The Window Washers Office

Several years ago I called a window washing company and asked if they were hiring. The owner answered and said yes. We arranged to meet up at a job site, to talk and to prove to him that I am a experienced window cleaner.

One of the first questions he asked me was, “Did you see my office? On my website?”

There is a photo at the companies website labeled “Our Office” - a beautiful, sturdy, clean, and modern home office. One part of the photo kind of stuck-out-of-place, and it was a 12" squeegee that looked to have been tacked up onto the wall.

It dawned on me that he may have been washing windows at a persons house with a fancy office, and brought along some thumbtacks and quickly rushed to hang his squeegee up on the wall, and snapped a picture of it for the website.

He called it “My office”.

How do you know it’s not his office? Did he say so? Are you asking a question or just making a comment.

i knew a guy who played a background tape of busy big office noise everytime he answered his phone. AND tapped away noisily on a keyboard that was not plugged in, telling customers the various “options”

Well, I worked for him for 1 day. We completed a couple (expensive) jobs, and I did good work. I also hustled up an additional project lead for his company speaking to a facility manager at another building.

He was a chain smoker and a alcoholic. He was a likable person, really, interesting person. But he had a bitter attitude about life in general. He complained and put-down other window cleaning businesses in the area who were performing better.

He had a number of previous workers hurt on the job. He hired completely inexperienced window cleaners. It is not uncommon in large U.S. cities, he was comfortable only hiring immigrants from his native country. He shared some sad stories, he learned the hardest way, about the importance of safety training.

The guy may have been in the vicinity of being at rock-bottom. He was also solid and strong in many ways. I learned a lot working for him that day. I enjoyed the jobs.

The next day, I phone him and asked to see some money for my work, and (as I suspected he would) got irritable and defensive. He was drunk at noon, and I could hear in his voice, a heavy drinker. I had to haggle for minimum wage, which was an insult considering the price of the work I helped to complete.

After all was said and done, I told him to forget about it, you keep the money, thanks for the experience, but I am going to continue seeking employment elsewhere. He needed the money more then me.

Personally, I liked the guy. I like underdogs! I wanted to work for him and be a dedicated employee, but he was certainly planning to stiff me for my time.

I figure that he needed to undercut the employees to keep up with paying those bills, for his lavish window washers office.

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