Adding another man... questions

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Lawn-Scapes, Jun 5, 2001.

  1. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,810

    I've always been a solo act... seems like forever.

    In the past I never wanted the responsiblity of another... I thought about hiring another person when I was in business down in Florida but it never came about. Now in Maryland I'm thinking about it again. I have some questions though...

    Is it worth it? Can 2 men do double the work? Do you take taxes out for one man? How do you keep him coming back each year? Do I need workmans comp for one employee?

    Feel free to add whatever else you think is pertinent.....
  2. CMerLand

    CMerLand LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 393


    First of here in NJ you need workers comp as soon as you hire your first employee, and yes you are responsible for paying taxes for that employee. Think its a hassle???

    Do a search from that Ron guy who took a fall off a ladder breaking his back, then read the other post about how hes now out of business because he couldnt perform the work. He was a part time guy but the point of the story is valid.

    Now, the rest is just my opinion. The reason you should be in business is to ultimately grow that business to a point where it has a value worth selling after X number of years in it. Many of the one man shows out there that think they are businessmen (not implying you), have in fact done nothing more then bought themselves a job and the freedom of being their own boss. Its really more of a lifestyle choice. These guys buy equipment, get some customers and off they go makeing money. All they become are money processors, doing the work, billing customers then paying their bills and expenses or for their equipment etc. After 10 years they are still one man shows, the value of their business is limited to the assets (probably a 10 year old mower and their truck) and a very limited client list. A client list that will hold little value for a prospective buyer, cause many of these clients only want "JIM" to do their lawn.

    However, they are now also 10 years older, can no longer do the work as aches and pains are more severe, have accumulated no wealth from the business, have no retirement funds other then maybe social security ( which will be miniscule since they hide most of their income). All they know how to do is lawn work, as they've aquired no other skills, and are then shocked to find out that if they are lucky they might make $15 or $ 18.00 an hour working somewhere else. That of course is absurd since they can make $ 30 to $ 50 working for themselves, when in reality if they took the time to track how many hours, and how many dollars they spend they're probably lucky to make minimum wage.

    So do I think you should add one new employee, NO add 10 employees (one at a time of course) and grow your business into a success buy expanding your services and increasing your market, while maintaining a profit. Dont want to do this? Keep your day job and stick your lawn business investment money in the stock market where your investment will grow buy 8-10% per year. (disclaimer: past performance does not imply future results)

    Best of luck

  3. lawnman_scott

    lawnman_scott LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,547

    You do need to take taxes out, and wc varies from state to state i think, in fl you only need it with 3 or more employees. Its actually quite simple doing the tax part. I agree with cmerland, there are some days i cant do much, and wouldnt if it wernt for employeees. Im 34 now, and dont see myself doing the actual work much longer, because i will be big enough to not have to, and because i just simply wont be able to, my back and knees are already shot from 10 years working for soft drink companies.

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