Never LATE Property Cleaning, LLC of Pinellas County
Ada McFarley grew up helping her single mother clean to supplement her Pinellas County School Board income. Years later, after being passed over for a promotion in the education field, she decided to take her destiny into her own hands.
“I was sitting in a job where I had just gotten passed over for a promotion and I was just tired,” she said. “I wanted to make my own model where you could make it thorough the glass ceiling if you were persistent and determined.”
McFarley launched Never LATE Property Cleaning, which now specializes in vacation rentals, while still working as an adjunct teacher at a local college. When she needed someone to review the basic business plan she’d put together, she reached out to the Florida SBDC at Pinellas County Economic Development, and certified business consultant Wayne Brass.
“Many people come in and just have a shotgun approach to the market,” Brass said of business owners. “A business plan gets them focused and it’s a requirement for any loan that you’re going to get.”
McFarley wasn’t expecting what she found in Brass. “It was humbling,” she said of his business plan review. “He just ripped it to shreds but I just kept coming. It was something I was really passionate about.”
Part of her passion comes from carrying the family torch while working her business. The word LATE in her business name represents the initials of her mother, sister, and daughters’ first names, and it serves as a daily reminder of sorts.
“I have some really powerful names in my company and that makes me show up every day wanting to give it all I’ve got,” she said.
Since she began working with the FSBDC at PCED, McFarley has received no-cost business plan assistance, attended a Growth Conference, and learned about QuickBooks and pricing strategy. She’s also worked with Dr. Cynthia Johnson, Director of FSBDC at PCED. As a result, her business is growing rapidly.
“I’d be a mom and pop cleaner if I hadn’t come to them,” she said. “I’d still be doing the cleaning myself. Had I not met these guys who took it to a new level, I probably would’ve been in that same template that my mom had.”
McFarley has grown her business to include six full-time employees, varying numbers of contract employees depending on the season, and approximately $390,000 in revenues for 2013.
She says even with all of the growth the company has experienced, she will continue to work with the FSBDC at PCED, focusing now on the financial aspects of her business.
Brass said his next step with McFarley is to focus on a financial analysis, so that she will truly understand the numbers. McFarley is just happy to have the help, and hopes other business owners will take advantage.
“They take the curve off of learning,” she said. “They are remarkable personal coaches. I would far say as a business owner, because they are in my corner, there is no problem that I’m going to encounter in my business that they’re not going to be able to turn around and get me where I should be. I can’t fail.”