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Ditching my partner and going solo!

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by H & M Yard Improvements, Sep 28, 2012.

  1. H & M Yard Improvements

    H & M Yard Improvements LawnSite Member
    Posts: 214

    Ok a little rant here. A little advise from the veterans would be appreciated.

    My story: I started a small mowing biz with my buddy last season. We have grown from 13 customers last season to 29 this season. I do all of the office work, billing, estimates, landed all of of our clients, scheduling etc.

    He: Doesnt stroll out of his house until 8 or later, makes me wait when I want to be on the road by 7. Is picky about what jobs he wants to do. Is above working weekends (Saturday). He says hes worked enough Saturdays in his life and hes only 38 yrs old and lives with his wife at mom and dads house.

    We had rain the last 2 days so we got a little backed up. I have customers that want their lawns cut Saturday (tomorrow). I said no problem I will go out on my own and do them. My partner gets pissed at me because i said I would service them. He wanted me to wait until Tuesday.He said that I am taking money out of his pocket by working Saturday. There is absolutely no reason why he cannot work Saturday other than he is lazy and doesnt want to work. To me he seems like an unreliable laborer I would have 6 pissed off customers if I did that. He does not have to handle the phone calls if someone gets pissed. And if i do get a call from someone unsatisfied and I tell him about it, he just shrugs his shoulders as if it is no big deal and says "Whatever dude".

    So, how do I go about getting rid of him. I want to be solo next season. Then I wont have to deal with his BS. I have purchased most of the equipment with my own money. He doesnt contribute anything to the biz. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for readin and understanding.

  2. memphis.landscape

    memphis.landscape LawnSite Member
    Posts: 140

    Just tell him. I was in a similar situation a few years ago and had to just man up and tell him I wanted to split. It wasn't easy, but had to be done. Anything he put in on you guys will need to split up 50/50 and I would assume you guys would need to split some of the yards as well. Or you could just offer to buy him out.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  3. Greg78

    Greg78 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,010

    Partnerships are a hard deal as you are finding out. To late for this now but all these things (how to split things up or buy out procedures) needed to be decided and in writing before entering into a partnership. Only posting this to help somebody who might be thinking about doing a partnership.

    They rarely work out. I have had one fail and 2 successful. The 2 successful have been with my dad.
  4. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 17,002

    I never have understood the partner thing. All you can do is offer to buy him out, or split the business in half if you dont have the funds to buy him out. I would try to keep everything "cool" so you dont destroy your business, if you are friends its quite possible you wont be if you part ways.

    Talk to your partner over a cup of coffee or a beer, <just a couple> and see if you can resolve the mess without much information getting out to your customers. Your partner probably wants out anyway.

    Get SOLO and stay SOLO.
  5. TenderCareLawnService

    TenderCareLawnService LawnSite Member
    Posts: 68

    I understand and have been in a similar situation with another business I had. Please be smart about the situation. What to do with the yards, split them 50/50 or like they said buy them out. When purchasing the equipment did you purchase it with you own money and bring that into your books (accounting system) as an asset to the company? If you did this then you will probably have to find the best way to split this. Think about the money in the bank AND who had access to it. My previous partner and I both had access so when I told him I wanted to split he went and took out a much larger piece than was his. I had no idea he did this. So please be careful.

    All in all it sounds like this needs to be done and fast. Don't wait if it's not working out because it will only get worse. Good luck and I hope it all works out
  6. ztman

    ztman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,007

    First question. Do you actually have a formal partnership, or is this two buddies that decided to cut grass. Sounds like to me no formal agreement, because the first thing you consider in writing an agreement is how to get out. If you put up all the money and did all the work, show him the high way. If there is actually a partnership tell him you will split the accounts. He wont want to do that if all the equipment is yours. You say he is lazy so he wont go out and buy equipment to service the clients and you will end up with the accounts anyway
  7. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 7,961

    I split one 2 years ago. Like a marriage without the benefits. We did it for 5 years however.

    BTW Working Sats does suck but you sound better off hiring a guy for $11
  8. muddywater

    muddywater LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,813

    If there is no legal paperwork detailing a partnership and he is truly a pos... I would just take everything and dump him.
  9. C Jovingo Landscaping

    C Jovingo Landscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 436

    Sounds like it is your company & your buddy is just an employee. You do all the office/paper work, billing, estimates, handle calls, scheduling & bought the equipment. Does he mow by himself or both of you mow all 29. Let me guess...he had the truck, so that made him a partner! Lol! I can't see your location on cell phone. I you have an end to your season, I'd finish the season. Let him know then that your goin solo next year!
    Posted via Mobile Device
  10. Greg78

    Greg78 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,010

    OP is in New Jersey. That is annoying when I'm on my Iphone and want to know where somebody is located.

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