Classy Clothes and Cleanliness Built This Pumper's Excellent Reputation

Raymond Harris' pressed work shirts and spotless trucks go a long way in maintaining a professional image

Classy Clothes and Cleanliness Built This Pumper's Excellent Reputation

Interested in Business?

Get Business articles, news and videos right in your inbox! Sign up now.

Business + Get Alerts

Raymond Harris prides himself on taking a professional approach to running his septic pumping business, Sunshine Septic, based in Springfield, Tennessee. Whether it’s the uniform he wears or the sparkling-clean, bright-yellow trucks he drives, Harris knows that a professional image helps generate repeat business and good word-of-mouth referrals.

Take the uniform, for example. Harris wears tan work pants and a tan pressed work shirt, all made by Dickies, plus a baseball cap with the company’s name on it. He also carries an extra uniform in his truck, so if he gets too dirty, he can change into a clean uniform. And instead of having his first name embroidered on the work shirt, he opted for Sunshine, figuring it would reinforce his brand-recognition efforts. “As a result, lots of customers call me Sunshine,” he jokes.

Why bother with a uniform? Customers respect cleanliness and professionalism. “Too many guys pump tanks in flip-flops and ripped shorts,” he says. “When I pull up to a $2 million home in some of these subdivisions, I’ve got to look sharp — clean-shaven and my hair cut, just the way I’d want someone to look like if they come to my house. Appearance goes a long way.”

Harris also carries dish soap and a jug of water in his truck and makes a point of washing his hands in front of customers before doing any paperwork. He also shakes customers’ hands and thanks them, so he figures he’d better have clean hands. “It’s all about the visuals,” he says.

Moreover, Harris also knows that it never hurts to make a service call a memorable experience. To that end, he gives customers a scented Yankee candle. “I tell them, ‘Here’s something that smells a little better than your tank,’” he says. “They’ll never forget you. Never.”

To learn more about Harris and his business, read a contractor profile story in the May issue of Pumper.


Comments on this site are submitted by users and are not endorsed by nor do they reflect the views or opinions of COLE Publishing, Inc. Comments are moderated before being posted.