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Family members know more than you?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by tfilbert, May 4, 2005.

  1. tfilbert

    tfilbert LawnSite Member
    Posts: 61

    Sister-in-law was over for supper last night when I got a call about 6:30pm. I had just walked in the door, dirty, grass all over me, sweat stains everywhere. You know what I mean. Guy was trying to find someone to cut every two weeks now and once a month later. Explained I was sorry I don't do bi-weekly or monthly cuts but if he changed his mind give me a call back. Nice conversation, just not interested. Sister-in-law has seen us go from nothing two years ago to where we are now. She started complaining to my wife about how can we be so picky, don't we need new customers, does it matter how often I cut, it's all money. My wife responded; ya it matters a lot! It is very hard on the equipment to cut longer grass. Leaves property looking bad, damages our reputation. These people tend to pay slow or not at all. I was so proud of her I had to give her a big wet one right then and there. She then said we didn't build this company on doing quality work at fair prices to throw it away for this type customer. She has learned, as we both have what we will and will not do to build our business. Not 6 hours prior, unknown to sister-in-law I had been home changing out equipment after doing an install. I was out back and this guy stopped and asked my wife how long she had used my service and was she happy. She said oh about 25 years now and yes. They were both laughing when I came around to load mowers to go do some cuts. He was looking for an LCO to cut two apartment complexes he owns and his own property. Since they were close I went to have a look and ended up with all three properties. Small at 15 units each and about 1 - 1 1/2 hours per complex. 125.00 per week and all close by. Don't tell my sister-in-law, she would have had me bid all three for 50 bucks!
  2. Tvov

    Tvov LawnSite Bronze Member
    from CT
    Posts: 1,157

    Yep, I've had family make similar comments. They are always amazed when I say that I turn down work. Once your name and phone are out there after a couple years of honest work, your phone rings off the hook.
  3. Watkinslawnservice

    Watkinslawnservice LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 378

    Speaking of sister-in-laws.............Mine said the stupidest thing the other day.

    My wife has a cleaning biz and is starting to get too busy to handle it all by herself. She told her sister that she was thinking of hiring an employee. Her sister asked what she would pay said employee. My wife replied that she would most likely pay $10/hour. Her sister was horrified that my wife gets $25/hr and was only going to pay $10/hr. She said that she couldn't believe that my wife would do such a thing and that it would only be fair to pay $25/hr. Needless to say, she is a moron.
  4. Tvov

    Tvov LawnSite Bronze Member
    from CT
    Posts: 1,157

    Once, many moons ago, I had a customer who couldn't understand why I wasn't paying my employees what I was charging as an hourly rate. I learned from that to keep details of your billing to yourself, as much as possible.
  5. cantoo

    cantoo LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,910

    You should have told her to start a business and your wife could work for her at $25 per hour. Then she how long she would last..
  6. turfmann

    turfmann LawnSite Platinum Member
    from PRM
    Posts: 4,536

    Sounds like a streak of jealousy, huh? When someone can't do what you've accomplished their reaction is to criticize you.

    I keep things about my company to myself. Need to know basis. Having gone from employee to employer I found out that there is a big difference in your mindset. Nothing like being awake half the night staring at the paster swirls on your bedroom ceiling, worrying about your business. Only another business owner understands that and will likely laugh with you as they know what you're talking about.
  7. Tvov

    Tvov LawnSite Bronze Member
    from CT
    Posts: 1,157

    And THAT is probably the number 1 reason I come to this site!
  8. Watkinslawnservice

    Watkinslawnservice LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 378

    The funny part is, she wouldn't be able to do it if she wanted to. She is 35 yrs old and never got a drivers lisence. She can't even drive a car!!!! She lives in LA-LA land and has never had to work for anything.

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