An interview with Tamara Wilson, Founder and CEO of A Vibrant Cleaning Solution
Tamara is one of the most appreciative, humble and professional human beings, I’ve had the pleasure of working with. What I appreciated most about working with her, is how she valued my time and always said thank you. In business and especially in her line of work, these are two things that make her an asset in the Professional Cleaning Services industry.
Check out her interview to learn more about her and her business.
Where are you originally from
My family and I are originally from Newark, New Jersey. However, we currently reside in North Carolina, home of the Carolina Panthers, “go Panthers”.
What was life like growing up where you grew up
Hmm…growing up in New Jersey was all about family. You had grandmother (rest her soul), my mom, my brother and sister, aunts, uncle and cousins. We all lived together in a 3 story home. At least two weekends out the month we would either: go to the beach, visit one of the local amusement parks or have a family cookout.
Regardless of what we were doing, we always had fun, laughed and created priceless memories!
How many siblings do you have
- My sister: she is the oldest, she is furthering her education and career in the Healthcare Industry.
- My brother: the middle child (rest his soul), passed away in a tragic car accident in Dec 2011.
- Then there is me: I am the youngest and I have a one year old son Amir, whom I love very much!
I’ve always dreamed of having my own business ever since I was a young girl.
What’s a childhood fear you overcame
As a child I remember being very shy. I would never volunteer to speak in front of the class, how’s that for an up and coming business woman, lol. It wasn’t until after high school, when I enlisted in the military that I found “my thing”…some sort of empowerment. I was eager to “pay it forward” and help others, the fear of being shy was no longer there.
What’s your educational background
Upon graduating high school, I joined the military and then began my undergraduate studies at Johnson C. Smith University. I served a total of 8 years in the U.S Army Reserves. After graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science, I accepted a job at a hospital as a Computer Application Specialist. Working in the healthcare field became intriguing, so within a year I found myself going back to school.
I studied Healthcare Information Technology at the University of NC at Charlotte, and within a few years I graduated with a Master’s Degree in Healthcare Administration from Strayer University.
What attracted you to this field
I have always enjoyed doing things that put a smile on peoples’ faces, as well as in their heart. Just because we associate ourselves with people, we don’t always know what they need. I am motivated when it comes down to helping, serving and making a difference.
Tell us about your business and the services you offer
I started my cleaning business from a Passion of cleaning and a Purpose to serve. I know most people get into this type of business because it is an easy startup and doesn’t require much funding. Although this is true, I believe in doing what I enjoy most and that is putting to use my gifts and talents to serve others.
A Vibrant Cleaning Solution is a locally owned and operating business located outside of Cabarrus County. We provide professional cleaning services to commercial and residential clients. In addition to our cleaning services, we also work closely with other local organizations to assist and develop a relationship within the community.
How long have you been in business
I have been in business for a year and a half.
What’s your overhead like
Since starting my business I’ve had little overhead. Basically in the beginning, I made sure to only purchase items that were necessary such as supplies, business insurance, and marketing material. Some of the ways I’ve managed to cut down on cost is by running my business remotely and purchasing cleaning supplies and agents in bulk.
How did you fund your business when you started out
When I first started the business, I used a lot of my own personal funds. Once business picked up and we established more clients, I was able to profit and use the revenue that came in, to continue funding the business.
How many customers did you have when you first started out vs now
Starting out was a little tough. I had a few customers here and there, but I remained faithful, kept marketing, and continued in my purpose to serve. I am pleased to say, that over time the business has attracted many great clients, whom we greatly enjoy providing service to.
What are 2 key things that make your business unique
The two key differences that separate A Vibrant Cleaning Solution from other cleaning service businesses are:
1. We are an eco-friendly “green” cleaning company. With that being said, we take into consideration using products that are hypoallergenic, user-friendly, and safe for our clients, as well as their families.
2. In addition, we pride ourselves as a business that helps out and does work in the community as a whole.
As a business owner I look at the bigger picture: “You cannot provide a service to the people without serving the community, the people make up the community.”
What is the one thing you think your industry lacks, that you wish to change
The one thing I think the cleaning industry lacks is consistency. I think the majority of startup cleaning companies are excited about landing deals, that they forget to be consistent. The problem comes in after a few contracts and things aren’t as precise as in the beginning.
Before you know it, you are getting more complaints than contracts. I would rather do a great job and guarantee my work, instead of letting valued clients walk away.
What drove you to choose Entrepreneurship
I chose to become an entrepreneur for a few reasons. First it allows me the opportunity to do what I love as often as I want to. Secondly, this approach allows me to dig into my own creativity and uniquely bring about a solution.
How many employees do you have and how do you manage them
As of today, I have a handful of trusted employees that I can rely on. The key to managing and retaining good employees is communication and delegation, effectively as well efficiently. I keep my team in the loop, they are familiar with the company standards, their responsibility and what is to be expected.
I respect my employees as individuals, in addition to the job they perform. Therefore, I don’t mind rewarding them with a “Thank You” note or a card. I believe rewards and recognition for a job well done, goes a long way. I want my team to know that I truly care and do not take their hard work for granted.
How do you manage being a mom and running a business
I started my business when my son turned three months’ and I must admit it was a tough task. I am a mother first, but I proudly continue to run my business with purpose. The one thing that keeps me going is my inner strength from the Lord, knowing my purpose, and that one day i’ll be able to look my son in the eyes and say, “Through it all, Mommy did it.” As my son gets older, he will also be helping and doing his part to serve in the business.
What do you love most about what you’re doing
- I love knowing that someway, somehow I am helping to make a difference.
- I love that I can be myself and give to people from a genuine heart.
- I love that A Vibrant Cleaning Solution offers professional cleaning services while connecting with the community.
What do you do in your spare time
When I have spare time I read, spend quality time with my family, work out, volunteer, or just meditate and focus.
What is your best advice for other Entrepreneur’s
The best advice I can give to a new entrepreneur is to never quit. Stay true to your passion and purpose, whatever you are destined to do in this life; will eventually happen. Take baby steps into success and have fun, dig deep within and keep going.
Where do you see your business in the next 5 years
Within the next five years, I see the business planting seeds of greatness in the community. I see expansion and potentially opening up new locations. I see A Vibrant Cleaning Solution excelling beyond what I imagined when I initially established and opened the business.
I would also like to add that in the near future, we’ll be offering a wide variety of value-added services to enhance our current offerings.
What is your favorite quote and Why
While I was serving in the military, my supply sergeant once told me
“Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard.”~ Kevin Durant
I like this quote because it takes more than talent to produce results, more often than not, it takes hard work and dedication.