National Clothesline
February 2019
National Clothesline
New look at Clean. A new look is in store
for the educational sessions at the Clean
Show with morning sessions geared to
the interests of particular industry
segments and afternoon general
sessions with topics of broader interest
to all attendees.
Make no mistake. When Levi Rottenberg
purchased Executive Wholesale
Laundry of Farmingdale, NY, about a
dozen years ago, he hoped not to lose
too many shirts since the business was
devoted to laundering them. But he was
more afraid of losing his own shirt.
Many happy returns. Acquiring a new
customer costs anywhere from five to 25
times more than retaining an existing
one. Larry Siegel outlines low-cost
strategies for keeping the customers you
The pain to train. Shirts are a pain
because it takes longer to train pressers
than for other types of garments. But
what really makes for a good shirt
presser, Don Desrosiers asks.
Pesky employees. Running a business
would be so much easier without
employees. So why not just call them
independent contractors? Maybe not a
good idea, Frank Kollman says.
Classes begin. DLI’s School of Dry
Cleaning Technology begins its 2019
schedule this month with introductory
and advanced Drycleaning courses.

Complete table of contents
of this issue
View the flipbook version here.
Industry stars gather to brainstorm
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The annual midwinter getaway sponsored by the Drycleaning and Laundry Institute and the National
Cleaners Association, known as Brainstorming with the Five Stars, proved to be timely this year.
While much of the nation was frozen solid in an Arctic blast, the 100-and-some industry members
who headed to St. Maarten for the Jan. 17-20 conference enjoyed warm sunshine and sandy
beaches mixed with friendly networking and insightful speakers.
It was the eighth gathering in what has become an annual event that began in Puerto Rico in 2012
when the two associations first combined what had been separate winter conferences — NCA with its
Brainstorming event and DLI with its Five Stars conference.
The social aspect of the winter conference got underway with a cocktail reception on Thursday
evening at the Sonesta Ocean Point Resort, a boutique, all-inclusive resort where all rooms have an
ocean view.
The business portion of the program opened on Friday morning, the first of three morning sessions
where speakers imparted their specialized knowledge with Saturday and Sunday morning sessions
following before attendees had to return to the twin realities of business as usual and life in a wintry
Speakers included Jeff Tippett, on persuasive communications, John DiJulius on customer service,
and Arthur Greeno, who explained the secret to Chick fil-A’s success in building a business based
largely on minimum wage workers.
DiJulius spoke about a customer service revolution and the need to become a brand that customers
can’t live without.
“You are in the customer perception business,” he said. “Do not ask customers what they want. Give
them something they can’t live without.”
He recalled the words of Henry Ford who said, “If I had asked people what they want, they would
have said faster horses.”