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Eden Lights
05-03-2009, 12:49 AM
Anyone here have their lighting business turning a profit to the point that you could step back and watch someone else run the show and still send you your paycheck? That is my 10 year goal set in 2000 and it must be achieved.

TXNSLighting
05-03-2009, 01:12 AM
Im sure several here are at that point, but why? We have a passion for this, and i myself could never see any one else runnin this company but me. I just love it to much. My kids will run this company when its time to retire.

Eden Lights
05-03-2009, 09:19 AM
Lets redefine stepping back as working under 50 hours per week. Working is defined as doing ANYTHING to do with your business. Turning a profit is paying everyone involved in your business a competetive salary on a weekly basis, fully funding IRA and Roths, and maintaining a strong HSA or other health program through your business.

David Gretzmier
05-03-2009, 05:35 PM
not in my 10 year goal as I just turned 40. My family will be getting mre involved, not less, over the next 20 years. I will be using all of my children in both Christmas and Landscape lighting, as my 11 year old is already a 3 year veteran in the biz. I anticipate both sides of the biz to continue to grow over the next 20, with one or two of the 4 kids probably showing an interest in running/help run a 2 mill ( if trends continue ) company when I am 60. I do truly love this business, and my idea of initial retirement ( 60-70 ) is only working maybe 2-3 weeks out of 4, and traveling heavy to see the world and maybe speak at conventions and consult on projects. more retirement would be just selling and only installing on maybe 1 week total a month. If I have no one to run the biz, we would just work 3 weeks on and the rest of the month off.

my daughter looked at a redo job with me a few days ago- direct quote- "DAD- pierce points ! don't these idiots know they corrode the wire- (has already cut wire back twice without permission-) wire is ruined. we're gonna need 17 uplights in the front and you need 3 in a triangle on that birch over there. They'll want paths on the walk but you'll see the bulbs from the drive, it is downhill, I wouldn't do it. they have heads ( irrigation) that'll hit them too. they want light on the waterfall in back?"

all correct, I am hoping she stays on. not bad for 5 bucks an hour.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
05-03-2009, 05:59 PM
Having just hired on a full time, year round Operations Manager, and now looking to hire on another installer/service tech., I hope to be in a position within a year or so where my role is reduced to that of marketing, design, sales, and service co-ordinator. Having been in the trenches for 11 years now, I am looking forward to it!

Pro-Scapes
05-03-2009, 09:54 PM
I would like to have an office person if anyone. That is the only aspect of my business I really do not look forward to. As time progresses I will no doubt look more to laborers than doing alot of the manual stuff myself but at least at this point in time I love being a small operation and the being able to give my clients that personal touch.

Knowing it will be me myself who comes to service and install things is something many of my clients look forward to. I really have no desire to send a crew out to do things. I can make quite a comfortable living and am content with how things are running now.

The Lighting Geek
05-04-2009, 12:26 AM
I would like to have an office person if anyone. That is the only aspect of my business I really do not look forward to. As time progresses I will no doubt look more to laborers than doing alot of the manual stuff myself but at least at this point in time I love being a small operation and the being able to give my clients that personal touch.

Knowing it will be me myself who comes to service and install things is something many of my clients look forward to. I really have no desire to send a crew out to do things. I can make quite a comfortable living and am content with how things are running now.

I completely agree with you Billy. I am in the same place right now.

Chris J
05-05-2009, 10:55 PM
I think you guys are full of spit. If it were'nt for service contracts, I'd be sunk by now. Tommy, I thought you were already OOB? But then again, I haven't been on here in a while so things may have changed.
FYI, on my end new installs are down 50%. On a good note, I let go of all my employees which effectively gave me a significant raise! Bad news is that I now have to do it all myself, which significantly reduces the amount of time I have to screw with you goof balls! Summary of the story: You guys can KMA! Glad to be back, by the way, so get your digs in quick. Probably won't be here for long!

klkanders
05-05-2009, 10:59 PM
What a return! Welcome back Chris! Always good to see your posts!

Keith

TXNSLighting
05-05-2009, 11:28 PM
Great comeback there!

Eden Lights
05-06-2009, 12:05 AM
I think you guys are full of spit. If it were'nt for service contracts, I'd be sunk by now. Tommy, I thought you were already OOB? But then again, I haven't been on here in a while so things may have changed.
FYI, on my end new installs are down 50%. On a good note, I let go of all my employees which effectively gave me a significant raise! Bad news is that I now have to do it all myself, which significantly reduces the amount of time I have to screw with you goof balls! Summary of the story: You guys can KMA! Glad to be back, by the way, so get your digs in quick. Probably won't be here for long!

Thanks for the update Chris, we are almost at the same place as you as far as business numbers. The manufacturers that I have gotten real numbers from are seeing the same thing from their first quarter reports. (And no I didn't talk with Unique) I was also trying to gauge business success and potential success from the professionals from this site, and I think I got my answer. While Lighting is my passion, its still a business and should be looked at as that only. My goals are high and right now I am not making them. I have no desire to run in place. I hope everyone here attains there goals what ever they might be.

David Gretzmier
05-06-2009, 09:00 AM
Welcome back Chris !

I try to think of these as long term goals, rather than this years temperature of the recession, as yeah, business in pretty much spit. The phone just is not ringing with new clients from existing advertising ( yellow pages, truck graphics) in place. I've gotten some referrals from BNI networking, and one of those is a pretty locked lighting job for mid june. everything i currently have on the board or working on is a referral or Christmas client. and most of thst is not lighting. and yeah, the bulb maintenance will keep me from bankrupcy until Christmas light season is here.

It's pretty humbling to do less lighting this year than last, but I'm gonna try and drop some cash on brochures and postcards over at gotprint.com and see what happens.

Chris J
05-12-2009, 08:02 PM
Gotcha! One of the biggest hurdles in these tough times is marketing. Most will reduce their marketing budget altogether, but I believe that it is the one who persists in the marketing effort that will ultimately prevail in the end. Even though it seems that these are wasted dollars right now, advertising is something that may catapult your business once the recession has softened. Think about it: how many of your competitors do you think are branding their name in people's minds right now, assuming they are even in business today? I say go for broke, or go home! I'm now prostituting on the side to help make ends meet, and keep up with the ad budget, but that's on the slow side too (for some reason?) But hey! You gotta think positive!

Later Gators! I still say KMA, but I'll be back soon to talk with you guys more!

TXNSLighting
05-12-2009, 10:55 PM
Too fantastic Chris!