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View Full Version : Haven'teven bought gear yet, but got BIG account lined up!!


Bob_McNaughton
07-27-2001, 03:52 PM
As most of you know, i'm going online with my LC business next spring. I've just purchased a 2001 Dodge 2500HD truck, but not much else so far.(Enclosed, ZTR, WB and stuff will come over winter as the season nears)

Anyway, I am still slaving for "The Man" day after day, dreaming of when I officially open the business.

Today I was chatting with a customer about trucks, and showed him my truck, and he was like "Wow, wtf you gonna be doing with it?"... I told em about the LC and Plowing business I am starting next season.

Anyway, we talked more, and he said I sounded professional, ambitious and knowledgable, and mentioned he is very unhappy with the guy handling his properties. He has 2 office buildings, and a fairly large Condo project that need to be mowed/plowed.

In close, he said he would like me to handle everything next season, and he is going to pull the other guys contract and see how much hes being paid so I can have a ballpark of where to price (naturally, i'm going to be a bit higher). I explained to this guy that I am a well educated business man, and have no interest in doing a poor, low quality job just to make a buck so I can hit the bars at 3pm after mowing a few lawns for the day. He was impressed, to say the least.

Nothing is set in stone, but it looks real promising. From what I gather talking to him, this one contact may match or beat what I make a year working for "The Man".

So in the end, it really pays to talk to people - and always be selling yourself. Act professional and knowledgable, show ambition, and be political! Sell yourself, sell your company, and sell your quality service - don't sell yourself short!. Show interest in your customers, ask them about their fancy car, tell them their house looks wonderful! People like to hear about what THEY own and work hard for! There are ALOT of people out there cutting grass that are making this business hard on the professionals, don't become one of them!

WOOT - I can't wait!

roscioli
07-27-2001, 06:11 PM
Congrats my lawnsite friend, congrats.

AltaLawnCare
07-27-2001, 08:55 PM
That Dodge truck must've brought you luck. Is it white, the white ones are the luckiest.:p
Thats the number one way to get business, I'm bidding on a large commercial property now because of a chance encounter with the manager of the plant and a conversation just like you've described. I'll know in 2 months if I got it.

Finecut
07-27-2001, 09:23 PM
Bob,

Don't mean to throw cold water on your deal...you need to learn to read BS. What this guy may have told you in essence is...he'd just be tickled to find someone to do the job for 25% less.

You'll learn over the years that all businessmen are eager for a deal, they know a new guy will often sell themselves short and underbid just to get their foot in the door. That doesn't mean to say that they will give just anybody a shot at it, but if you sound creditable it may behoove them to give you a try. They sometimes give a figure that they would like to get the job done for, rather than what they indeed are paying. The current contractor may not really be able to do the job for what he's charging. If you can sit down with this guy and look at the terms of the contract it would certainly be in your best interest. I don't mean to talk down to you...I just want to prepare you for what maybe a let down. Best luck to you and I hope you're able to get it...on your terms!

BRL
07-27-2001, 11:04 PM
I wish you the best of luck. As much as it stinks, I do have to say that Finecut is right. If you get into this biz you will run into people like that. Experience will allow you to see them coming & avoid their hassle. Hopefully this guy is not one of them.

CSRA Landscaping
07-27-2001, 11:35 PM
It does sound a bit too good to be true. Try to do as much homework on this one as you possibly can. Remember, if something sounds too good to be true, it usually is, esp. in this field. You want a cutthroat field? You got it.

Charles
07-28-2001, 07:54 AM
Yea sounds fishy to me too LOL. Why would he risk dumping his current lawn care company for someone with no experience at all?
YOu may egt into this field as many do and decide its not for you leaving him high and dry. Its one thing for a homeowner to switch around and another for a business. For a business appearance is everything. Unless its a losers business and they wont pay you

Grapevine
07-28-2001, 09:12 PM
Bob , I've been in this business for 14 years full time and we take care of 6 large condos and they are a ***** to deal with. It takes a little more than asking the customer about his car and house to be a professional, it takes experience and doing quality work. No offense if I don't take advice on how to be a professional from someone who hasn't spent five minutes in this business, and has no idea what he's talking about.

RMDoyon
07-28-2001, 11:16 PM
Congratulations Bob, your positive attitude is refreshing.

Passion and enthusiasm for any venture will carry the day and result in more sales and more referrals.

People want to associate with those who show a passion for their work.
Your comments about salesmanship are fundamental and I bet there are a lot of guys on here that can use that advice.

Roger

cos
07-28-2001, 11:35 PM
I remember those days. Those are the type of customers that complain alot and try to pay little.

Bob_McNaughton
07-29-2001, 12:23 AM
Sorry to burst your bubble, but why are you assuming I haven't been in this business before?

When I was 17 (34 now), I did this for 3 years to pay my way through college(all commercial gear). Had 30-50 accounts, and was successful until I had enough money to focus on college, and sold the business(w/customer base for a profit) and completed my degree.

Second, I worked 2 years while still in school for a guy that ran 2-3 crews as his formen.(150-200 accounts I managed at the age of 20)

Third, I have a marketing and business degree, and 8 years experiance in marketing, business consulting, and field sales representation for a fortune 500 company. I've closed over 100 advert deals in the 7 figure range, and have managed advertising accounts exceeding 8 figures in the worldwide marketplace.

Fourth, i've owned/operated 2 successful companies over the last decade, including the first large scale ISP in Macomb County Michigan which I started from ground up in 1992. (sold it for healthy profit to Worldcom in 1998)

I'm not saying I know it all, so don't get me wrong. But please, don't call me a rookie, I have alot of hours on commercial gear and behind the plow.

If I sound nieve when asking questions sometimes, it is because I am picking your brains - soaking up data that you know, and I may not know. This is the foundation for a good business plan - talk to those that know, learn from their mistakes, and build upon their successes. I'm increasing my knowledge base, and filling in any gaps in information I have gathered.

Lastly, I chatted with the guy briefly today, and we set up a meeting at his office so I can go over his current contract with the current service, and discuss pricing issues. So it appears it may pan out, especially in light of showing me the actual contract from the other scrub service. I fully intend on having several solid contracts lined up before I even purchase equipment. If I don't, then my marketing plan has failed.

Grapevine, based on your reply, you need all the professional advice you can get. Enjoy it.

I don't have all the answers, and don't pretend to. But based on the scrubs I see around here mowing, it appears I really don't need all the answers to abate them from most of their customers - at a higher price nonetheless.

Peace

LAWNGODFATHER
07-29-2001, 03:33 AM
Before you guys get to involved in this thread

This biz is not the same kind of marketing you are accustom to
You’re not going to fail if you don’t close all the contracts

This biz requires:

Quality
Reliability
Dependable employees
Dependable equipment
And so on

This biz doesn’t work like it did 10 years ago

Don’t get me wrong you may know how to run one, but are you prepared to work it again
If I had to do it all over again I wouldn’t do it, but I love it and I will stick with it through thick and thin

if you want you can email me to pick my brain, I have a lot of usefull info

Good luck and make sure you can find employee’s to work

LGF:blob1:

lawrence stone
07-29-2001, 05:14 AM
Originally posted by Bob_McNaughton


If I sound nieve when asking questions sometimes,

Peace

How does ones questions sound like a fist?

I suggest that you go back and find another job with a mega corp.

You are not equipped to handle business in the real world.

Next year your newfound buddy will be using your contract to leverage another new "nieve" pretentious wannabe.

Bob_McNaughton
07-29-2001, 11:58 AM
Hey if it makes you feel better about yourself calling me a "Newbie", "Wannabe" and "Nieve", then have at it. But i'd recommend spending a little more time out there building your business than formulating arrogant replies to me.. Or some "Wannabe" with a business head may just come along and take your business.

The fact is the foundations for all successful businesses are the same.

Randy Scott
07-29-2001, 12:48 PM
I don't really want to get into it with anyone here, but I think you are coming on a little strong (Bob) for some people on this site. It is great you are enthused about your venture, but it isn't that easy when you put what's on paper into action. I know, I'm pretty new to this also.
You have stated that you have had, qoute, " three extremely successful businesses " and have been in an " executive level of advertising ", yet now you barely make $30 thousand a year working for Radioshack. A little pothetic isn't it? Your profile states you are 33 years old. I am curious as to why you haven't kept one of those extremely successful businesses, or stayed in the executive level of work you state you were in. A new business really doesn't, or shouldn't, show much profit for a few years, you know, tax purposes, so that doesn't really give you alot of time in between businesses. Just take a minute to look at this from our perspective and then you will understand some of the smart-a$$ answers. I think there are enough people here, old enough, to have seen and learned enough about people in this world to know certain characteristics, about certain individuals. I wish you the best of luck on your 4th business adventure and prove some here wrong about yourself! Good luck!

Bob_McNaughton
07-29-2001, 01:35 PM
Thanks for the advice Randy. Point taken.

To make a long story short, I detested the corporate environment, and decided to resign, relocate and marry the woman of my dreams.

Makin peanuts at Radioshack was pure accident when I ran into a District Manager promising a career filled with rewards and six figure incomes. Yea right..

I'm done slaving for "The man" after this winter. Going back to doing something I really loved. Ahh, love the smell of fresh cut grass, and the freedom of blasting across acres of grass on a ZTR. :D The money is welcomed, but secondary to my enjoyment.

Life is too short to be boxed up in a cubicle worrying about cutbacks in a stuggling economy, and listening to the rants of the department heads.

Randy Scott
07-29-2001, 03:21 PM
I hear you Bob, that is what is great about this country, you're free to do what you like. The idea of controlling my own destiny is what really excites me. No one to blame but myself! Like I said, good luck with things and enjoy the freedom of control when you start in spring. I know I do!

Calvin
07-29-2001, 06:56 PM
I hope your ready to get your hands dirty Bob 'cause it sounds like you expect your job to be in customer relations. Alot of the worse LCO's around here are run by guys who think a business plan is all it takes to be successful. Yea Bob you should listen to Grapevine, and not dismiss anyone who puts a damper on your flaming enthusiasm. You sound pretty naive to me too.
"The money is welcomed but secondary to my enjoyment"
Are you some kind of nut?

AztlanLC
07-29-2001, 11:09 PM
I never go and bid on someone property based on a contract tha they say is from the guy who's doing the service, I always look at the property figure out how much I have to charge to cover my cost and make a profit than I give my proposal, the price might be highter or lower than other guys but I dont' care how much they charge I only care How much I have to.

If you're not able to figure out your cost and are gonna give a price based on someone else's contract than you are in the wrong business and you are only going to hurt the LC proffesionals.

:blob2:

Currier
07-29-2001, 11:33 PM
Gee Bob...thanks for sharing your enthusiasm with us! It appears that maybe we have a new syndrome called lawnsite rage. What is the deal with the hostilities? Getting stressed with the business/customers/competition and need a place to blow steam or what? Bob was simply telling us about a possible opportunity that may come his way.


"There are ALOT of people out there cutting grass that are making this business hard on the professionals, don't become one of them!"

Sounds to me that this is a person that wants to do a good job and do well...

"You sound pretty naive to me too.
"The money is welcomed but secondary to my enjoyment"
Are you some kind of nut?"

Yeah boy, he sure sounds crazy. After all isn't there a law that says you have to hate your job...

Lawn DOG
07-29-2001, 11:50 PM
Originally posted by Bob_McNaughton


Show interest in your customers, ask them about their fancy car, tell them their house looks wonderful! People like to hear about what THEY own and work hard for! There are ALOT of people out there cutting grass that are making this business hard on the professionals, don't become one of them!

WOOT - I can't wait!

I agree with almost everything you had to say but will take issue with you're last statment. We have a policy not to take inventory of our customers belongings. This does not mean as the boss you can't compliment your customer. The problem is when your employess are saying how they like your customers stuff. Now, I don't know about you but if the refridgerator repair guy starts telling me about how he likes my personal belongings I would have to think twice about calling him back.Your customers don't need the lawn guy to make them feel successful. They have a lawn service that speaks for itself. Have you ever thought how it would look if something of theirs ended up being stolen. Geee, I seem to remember that lawn guy saying how nice my fancy car was.

I hope you see my point.
Just my two cents.

strickdad
07-30-2001, 12:11 AM
advertiseing account managers that are in charge of 7 and 8 figure accounts typically make over 100,000 dollars a year seems to me you are gonna have a hard time making over a 100,000 salary on one account.... you did say you thought you could make more money on this one account than working for the "man" didnt you?

Lawn DOG
07-30-2001, 12:15 AM
I posted this message before I read everybody else's replies. I did not want to get on the Bob Bashing Bandwagon. I hope that you have many years of success.
I would be a little easy on the scrub talk or how to be a pro until you get some years behind you. Many people on this site would gladly share years of experience with you.
Good luck.

Bob_McNaughton
07-30-2001, 01:07 AM
Thanks for the words Currier.

My wife was over my shoulder reading the replies on this thread, and a few others, and was like "Gee, there appears to be alot of unhappy people in that business."

I had to explain to her that internet forums are usually the vocal minority of the masses, and not to pay much attention to it. =p

Of course, there are some shining examples of fine, hardworking professionals that post on here. I guess you just have to be able to filter through the bull$hit posters to get to the good stuff.

People need to read before they slam me. Time and time again I keep getting called a rookie. I don't know about you, but 4 years in the lawncare business wouldn't constitute a rookie, now would it? I didn't even bother to mention the 3 years I was a groundsman at a local golf course when I was in highschool. If we add that, I got 7 non-contiguous years handling turf. I'm no expert, by any sense of the word. But I also ain't no pencil pushing executive without experiance in the field.


-----------
Dodge 2500HD Quad Cab (purchased)
Roadmaster 7x16 Enclosed (ordered)
eXmark 60" Ztr (50% deposit paid)
eXmark 52" Ztr (pending purchase)
eXmark 36" WB (pending purchase)
Residential Accounts: 5
Commercial Accounts: 3
Date of Company Launch: Spring 2002

SLS
07-30-2001, 01:21 AM
I guess that this thread is living proof that there will be neysayers and party-poopers in every crowd.

Too bad for them! :rolleyes:

So what if Bob may make a boo-boo or two along the way to success...doesn't everyone? It's no big deal and no sweat off of anyones back-except his of course.

I happen to like Bob's gung-ho spirit. :)

I wish you the best of luck in your latest venture, Bob. :D

strickdad
07-30-2001, 01:21 AM
yeah bob but you didnt answer my question??

MJB
07-30-2001, 01:36 AM
Go for it Bob.... I think we have a lot of over worked, over stressed, lawn jockeys, looking for a place to vent. It wasn't as easy for many as you are making it sound. New truck, new equipment
pending. Getting off to a great start. Probably a lot of guys just a bit jealous, probably because they still don't have a new truck after years in the biz...haha. Or can't hardly make the payments on the one they got. :-)

LAWNGODFATHER
07-30-2001, 02:44 AM
Give him a break he's going to do somthing he loves

Bob_McNaughton
07-30-2001, 08:23 AM
Strickdad, read back. You'll see I am no longer in marketing, but slaving over a hot stove at Radioshack. (laugh, sure feels like it tho)

In another post on this thread, I already explained why I left the cubicle filled world of stress. ;)

65hoss
07-30-2001, 09:12 AM
From my business experience, the more naysayers the better. It usually means you can make it.

But don't count on this guy until you see the contract signed. Get the contract signed before you go buying equipment specifically for this guys property. Go now and try to get started. You might be surprised what business you can find this time of year. I'm getting my "second wind" the last couple of weeks. Several new customers have called.

No matter how much planning, things never go as smooth as we have them in our minds. Use this to your advantage!!!

lawnperfections
07-30-2001, 10:50 AM
Bob may or may not be full it, so what. He is seems to thrilled about his pending venture, that's what important. So get off him for God sake.

dhicks
07-30-2001, 11:03 AM
Go for it Bob. Your business will not thrive or fail to thrive on this single account offer. Your business will be built upon many accounts. Maintain a positive attitude and ignor those that want to bring you down even before you sign a contract.

strickdad
07-30-2001, 11:23 AM
my apologys to you bob, i understand the meaning of cutbacks and the worry of not knowing weather you will have a job tommorrow... i was a diesel mechanic working for a major "textile" firm. needless to say they moved to mexico and didnt take me with them (not that i wanted to go!) luckily the truck mechanic market is extremley thin and i had no trouble finding another job... i started my bussiness many years ago as a sideline, my wife took it over and made it her full time carrer . best move i ever made!! she keeps us making money(i kept us in debt.) i work for her part time and turn wrenchs full time and we make lots of money that way. so in closing it really is about what you love doing and not the money.. i wish you good luck ! gotta go the boss is calling (wife)

CSRA Landscaping
07-30-2001, 09:02 PM
Gee, I take the weekend off, away from LS and it gets all funny. I, for one, wasn't bashing Bob. I was, however, cautioning him to be careful on this one. Not naysaying, not telling him to hang it up, but cautioning him. I don't want to be the one that's guilty of telling him to go into something fulltilt ona wing and a prayer, while that may be how some folks make it. I find teh majority of the larger businesses took time to plan things out and didn't react rashly to something that sounded, ahem, too good to be true.

With that said, good luck Bob!:cool:

Calvin
07-30-2001, 09:43 PM
So if you don't say good luck go for it Bob you're bashin' him? What is this some kind of LCO feel good bonding session? I'm tellin' ya if Bob & some of the rest of you are as sensitive to a little critical advice you all should go on Oprah.
Just want the guy to jump in with both eyes open, right now that unbridled enthusiasm may be blinding him a bit.

Finecut
07-30-2001, 10:23 PM
Bob,

Please note the above post! Made by a buffoon who put his mower in someones yard and can't figure out how to get out! Perhaps, you need to hear his business plan?

BLakin01
07-30-2001, 10:27 PM
Bob,

Whatever floats your boat, go for it. I myself am contemplating jumping into it full steam ahead, but there is other "options" on my table as we speak. I am Probably the most confused person in the world right now, or so it seems. In my opinion, I say don't listen to any body else (well, maybe your wife), and just go with what you feel. Even if you don't get awhole lot of accounts the first year, treat your present customers like kings, and it will eventually pay off. You know, it seems like maybe I should be taking some of my own advice, don't you think?

Brandon Lakin
B & H Mowing Service
Rensselaer, IN

bubble boy
07-30-2001, 10:43 PM
finecut-2 points for payin attention:D

bob, whether the naysayers are right or wrong, if you can handle the criticism you are all the better.

i think your enthusiasm can only help you. you may get the account you may not either way keep it up:)

Currier
07-30-2001, 10:49 PM
Finecut, That is TOO funny!!!
:D

Bob_McNaughton
07-30-2001, 10:50 PM
Yea I just noticed Calvin is the guy that has a customer making a planter out of his scags now. =p

Gotta admit though, this turned into a uber thread. I guess thats one good outcome. Hehe

Stinger
07-30-2001, 11:08 PM
Ok, so you have experience, money to buy all kind of toys and this is what you choose to do at this point in your life, good 4 you Bob. On the other hand If I was a well versed, educated man I sure as heck wouldn't cut grass for fun. Question, howmany members here at Lawnsite started off where Bob plans to? Big truck, trailer, top of the line equipment, etc? How many years of steady growth does it take to grow one a sucessful business as a LCO? These are things all of us have learned over a long bloody, nerve racking, sweating the rear off time period. Some things cannot be bought, they can only be earned and learned (the hard way). This is not a glamerous industry, but we and maybe even you do it for the love. But please don't come on here throwing your weight around and waving your new banner because that's not what lawnsite is for. We all have a common brotherhood here and offer help when we can. So look, listen, and learn from those that got it the hard way. Most will be glad to lend a hand. Good luck in returning to a past venture may you be more successful this time than the last.

65hoss
07-30-2001, 11:37 PM
Finecut took it to the hole and scored. Drew the foul also. :D

GreenQuest Lawn
07-31-2001, 12:36 AM
Go for it Bob!

I started out with new equipment all top of the line.

No problems here!:blob4:

Calvin
07-31-2001, 12:46 AM
Hey Finecut,
Haven't run the mowers much the past couple years. Been too busy counting $$$. Sorry you have to spend so much time behind one. Is that your business plan?

MJB
07-31-2001, 12:52 AM
Calvin must be a bank teller now :-)

plow kid
07-31-2001, 01:20 AM
Jeesh

kutnkru
07-31-2001, 01:30 AM
Originally posted by Chuck Smith
... Every year there are 1,000's of people getting into the biz, and the #1 way they get jobs is by price scalping. One of two things then usually happens. Either they aren't in business very long, or they gradually raise their prices as they gain experience and knowledge. In the mean time, they make the rest of us "look bad" , ...

I think that this statement applies to the many and various service oriented industries out there. More often than not, those who have been in business for a while (surpassed several weed crops), hear everyones good intentions but know the more freightening reality - 99% of most newcomers to this Industry continue to drive down the Fair Market Value.

I have no harsh feelings about Bobs intentions, nor is my post meant to be a scrutiny. I just hope that he does as much as he can to be, act, and operate in a professional manner.

As has been said before by a select few - if we act professional and operate professionally, we will be seen/paid as professionals.

Good Luck in your endeavor.
Kris

wriken
07-31-2001, 06:31 PM
Bob, go for it. like you I have a new truck, a F-150, new trailer, ztr,blowers,weed wackers extra blades for all, looking to by a toro 21"and WB's. The funny thing is that I only have 4 res accounts, but working on 3 big comm. ones. One's 27 acres 4 diamond turf, one is 12 acres, and 18 sub-stations that need mowing any other ones that come along. and am going to do this by not cutting anybodys throut. you got to have the equipment to do the job, so I saved for some time to buy this equipment. This has been my dream for 10 + years, I once operated a pulpwood business for 10 years, almost 1 million in equipment debt at the tender age of 23, lots of hard work, so I know what sweat is mowing a lawn, can't be any worse than starting at 6am and pulling fully loaded leads and pups thru 2-3 foot of mud at 11pm. also all the hardships of running a small business. What happened to the logging business,? I know some of you will wonder, after 10 years in the 80's, recession yrs I decided to sell out. Even though I have a job right to this day making almost $100,000.00 a year, I know where my heart is, sweating not behind a desk fighting crime. My dream is to be the biggest lawn sevice around, and hope that dream comes true, So go for it. see ya :)

Cleve
07-31-2001, 09:44 PM
Originally posted by Bob_McNaughton
I guess you just have to be able to filter through the bull$hit posters to get to the good stuff.
-----------
Dodge 2500HD Quad Cab (purchased)
Roadmaster 7x16 Enclosed (ordered)
eXmark 60" Ztr (50% deposit paid)
eXmark 52" Ztr (pending purchase)
eXmark 36" WB (pending purchase)
Residential Accounts: 5
Commercial Accounts: 3
Date of Company Launch: Spring 2002

This has been quite an interesting post.
And also quite interesting how many times Bob has made the statement regards "higher pricing" that he intends to charge for his superior quality and experience.

I do take some exception to the market strategy of putting down a 50% deposit on a piece of equipment that will not be needed before next spring. Seems that the best market strategy would be to wait until the fall and look for a dealer selling at a discount. Or at the very least save your money until needed. Are these mowers that scarce that you have to order them 6 months in advance? Same question goes for the trailer. These things don't need to be ordered 6 months or more before need. Usually just a few weeks even for a special built one. Seems a marketing specialist would spend his money more wisely.

Great salesman though to be able to get 5 residential and 3 commercial accounts with no equipment at all. Must already have all the necessary insurance and paperwork needed to satisfy those commercial buyers. ???

Either way, good luck with your business next year.

Cleve.

Just Turned Pro
08-01-2001, 12:28 AM
This thread has outlasted my attention span:o

It has rapidly deteriorated into a flamer thread..... at least with the threads that ask the "same old" questions over and over again I am occasionally reminded of something that I forgot.

Bob_McNaughton
08-01-2001, 01:39 AM
ZTR is a dealer demo, picking it up this week if the dealer is ready and I like the condition, if not, deposit comes back, and I wait till next season to buy a new one and go with the 36"wb right now to mow my own lawn - hopefully it goes through, as I was looking forward to using the ztr around the house for awhile.. Sold my Homeowner Rider to the neighbor for 500 bux, his blew a head gasket this week(good timing), and he wanted to replace it anyway.

Trailer was ordered early, because i'm going to use it over winter to carry my sleds up north during the weekends over winter, and my camping/hunting gear during deer season.. Just sold my sled trailer for 2k to a co-worker. Once again, timing was impeccable.

The 3 commercial accounts are 1) Apartment complex my mother owns, 2) The local strip mall where my Radioshack is located, and 3) The little ceasars that my old friend owns. =p No brainers on getting these, they were automatic - and will generate several hundred dollars a week once I begin operations.

Greenstar might be subbing plowing overflow out to me this winter as well, so I might have to spool things up earlier than I anticipated. Also, might pick up one of Greenstars used 36"WBs as backup as well. The biggest problem I am having is, people want me to mow NOW.. But nothing is ready, i'm still working 55 hours a week for the man, and just dont have time to fire the company up 100% right now. Besides, summer is almost over.. But I got alot of anxious clients that want to do business. =/

strickdad
08-01-2001, 02:32 AM
now its getting deep

CSRA Landscaping
08-01-2001, 04:25 AM
Gee, Bob, talk about laack of disclosure. The way you started this thread, it sounded like you were pinning all the hope foryour biz on the one 'maybe' account. I'd do it too, with those lined up. Good luck, bud.

lawrence stone
08-01-2001, 09:23 AM
Originally posted by Bob_McNaughton


Third, I have a marketing and business degree, and 8 years experiance in marketing, business consulting, and field sales representation for a fortune 500 company.

Then why are you getting into such a low profit margin business like lawn mowing?

If you are as smart as you say you are then you would be aspiring for a more profitable niche in the green industry like the fertilization and pesticide application business. This would require a lot less equipment vs. a mowing contractor.

By going out and buying a $28k truck and all new equipment you will never be able to make any real money in the competitive low margin real world of lawn mowing.

BTW a man only has one thing is this world and that is his credibility. If a potential commercial client offers up current pricing information about the current contractor he is a piece of garbage.
Since you would gladly accept this information puts you at the top of the heap.

College professors that never even had to make one payroll and are clueless of how real world business actually works have polluted your mind. Since small business does not work like business between fortune 500 companies your work experience is moot.

You have spoken many times about the "stress" of working for big business. How is there any stress when you are working with other folk’s (stockholders) money?

How do you plan to cope when you are working with your real own money and not "play" money?

roscioli
08-01-2001, 09:51 AM
Bob- Shall I answer this for you? Read all of his posts. He is going out to do something that he loves. Dropping his crap job at Radio Shack, and venturing out into something that he loves, and has experience with. It is obvious that he is more educated than you Stone, so don't be too jealous, just accept that maybe somebody might be able to be successful in this business other than yourself.
On a side note Stone- Why are you so anti-schooling? At UMASS (where I attend) all of the professors (In the HOTEL, RESTAUARANT AND TRAVEL ADMINISTRATION program, which is #4 in the country) have had experience in the field. UMASS HRTA does not hire professors that have not. You think public school is corruption, I think public school is a blessing. In this comment I do not mean to start any kind of bickering like we previously had, I just want a good explanation of why you don't like School.
Bob- It is great that you are off to such a good strong start, don't let any of the guys on Lawnsite put you down. As I said in the First response on this thread, Congrats.

Bob_McNaughton
08-01-2001, 09:56 AM
Lawrence I love to cut grass.. --that good enough?

Obviously alot of great people, who truely enjoy their work, and helping others post on these boards to.. To those people, i'd like to say thanks for the advice and strong encouragement.

I admire people doing this work..

Before you have aspirations of getting a degree and going to work for a fat-cat corporation, let me tell you, DON'T DO IT! They will suck the life out of you in a short time..

crazygator
08-01-2001, 10:06 AM
Bob, I wish you all the success possible. Do enjoy not working for "the man" and as long as you love what you are doing then it's all good. And less stress that way too! As for all the immature "Bob bashers", please! Either grow up then post a message, or don't post. It tells us all how you are personally and professionally, and sounds like many are just scrubs by the way you post.
Bob, let us know how it's going, and keep up the high spirits!

vipermanz
08-01-2001, 11:21 PM
Hey Bob, We have the same amount of yards, 8;)

LAWNGODFATHER
02-07-2002, 07:29 PM
Ok just checking on those accounts, and seeing how it's going.

Any word Bob?

PAPS
02-07-2002, 09:06 PM
gotta love those employees that are out working for you... yet tryin to get work for their business. Having an employee COMPETE against you while working for you is always fun :rolleyes:

bruces
02-07-2002, 09:17 PM
LGF,

Seems Bob has disappeared. If I was as successful as he apparently is going to be before buying equipment, I probably wouldn't lower myself to associate with people on here that actually have to be in business to pick up the lucrative accounts.

Why bother if you would actually have to be in business, own equipment, etc.

That wouldn't be worth talking about.

Maybe Bob will surface again with reports on his success.

sid
02-07-2002, 10:02 PM
Bob was a troll by a former member who left LS long ago.

1MajorTom
02-08-2002, 12:03 AM
Sid,

How would a "new" member such as yourself know about this?

KirbysLawn
02-08-2002, 12:21 AM
Originally posted by 1MajorTom
Sid,

How would a "new" member such as yourself know about this?

Hummm....

I'll take a stab at that answer, could it be Casey, Calvin, Hobbes, Jones, Jack D. or any of the other screen names I have missed?:rolleyes:

rodfather
02-08-2002, 12:36 PM
If nothing more, you have to admire his enthusiasm.

I don't blame him for wanting to get out of corporate life. I was the Director of Training for Hertz Equipment Rental Corp from '87 to '94. Was away on business travel 40+ weeks a year traveling 250,000 miles year after year. Had to leave on account that I lost my voice to throat cancer in the prime of my life (38).

I think he makes a smart point of lining up the accounts first and then buying equipment. Tha'ts exactly what I did in '95. Get some accounts first, then figure out what you need to service them with. No accounts, no need for equipment. Big accounts, big equipment, and so on.

I started out with nothing in the Fall of '94 and have never looked back. We now have over 100 full-time customers (mowing, fertilization, maintenance, you name it). Why can't he do the same?

I wish him luck.

southscape
11-01-2002, 09:46 PM
what a bunch of ridiculous replies. grow up people.

LAWNGODFATHER
11-01-2002, 09:54 PM
Ghee I saw this title in my e-mail and thought BOB might have posted to it.

But no, a new member complaining, what else is new?

VLM
11-01-2002, 10:35 PM
Here's an update from Bob, he writes:

Hey guys I was in a bar the other day and met this guy. I told him how great his suit looked and he offered my a contract running of all things a nuclear power plant. Now I went to college so I know everything. I worked at radio shack in high school which gives me lots of experience with ultra high tech equipment so dont call me a newbee. Anyway this guy is gonna get rid of his old contactor and let me see his contract so I can bid 25% higher and steal it away. Did I menttion I went to college? Soon I'll be making more money than I am now at a fortune 500 Co where I am in charge of everyone and am incredibly successful, but I really enjoy running nuclear power plants. It just goes to show how you morons need to sell yourselves and of course allways be positive (like me)! By the way, my wife (the gal of my dreams) left me for the guy next door who started a lawn business with a '86 ford, 21" push mower, homelite weedeater and blower.

2002 Chevy Silverado 2500
1965 Nuclear Power Plant (pending purchase)

Man what a piece of work!!!!!!!!!!!

CSRA Landscaping
11-01-2002, 10:37 PM
HAAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAA!!!!

Darryl G
11-01-2002, 11:59 PM
The only thing I couldn't figure out was what is wrong with mowing a few lawns and going to the bar at 3:00 in the afternoon. I'd go earlier, but that's when my local bar they opens!

LAWNGODFATHER
11-02-2002, 12:46 AM
Originally posted by CSRA Landscaping
HAAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAA!!!! I can't type I am laughin' so friggin' hard.

VLM your forgot to tell everyone he was going to hire a SCRUB to clean and change the reactor cores.

richard coffman
11-02-2002, 01:01 AM
I'm sure there are other's here in the site who have been in this field a lot longer than my 14 years, so i show my respect and listen to what they have to say. sometimes we have to agree to disagree, and not allow ourselves to get upset at what others say.
now, let your companys reputation sell itself, people will judge a person on how they carry themselves. Your the represenative of your company, and what you say will have a reflection on you and the company.be kind, honest and don't try to know everything. I'n this business, we all can't know eerything, I'f we did, we wouldn't have this wonderful site to learn and grow. Hope this advise helpes, and good luck in the future.:cool:

Green Pastures
11-02-2002, 01:52 PM
What a bunch of negativity. I can't believe that we treat each other this way. Where I found Bob a bit over the top with all the education and experience talk, I like Bob's enthusiasm, like myself, I'm very happy to be in this biz. I still get excited when a call comes in and I get to go out and do an estimate. Even if I don't get the work, I chalk it up as experience. I try to find out how to estimate my labor and overhead costs better the next time. Bob's excited and contrary to popular belief that is a big part of success.

I LIKE CUTTING GRASS. If I make $500 or $5,000,000 this year matters not to me. I'm very happy doing what I do. Did I say I was Happy dong this??? I was MISERABLE in my job working for the man. Sure I had bennies and paid vacations but I HATED to shlep my sorry butt in there every night at 10 pm and work the vampire shift till 6 am. Oh, did I mention I hated the hours? Now I want to get to work, I like making homes and businesses look better. I drive around bobbing my head to the music on the radio, with a big fat smile on my face. When my customers see me they smile, it's contageous you see. They wave and come out of the house to speak with me. I like my customers, and they like me.

My bills are getting paid, and things are growing slowly, but surely. Just like it should be.

Let's try to encourage each other a little more.

I'll be willing to bet my ZTR's that Bob is out there working with a big smile on his face, happy as a pig in mud. He probably remembers this place as a corral for a bunch of angry, sad, grouchy, jealous, losers with bad attitudes. I wouldn't come back either. It's a shame too because no matter how long or short you've been in this biz there is always something to be learned. And you can learn from anybody, especially a newbie with some fresh ideas. There's an old saying that goes like this...if you keep doing things the same old way, you're going to get the same old results. I'm here cuz I want ideas and opinions other than my own.

Funny how I noticed while reading through these posts that a majority of the really negative posts have "BANNED" written under their names. Good for the moderators, we dont need negativity here. We are all brothers in business and I for one will try harder to always be positive and not criticize as much as I have in the past.

LAWNGODFATHER
11-02-2002, 07:14 PM
Guys search "BOB"s posts, you will see Mr Positive went and hired a scrub and got what he paid for.

Not once but if I recall 3 times and got burned 3 times.

LAWNGODFATHER
02-08-2003, 06:30 PM
Is "BoB" still getting burned?

crawdad
03-03-2003, 07:03 AM
Hey, Bob, are you out there?

I'll bet he's got his hands full, with all the money he's making, payup and doesn't have time for our negativism. Or else, he's at Radio Shack, selling resistors and batteries, and dreaming of opening another Fortune 500 company. ;)
Crawdad