View Full Version : Are we growing fast enough?

2 man crew
06-27-2001, 08:06 PM
How fast are you growing? and am I keeping pace?
Ive been doing lawn care and snow removal for 4 years. I started from scratch with a small add in the local paper and started my first season with 15 residental costomers. Now Ive got 98 Lawn costomers and 80 snow plow costomers. About 98% residential. Im using 1 chev 1 ton (for lawn and snow), 2 toro hydro walk behinds a 44"and one 52"with turf riders, 1 lesco 36", 1 bobcat 32". Ive have one full time employee. I will be advertising in the yellow pages for the first time this year. and thinking about adding another truck and crew. any feed back would be great.

06-27-2001, 08:54 PM
Sounds like your doing great to me.

06-27-2001, 10:23 PM
I'm trying to figure out how you can service 80 plow accounts with one truck.

06-27-2001, 10:29 PM
Just remember, it is not quantity, but rather dollars in your pocket at the end of the year. Don't do more work just to make the same money.

David Gretzmier
06-28-2001, 12:32 AM
the yellow pages will bring you lots of bids to cherry pick from. start figuring out what your worst 20% customers as far as profit and raise thier price 20%, then raise everyone else 5% . you will need the room to grow when the ad hits. Good luck dave g

2 man crew
06-28-2001, 01:55 AM
Allan Ive got the 80 snow accounts condensed into a 30 mile area. the rout takes me 10 hours on a light snow and 15 on a heavy 9"+.

Sean Adams
06-28-2001, 02:26 AM
I think it is good you are concerned with the growth of your company. Something I wrote about in our last newsletter was the importance of improvement versus growth. I owned my own business for nearly a decade so I have been up and down every road there is to travel in this business, just like so many of the guys here. But I think that too many people worry about growing instead of improving. Are your clients happy? Are you servicing the kinds of accounts that are allowing you to profit as opposed to just getting by? Are you developing a reputation as a company that provides a valuable, reliable, profesional service? It is always easier to look back and realize what you did wrong. Take a look at your business from top to bottom. Sometimes improvement can even mean halting "growth" altogether. Just like jaclawn said...1000 accounts, 10 trucks, and 50 employees are all fine and good, but are you profiting? Are you getting closer to the point where you can oversee operations with your focus being improvement on a regular basis? These are just suggestions. I wish you the best of luck...and oh, I'm not sure how others feel, but I think you could use your money for better marketing approaches than a yellow pages ad. Sometimes, it is just a way for people to line up 20 bids at one time 15 minutes apart.

Sean Adams

06-28-2001, 08:19 AM
In my humble opinion the yellow pages are a waste of money. Most accounts come through word of mouth, referals from dealerships, drive bys, and direct contact by you the owner. As long as you have a well placed sign on your trailer or in the yard I would forgo the expense of the yellow pages.


06-28-2001, 02:42 PM
i havnt advertised in the yellow pages but heard from others its a waste of time. i also agree that more customers doesnt neccesarily mean higher profits, make sure that u r making the profit u desire from each and every account. i recently gave up a few customers that i wasnt making it on, and raised some of the others. its alot easier going out every day to work a little less and make a little more.

06-28-2001, 05:33 PM
sound good but...what kinda $$ are you turning?i could have half that an turn the same $$. all depends on the money.do you feel like your doing good?

2 man crew
06-28-2001, 09:14 PM
Thanks for the feedback.
To answer some of your questions. I feel Ive got my business about as fine tuned as I can get it. Im charging toward the higher end of the scale for my area. Average lawn is around $30-$35. Most of the lawns at that price take us 12-17 min ( cut trim blow ). We average 3.5 lawns per hour. The guy Ive got working for me has been with me for 2 and a half seasons. He is fast And pays attention to the details. And my costomers all seem very happy with the service. I dumped 13 at the end of last year that just took to long and didnt want to pay $60 a cut. (cant blam em) This year I picked up 25. Im making money but what realy makes me happy is meeting my goals which have alot to do with growth. Improvement is key and is important to me but i should spend a little more time in that area.