Are you ready to respond, not react to this crisis? I’ve weathered many economic downturns over the past few decades, and I’d like to share what I’ve learned with you. The next thing I’d like to cover about managing this crisis is how to maximize the opportunity that it provides.

When I say “maximize the opportunity” this does not mean you exploit or price-gouge. Instead, you should promote deep cleanings, disinfection cleans, office cleanings, and find ways to serve your community. Suggest to customers who want to cancel their appointments that they donate their recurring payment towards a free cleaning we then provide to medical professionals.

Be aware of the fine line between maximizing the opportunity and taking advantage of people’s pain—you don’t want to do the latter.

There is a run on maid services just like the run on toilet paper. Service is booming. People want their houses or offices cleaned and we are offering as many deep cleanings as we can to our customers. One idea for clients that are thinking about skipping their appointments— suggest that if they pay for the appointment now, you’ll return later with a steam cleaner and provide two extra hours of free steam cleaning for disinfection without harsh chemicals, at no cost to them.

If a client calls and says, “I hate to do this to you but we’re sick so we have to cancel a couple of cleanings,” you can take advantage of the moment and ask if they happen to have an office that needs cleaning. Then they can keep paying for their house cleaning but you clean their office instead. One way to close that sale is to mention the long list of things that you can sanitize to keep their employees safe and healthy.

Maybe you’ve never cleaned offices, you only focus on home cleaning. Now is the time to pivot. Perhaps your client is an attorney and he has a law office. With your offer to clean his office, he might think “Great idea!” You mention that you can come in and sanitize all the doorknobs, wipe down all the metal, wipe down the thermostat buttons and alarm system buttons, sanitize the bathrooms.

Another option if a customer is cancelling is to suggest that even though they’re skipping, that they could contribute the cost of their cleaning via a gift card that would go to someone in the healthcare profession or who performs other vital services. These people are on the front lines and exhausted, and what a fabulous gift it would be to thank them for their service with a free house cleaning.

If you have cancer patients that you clean for, you could also offer that your client’s skipped cleaning payment goes to pay for an additional cleaning for those cancer patients. It’s more important than ever that everyone have a clean home and donating a cleaning is such a nice gesture. It’s worth a try!

Need more tips NOW on surviving this crisis? Join the 10-day Coronavirus Response Challenge. I’ve got advice on what to do, how to respond, how to deal with media, and how to reassure customers and employees during the COVID19 Crisis.