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Old 03-15-2002, 12:17 AM
Commander Commander is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: western mass
Posts: 116
Effiecency / Systems

This has nothing to do with landscaping, but it has a lot to do with business.

I had gone to a pub type establishment to eat dinner this evening. I had to wait about 15 minutes for a table (no big deal). Get in there and sit down at a table. I am looking at the physical layout of the place and it was horrible. I watched as the wait staff worked the tables and it was horrible. They had few, if any systems in place for how to work the customers. Now granted the place was packed, but the service was bad. I ordered a soda with no ice, what do I get? Soda with ice. I drank that and waited a good 10 minutes just for somebody to come up and ask if I needed a refill. I talked with one of the managers or hosts and asked how many employees this place has. He responded with 40 The reason that I bring this up is because I work for a guy who has a pizza place. This one pizza place is about 3 times the size of the place I visited tonight. The pizza place only employs 33 people though. The owner of the pizza place lives in a house that is worth in the 7 figures. I kept thinking to myself that if they had to compete with eachother (for whatever reason) that my pizza guy would put this pub guy out of business within a few months.

There is much more to tell than this, however my theme here is that the pizza guy has systems down and an efficient layout, therefore he will dominate. The pub type place has a bad layout, and few if any systems, so therefore they would fold. How does this relate to our business you might ask? Just think about it... more money with fewer employees?
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Old 03-15-2002, 10:16 PM
site site is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Stratham,NH
Posts: 168
I spend a lot of time trying to systemize things, and with some success, but it isn't easy. First of all we do mostly installations. We are the ones people call when it's complicated, so every job is different. So little things are systemized- how to load trucks, where to put time slips, what truck to take for what materials, what tools to take to a certain job...
The problem is- this system thing is bigger than me. I have a manual, but it's almost impossible to make the guys read it much less live by it. The first time the guys see me or their forman give an inch on a system they trash the whole thing.
Here's an example- My rule come to work dressed and stay dressed. Wear your shirt all day even if it's hot. Well I show up to the job and everybody (even the foreman) is dressed like Tarzan. It turns out the homeowner asked them to take their shirts off- I guess it gave her a thrill. no big deal I thought... for the rest of the season I was bustin' these guys without their shirts. Almost like they had the rule backwards. I could start firing guys, but they were too talented. Instead, I put up with it.
I'm not giving up on systems though- I think they are the keyto my future success.
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  #3  
Old 03-16-2002, 02:31 AM
garydale garydale is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Mount Airy, Maryland EST
Posts: 813
Big believer in systems & standards!!!

I have always found the guys that are recognized and sucessful are the ones that insist on their company way of doing things.

Uniforms, appearance, conduct, manners are critical to your success.

Same is true for work procedures.Set your standards and insist on them all the time by everyone on your payroll. I believe you should be able to spot a company's work and it's people any where by how they look and do their work.

Standards will get your company recognized by good workers who will want to work for you,customers will seek out your outfit and besides, it make supervising so much easier.
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gary crutchfield
www.lawnaideplus.com
po box 630
mount airy, md 21771-0630
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