Window Cleaning Magazine editor Lee Burbidge has today become the official owner of the Guild Of Master Window Cleaners.
The Guild was started 7 years ago by Nathanael Jones and was never intended as an alternative to the trade associations at the time instead it was built from the start to be something different . The founding members looked closely at the huge changes that the industry had faced in recent years such as affordable water fed pole systems, the changes to the Heath & Safety Working At Height Regulations (WAHR) and the huge increase in advertising and marketing that most sole traders never had to compete with before.
The purpose of the Guild was clear to share information, to promote safer working practices in the industry and to help small companies and ‘one man bands’ to market their business effectively and remain visible to their potential customers despite increased competition.
Nathanael no longer window cleans and instead works within his busy web design company. He will still be involved in the changes Lee Burbidge would like to make to the Guild web site and Lee looks forward to working with him.
WCM : What does this mean for current Guild members?
Lee: The current members will notice in the coming 6 months an increase in benefits available to them that they simply cannot get anywhere else. For example, heavily discounted pure water systems, special deals on insurance and business software such as Round Partner plus much, much more.
WCM: What is your plan with the website its self?
Lee: The web site comes with a forum, formerly ACS Forums with some 1,600 members. We will merge this on to the Window Cleaning Magazine web site together with a Facebook button to our WCM Facebook Group of just under 2000 members thus offering multiple options for the users desired method of communicating with other window cleaners.
I will be looking at possible improvements to the Guild website in order to enhance the user experience. We want to push safety in a big way and look at the resources for all window cleaning business owners. I want to be able to help the members from knowing how to carry out risk assessments to saving money with our Guild Partners.
WCM: How does this affect the FWC?
Lee: It dosen’t. We would see the FWC as a partner. They are a trade body currently recognised by the Government. In fact only this week we have started moves to get involved with the IWCA ( International Window Cleaning Association) on a unified approach to safety for window cleaners.
WCM TV is also planning commercials to drill home the safety message with some hard hitting film.
WCM: what would you like to achieve with the Guild
Lee: To promote safety.
Offer the best resources going in the UK for added membership value.
To tender for national contracts for Guild members.
To promote a professionalism in the industry.
But above all, to LISTEN to its members.
We are listening to our members and would encourage non -members to help shape the Guild and join us. The Guild has potential to be massive and give window cleaners what they really want.
Window cleaners will feel proud of that badge on their van and we will educate the public and facilities managers up and down the UK that its a badge they can certainly trust.