General Manager

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by Gene $immons, Nov 23, 2003.

  1. Gene $immons

    Gene $immons LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,028

    I am considering hiring a guy that I have known for years as a "general manager".

    I want his job to take over some of the daily overseeing of the crews, and to assist in company growth and development, and customer relations plus advertising ideas.

    This guy had a bachelors degree, and has alot of contacts around town due to his involvement in misc. associations. I think it might be a good thing to have him around.

    I was considering paying him a base salary, plus some sort of bonus or commission for each new account that he can personally land for us.

    Do any of you have a similar position in your company? And how is it working? What jobs do you require your "general manager" to perform?

    Thanks,

    Gene






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  2. Gene $immons

    Gene $immons LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,028

    Wow! Thanks!

    I guess all of you are solo guys.
     
  3. Columbia Turf

    Columbia Turf LawnSite Member
    Posts: 99

    How much freedom do you want to give this person? Access to "the books", accountability for low bids? ETC.......I learned several things in my career. I think one of the biggest was a company I worked for as an outside sales rep, Even the owner of the company had a monthly sales goal. Its all about Time and money. Whatever his responsabilities, I would think he would also have to produce some kind of revenue. Weather it be picking up a couple irrigation service calls, Damage control of some kind or even helping the crews on days people dont show up for work.

    Any Help???
     
  4. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Posts: 8,745

    Do you think that the friendship will work out in the working environment Gene?
     
  5. Gene $immons

    Gene $immons LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,028

    Columbia Turf, I want him to be able to know how to do almost everything that I do. I want him to be able to see the books, and "understand" the business and how the money flows.

    I will also allow him to bid on regular lawns. Larger properties and commercial accounts will be handled by both of us.

    His main job will be to raise production and take care of the daily misc. that seems to slow me down. He will not be excluded from filling in as a temporary foreman if needed.

    Tiedman, The reason I like this guy is we are always level with each other, no game playing, just honesty and hard work. The goal is to improve my business. If he is unhappy he can leave. I won't take it as a personal insult. If I am unhappy with something I'll tell him in the right way.

    Do any of you guys out there have a general manager, or have a similar position on your staff ?
     
  6. cklands

    cklands LawnSite Senior Member
    from MA
    Posts: 360

    What size company are you? Why don't you be the "general manager"? What will your job be if he is the general manager?
     
  7. Gene $immons

    Gene $immons LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,028

    We have around 275 residential accounts and 30 commercials.

    I need another "me" lol

    Plus it would be nice to take a short vacation for once in the summer time, and have a guy around to handle everything.

    The company has shown good growth over the last two years and I am needing to turn over some of the responsibilities to others now. I ran one of the crews this past season, and it was taking away from too many other duties.
     
  8. Thumper0504

    Thumper0504 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 17

    Does it make sense based on many crews are you running and what size?
     
  9. Columbia Turf

    Columbia Turf LawnSite Member
    Posts: 99

    Gene, I bet we run simular operations. I am lucky and have a person that fills that position pretty well. His background is in the golf course stuff, but I have him for at least now.

    I know what you mean about "taking that vacation". I was able to spend the whole week in Knoxville Iowa for the Sprint car Nationals. I "checked in" only a couple times and didnt really need to.

    I think however, you will probably never find someone to do all the things you do. What i mean by this is someone that continues to think about all the small things, untied details, ways to further you company. However, if he is taking care of the dailly stuff, it gives you more time to work on that kind of stuff.

    I know what you mean about "the other me".
     
  10. Johnny

    Johnny LawnSite Member
    Posts: 102

    Gene,

    Good people are hard to find... If he is your man and you can afford him, don't let him slip away. Just make darn sure he is the complete package. And make darn sure your company can afford the increase in payroll. The additon of management will allow you, the owner/operator, to be the owner. Although payroll has increased, you, the owner, will have more time (since not dealing directly with operations) to sell your services. You will also have time to manage your company (control costs). Increase sales and control costs...something that most owner/operators can't effectively do, because they are just trying to keep the ship floating down stream.

    I can't stress enough the importance of making sure that he is the man for the job. This decision will probably not increase your profit a great deal annually, but it sure could cost you a lot of money. If he is the man for the job, the benefits will appear down the road, when he is running your company when you no longer want to or can't.

    He must be a good person (integrity). He must be intelligent. He must have a great work ethic. He must have excellent people skills. He must have passion. He must be good with numbers. You can teach him the business.
     

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