Recently, Rune Sovndahl, CEO and co-founder of Fantastic Services, shared our ‘fantastic story’ with Start Your Business Magazine – The UK’s best-selling, small business magazine for entrepreneurs.
Rune explained how it all began. Once upon a time, he needed to get his deposit back from a rented flat. With this in mind, he thought wouldn’t it be great, if there was a cleaning company that could guarantee your landlord would return your full deposit. Combined with the fact that Rune also has a skin condition that makes cleaning pretty tough for him (his hands swell up like balloons when they come into contact with dust and water) the idea of Fantastic Cleaners started to form. He met Anton, his now business partner, and together Fantastic Services became a reality.
What helped them get there was being so driven. Even as a child, Rune – aged 10, can remember arranging his desk and playing at being a manager – “I had a stapler and pens, and I knew that one day I would have my own desk, in my own office, for my own business.”
Nowadays, lots of different people use Fantastic Services. Everyone from students to celebrities! Most recently, Made in Chelsea’s, Caggie Dunlop tweeted about her fantastic spring cleaning service, and she even mentioned the new GoFantastic app.
With our services, it’s an equal mix between the genders, with around a 50-50 split using them. But, what makes them return time after time? The high level of customer service we provide. Rune cites it as “the most important thing and the number one reason for our success.” Rune also hits on a very hot topic, one that affects some parts of the service industry and its workers – economic migration. There’s a lot of debate going on about the topic at the moment. However, Rune doesn’t think that it should be about nationality, but about contribution and work ethics. He explains that yes – the service industry does attract economic migrants, however, “I’m a big believer that it’s migrants that make society great. I think we often think too much about class systems and income, not recognising that labour is needed in society. We can’t all be managers and society need migrants to help contribute to an active workforce.”
He also talks about the impact of the development of new robotic technology, which could potentially change a lot of roles in the service industry. But, again Rune isn’t concerned by the leaps being made in technology. “I think it’s great and robotics will be used to tackle the most dangerous jobs. It’s an area that we are continuously looking into, and we will continue to work towards automation.” One day the company will look at installing cleaning robots but we’re not quite there yet. Finally, he talks about his top tips for anyone entering the service industry.