I took a different route.
I decided early on after working for my Dad (House Builder). I would go a different route. I went to a 4 year school and get a degree in Technology Education which I used to become a shop teacher. My degree consisted of classes on everything from metals technology to home construction, plumbing, electrical, and industrial design and drawing. My many computer classes and graphic design classes has lead me to create my own logos, flyers, websites, designs, and to create information pages for customers that are beautiful and easy to understand.
I have now been employed for 5 years and my salary is a little over 52,000 for 180 days of work. I teach 8th graders the love of the technical world. I also have a masters in education. The great thing about my degree and education was it allowed me to produce start up cash to try out this industry. If I ever decided I could not hack it, or got burned, I could just go back to playing golf all summer.
During college I worked for landscapers full time, farmers (to gain machine exp), and a chemical fertilizer plants (to gain fert exp). In an unknown way I got a ton of experience in quite a few areas of landscaping and I really did a ton of hardscaping and loved it. I have always had the equipment and building bug, its in my genes. Even if I wanted to quit this industry I couldn't.
2 years ago I started a Property service business because all of my "friends," could not stop asking for me to do a little job here, or there, and I decided I should just as well get paid. I am not trying to steal anyone's work as I will always stay a solo, I just have the intense love for making things right like many in the industry.
I have found my education route has really allowed me to talk with people and educate them on correct policies and practices. My general knowledge has been more of an asset. Sure I F&^K up many times, but I think the difference is the ability to make it right, really contracting work comes down to the integrity of who your working with doesn't it?
I am working to go to ICPI, and join more landscaping groups. I have to be honest, us little guys fill a very important role in the grand scheme of things. I work solo, and many trust my integrity as a fixture in the public community, and many choose to work with me. I would imagine my prices are lower than other in the area, but I have lower overhead, and my goal is to not go all out and become a shine and fade super company.
Last edited by Steiner; 01-05-2008 at 08:41 AM.