Archive for July, 2009

Blog Stats June vs. July

Just took a look at my stats for July over June.  Just better than DOUBLE!!!!!  Thanks everyone, I enjoy writing on here and I’m glad you guys take time to stop by and give it a little read!!!!

AND I just looked at the stats for our website. There’s easily 5 times more visitors to the blog than there are to the website. I’m not sure if that’s good or bad, but I like it!!!


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Need a cooling off? Turn up the speakers!!!

My buddy Doug Burns at the Power of Two – Coaching sent this over to cool me off. I thought everyone would appreciated it!!!

Your Weather: rain in gp – The Weather Network

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Social Media – The debate continues

I’ve been very public about how I’m trying to fit twitter into my business model and I’m still really trying to puzzle it out.  I did come across this article entitled: 5 easy Social Media Wins for Your Small Business that I thought I would pass on.

I was speaking with a friend last night that works for a non-profit and she was trying to think of ways to fit twitter into their corporate culture.  Well, I said, that’s an easy one!  You have volunteer events, you host social functions, you have booths at local events and festivals, you have a presence in the community.  As well, they host classes on the topics of literacy (computer, social etc.) and so on.  To me, that’s a no brainer.

Dell and large organizations can utilize twitter to promote specials on machines, clear out old stock etc.

But what if you’re a recycling company? What if your customers are locally based? It’s not so blindingly obvious to me but I do want to maintain communication with clients and friends. For now that’s what I’m using it for.

Do you have a growing, service based business? How do you use twitter?

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When is it ok to litter? When it’s a cigarette apparently!

I don’t smoke. I used to smoke all through high-school. At the end of grade 12, it was about a pack a day. That’s expensive, and what lead me to quit was that I got a pretty horrific cough and I was scarred (literally) into seeking out the patch. Quitting was TOUGH! But I haven’t smoked in over 10 years.

One of the things that I most dislike about smoking is the littering that’s associated with it. How often does the person in front of you in traffic throw his butt out the window? OFTEN! Why? Because they know their cigarette butts are gross? Because they don’t want them in their car? They don’t want to empty the ashtray? Well… I don’t want them on my street! Good people that wouldn’t litter under normal circumstances feel compelled to chuck butts out of car windows. You don’t unwrap your sandwich and throw that on the ground.  You don’t just hurl pop cans into the road. The theory behind and the physical act are one and the same, why for cigarette butts is it any different? Why? STOP IT!

Driving to work this morning, and the impetus of this post, was that I saw a woman in the vestibule of her building finishing a cigarette.  She walked 2 meters towards the road and threw the butt into the street. Well, Miss, IT’S STILL LITTERING! I guess she did it because next to the door it’s garbage and she doesn’t want to mess up the entrance way.  Well…. Nothing has changed except the location of said detritus.

It obviously bothers me a bit and because of that I started poking about the net this morning and responding to blog posts and one link lead to another, and another, and then I found this site called “How Can I Reuse This” and the topic of cigarette butts.  They didn’t really have very many good suggestions, but they did come up with “fabric” because “fibre is fibre”. Still, does anyone have any real suggestions? I couldn’t begin to guess how they could be recycled, but maybe you all have some ideas.

Anything? Anything at all? I know what we shouldn’t be doing with them: throwing them into the street!!

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Breathing Space Consulting

Jodi @ Breathing Space Consulting likes us!!!  Not that it surprises me 🙂 but I sure do like hearing it!!!

Hi Thomas,

I just wanted to say thank you to you. Your guys did a great job at my clients on Wednesday.

They were very helpful, nice and accommodating.


Breathing Space Consulting  604.805.4902

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Twitter. Is it useful?

I don’t know.  I’m a signatory to the Twitter craze, but I’ve yet to get my groove on with it. I know I like to follow Lance Armstrong, but for business… ?

I’m open to new suggestions though should anyone have them.  Here’s an articl by which I thought was actually pretty cool.

Do people here use twitter for their businesses? For anything? What do you think?

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Price Loyal vs Brand Loyal

So, today I receive a call from a customer that is looking to have a stacking washer and dryer hauled away and recycled and she wants a price. Regularly our price for 1 time items like a washer or dryer is $75, but she’s both, and that’s about 2 yards, and we’re $45 per yard and so I say, “We do that.  $90 to have it recycled” or something to that effect.

She’s unimpressed with the price, so I suggest she phone around and see what she likes and she’s free to call us back at the end of the day.  I’m paraphrasing, but this is the gist of our conversation. Her retort is that she’s found a guy that can do it for $60.  “Well” I say. “It sounds like you’ve found a great deal! You should shake his hand and take him up on that”. Again, a paraphrase, but you get what I’m trying to say. I can’t do it for $60, I’ll lose money. He says he can. Hold him to it and solve the problem.

And so off I went about my morning. Phillips Lighting is downsizing a warehouse in Burnaby, and I have to pick up a cheque from a contractor in North Van and we have $10 off cards at Dunbar Lumber that need restocking and I go off to rip around on my scooter and enjoy the weather and all of that. But as I’m out tootling around I get to thinking, “Maybe I gave her bad advice”.  “Maybe she didn’t get a good deal!”

Maybe the people you hire to come into your house and remove appliances SHOULDN’T go to the lowest bidder.  What if, as I suggest on my website, that when you pay peanuts you get monkeys? What if, as I suspect, for the price of $60 it’s actually not profitable.  What if, the other company (if it was a company) loses money. After all, there can only be 1 least expensive guy. Right? And, he probably hires the least expensive employees, and they probably demonstrate the least level of care in the owners home.  Right? Am I out to lunch here? If we think it through, isn’t this the logical conclusion?

Sure you can compare prices when you buy Tide for instance.  Here’s it’s $12, there it’s $8. Same Tide package. Same Tide soap.  Who cares? Save the money.


John, although a new employee, is also a professional mover.  Shouldn’t that account for something? Isn’t it worth the $30 difference to not hire a painter/drywaller/handy person to repair the dings in your wall?  Or to not have to drive to Rona and buy a new can of paint after you source a sample that you can have matched? Don’t you want to be guaranteed that your items go for recycling and not (as I saw on my trip out to Philips dumped on the side of the road like the pile of carpet and renovation debris)?

The type of customers we LOVE at Fresh Start take all these things into consideration.  The $30 doesn’t sound like a big difference to me when I weigh out the hassel of having yahoos bang a 200lb stacking washer and dryer into my wall and door jam after they realize it’s too tall/wide for the exit.

This is turning into a longer post than anticipated but I think this related story is relevant. Recently I went to get a massage from Jen Dobell at Pure Performance Massage Therapy, and I can’t remember what it cost. Truthfully, I don’t care.  When I went in there it was because I’d hurt something when I moved, and I couldn’t stand up straight and I was in significant, SIGNIFICANT pain.  She spent an hour working on me and the pain went from hurting at a light touch to gradually and slowly working on my problem.  I needed the full hour, but she was awesome!  Do I care what it cost? No. Would I recommend her to anyone? YES! It was phenomenal.

I’m brand loyal to Jen Dobel and the rest of the gang at Pure Performance, not price loyal.  And when I think of the hassle of hiring any old somebody to come into my HOME and take out appliances that were plumbed into the wall, I don’t want that left up to any old somebody.

Similar experiences anyone?

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