PDA

View Full Version : Employees taking over


ProTouch Groundscapes
06-05-2011, 09:54 AM
wish me luck!

Tuesday will be the first day for our company that we will have employees taking over the mowing duties.

My brother(19) and I (24) have been running this company ourselves for the past 7 years and we have experienced excellent growth to the point that this year we run 2 full time employees and 2-3 part timers.

The rain this spring has put a serious back log on our landscaping side of the business so my brother is pulling off of mowing to help me out with with that side of the company. Plus this way I can show him the ropes as I will be getting married in July and attending law school in Aug. and therefore be only a high level manager for our company and my brother will be taking over my responsibilities as a field manager.

I feel that we have a good chance of making this work as the guy that will be running the mowing crew is an excellent employee. We have gone through a lot of crappy guys to find him. Hell, he even made us a website, something Ive been trying to do for over a year now just havent had the time.

Just wanted to see if anyone has any advice from companies that have been through this before?

mikemat31
06-05-2011, 11:18 AM
May I ask you a question. I see your going to law school soon. I am 16 and my parents love the fact I am working. They just don't want me to be stuck doing this the rest of my life. May I ask you do you have future plans to become a lawyer, and are you going to continue with the landscaping. How did you juggle college and landscaping at the same time.

thanks,
mike

Think Green
06-05-2011, 12:15 PM
Pro Touch,
I am sure the intentions of planning for a smooth running transition is in mind, but never under any circumstances allow your employees to run your company. A good field crew leader is only as good as the boss running them. Your brother need not put stock in these guys no matter how efficient and good running at this time. I mean, don't get complacent to their abilities and intentions. Their is a multi million dollar competitor of ours locally, that turned his enterprise over to his--just out of college son, and instantly the employees started dropping off like flies. The one's his son didn't fire,left and joined up with the others that were of higher position and started their own company. The real kicker is...........one employee was a Spray Technician and the other a Irrigation Technician. Now, these two ex-employees have taken most if not all of his Commercial and Industrial accounts. I mean, 150,000 dollar a year accounts.!!!! Pretty big chunk of his pocket book was slide out from under his feet.
The nursery that he owns has reduced their annual sales by 50% and what is left is not looking too good for this year. This company supplied my plant stock and all other materials for years. Now, it is looking grim for them as if the sales aren't there, then nothing else is either.
You will get married and go off to become a Attorney, so your intentions are elsewhere and the sudden burden will get shifted to your brother. He needs to realize that things aren't always on the Golden Cow side when a partnership is separated.

ProTouch Groundscapes
06-05-2011, 05:37 PM
I see your point, but I think i may have stated my position incorrectly. I only meant that our mowing division will be handled by employees, everything else is still in our hands. brother, my father and I. Even after law school I intend to have a high level position just to make long term strategic decisions while my brother and father handle the day to day operations. The one employee was territory manager for mowing and spraying for a well known company here that got bought out by Davey for their accounts.

Mikemat- it was hard especially during snow season when the crazy hours would mess with my sleep schedule. I did accounting undergrad with minors in supply chain management and entrepreneurship. Im blessed that i have never been a big studier. I went to class and paid good attention and took good notes and I maintained Deans list throughout my undergrad. It was tough but I gained alot of experience and was never a poor college kid, hell I drive an 09 lariat f350 superduty. Im not trying to brag but Ive always believed in enjoying the fruits of your hard work (saving is good too!)

ed2hess
06-05-2011, 08:08 PM
Way way tooo early to be putting two guys in management. You need a lot more people before you get away from working full time in the field.

nepatsfan
06-05-2011, 08:21 PM
Two things....Have them time in and time out. Just a simple thing their mowing schedule that they hand in at the end of the day. What time you got there and what time you left. If nothing else so you know exactly how long everything takes them so if you get new guys you can show them how long it took the other crew. People get comfortable and you can see how long things took them and make sure they aren't stopping for lunch for an hour.

The other thing...make sure you take the time to look at their work periodically. Just make sure everything is being done properly. I put a lot of pressure on my guys to be fast and efficient but I don't want them cutting corners in the process.

This is honestly my best advice....I am assuming that the guys you will be sending are already well trained and know what they are doing. It is difficult to let them off the t*t but it is how you grow!

It can work...it is a logical step. Good Luck!

XLS
06-05-2011, 08:39 PM
nepatsfan hit it dead on clock in and out so you can track job times it will show you who needs to go and when

cpllawncare
06-05-2011, 08:51 PM
Way way tooo early to be putting two guys in management. You need a lot more people before you get away from working full time in the field.

Maybe, but if their set up correctly, maybe not. I don't plan on staying in the field myself but one or two more years.

grassman177
06-05-2011, 08:55 PM
i agree with everyone here, a bit of all those is needed really .

good luck, it aint easy at all. we have many good crew members right now, but none of them are quite what we are looking for in a crew leader position. you know what i mean.

seams those are really few and far between, especially when you are very picky like we are.

XLS
06-05-2011, 09:01 PM
and the worst feeling you can get as a business owner iswhen having a great guy ,knowing he is able to run crews and then realize you overburdened him and he is so strict on your guys due to the idea of failing the company that it kills his crews marral. I have seen that ......its like hitting the self destruct.... some times its better to let him work into the position slowly then just saying go .

ProTouch Groundscapes
06-06-2011, 08:36 AM
Way way tooo early to be putting two guys in management. You need a lot more people before you get away from working full time in the field.

I never said I would be putting two guys in a strictly managerial role. If i did then it was misinterpreted. My brother is still doing field work but would be taking over a few of my current responsibilities. The only thing he wouldnt be doing on a full time basis would be mowing grass 5-6 days a week and instead be doing hedge trimming, mulch installs, lawn installs and that type of landscaping.

The two employees would only be responsible for the day to day mowing activities. Every morning they will be clocking in here to pick up the truck and trailer and then bringing it back at the end of the day. My brother has done the route for the past 5 years+ so he know how long it takes each day for the different houses.

The other thing...make sure you take the time to look at their work periodically. Just make sure everything is being done properly. I put a lot of pressure on my guys to be fast and efficient but I don't want them cutting corners in the process.



Yes, my brother will be checking in every so often and he is OCD about how he leaves lawns looking. He is actually a tougher boss than I. I am too soft, hes not afraid to let them know a thing or two.

This is honestly my best advice....I am assuming that the guys you will be sending are already well trained and know what they are doing. It is difficult to let them off the t*t but it is how you grow!

yes they are, the two guys have also worked together in the past. They have been working under my brother's supervision for the past few months so they know what he expects and my brother knows what they are capable of.

and the worst feeling you can get as a business owner iswhen having a great guy ,knowing he is able to run crews and then realize you overburdened him and he is so strict on your guys due to the idea of failing the company that it kills his crews marral. I have seen that ......its like hitting the self destruct.... some times its better to let him work into the position slowly then just saying go .

The guys say the love working for us. They say we are one of the most organized outfits and all our equipment is kept up and in great shape. Nice big enclosed trailer, newer mowers, and good handhelds. We have told this guy from the beginning that we are looking for someone to lead a mowing crew so he knew what to expect and has had that position before at his previous employer.

I like these thought provokers guys, thanks for the tips. One question though, are you saying to clock in when they get to a house to mow then clock out when they are ready to leave the house? that seems a bit overkill as our service is just mow,trim,edge & blow. Most houses avg. between 15-20 min depending on time of year.

THEGOLDPRO
06-06-2011, 10:09 AM
I like how you keep saying you will become a "high level manager" you only have 2 guys working for you how "high" do you really think you will become lol. You make it sound like you have 300 employees.

ProTouch Groundscapes
06-06-2011, 10:59 AM
Im gonna be the mutha effn CEO!

man you guys are so literal. Mr. Goldpro, by high level manager I meant that I will no longer be working in the field but managing from a higher perspective. In no way am I talking myself up like im a multi million dollar corporation as you assumed in your narrow field of thinking. High level means making long term decisions such as which direction I would like to focus our company or what prospective clients I want to market and helping with bidding. I used the term "high level" to help illustrate the point that I am trying to separate myself from field work and focus on the well being of the company as a whole and also for the fact that I wont have the time to devote to it being in law school.

here is our current break down:

My brother and I work full time and my father will help out when his construction business is slow and we need help on large projects.

2 full time employees for mowing and 3 part timers that come in on certain days for mowing our larger accounts and another part timer that helps me out throughout the week on other landscaping jobs.

Most of the time you bring negative comments that are not relative and nothing that actually contributes to the topic. Almost everytime i post in this stupid section I end up regretting it cause of members like you.

Will P.C.
06-06-2011, 11:15 AM
Realistically, you should give up your vote in the family biz. Trust me, you are going to be way too busy to even think about the lawn care business.

Your brother and Dad might get pissed if you try and make decisions for a business you are no longer a part of. Further, you could make the wrong decisions since you will no longer be connected. You might as well be living in the north pole.

I think it naturally happen like this. You are going to lose interest while trying to get great internships. Cutting grass and landscape is no longer your future and career.

THEGOLDPRO
06-06-2011, 12:53 PM
Im gonna be the mutha effn CEO!

man you guys are so literal. Mr. Goldpro, by high level manager I meant that I will no longer be working in the field but managing from a higher perspective. In no way am I talking myself up like im a multi million dollar corporation as you assumed in your narrow field of thinking. High level means making long term decisions such as which direction I would like to focus our company or what prospective clients I want to market and helping with bidding. I used the term "high level" to help illustrate the point that I am trying to separate myself from field work and focus on the well being of the company as a whole and also for the fact that I wont have the time to devote to it being in law school.

here is our current break down:

My brother and I work full time and my father will help out when his construction business is slow and we need help on large projects.

2 full time employees for mowing and 3 part timers that come in on certain days for mowing our larger accounts and another part timer that helps me out throughout the week on other landscaping jobs.

Most of the time you bring negative comments that are not relative and nothing that actually contributes to the topic. Almost everytime i post in this stupid section I end up regretting it cause of members like you.

Oh geez im sorry i cant seem to pick apart every single sentence you write and make sense of it.. In my head and im sure others your "high level manager" position sounded funny to me. Like you were trying to make yourself seem more important then you really are.

All you had to say was im no longer going to be out in the field i will be hanging back in the office helping to grow the business. No need for the fancy titles. But whatever have fun doing whatever it is your doing.

cpllawncare
06-06-2011, 03:53 PM
I've always found it funny how people get off on having a title, got a buddy with a small roofing company and he has a executive vice president of business development, your a freakin sales mgr okay dude LOL. I guess I could be a CEO but would just rather be "The Owner" when people ask, just seems more appropriate for a smalll business. One reason I went full time was to get away from all the corporate crap like titles and stuff.

ProTouch Groundscapes
06-06-2011, 04:34 PM
Oh geez im sorry i cant seem to pick apart every single sentence you write and make sense of it.. In my head and im sure others your "high level manager" position sounded funny to me. Like you were trying to make yourself seem more important then you really are.

All you had to say was im no longer going to be out in the field i will be hanging back in the office helping to grow the business. No need for the fancy titles. But whatever have fun doing whatever it is your doing

sorry for blowing it out of proportion, I just explained that twice already, I just get peeved when people dont fully read posts and make comments or ask questions about things that were already explained.

I've always found it funny how people get off on having a title, got a buddy with a small roofing company and he has a executive vice president of business development, your a freakin sales mgr okay dude LOL. I guess I could be a CEO but would just rather be "The Owner" when people ask, just seems more appropriate for a smalll business. One reason I went full time was to get away from all the corporate crap like titles and stuff.

the CEO comment was a sarcastic remark. My business cards have owner on them, nothing fancy.

deere615
06-06-2011, 09:43 PM
I think you guys will be fine Alex is cool I met him at yankee a few weeks ago. So whose truck will the mowing crew be using? The chevy?

topsites
06-06-2011, 10:03 PM
Is the shop still standing?

McVey Landscape
06-07-2011, 03:22 AM
Pro Touch. I have experiance the same. Spring rains (love them!) but cant get away for hard scaping or green scaping. I have turned my 2 man crew on it's own so I can get other things done. So far no problems. We WISH you LUCK!!!