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  #41  
Old 10-14-2012, 10:03 PM
orangemower orangemower is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by puppypaws View Post
Your grandfather was wise beyond years!
One of our for fathers for sure. They knew how to do things right and were very wise.
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  #42  
Old 10-15-2012, 08:38 AM
LHS Lawns LHS Lawns is offline
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Location: Eastern Shore, MD
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimLewis View Post
I have to partially disagree with the post. At least from where I am sitting, I hardly ever get the feeling that customers don't respect me or my company. In fact, I usually get a lot of respect when I show up to a customer's house. Maybe because our company is well-known in the community. But I think there is a lot more that goes into it too. Typically, our customers have either heard from us from a friend who spoke really highly of us or found us on the internet. And by the time they've gone through our website and seen all the beautiful work we're capable of doing, I think they end up having a lot of respect for our company. I think a lot of that comes from the fact that mowing lawns is just PART of what we do. People see nice paver patios, impressive stone work, outdoor living areas, landscape design, carpentry, landscape installs, etc. and I think the level of skill that is needed to pull that stuff off shines through. Most people are impressed by that point and by the time we show up, they already have respect for me and our company.

I think it also helps to be looking professional too. From your business card to your uniforms to the estimate sheet you hand them. The more custom and non-generic that stuff is, the more people will think you have really invested in your company and take you as more professional.

It also helps to be able to converse with the clients on a level that they are familiar with as well. Most of my clients are middle aged and have kids - so do I. So I bring that up. Most of my clients are college educated, so am I. So if I see a OSU or UofO sticker in their car of flag in front of their house, I bring that up. If I notice a book on Shakespeare or The Bible on their table, I might discuss that a little. Often I'll ask what they do. I have friends in just about every profession out there. So if someone says they are an attorney or businessman or whatever, I know enough to talk a little shop with them. This all helps set the stage that I am someone who is a lot like them. It shows them that I am not just some dude that does this for beer money. All of this posturing, so to speak, is really important. People want to buy from other people who they feel are similar to them. It's an advantage I have, being the age that I am and having had the life experiences I have had. And we all have to use our different advantages to their best potential.

Anyway, that's my perspective, FWIW.
When I started this thread Jim your highly successful company was one that came to mind that does get respect. The services you offer especially the hardscaping and landscape design shouldn't have a problem with respect at all.

I've found that my customers do respect me as a person who owns/operates a business.

It just really jumped out at me how they separate me from the profession.

Being well-mannered, hard working, and proficient should make any profession
respectable.
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  #43  
Old 10-15-2012, 09:02 AM
orangemower orangemower is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: pa
Posts: 2,773
Quote:
Originally Posted by JimLewis View Post
I have to partially disagree with the post. At least from where I am sitting, I hardly ever get the feeling that customers don't respect me or my company. In fact, I usually get a lot of respect when I show up to a customer's house. Maybe because our company is well-known in the community. But I think there is a lot more that goes into it too. Typically, our customers have either heard from us from a friend who spoke really highly of us or found us on the internet. And by the time they've gone through our website and seen all the beautiful work we're capable of doing, I think they end up having a lot of respect for our company. I think a lot of that comes from the fact that mowing lawns is just PART of what we do. People see nice paver patios, impressive stone work, outdoor living areas, landscape design, carpentry, landscape installs, etc. and I think the level of skill that is needed to pull that stuff off shines through. Most people are impressed by that point and by the time we show up, they already have respect for me and our company.

I think it also helps to be looking professional too. From your business card to your uniforms to the estimate sheet you hand them. The more custom and non-generic that stuff is, the more people will think you have really invested in your company and take you as more professional.

It also helps to be able to converse with the clients on a level that they are familiar with as well. Most of my clients are middle aged and have kids - so do I. So I bring that up. Most of my clients are college educated, so am I. So if I see a OSU or UofO sticker in their car of flag in front of their house, I bring that up. If I notice a book on Shakespeare or The Bible on their table, I might discuss that a little. Often I'll ask what they do. I have friends in just about every profession out there. So if someone says they are an attorney or businessman or whatever, I know enough to talk a little shop with them. This all helps set the stage that I am someone who is a lot like them. It shows them that I am not just some dude that does this for beer money. All of this posturing, so to speak, is really important. People want to buy from other people who they feel are similar to them. It's an advantage I have, being the age that I am and having had the life experiences I have had. And we all have to use our different advantages to their best potential.

Anyway, that's my perspective, FWIW.
Very well said Jim. I feel the same way. Interacting with the client makes all the difference in the world. I ALWAYS try to relate to them regardless until it goes politics then I draw the line. LOL
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  #44  
Old 10-15-2012, 12:04 PM
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juspayme juspayme is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: new castle pa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LHS Lawns View Post
I run my part-time lawn and landscape business in a very professional manner.
Fully insured, licensed for pest app on turf and ornamental, nutrient management certified for fert app. US DOT certified for the truck and trailer.

Truck has company logo and all license numbers.

I conduct myself in a professional manner in both verbal and written communication.

I keep my customers long term.

I feel I represent the industry very well. We should all try to be the best we can be.

Please don't think I'm trying to make myself out to be better than someone else as a person. I'm very humble and I thank the Lord for all he has done for me. Couldn't have done it without him.

As I said I'm part-time. In my full time job I work for the State Dept. of Agriculture as Soil Conservation Planner. We help farmers protect soil and water resources on their farmland which in turn helps the Chesapeake Bay, the largest estuary in the US.

I don't tell my customers that I'm part-time, I don't think it matters either way but I still don't.
When they do find out what my full time job is its like I've been elevated to a higher level which makes me believe the business itself doesn't get much respect.

It happened this year with a second year client. She practically bowed down to me.

Had another client who just found out and said I feel better with you taking care of my lawn because you know what you are doing. I've had him for about six years and I never heard that before. Same work same results.

I've always kept a high standard I set for myself and my work but now I'm better at what I do?

And even a new client I just picked up a few weeks ago who has seen me in the area for years asked me point blank what my full time job is. I felt like he was saying you couldn't possibly be doing just this for a living.

I'm not complaining, I'm fine with it. My situation sounds like it will have a positive outcome.

It just seems to me the lawn/landscape business doesn't get the respect it deserves.
ITs good to see someone who respects the profession. Keep on looking good.
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2011 hd2500 chevy
2008 28 kaw 60 ULTRA CUT exmark.
2008 28 kaw 60 ULTRA CUT exmark.
90 chevy 1 ton truck
89 chevry half ton
85 i ton dump
16 hp leaf loader
3 snow plows, 2 salt spreader
8 x 20 enclosed carmate trailer, red with refrigirator
2 little wonders 10briggs ( boo) and 9hp honda
21 inch com. toro with susuki engine.
30 inch time cutter ,echo weedeaters and still backback
misc tools.
cuttin evrey summer since i was 10. now 39.
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  #45  
Old 10-15-2012, 12:47 PM
LHS Lawns LHS Lawns is offline
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Join Date: May 2011
Location: Eastern Shore, MD
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Thanks for the kind words Justpayme.

Great looking truck and trailer you have there.
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  #46  
Old 10-15-2012, 01:00 PM
A1 Outdoor Services A1 Outdoor Services is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: South AL
Posts: 44
Living in South Alabama, our econmy is very ag driven, so lucky for us "working men" are very respected, so we probably dont have this problem as much as some of you from other areas. Now, sure there are the folks with push mowers hanging out of the trunk etc. but us that are legit are respected
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  #47  
Old 10-17-2012, 03:17 AM
juspayme's Avatar
juspayme juspayme is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: new castle pa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LHS Lawns View Post
Thanks for the kind words Justpayme.

Great looking truck and trailer you have there.
your welcome my new truck is alot nicer though, i love the professionalism aspect, it def made me more successful

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?f...ze=2048%2C1536
__________________

2011 hd2500 chevy
2008 28 kaw 60 ULTRA CUT exmark.
2008 28 kaw 60 ULTRA CUT exmark.
90 chevy 1 ton truck
89 chevry half ton
85 i ton dump
16 hp leaf loader
3 snow plows, 2 salt spreader
8 x 20 enclosed carmate trailer, red with refrigirator
2 little wonders 10briggs ( boo) and 9hp honda
21 inch com. toro with susuki engine.
30 inch time cutter ,echo weedeaters and still backback
misc tools.
cuttin evrey summer since i was 10. now 39.
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  #48  
Old 10-17-2012, 07:09 AM
LHS Lawns LHS Lawns is offline
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Join Date: May 2011
Location: Eastern Shore, MD
Posts: 215
Quote:
Originally Posted by juspayme View Post
your welcome my new truck is alot nicer though, i love the professionalism aspect, it def made me more successful

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?f...ze=2048%2C1536
I'll second that on the new truck, Nice!

I've always had a saying "Never miss an opportunity to show Class and Professionalism"
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  #49  
Old 10-17-2012, 09:01 AM
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MOturkey MOturkey is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Bolivar, MO
Posts: 2,501
Quote:
Originally Posted by CraigPLC View Post
Sorry, I have not read all the posts, so if I repeat something, please forgive me.

People always want to feel they are superior to the people doing work for them, especially those doing manual labor. They look down on plumbers, electricians, painters, carpenters, gardeners, landscapers, roofers, auto mechanics, etc. Which cracks me up, because in most cases, all these people make as much or more than the people they are doing work for. But I too was caught off guard, and may be it's because I am in an unique area, being in the suburbs of Detroit. Because most of my customers who own these big fancy Lake Front homes, are auto workers. At first, I thought they were engineers, or managers, but I'm learning most are line workers. Who when the auto industry was rocking, and they were working 12-hours a day, 7-days a week saved their money and bought these beautiful homes. So here is a line worker living in the same neighborhood as doctors, lawyers, judges, and the VPs of their corporations.

We all have a tendency to feel we are superior. What do you think about the person making your hamburger or delivering your pizza? Well today, you may be shocked to learn they were white collar executive. Imagine my shock, when one night my pizza was delivered by one of my ex-colleagues (he was Corporate Director of Finance), and I felt bad for him because he felt embarrassed. I know for myself, I used to think erotic dancers were all drugs addicts or bimbos until I start cutting their lawns for their $1,000,000 house. Yep, one of my customers is a dancer at a local stripe club. So you might look down on her (well... you probably wish...) but she makes enough money to live a beautiful home and drive a BMW 7-Series.

My point, I wouldn't care if someone wants to look down on you, care more about who you are looking down on - chance are, you're wrong!
I certainly agree with what you are saying, but respect should have nothing to do with a person's income, or level of education, for that matter. If that were the case, drug lords and mafia bosses should at the top of our respect list. Some of the people I've come to respect the most throughout my life never finished high school, and probably never made $20,000 a year in today's dollars their whole life.
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  #50  
Old 10-17-2012, 01:47 PM
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puppypaws puppypaws is offline
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Location: Marshville,NC 28103
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MOturkey View Post
I certainly agree with what you are saying, but respect should have nothing to do with a person's income, or level of education, for that matter. If that were the case, drug lords and mafia bosses should at the top of our respect list. Some of the people I've come to respect the most throughout my life never finished high school, and probably never made $20,000 a year in today's dollars their whole life.

This is a very good point of view...People need to remember, they came into this world naked, and with nothing, and for the value of what you are buried in, you would be just as well off leaving in the same manner.

An older gentleman once made this statement to me, he said, "son, let me tell you something, the only thing you will take with you when you leave this world is what you gave away."

I thought that to be one of the most sensible statements I had ever heard, and have never forgotten it.

The way some reason about people acquiring large amounts of money being of higher caliber reminds me of this story...There was an extremely wealthy gentleman that became seriously ill, he told his wife that if he died he wanted her to put one million dollars in his casket before he was buried, because he honestly had no idea of what it may be like on the other side. She promised she would honor his request...immediately after his burial several of his really close friends approached his wife, they knew what his request had been and were dieing to find out if she had honestly done what he asked of her. They all ran up like school children waiting for a treat, the spokesman for the group then asked...did you really put a million dollars in his casket before they buried him...she said, I most certainly did, I wrote him a check and put it into his right hand pants pocket, making it as easy as possible for him to access.
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