If a franchisor suggests that your job as a franchisee will be “effortless” or “without challenges,” you might want to question their business model. While established brands provide invaluable tools and ongoing support, it’s important to remember that effort is needed to turn those resources into results.

Dan Nestor, co-founder and president of NEXClean, shared what has worked for his specialty commercial cleaning company. “A franchise playbook can only take a franchisee so far,” he said. “We’re positioning our brand as a wealth-building concept for franchisees. This is not just a replacement income. You will learn how to build equity and wealth in the service industry, and it will take hard work and determination.”

Nestor knows a thing or two about work ethic; he and Mike Quinn started their business in college and put in the sweat equity to build it into what it is today. NEXClean is known for its reliable, high-quality
cleaning services and its ongoing contracts with big-name companies and consistent referral work show that it’s doing something right.

That success is shared with franchisees who embrace the brand’s “roll up your sleeves’’ mentality. “There are no shortcuts,” explained Sean Richards, owner of the Dover, Delaware, NEXClean location. “The shortcuts are hard work, persistence and grit.”

With this in mind, Nestor has created systems to streamline franchisee efforts, resulting in growth. The brand prides itself on its transparency and constant communication with franchisees to discuss best practices and make changes when necessary.

“We use the term ‘partner’ because we understand that their success is going to be the brand’s success,” Nestor explained. “We’re an open book, and we have a team built to support them for whatever they might be up against.”

In particular, NEXClean’s sales program leverages its internal network to carry big clients into open territories and markets. Franchisees also have access to the brand’s list of existing clients, which means that some territories have revenue opportunities from the get-go. While both of those tools should give new franchise partners plenty of work, NEXClean also has a robust digital marketing campaign, including social media efforts, pay-per-click campaigns on search engines and content production on various channels.

Richards noted that the brand’s marketing has paid off. While he already has a lot of clients, he has been able to grow faster than he expected with leads forwarded from corporate’s marketing team. “We get a lot of clients coming in and inquiring through those platforms. We just go after them and try to close the deal,” he said.

Since opening his franchise in 2018, Richards has secured multiple repeat clients through the brand’s two major divisions: healthcare and commercial janitorial services. NEXClean takes on a wide range of jobs, from three-month-long post-construction projects for universities to twice-a-week small-office cleanings, resulting in consistent work. Richards has been so successful that he is beginning to hire new employees to keep up with the demand.

“We are servicing the Applebee’s Group in Delaware, which is nine locations that we’re servicing seven days a week, and we are servicing five of Delaware State University’s dining halls. So it’s a lot of coordinating supplies, coordinating subcontractors in New Jersey and just managing the overall logistics of servicing every client we have on a day-to-day basis. We’re very busy,” he said.

Thanks to the brand’s commitment to high standards, that demand is expected to continue. NEXClean currently has open territories in the New York metropolitan area.

Brianna Bohn