Proposal Presentation / Closing

Bringing your finished proposal back to the customer should be a golden opportunity to further sell yourself and your service. Truth is, though, no two presentations are the same. I’ve had rather discouraging presentations where the office manger had to run-off to deal with another emergency leaving me no alternative but to leave the proposal behind on his or her desk, And I’ve had the very-involved presentation sitting in a large conference room with four department heads who took the cleaning of their facility very seriously. In a situation like the later, carry a copy of the proposal as a reference guide to the questions they are sure to ask you. You will need a copy of the proposal regardless for your own files, so you might as well bring one to every presentation just in case you find yourself in a room full of executives. Most of the time, though, you’ll be dealing with only one person – the office manger.

Be sure to call first to set-up an appointment for presenting the proposal. Don’t simply walk in without some notice. Besides, you’re chances will be much better that the right people will take the time to sit with you and hear you out.

What should you wear to such presentations? The larger the company, the greater the need for dress-up. But for the most part I recommend corporate casual. Although I’ve never showed up in shorts and sandals during a presentation, I have worn jeans, clean sneakers and a polo style shirt to companies with minimal dress codes (an observation made during the tour). You can eventually have your company name and/or logo emblazoned on your shirts. The best outfit to wear? The outfit which makes you feel confident in what you’re doing.

Questions and issues most commonly brought up during this interview:

Washrooms: Companies take their washroom cleaning very seriously. Be prepared to sell your abilities in this area should they bring it up and want solid assurances.

Dusting: Same as washrooms. You will win a lot of work because of the present dusty conditions of the facility. That, and cobwebs. Conversely, you will lose a lot of work if you are negligent in these areas.

Crew: It may seem like a trick question, but some companies ask what type people do you hire. Diffuse it by stating this account is on your route and that you, personally, will be servicing it.

Hours serviced: The customer may not want the cleaning crew to arrive too early. Establish a time that both sides will be comfortable with.

Security: Some managers have arrived at their office only to discover that the front door was left unlocked. Or that the alarm, should they have one, was not reset, or worse, tripped by the cleaning service. Assure them that your staff is specifically trained in this area. Make sure that you actually have this training.

Chapter 15__First Day of Service