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Finding the why in iClean – with Willem Flach

Finding the why in iClean – with Willem Flach

Ever wondered why you do what you do?

We certainly have.

In fact, our CEO (Chief Enthusiasm Officer) and founder thinks about it every day. And that’s why he’s also known as our company life coach or mastermind. Sometimes we also call him by his actual name.

To find out the dirt on iClean (we love a good cleaning pun), we’ve delved into the depths of Willem’s mind. He came clean (sorry, we’ll stop now) on his daily routine, life before iClean – and why he does what he does.

So, let’s start from the beginning of his day. And we’re not exaggerating when we say… the beginning.

Kick-start the day off right

The alarm goes off at 4am. Gasp. It might not be everyone’s cup of tea (although you’ll need one at that hour), but that’s when Willem Flach starts his day.

‘The world is quiet at this time’ says Will. ‘I get a lot done. In fact, there’s 14 things I get done before anyone else gets up.’ 

He starts with a dose of daily mentoring from Darren Hardy (if you’re not familiar with DarrenDaily, make sure you check it out). This is followed by exercise, plenty of water and an entry in his gratitude journal, before finally bringing his wife and business partner, Jen, a cup of tea.

To have more you have to become more

Whether you’re running your own business or showing up to work for someone else, Will believes in being the best version of ‘you’ that you can be.

Will believes the world is moving at such a pace that you can’t afford not to invest in yourself.

Putting in the time to upskill in a particular area such as communication or time management is vital when you’re leading a team, especially a remote team. And being an inspiring leader is a non-negotiable.

On Will’s desk is a photo of him with his former mentor, Jim Rohn. Jim was an entrepreneur and author, known for his motivational quotes (‘Either you run the day, or the day runs you’ sound familiar?). The photo was taken 30 years ago when the pair met at a conference on the Gold Coast, and Jim has been a huge influence on Will’s life ever since. In fact, iClean wouldn’t be where it is today without his advice.

The path to iClean

When you speak to Will about his background, it’s almost as though you can see the stars aligning and forming the iClean constellation as he talks.

An analytical, scientific-based mind (from his days as a diligent science student) comes in handy when dealing with ATP testing and hospital-grade cleaning. Combine that with the people management skills learnt from his time running restaurants and then throw in the systems and processes picked up while turning around a mate’s flailing cleaning company. And you’ll come to the conclusion that Will is well-qualified to successfully lead the iClean team. Each experience has contributed to iClean’s story.

Looking outside his own industry for the secrets of success is another driving force.

Will recounts a story of driving through McDonalds on his way to the football from Wangaratta. Now one of his favourite brands, he was blown away by the consistency in look and feel between every single door of the successful franchise. ‘It’s all about systems…or following the recipe’.

A few simple disciplines, every day

You may’ve noticed already, Will is a disciplined man. After all, getting up at 4am and completing a morning routine doesn’t make everyone’s daily checklist.

Well versed in the ‘7 habits of highly effective people’ he makes a point of working in quadrant two of Steven Covey’s effective time management matrix. Relationship-building, planning and recognising new opportunities may not seem like urgent priorities to you. But according to Will (and Covey), they are the areas you need to focus on most of all!

This investment in time and disciplined practice is evident in iClean’s detailed systems, the commitment to training and compliance and the innovative ways of communicating with the team.

Finding joy in the relationships

When you ask Will what gives him the most joy, other than spending time with Jen (who let’s be honest, is the dictionary definition of joy), his face lights up.

He talks with great passion about the terrific people who make up the iClean team. From a range of backgrounds, many having come to Australia as refugees, it’s obvious Will and Jen are emotionally invested in their people and are grateful for the hard work they put in.

Whether helping their staff to start a new life, or giving a salary advance to fly out a family member for a special occasion, Will and Jen go over and above to support their people. They are firm believers of the philosophy ‘take care of your employees and they will take care of your clients’.

Do great work by loving what you do

Doing the right thing goes beyond just looking after staff and clients.

Each morning when Will tunes in to DarrenDaily, he not only listens to advice but always takes time to share his own pearls of wisdom, joining a community of people committed to self-development.

His passion for the business is undeniable. When asked what he would do if he had the winning $5M lottery ticket he replies, ‘I’d travel to Antarctica and Sri Lanka. These days you can run a business from anywhere in the world.’

He follows this with ideas about how he’d help build wells in places without clean water, and how travel is the best education you can get.

So even with all that money you’d keep working Will?

‘Of course. I like business,’ he says. ‘I’ll be doing it ‘til the day I die… how else would I keep my brain occupied?’