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Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Meet Mike Smith

You may never meet him or see him at one of our stores, but trust me, his fingertips touch everything A Cleaner World related.  Who is this mystery person, you ask.  It’s Mike Smith, and given how much I’ve talked about him, I’m guessing you feel like you already know him.  But let me tell you a few things that you may not know.

He came to A Cleaner World at the age of 24 because he needed a job.  It was one of those situations where someone’s mom knew Mike’s mom, and someone else knew his wife.  Thirty years later, it’s more than just a job to him.  He’s driven by providing both the best customer service and delivering the best quality for every customer on every single visit; therefore, he seeks to hire folks with the same philosophy and then takes the time to invest in them properly.

Mike has coined the phrase: “We have to be smarter than the label.”  Garment manufacturers and importers must provide a ‘reasonable basis for all care instructions and warnings’, but Mike has learned over the years that cleaning only by the label’s instructions can result in undesired outcomes.  When he started in the business thirty years ago, 95% of the garments he saw were dry clean only.  Today cleaning clothes is much more technical, so he’s constantly training staff and educating himself to ensure every garment receives the best care.

He’s on his phone more than most teenagers.  There are times when I think his phone is glued to his ear, but that’s because he’s simply in demand.  He knows everything – from how to handle a problem garment to how to fix a piece of machinery to how to boil shrimp.  He’s like superman in khakis.

He repels dirty.  Seriously.  I’ve never seen him dirty, in anything less dressy than khaki pants and a golf shirt, or without his shirt tail tucked in.  He’s always so put together that he’s earned the name “Mr. Clean”.  Fitting.  In fact, Steve Plantone once told me that Mike can fix a greasy piece of equipment and still look freshly pressed and spotless.  I believe that dirt is afraid of him.  And the truth is – it should be.

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