We had the good fortune of connecting with Stephanie Guerra and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Stephanie, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
I always knew that I one day wanted to have my own business. I knew that I wanted to be able to call my own shots, make my own rules and provide a great working environment for others that would eventually lead them to one day being business owners themselves. I just needed a push, a sign, something to tell me to press go and to not look back. Suddenly, in came Xelda, my now two year old, going on three, little girl. After becoming a mom, I struggled with the thought of having to return to my regular full-time job and not being able to spend time with my daughter, missing the most important moments in her life like taking her first step, saying her first word and seeing her grow minute by minute and hour per hour. Xelda, or Poochichi as I like to call her, has given me the determination, drive and force to actually push me to get to my goal of becoming a successful business owner. I always liked to consider myself a hustler, but when I sit and think about it, the real hustle came now that I am not just working for my future, but for the one person that relies on me, Xelda.
What should our readers know about your business?
Ahhh the cleaning industry. Seems oh so sweet and oh so simple. Noooot. But for some reason, I love it. One day, I was at my old place of employment. A cleaning lady walked in and started to perform her tasks. I thought to myself “wow, I work a lot. Now I have to go home on this Friday and clean my house and I am so tired.” What happened? I hired her to clean my home 2-3 times a month. Every Friday from thereon out, I looked forward to walking into my beautiful and clean space. It felt comforting to know that while I was at work, my home was getting cleaned and by someone other than myself. Growing up, my grandmother used to say “una casa limpia trae buen energia… A clean house brings great energy.” That is so true. Ever had a great day then come home and your house is messy and suddenly you find yourself sitting on the couch with a migraine? I knew that if as a working woman I was going through this, I was not alone. I started to do my research on this industry and how I could not only be able to provide reliable cleaning services but at a pretty affordable rate. For about two years, I hit the books, I sought advice from online professionals, for the first time, I studied this industry. Finally, last year, I sat with my friend and now business partner, Karimar Gonzalez, and I said “We are ready.” Though there have been and though there will continue to be challenges, I do not get upset for those same challenges are only going to teach us to become a better and thriving cleaning company that in the future many home and business owners will want to use. I want people to look at me as a success story. A girl who grew up with her grandmother and sister and worked hard and persevered. A girl who always wanted it all and who is finally seeing it all. A girl who turned wife and then mother and who never stopped believing in her dream no matter what it was. I want to be an example. An example of where just a little bit of hard work and determination can get you if you just, TRY.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Islamorada Beach: Not in Miami but I have to say that they have this one private beach that is absolutely stunning. The water is so incredibly clear and looking at the boats all lined up along the bay, people having some good ol’ fun and mingling in this completely exciting yet serene place, goodness, I could stay there for about 10 hours and still not want to leave. The best beach I have ever been to by far. You have to know someone who lives on the property to go, but hey, I know people in high places. lol! Eleven: I went there once. I cannot and will not say the course of events that evening, but let’s just say this, when we walked out, we were greeted by the sun and not the moon. Definitely a must-go place. At least once in your life, go to Club Eleven, once the pandemic is over of course.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My husband Robert “Ne” Guerra. He has really been with me through the uphill battle of trying to find my niche. Not only has he been part of my creative process with my music career, which I still have to keep me sane, but he has never doubted me. “Ne, I want to open up a dance company.” “Go ahead you got this you are the best dancer that I know.” “Ne, I want to be a wardrobe stylist.” “Someone who dresses better than you? Yeah right. Go for it.” “Ne, I’m going to follow through with my music.” “It’s about time.” “Ne, let me give it a go, a real go at this cleaning industry.” “Now this, this you definitely got.” I am pretty sure if I told my husband that I wanted to walk on the moon, he’d be the one to buy me the shoes to go do it. I am so thankful to have him in my life for without him, I do not think I would have the confidence that I have and that is the damn truth.
Karimar Gonzalez-Co-Owner, Fast Action Mitigation & Cleaning Services, Inc.