Former Banker Turned Janitor Makes $10 Million Annually

Former Banker Turned Janitor Makes $10 Million Annually

John Disselkamp made a bold move when he left his comfortable, high-paying job in banking to pursue a career in janitorial work. While this decision initially seemed like career suicide, it ultimately led to the creation of a successful $10 million janitorial company.

Despite the skepticism he faced, Disselkamp’s determination paid off. Today, he is the owner and leader of a thriving business, proving that taking risks and following your passions can lead to great success.

From Janitor to Entrepreneur

At the age of 35, Disselkamp left his job at a bank in Louisville, Kentucky, and moved in with his mother. He had no retirement savings and was in debt. Disselkamp was inspired by a former banking client who had opened a successful cleaning business. He decided to learn the business from the ground up and got a job as a janitor, earning $600 a month.

Disselkamp’s plan was to gain experience in the cleaning business and eventually start his own company. He worked hard and learned everything he could about the industry. After a year of working as a janitor, he started his own cleaning business.

Disselkamp’s experience as a janitor gave him a unique perspective on the cleaning business. He knew what it was like to be on the front lines, doing the hard work. This knowledge helped him to build a successful business that focused on quality and customer service.

Today, Disselkamp’s cleaning business is thriving, and he is living proof that with hard work and determination, anyone can achieve their dreams.

A Fish Out of Water

At the start of his business, the owner had little knowledge about the cleaning industry. When asked by a building owner what to use to clean the floor, he had to take a picture and reach out to a friend for help. Despite this humbling experience, he realized that his strength lay in his ability to seek assistance when needed. He recognized that his business was not just about cleaning, but about connecting with people. He saw the value in building relationships with his clients and understanding their needs. This realization helped him to grow his business and become successful in the industry.

From Cleaning One Toilet to Many

John Disselkamp’s journey from being a janitor to owning a commercial cleaning company with 330 employees and serving roughly 5 million square feet per night started with a cold call. Disselkamp looked up a prominent local property management company and called a guy whose name he found on their website. After leaving multiple messages, he finally received a call back three weeks later. Two months after that, his company had a gig cleaning an eight-story, 200,000-square-foot building.

Over time, Disselkamp’s company, First Class Commercial Cleaning, grew to employ hundreds of people and expanded its services to include not just commercial cleaning, but also floor care, window cleaning, and more. The company’s success is a testament to Disselkamp’s persistence and hard work, as well as his ability to provide high-quality service to his clients. Today, First Class Commercial Cleaning is a leader in the industry, providing top-notch cleaning services to businesses and organizations throughout the region.

The Power of Teamwork

Disselkamp attributes his success to his team of 330 individuals who work tirelessly to serve others. From the leadership and management team to the frontline cleaners, each member genuinely cares about their work and strives to make a difference. By working together, they are able to achieve more than any individual could on their own. This emphasizes the importance of teamwork in achieving success, as it allows individuals to combine their strengths and skills to accomplish a common goal.

Doing Common Things Uncommonly Well

One of the secrets to success for many businesses is the ability to care about team members as much as customers. This is a philosophy that has been embraced by many successful entrepreneurs, including the founder of a company featured in the “Fail Your Way to Success” podcast.

According to the founder, the key to growing a simple business is to genuinely care about team members. This means going beyond the surface level and making a real effort to build trust and establish one-on-one relationships with employees. This approach has been proven to be more effective than simply providing perks like ping pong tables or outdoor lunch areas.

The founder acknowledges that achieving this level of care is not easy. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication to make employees feel like they are a part of something bigger. However, the rewards of this approach can be significant, as evidenced by the success of the featured company.

Of course, the road to success is never easy. The founder admits to having many days where they felt like giving up. However, they recognize that perseverance and grit are essential qualities for anyone who wants to succeed in business.

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In summary, caring about team members is a crucial element of success for any business. By building trust and establishing one-on-one relationships, entrepreneurs can create a culture that fosters growth and success.

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Created by Martin Hamilton