Last month, the Punch caught up with Jim Spiro, Founder and President of Platinum Lifestyle Management (PLM), a high-end personal concierge service based in DC.Ã‚Â Not only did PLM celebrate its two anniversary of being in business in November, but itÃ‚Â is having a stellar year, with even more clients being brought on board.Ã‚Â This is Part 2 of the interview:
PP: What are some of the biggest challenges you face in this business and how are able to overcome them successfully?
JS:Ã‚Â Definitely getting those last minute requests that may seem impossible.Ã‚Â I always have to keep an open mind as to what my clients may ask of me – trust me, you never know!Ã‚Â We overcome these challenging requests with creativity and an “It will get done” attitude.Ã‚Â My business partner Wayne Pinkney is great at this and such a huge asset to PLM.
An example is one year, when Valentine’s Day fell mid-week, everyone was going to celebrate that Friday night.Ã‚Â My client called in the middle of the week and said he and his significant other wanted to go to Maestro at the Ritz Carlton that Friday night.Ã‚Â He had called and it was completely booked.Ã‚Â Well, I knew the maitre d’ and I reached out to him, explaining how important this was to my client and to me.Ã‚Â My client celebrated Valentine’s Day that Friday night at Maestro andÃ‚Â was so pleased.Ã‚Â Another example, kind of off the beaten path of normal requests, was when a client was going out of town.Ã‚Â Her DVD and VCR were broken but she wanted to have a bunch of shows taped.Ã‚Â She didn’t have TiVo either.Ã‚Â I happened to know someone whose job wasÃ‚Â to tape all of the games for a local school, and I called him up to help out.Ã‚Â He endedÃ‚Â up recording every one of her shows and put them all together in one clean tape.Ã‚Â Ã‚Â You can’t imagine howÃ‚Â ecstatic she was!Ã‚Â But, I have also gotten clients to play on Congressional Country Club, into the NBA All Star game, etc. – more fun stuff.
PP:Ã‚Â What are some of the misconceptions about personal concierge services?Ã‚Â Ã‚Â
JS:Ã‚Â In DC as a whole, compared to other markets like NYC, people haven’t fully grasped the concept of paid delegation for tasks to be done in order to make their own lives better.Ã‚Â You can pay a trustworthy service to get a high-end or low-end tasks done daily which leaves you time to concentrate on your work, your family, your hobbies or yourself.Ã‚Â PLM is not just about errand running, all though we can take care of that.Ã‚Â We are about high-end needs that are personal.Ã‚Â I know my clients’ birthdays, their anniversaries, their favorite places to vacation, their cars, where they get them serviced, their favorite places to dine, their family’s interests – anything they want me to know soÃ‚Â I canÃ‚Â help provide them the lifestyle they ultimately deserve: one with more time! Ã‚Â
PP:Ã‚Â Who is your typical client?Ã‚Â IS there a typical client?
JS:Ã‚Â Looking at the PLM client list, there really is no “typical client”, meaning male or female, or age, or profession, or single or married.Ã‚Â However, we do service the very busy individual making a certain amount annually.Ã‚Â We have attorneys, small business owners, lobbyists, athletes, and other types of professions, all different ages, men and women.Ã‚Â The common denominator is: They are very busy professionals and understand the concept of delegating many tasks to a service.
PP:Ã‚Â What other thoughts would you like to leave with our readers?
JS:Ã‚Â I think it is important for any entrepreneur starting up to get involved with this community on any level.Ã‚Â I have found it to be very rewarding personally as well as professionally.Ã‚Â There are so many great causes in DC and if you don’t have the time to fully commit, you can do something on a lower level, but have it fit into your business.Ã‚Â I was the official concierge service of the Helen Hayes Awards this year and it was very gratifying, but I also got the company’s name out there to potential clientele, met great people and have some business working as a result.Ã‚Â I do a lot of Silent Auction items for variousÃ‚Â charities and eventsÃ‚Â too.Ã‚Â
Last but not least, PLMÃ‚Â would like to offer toÃ‚Â anyone who mentions that they read this interviewÃ‚Â on Pamela’s Punch, and signs up for service, theyÃ‚Â will get their first month at a 50% discount.Ã‚Â Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
**Platinum Lifestyle Management is a Special Highlighted Partner of Pamela’s Punch**