View Full Version : how to eliminate the "scrubs" from our vocab.

09-08-2000, 02:13 AM
I have in the last several months have been aproched by "scrubs" a term i never knew before meeting you guys and since have encourage ,disscused and edgicated those "people"
to the idea of making more money with less accounts. and i'm
not saying im saving the world but at least in some areas that i have practiced this it does have i little effect and maybe just maybe there talk to other and all will relieze that there's enough good work for everyone and everyone can prosper..in closing i sugest that we promote "save a scrub month" it may change things in time.. after all we the memebers of "LAWNSITE.COM" are allways one step ahead due to the vast knowlege aquired here..

[Edited by BUSHMASTER on 09-09-2000 at 01:00 AM]

09-08-2000, 07:07 PM
Not a bad idea. If the scrubs become more educated it will make things better for competiton. Where would McDonalds be or for that matter Burger King. There is plenty of business out there no need to cut anyones throat. Just educate the newbeeies as to whats fare pricing and we would all make plenty of money.Remeber competion is good for business.

09-09-2000, 12:23 AM
I want to start it off the local chapter 144 in columbus ga
an appoint myself president..I will enlighten the unknowlege
geensman with vitail info about what they are and show them things that can increase there bank account there'll learn about, price3ing, stragity,image,and code of conduct. there will be dues use towards refeshments at the local shonies,and even schdule bike and toy drives around christmas for those in need ...if your in the col. ga area
and intersted email me.

09-09-2000, 12:26 AM
well have bumper stickers that say "don't be a scrub go to lawnsite.com"tee shirts to promote this concept what yall think sound off if we want to pull together and create a coast to coast effort to this cause.arr arrr aarr.

[Edited by BUSHMASTER on 09-09-2000 at 04:29 AM]

09-09-2000, 04:42 AM
Why don't you use some of your "stragity" to use spell checker?

09-09-2000, 11:51 AM
maybe your got a piont but how it that goingto fix the problems that "scubs" cause uhmmmmm???

Island Lawn
03-18-2001, 12:39 PM
Blast from the Past!!!

I think These guys have some points about how we can affect state of the industry in our own backyards.

Eric ELM
03-18-2001, 12:46 PM
We have some deep digging in the archives going on today. :D

This is the second one in the last minute I've read. Good to see the archives being used. :)

03-18-2001, 08:16 PM
You bad boy some body going to turn you in
to the spell checkers police.GOOD LORD
A good message grassmaster.

03-18-2001, 09:09 PM
Awm, you got grassmaster on your mind. He didn't post to this thread. None of the those posts were long enough to be his . ;) Just joking with you grassmaster.

You mean Bushmaster :)

Lawn Wizard
03-18-2001, 09:15 PM
If not for this site I would be a complete scrub! but thanks to the information I have found here I feel confident going into business with the knowledge I have found! hail lawnsite.com!

LJ lawn
03-18-2001, 10:07 PM
SO is more competition better then? doesn't it stand to reason that when a market is flooded price drops? isn't this basic economics? so i should be glad that i lose my account for a couple of bucks cheaper labor or can't get quality customers because most of them have a certain price set in their heads.(brought about from cheap labor)now all i'm going to be hearing is how they can't afford to pay any more money because the economy is down.there are big companys out here doing commercial accounts so cheap you wonder how they make any money at all. i've heard these guys work on 1-2% profit margin.go figure.don't move here,(central NJ)waaay too many part-timers and scabs.

03-18-2001, 10:56 PM
Sounds like you are trying to agree upon a price that you will perform services for. that would be considered price fixing and it is illegal. Every year in a low overhead business there will be several new so called companies in your market! There are two ways to deal with it, you can either put on the glove and play ball, or pick up your toys and go home (or at lest back to punching a clock)! If you call a scrub someone that drives a Lawn Boy around in the back of his car to his accounts all day, how come this guy is taking accounts away from you. I think that you should try and sell your clients on your quality, or at least the fact that you will be there for the whole season!
I have also heard somewhere on this forum that there is no loyalty from your clients? It sounds like you have identified a problem, now solve it! Ask yourself "what would form a relationship with a client that would make it hard for them to leave for another service provider?" Just being friendly with your customers, saying hello, saying hello for example is one way. I can't count the times i've heard on this forum that people would likes a certain name brand of equipment but the the prick at the service shop is so slow, unsociable, incompetant, etc.... This is show your clients evaluate you. Valentines day is a perfect time to send your clients from the previous year thanking them for "being my valentine last season". Of corse followed by a phone call in March asking them to allow you to provide service again this season. All of these PERSONAL communications build loyalty amongst your clients, it makes them hard to "leave the nice guy who sent a card". Stop worrying about the scrubs and protect yourself from them. There are always going to be around unless it costed 6 figures to get into the lc business, but then I guess you wouldn't be in it either!

[Edited by jjfehr on 03-18-2001 at 11:02 PM]

03-18-2001, 11:15 PM
I think its time for a wake up call. The bottom line is the MONEY, a customer (for the most part) only cares what its gonna cost him to get his or her yard done PERIOD. And alot of these SCRUBS do great work. The customer couldn't care less if you make a profit or not. I have bid on stuff that I know I would lose money on just to see if I would get it, and guess what I didn't. These customers really don't give a damn about mine or your investment in equipment, education, certification or apperance. Now this isn't the case for all customers, espcially the ones you've had for awhile. The money is the biggest thing to 90% of them. Education of economics for the scrubs is the only way I see an improvment in our industry, everytime I speak with a newby I tell them "DON'T DO IT FOR FREE" get as much $$$ as you can for every job.

03-18-2001, 11:48 PM
You not going to have a 100% market share anyway, so why not concentrate on the 10% of the market that does care about quality and leave the leftovers for the "scrubs" that you can't compete on price with. If you see a "scrub" working on an account, make a mental note, and remember it for later in the season when he quits! Politely bid the persons lawn reminding them why it is their best interest to choose a pro. company to provide their lawn service. At this point they might see the diff. between price and quality!

LJ lawn
03-19-2001, 11:23 PM
how is someone supposed to compete when even ligit pro lawn companys are giving away the work in certain areas? (VOLUME WORKING)underbidding is a vicious cycle.i already know no matter how professional you try to be to sell the job,certain areas (residential)are /have already been price fixed (scabbed out)for years and there isn't any thing anyone is going to do about it.it sure would be nice to FIX a price everyone (all lanscapers in an area) would agree on.illegal or not.at least it would guarantee a liveable wage.most of my customers are loyal and wouldn't want to deal with anyone else because i spend time talking to them and understanding them on a human level. but when i hear of large companys going under because they can't compete what does that tell you-somebody's doing it CHEAPER usually a LOT cheaper.i think it all depends upon the area you live in.it's real easy to give advise if you don't live in an over worked area.i don't want 100% of the market just what i can handle comfortably and be able to make a LIVING not just scrape-by.bottom line is always MONEY and always will be.just the nature of the beast.i think i'll put on the gloves and take a swing (i don't play ball) or else i'll take my toys to a greener more profitable area of the nation.

03-20-2001, 10:58 AM
It seems like everywhere a man goes now, the market is over-run by the "so called Scrubs", as well as legit part-timers(including Myself) and several full-time companies. In this area, or at least the customers that I service, 80% are seniors, there not physically able to do the work, and most are on a fixed budget. 5% are workaholics and don't have enough hours in the day to do it themselves and will pay good for a quality job. and then theres the 15% that are scrubs themselves, there just too darn lazy to do it, and would rather pay a self made scrub a nickel to do it for them.
Now I hear alot of people talking about only taking the high end market. Now this looks great on paper, and I'm sure theres people out there that are overrun by these type of accounts, but as for the community I live in, that is not possible. Sure I have a few accounts that I make a killing on. The senior citizens that I do work for, like I said are on a fixed income and my profits are not near as high. and then there are the scubs that I do work for. Normally I won't turn work down, as long as I make a profit, but everyone is right, this country is getting saturated with people in the industry driving the price down. In 96' when I started, I did one yard for $25, today that same yard is being mowed for $15(and I'm not doing it)......5 years later and gas about .50 cents higher per gallon. Am I worried about it.......Well sorta.....Looking at the big picture, if this keeps up, and other people start jumping on the cheap bandwagon, what is in store for me. Now I have heard several comments that a person shouldn't worry about the competition, and I don't, but I do worry about what my competition is doing to this industry. I wonder if I'm going to mow the same yard for the same price in 10 years (the answer is NO, I'll leave the biz before that).........That's what it is coming to here. For the most part, and for what I have seen, the customer, regardless if it is residential, commercial or industrial will go with the cheapest possible price as long as the job gets done.
Now, that all of this is off my chest, whew, I'm not complaining, well not really, but it really burns when I see someone mowing a 10 acre apartment complex for $300 that takes him 2 days to do it.......
The key is education, a commitment from all lawn and landscape professionals to better the community, the industry and ourselves.....Sure this industry is competitive, but I'm still making more mowing than I do at my full-time job, and the only reason I keep this other job is because I haven't met my goals that I have set for my business.
I believe a program like "adopt a scrub" or the like would benifit all of us. This will in return weed out the weak, and non-commited. As I have said in a previous post, I and a few of my competitors have decided to try at least have a local organization of lawn care professionals. Several ideas have been brought up like having everyone in the biz not only be state liscened and insured, but also have a contractors liscense......Electricians and Plumbers have to have it, why not us.....
I sure i've been babbling on forever, but it is time that we stood together as one, and not as rivaling enemies to fight a common problem...........That is all

Ohio Valley Lawn Services

LJ lawn
03-20-2001, 03:38 PM
TIM ,excellent point,and eloquently stated.

03-20-2001, 08:27 PM
BushMaster, I'm next door to ya in Phenix City. I would love if you could help me to bid properly. My partner And I am full time in the business and this is our first year. Any advise you would give me would be awesome. I believe in our aera that thier is enough work for all who want it and if they don't do a good job someone else will.

My partner and I just gave a bid in Green Island on 10,800 squre feet of turf. Wow what an awesome house about 10,000 square feet. We bid 50.00 per cut to include 5 applications of straight fert. we estamate total time on target to be about 45 min to an hour.

Any input on this would be awesome.

03-20-2001, 08:48 PM
Did you get the bid? 10,000 sq ft of mowing can be done real quick, if you make that one you're doing real good!

03-20-2001, 08:56 PM
I need to get back with the man tomorrow. He has new turf down and I think I would wait a bit before cutting it. Hey Homer should I cut back the turf real low for the first cut to promote the grass to get thicker? I'm not sure about this.
When I get this account I will be servicing him on a weekly plan because he has a sprinkler system. Homer this house is huge. If I get it I can't wait to take a picture of it with my digital camera and I'll send ya a copy.

03-20-2001, 08:56 PM
FUC? The Scrubs they will all go down when the weather gets hotter trust me......They can't take the heat when the fire heats up.

03-20-2001, 09:09 PM
Personally I wouldn't cut new sod down real low. I would let it develop on it's own. It'll come out soon enough, no need to rush it.

Somebody posted a while back that they were going to start an association in their area. I wonder how this developed and if it's a good idea.

In the paper today was 3 new ads by 3 new cutters in my little town. One says he has relocated from Oklahoma! I guess it was too dry out there or something. I was thinking I might send a letter to each one of them inviting them to a BBQ or something really dumb like that, at least it would be a nice gesture and might open the door for some pricing discussions....................not fixing.........discussions :D. Time to educate some scrubs!

Dean Gillette
03-20-2001, 09:12 PM
George! Don't do it! Cutting the turf real low will not promote thick growth, it will promote dead turf! Leave it at 2 1/2 or 3" and let those roots get established. There's a whole lot of reasons why low mowing is bad, I'll spare you the lecture- just take our word for it.

03-20-2001, 09:19 PM
Originally posted by George777
I need to get back with the man tomorrow. He has new turf down and I think I would wait a bit before cutting it. Hey Homer should I cut back the turf real low for the first cut to promote the grass to get thicker? I'm not sure about this.
When I get this account I will be servicing him on a weekly plan because he has a sprinkler system. Homer this house is huge. If I get it I can't wait to take a picture of it with my digital camera and I'll send ya a copy.

What kind of grass? Bermuda is ok to cut short at the begining of the green-up, however cool season grass is a different story!

Dean Gillette
03-20-2001, 09:32 PM
Kirby say- What kind of grass? Bermuda is ok to cut short at the begining of the green-up, however cool season grass is a different story!

Good point. I'm in Indiana thinking cool, and he's in Alabama. I need to pay better attention. George- listen to Kirby on this one, I rule on Blue and rage on Fescue, but on Bermuda I got no clue!

03-20-2001, 09:35 PM
Hey guy,s What's a scrub, and what is competition , shure is nice to live in a small town , and when someone needs grass cut my name always come's up, why , because I know EVERYBODY . Yes there is plenty of work