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drsogr
10-29-2006, 08:13 PM
Well guys I decided to call it quits on my landscaping business. I appreciate everyones help here. This site has a wealth of information, if it wasn't for this site I would have never even though to start a business. The landscape business is done and gone, but I definitely have the business bug in me. Maybe sometime down the road I will start up another business.

For those of you that didn't know I did entirely landscaping, no lawn maintenance whatsoever. I did this part time for a year, and then went full-time for a year before quitting. I left a great job to go full-time with the business. Here are some tips or advice for those of you that are thinking of going full-time.

If your personal time, your kids or your wife mean much to you, run the other way. I worked many 15 hour days trying to accomplish what I had sold. Good help is way too hard to find.

If you plan on living off of what you make, make sure you have an accountant helping you. I was way too busy to take an objective view on where money was coming and where it was going.

If you think you can just hire help and make more money...thing again. I paid above average salaries for this area, I could not get anyone to stay past 2 monthes. No one wanted to work as hard as I did.

I can make this much money part-time, if I do this full-time I will make this much. When I was part-time, things like workers comp, advertising budgets, equipment maintenance, truck wear and tear, employee tool breakage never really got factored in to the equation.

This is so much fun, I think I could do this full-time I had 10 times more fun when my business was just beer money. I worked fewer hours, had fewer problems, and never had to think long term. If you truly enjoy what you are doing part-time...consider keeping it that way.

Anyway, just a few tips or suggestions. I appreciate everyones help. I learned a lot about myself in the last few years. It truly shaped me running my own business. I managed to land a job back in the corporate world making more money than I have ever made, with great benefits. I am truly happy with the 9-5 world. Its amazing how much actually life you miss out on, when you are growing a business. BTW I am making more money now than I was making with the business.

Thanks guys.
Derek

JB1
10-29-2006, 08:18 PM
very good tips, I think the biggest thing people underestimate is the amount of time and sweat you have to devote to a business, good luck to your future job.

Trinity Lawn Care, LLC
10-29-2006, 08:19 PM
Yeah, good luck man!

drsogr
10-29-2006, 08:41 PM
Thanks guys.

huh
10-29-2006, 08:42 PM
very open honest post there

sounds to me like if you had started before a family became your number one obligation you have made it over the hump.....I respect that you took your family and time with them as a priority.....the openness and honesty you showed in this post is surely one of the reasons you were able to transition into a nice job

good luck :)

drsogr
10-29-2006, 08:52 PM
very open honest post there

sounds to me like if you had started before a family became your number one obligation you have made it over the hump.....I respect that you took your family and time with them as a priority.....the openness and honesty you showed in this post is surely one of the reasons you were able to transition into a nice job

good luck :)

That is a very nice comment you made...thank you. If I didn't have a family, I would still be with the business, in a heart beat. I could see the potential upside there. But the fact that I came very close to losing my wife, because I had put her and my son on the back burner was enough reason for me to get out.

mojob
10-29-2006, 09:05 PM
Good luck working for the Man. I'll never be able to go back. I like the thrill of the hunt too much and it took me most of my life to figure out I'm neither a leader nor a follower. I'm not going to be truely happy unless I'm blazing my own trail. Good luck in the future.

olderthandirt
10-29-2006, 09:12 PM
Derek, Excellent post and I congratulate you on knowing that family is more important than money/business.

I also believe that in the future you will restart a LCO biz with dif. objectives and with eyes wide open. That will again make it fun and profitable.

Good luck and best wishes in the future :waving:

LindblomRJ
10-29-2006, 09:50 PM
Good advice Mac. I know exactly what you mean Derek. Been there done that.

1MajorTom
10-29-2006, 10:04 PM
Derek,
Best of luck with your new job, and thanks for sharing your thoughts. Don't forget about us here, don't be a stranger. :)

HOOLIE
10-29-2006, 11:43 PM
Well good luck Derek...

Someone mentioned being a leader vs. a follower...not really about that I don't think, it's about being happy and balancing your family vs. work. There are many was to accomplish that...so if this works for you than it is the right decision.

I tell ya, some days I think I might do the same thing...

Classified
10-30-2006, 01:54 AM
Sorry to see this happen to you but thank you for your tips!

I am just getting in next year so wish me luck!

Thankfully I have grown up with my dad owning/operating his own business (in this fireld as well as power sweeping and plowing) so I have a huge mental dos/donts list already. you just added some extra reality to it. Thankfully my wife an I are workaholics and enjoy long hours (I know that sounds messed up but I do like to work! haha)

Good luck in your future and im glad you landed such a great job.

ED'S LAWNCARE
10-30-2006, 08:07 AM
Derek,
Good luck, I was in the same situation after my first year fulltime my wife was complaining all I ever did was work 12-14 hrs out of the house 2-3 hrs in. No time for family and It got worse when my partner quit. I'm not part-time again and loving it. Do you think you will go back to part-time?

MarcSmith
10-30-2006, 08:11 AM
I had mentioned in another post, that owning a small business is not a part time venture.....There is alot of sweat equity involved.

You did the right the thing, you can start another business, but its hard to find a kid and a wife.

Good luck.

Marc

goodgreen
10-30-2006, 08:15 AM
One of the best posts I've seen on here. I've been part time for about 6 years and mulled full time for the past 2. But the reasons you mentioned are what has kept me from jumping in. I like security and my regular job does provide that - plus I really enjoy the part time gig. I'm afraid if I was doing this 40-50 hours, my 57 year old body would cave in.

LawnBrother
10-30-2006, 06:57 PM
Good post, thanks for sharing some of what you have learned. Sounds like a big weight was lifted off your shoulders. Good luck to you!

tthomass
10-30-2006, 08:26 PM
i'm too hardheaded and wanting to reach that next goal to quit.....then again i'm 22, no kids, no wife (nor gf)........just me and my business

good luck to you

drsogr
10-31-2006, 04:24 PM
i'm too hardheaded and wanting to reach that next goal to quit.....then again i'm 22, no kids, no wife (nor gf)........just me and my business

good luck to you

If you have no kids, no wife....you are in the best position to own a small business. You have one person to feed, and you can work your arse off without effecting anyone else. Grow your business, then work on family!

drsogr
10-31-2006, 04:30 PM
Derek,
Good luck, I was in the same situation after my first year fulltime my wife was complaining all I ever did was work 12-14 hrs out of the house 2-3 hrs in. No time for family and It got worse when my partner quit. I'm not part-time again and loving it. Do you think you will go back to part-time?

I don't really see that happening. I landed a great job that could take me a lot of places. I feel that if I bust my ass at this job and finish up my engineering degree, I could really go places in life. That being said, if I could find a business that wouldn't interfere with my personal life much, that I could involve my family in, and that would require little headaches, I would be all for it!

I have actually been toying around with starting up a barbeque catering business. Something to do on the weekends. I really did get the business bug...I just don't think this business was the right fit for my lifestyle.

LindblomRJ
10-31-2006, 09:25 PM
I don't really see that happening. I landed a great job that could take me a lot of places. I feel that if I bust my ass at this job and finish up my engineering degree, I could really go places in life. That being said, if I could find a business that wouldn't interfere with my personal life much, that I could involve my family in, and that would require little headaches, I would be all for it!

I have actually been toying around with starting up a barbeque catering business. Something to do on the weekends. I really did get the business bug...I just don't think this business was the right fit for my lifestyle.

one of my brothers did that. Was a mechanic and equipment operator over in the Powder River Basin of Wyoming. He already had one degree (economics) when at the age of 31 went back to school and became a civil engineer. That was 13 years ago and he has never looked back and enjoys what he does.