Originally Posted by brucec32
Experienced guys. Let me ask you. Do you think there just might be a correlation between our industry's poor image with some people and the fact that we have thousands of guys who haven't got sufficient experience running around trying to be in the lawn business? You think that might affect how customers see YOU and how YOUR ability to charge a good price is diminished?
I'm all for charity......For the needy and helpless. However, this guy and others like him aren't helpless. They are perfectly capable of hiring on with someone to learn the trade. One clue you're ready for self-employment in a field might be things like knowing what people charge for stuff in your field!
The next time you feel like starting a thread about how hard it is to find "good help" these days, you might consider the fact that ANY industry would have a hard time finding help if the entry level position was "business owner". Just imagine if restaurants and dry cleaners were run like that. "Sorry about your suit being ruined sir, but the guys at "drycleanersite.com" told me everything I know".
This guy can skip working for you because you are here giving him the benefit of all your years of experience for free. I learned what to charge for aerations because I worked for someone else doing aerations! I knew from that:
a) how long it takes
b) how much longer it takes on sloped lots
c) how much harder lawns with numerous obstacles and turns take
d) how hard it is relative to just mowing lawns
e) the difference in a good job and simply running a machine a few times over a lawn.
f) what it cost by simply observing what my boss charged.
It's one thing to help someone out answering a question here. It's another when people start showing up in droves with nothing more to say or offer than "tell me what to do".
Somewhere along the line, in their dreams filled with dollar signs and early retirement, these guys forgot one important thing. You have to actually learn about what you're doing. I have noticed that while they get very excited about sales and marketing, truck lettering and shiny new equipment, they don't seem too interested at all in going out and learning the trade itself. They hope a few hours spent trolling posts here will suffice.
Well, after 17-18 years of it, I still learn new things. But unless I'm teaching an employee so he can help make me more money, I am not sure why I'd hand out that hard-earned knowledge for free.
If he's like most, you will reply "About $75 for a small lawn" and he will go out and print up 5,000 flyers saying "any lawn aerated, $65". Get it?
Then again I must be a sucker, I actually paid for a university course on turf.
And I bet as you being the "owner" you gladly tell your employees (who you probably pay 6 bucks an hour) what you bid on jobs or not worry about them signing a non-compete form???? Cut some slack dude!