THERE IS A SHIFT COMING in the contract cleaning industry. As Baby Boomers retire, more members of Generation X will assume leadership roles. Other young entrepreneurs will strike at opportunity and launch their own businesses. Over the next decade with this new generation at the helm, we will see the industry become even more diverse, tech-centric and global.

This month's cover story highlights six of those rising stars from Generation X. Since my Deputy Editor Lisa Ridgely and I are Gen-Xers as well, we were eager to learn how our generation is representing the cleaning industry. Much to our surprise, many Gen-X building service contractors had served as association presidents or other prestigious board positions, already putting their own stamp on the industry.

So, for this article, we wanted to find names readers may not be familiar with. We asked current industry leaders (both Baby Boomers and Gen-Xers) for BSCs they felt would be making an impact in the near future. We also included a couple contractors we have met over the years and felt embody the leadership qualities of this upcoming generation.

Of course, these six BSCs are just a representation of the generation. I know there are more contractors out there who, too, are redefining the industry. We could not feature them all, but I hope you enjoy these stories we could share.

Over the next decade we
will see the industry
become even more diverse,
tech-centric and global

To me it's a fair tradeoff, especially considering that contractors are looking for resources to lean on during this tough economy. According to the survey, 73 percent of respondents indicated this recession will make them more likely to work closely with their distributor.

Distributors are a great resource for BSCs to tap into, regardless of the economy, but few vendors will be willing to answer the call for help if all you care about is paying bottom-dollar for products. Instead of asking your supplier how much a product costs, ask how they can help you with green cleaning, safety issues, certification or a host of other issues.