CHICAGO — In the spirit of Halloween, American Drycleaner asked members of the trade audience to answer which spooky scenario frightens them the most. And while there was a clear-cut No. 1 choice, every potential situation presented in the Wire survey received votes.
Top of the list—at 26.3%—was receiving a call from the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) after it had received an anonymous complaint. Running a close second at 23.7% was a lengthy power outage. Third (15.8%) was “other,” including fears of going out of business and being investigated by the Environmental Protection Agency.
Other scenarios were a key piece of equipment is out of commission (13.2%), a big customer stops using your service (10.5%), a staff member injured on the job threatens to sue (5.3%), circumstances force a 10% cut in next year’s budget (2.6%), and an audit reveals that funds are missing (2.6%).
Operators were asked about the most frightening thing to have affected their store or plant. Some of the responses were:
The U.S. economy’s recent peaks and valleys have rivaled those of the scariest roller coaster. So, what is operators’ outlook for 2012? Approximately 23% believe the economy will be better. The largest share—35%—believes it will be about the same. Thirty percent believe it will be worse, and 12.5% are unsure.
While the Wire survey presents a snapshot of readers’ viewpoints at a particular moment, it should not be considered scientific.
Subscribers to Wire e-mails—distributed twice weekly—are invited to take the industry survey anonymously online each month. All dry cleaners are encouraged to participate, as a greater number of responses will help to better define operator opinions and industry trends.
To sign up for the Wire, click the “Subscriptions” button at the top right-hand corner of this page and follow the instructions.