Former Banker Finds Second Career with Squeegee Squad

This Former Banker Finds Second Career with Squeegee Squad

Franchisee Troy Butler Welcomes All at His Grand Rapids Window Cleaning Business

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Troy Butler’s Squeegee Squad is a diverse crew. Team members come from different backgrounds and cultures with varied interests and lifestyles, but one thing they share is a set of core values. Since opening his Grand Rapids, Mich.,-based window-cleaning business in 2018, Butler found it difficult to retain high-quality employees. “I’ve often said that we have had to hire four to keep one,” he says.

He came up with an acronym, “SQUAD,” which stands for Service, Quality, Unmatched effort, Action-oriented and Dedication, to describe the values and traits he sought to cultivate in his employees. “Fortunately, after five years in this business, I have a team of what I call ‘the ones’ after moving other folks along who didn’t share the vision,” he says.

“I am a 45-year-old African-American, and throughout the system, there are other minority and women operators who are successful,” Butler says. “In my business, we take pride in welcoming all souls. We’ve had a Latina high-rise window cleaner, several LGBTQ staff members, and even a person who had legal troubles earlier in life who needed a second chance. All that matters to me is whether a person can live our values and respect others’ points of view on social or religious matters regardless of whether they agree with them.”

Leaping into Business Ownership

A former commercial banker, Butler spent about 18 months researching different business opportunities. “My experience in the search process meant turning over lots of stones, but when I found something I believed was right for me, it was evident instantly. For most people, if they look long and hard enough, they can find something that will work.”

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Butler wasn’t interested in “reinventing the wheel” with a new business venture. He wanted to apply proven techniques that were scalable. “For me, the systems and brand recognition that being a part of a national franchise network provided was attractive and took away some of the angst of becoming an entrepreneur after 20 years in corporate America.”

His professional background also provided advantages as a business owner. “Because I’ve been in business development as a commercial banker within my market since 2004, I have thousands of business and personal relationships that I knew could be leveraged as a natural customer base for whatever concept I chose,” he says.

Giving Back

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Butler’s own values — including giving back to help others —have contributed to building those longtime relationships. He still gets calls from former banking colleagues seeking his advice, and he volunteers on the boards for the Grand Rapids Economic Development Corp. and Brownfield Redevelopment Authority, as well as the statewide AARP Executive Council. And he’s an active dad with afternoons transporting his four children to and from activities.

Butler has sought to model core values and foster professional and personal development among his team members. “Most rewarding is that my team now understands that living their professional and personal lives in a certain way will without question yield positive results. I encourage new hires to share their dreams with me because I’m living mine. More than one has stated that they want to own their own business, and I’m happy to say that I’ve had five former employees go on to start their own businesses with complete support from me.”

For more information about the Squeegee Squad franchise, visit

Window Cleaning Market

Squeegee Squad franchise owners benefit from the booming window cleaning market. Window washing services revenue is projected to grow at a CAGR of 2.3% to reach $2.9 billion in 2024, according to IBISWorld.

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Lisa Ocker’s career began at her hometown paper, The Baytown Sun, covering everything from city government to chemical plant disasters, a hurricane and a controversial FEMA buyout of a flood-plagued neighborhood. From there, she moved to South Florida, reporting for the Palm Beach Post and South Florida Sun-Sentinel newspapers, and serving as editor of the regional magazine, Boca Raton. Returning to her home state, she led the re-launch of SUCCESS magazine as editor after a Texas-based entrepreneur bought the 100-year-old brand.

Lisa’s work also has appeared in The New York Times, Chicago Tribune and Newsweek. She has covered major news events including the space shuttle Challenger explosion and the rape trial and acquittal of William Kennedy Smith, nephew of the late President John F. Kennedy and Sen. Edward Kennedy. Her coverage of immigration issues included reporting on Haitian and Cuban refugee crises while traveling with the U.S. Coast Guard and from the U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Her work with SUCCESS included profiles of entrepreneurs Steve Case, Ted Turner and the late Tony Hsieh.

Now living in and working from Santa Fe, NM, Lisa enjoys sharing the challenges and successes of franchisees and franchisors as a contributor to FranchiseWire and Franchise Consultant Magazine.
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