Register free!
Search
 
     

The Green Industry's Resource Center


Click for Weather
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 05-11-2013, 08:26 AM
bjm95 bjm95 is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 52
Getting Employees to listen?

My guys work hard and show up on time but they do not seem to listen.

Example: I asked them to stop rounding the edges, I want 90 degrees on corners. They are not doing it.

I am constantly telling them to put things back where they got it. They dont do it.

You can only yell, ask or threaten they're jobs so many times before it gets old. I don't want to fire them because they do work pretty good but at the same time I need these things done.

Does anyone have any legitimate suggestions??
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 05-11-2013, 08:37 AM
alldayrj's Avatar
alldayrj alldayrj is online now
LawnSite Silver Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Long island, NY
Posts: 2,963
Just fire one and the others should fall in. They know your threats are meaningless otherwise
__________________
RJ All Day
Masonry and Landscapes
www.rjfalcone.com
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 05-11-2013, 08:39 AM
JB1's Avatar
JB1 JB1 is online now
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: From the hills of beautiful Southern Indiana
Posts: 5,825
i use snickers candy bars as a way of positive reinforcement with them.
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 05-11-2013, 08:42 AM
Chineau Chineau is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Manitoba, Canada
Posts: 33
When you tell them 90 on a corner do you explain why? I started new guy this week past rule number one with me at the customers property never fill equipment on the customers lawn, why you spill you kill grass. You kill grass they don't want us back we don't have work. He understands.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 05-11-2013, 09:05 AM
bjm95 bjm95 is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chineau View Post
When you tell them 90 on a corner do you explain why? I started new guy this week past rule number one with me at the customers property never fill equipment on the customers lawn, why you spill you kill grass. You kill grass they don't want us back we don't have work. He understands.
Yes, I explain why and I even show pictures of what happens.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 05-11-2013, 09:03 AM
93Chevy's Avatar
93Chevy 93Chevy is online now
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Pittsburgh
Posts: 32,509
Quit treating them like kids and they'll stop acting like kids. I understand there's a time to yell, but never threaten your guys. What would you do if you in their shoes? What's happening to make them not want to listen? I just quit a pretty good job as a field supervisor for 5 grass crews because upper management didn't understand how to manage people. I show up on time every day and only called off once in over two years I've been there. I worked more hours than any of the other 30+ employees last year and you know what my reward was? A scolding about too much overtime. How does that make me want to work hard anymore? It doesn't. I can take a lot of crap and some people even think I'm a push-over. But I'm not going to stay on if I poured my blood out for two years and don't even get one measly "thanks for working late tonight."

I know I ventured off topic for a bit, but as a manager, you're responsible for your employees. If your employees are unhappy, look at yourself. What am I doing wrong that's making them feel that way? If your employees don't listen, look to yourself to figure out why. Sure, you get bad employees that need to be removed, absolutely. Not every guy can be managed. But instead of making them fearful of losing their jobs or even worse making them angry at you, help them to feel good about making your job easier.

And don't get me wrong, I'm not saying you should coddle your employees or treat them like spoiled children. Treat them like adults. As a leader, you need to show that you have their back, but aren't willing to be walked on. They don't put something back, call them on it. They don't do what you want, call them on it. Suspend them, issue a written warning. But if you change your mindset to "how can I help them do their jobs better" from "what the eff are they doing," you might notice some slow changes.

Professionalism starts from the top and works its way down. If you want your employees to be the best, you have to try your hardest to be the best.

Maybe I'm wrong, but I've watched over 12-14 employees for a couple years and I wasn't in the position to fire any of them. Which means I had to deal with what I was given. Being a consistent force of strength, cool demeanor, and compassion goes a lot further in my opinion than fear.

And every day I'd go home thinking about how poorly I did working with them.
__________________
"Please report all incidents of vomitus and fecal contamination to management immediately"

Pittsburgh/Western PA Landscapers Networking Thread

For Sale Chevy truck parts

Last edited by 93Chevy; 05-11-2013 at 09:09 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 05-11-2013, 09:13 AM
bjm95 bjm95 is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by 93Chevy View Post
Quit treating them like kids and they'll stop acting like kids. I understand there's a time to yell, but never threaten your guys. What would you do if you in their shoes? What's happening to make them not want to listen? I just quit a pretty good job as a field supervisor for 5 grass crews because upper management didn't understand how to manage people. I show up on time every day and only called off once in over two years I've been there. I worked more hours than any of the other 30+ employees last year and you know what my reward was? A scolding about too much overtime. How does that make me want to work hard anymore? It doesn't. I can take a lot of crap and some people even think I'm a push-over. But I'm not going to stay on if I poured my blood out for two years and don't even get one measly "thanks for working late tonight."

I know I ventured off topic for a bit, but as a manager, you're responsible for your employees. If your employees are unhappy, look at yourself. What am I doing wrong that's making them feel that way? If your employees don't listen, look to yourself to figure out why. Sure, you get bad employees that need to be removed, absolutely. Not every guy can be managed. But instead of making them fearful of losing their jobs or even worse making them angry at you, help them to feel good about making your job easier.

And don't get me wrong, I'm not saying you should coddle your employees or treat them like spoiled children. Treat them like adults. As a leader, you need to show that you have their back, but aren't willing to be walked on. They don't put something back, call them on it. They don't do what you want, call them on it. Suspend them, issue a written warning. But if you change your mindset to "how can I help them do their jobs better" from "what the eff are they doing," you might notice some slow changes.

Professionalism starts from the top and works its way down. If you want your employees to be the best, you have to try your hardest to be the best.

Maybe I'm wrong, but I've watched over 12-14 employees for a couple years and I wasn't in the position to fire any of them. Which means I had to deal with what I was given. Being a consistent force of strength, cool demeanor, and compassion goes a lot further in my opinion than fear.
I agree %100 that's why I am asking. I treat them like grown men, I don't yell, I ask and I do lots of things other bosses don't do. That's why I get frustrated when they don't listen continuously.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 05-12-2013, 12:43 PM
TPendagast's Avatar
TPendagast TPendagast is online now
LawnSite Gold Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Wasilla, AK
Posts: 3,473
Quote:
Originally Posted by 93Chevy View Post
Quit treating them like kids and they'll stop acting like kids. I understand there's a time to yell, but never threaten your guys. What would you do if you in their shoes? What's happening to make them not want to listen? I just quit a pretty good job as a field supervisor for 5 grass crews because upper management didn't understand how to manage people. I show up on time every day and only called off once in over two years I've been there. I worked more hours than any of the other 30+ employees last year and you know what my reward was? A scolding about too much overtime. How does that make me want to work hard anymore? It doesn't. I can take a lot of crap and some people even think I'm a push-over. But I'm not going to stay on if I poured my blood out for two years and don't even get one measly "thanks for working late tonight."

I know I ventured off topic for a bit, but as a manager, you're responsible for your employees. If your employees are unhappy, look at yourself. What am I doing wrong that's making them feel that way? If your employees don't listen, look to yourself to figure out why. Sure, you get bad employees that need to be removed, absolutely. Not every guy can be managed. But instead of making them fearful of losing their jobs or even worse making them angry at you, help them to feel good about making your job easier.

And don't get me wrong, I'm not saying you should coddle your employees or treat them like spoiled children. Treat them like adults. As a leader, you need to show that you have their back, but aren't willing to be walked on. They don't put something back, call them on it. They don't do what you want, call them on it. Suspend them, issue a written warning. But if you change your mindset to "how can I help them do their jobs better" from "what the eff are they doing," you might notice some slow changes.

Professionalism starts from the top and works its way down. If you want your employees to be the best, you have to try your hardest to be the best.

Maybe I'm wrong, but I've watched over 12-14 employees for a couple years and I wasn't in the position to fire any of them. Which means I had to deal with what I was given. Being a consistent force of strength, cool demeanor, and compassion goes a lot further in my opinion than fear.

And every day I'd go home thinking about how poorly I did working with them.
Chevy,
Everyone gets scolded if there is too much OT. What you need to show, on paper is the justification FOR that OT with added sales and higher profit margins (and yes it possible to do even with OT)
If you didnt HAVE that and all that OT was butt picking, then thats why you got a scolding.
Two years with a lawn company might as well be the same as saying 10 months, because that's ALL the "go time" you have in this industry. so that being said, that's not a lot of time put into a company. I know guys who have worked for brickman for 12 to 15 years.

so with that being said, that hardly makes you an expert on how to manage people. MOST people are lazy, think they know better, or are trying to find a way to not work so much, Take a snap shot of the living room in a house these workers live in, do they pick up their own stuff? or just leave it lying around.

They get attitudes that they dont have to do that, someone else should. work ethic is a disappearing thing in this country. Especially when what you are paying someone is scary close to what they could get if your fired them and they collect unemployment.

It's all about motivation. Instead of a system where everyone starts with an A, Give them a system where everyone starts with a D -, you want to work here? You earn your pay. EVERYONE starts with a 8/hr, if the stuff is done my way? thats $1, if you put back your tools $1, if the equipment is greased and not broken lost or stolen? $1, no call backs from customers this week? $1. You beat your times? $1...and so on. That's $13 an hour if they do things YOUR way, and $8/hr if they do things THEIR way.... its their choice. Come up with TEN things you want them to do. The guy who does it all is the perfect employee and is WORTH $18/hr.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 05-13-2013, 06:40 AM
93Chevy's Avatar
93Chevy 93Chevy is online now
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Pittsburgh
Posts: 32,509
Quote:
Originally Posted by TPendagast View Post
Chevy,
Everyone gets scolded if there is too much OT. What you need to show, on paper is the justification FOR that OT with added sales and higher profit margins (and yes it possible to do even with OT)
If you didnt HAVE that and all that OT was butt picking, then thats why you got a scolding.
Two years with a lawn company might as well be the same as saying 10 months, because that's ALL the "go time" you have in this industry. so that being said, that's not a lot of time put into a company. I know guys who have worked for brickman for 12 to 15 years.

so with that being said, that hardly makes you an expert on how to manage people. MOST people are lazy, think they know better, or are trying to find a way to not work so much, Take a snap shot of the living room in a house these workers live in, do they pick up their own stuff? or just leave it lying around.

They get attitudes that they dont have to do that, someone else should. work ethic is a disappearing thing in this country. Especially when what you are paying someone is scary close to what they could get if your fired them and they collect unemployment.

It's all about motivation. Instead of a system where everyone starts with an A, Give them a system where everyone starts with a D -, you want to work here? You earn your pay. EVERYONE starts with a 8/hr, if the stuff is done my way? thats $1, if you put back your tools $1, if the equipment is greased and not broken lost or stolen? $1, no call backs from customers this week? $1. You beat your times? $1...and so on. That's $13 an hour if they do things YOUR way, and $8/hr if they do things THEIR way.... its their choice. Come up with TEN things you want them to do. The guy who does it all is the perfect employee and is WORTH $18/hr.
I wasn't picking my butt on the clock, I was doing what I was told every day. They say come in at 6, I come it at 6. They say take care of these properties, I get back at 7pm, not my fault. I never purposefully wasted company time for a higher paycheck. Of course I'm not perfect and didn't run around full speed all day but I didn't sit at the garage at 8pm waxing mowers.

And also I'm sorry if I came across as an "expert"...not my intention. I personally think I'm terrible but somehow I get results. I wasn't sure how to word my post to sound otherwise, so I can definitely see how it came across a little too self-appreciating. Not my intention at all. Maybe next time a thread like this comes along, I'll give my two cents without my life story
__________________
"Please report all incidents of vomitus and fecal contamination to management immediately"

Pittsburgh/Western PA Landscapers Networking Thread

For Sale Chevy truck parts
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 05-11-2013, 09:34 AM
Efficiency's Avatar
Efficiency Efficiency is offline
LawnSite Bronze Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: zone 6
Posts: 1,027
Choose your battles. I choose to deal w all that and more just since my guys come in on time and do a reasonably good job most times. Employees are mostly capable of average and no more. If they can do more, they would have their own business.
Posted via Mobile Device
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump





Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ©1998 - 2012, LawnSite.comô - Moose River Media
All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:30 PM.

Page generated in 0.10881 seconds with 7 queries