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How long does one wait before approaching another LCO man to man?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Carolina Cuts, Jun 12, 2008.

  1. Carolina Cuts

    Carolina Cuts LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,152

    Got this ongoing problem of a guy who has been eyeing up my customers, approaching them after hours, bad mouthing myself and my help and purposely undercutting me to get my work.

    Now over the past 3 years I have mined my own business (believer in Karma) kept to my own work, my own quality. I get in, and get out.... HE stays there all day long cause he has 30-40 customers in this community. I have been asked by several of his clients if I'd take care of their properties for now on. I only ever accepted one. For the simple fact, I don't wanna be a jerk to him. I have never said a word to this guy, but continue to hear from MY customers that he keeps approaching them. He constantly does drive by's while we're working... almost stalking us. Very Creepy. He even called me one day, 3 times to b*tch about the one customer I did take. AFTER making a scene outside in front of the customers house. I was calm, cool and kindly asked him to never dial my # again and that it was unprofessional. "Business is business. Your client was not happy.... THEY CAME to me. Sorry for your loss"

    Well, 2 days ago I lost another client....
    claimed it wasn't me or my work, but he wanted to go with a local guy in the community.... (yea, the reputable peeping Tom - known for lurking in single moms windows) heard this from several neighbors. Also found out, he undercut me by $5.00.

    Now I've been cool with this cat for years, NEVER opening up my mouth.... but now it's just gettin' frustrating, cause he's BS's his way into my yards and taking food off my table....

    Is it time to speak up?
  2. Digdug

    Digdug LawnSite Member
    Posts: 125

    Sounds like its a tie score now.
  3. S.A.L.

    S.A.L. LawnSite Member
    from NOLA
    Posts: 226

    It's been time.
    What have you been waiting on?
    It's also time for contracts. You'll worry less once you've secured your clientel.
    Best wishes.
  4. JFF

    JFF LawnSite Member
    Posts: 248

    I know it is irritating, but how can you win? The guy is clearly looking for some kind of a confrontation the way you describe the stalking, etc.

    What would you propose if you did confront him? A non-competition agreement?

    But clearly he is not going to leave your customers alone, so I would not hesitate to sign up any of his that are interested.

    Good luck. I hate a sniper.
  5. supercuts

    supercuts LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,785

    who cares, dont say anything but the truth, tell them what has been happening. and what is wrong with you not to take his lawns??? you need some good lessons in business. that is karma, you getting his lawns!
  6. Carolina Cuts

    Carolina Cuts LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,152

    damn, you guys are fast...
    already decided to let it go.... he'll bury himself.

    And yes, I will take on any new customers that ask me from here on out....

    I'm in there tomorrow though... gonna be interesting.... hope I have some willpower not to open my mouth.
  7. billslawn89

    billslawn89 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,364

    if you know for sure he's been doing this, i would speak to him the next time around, and be calm and cool about it. i would tell him its very unprofessional to undercut a fellow lco, and explain to him that he wouldn't like it if someone did it to him. be professional about it and i would go and talk to the clients that left and explain to them about your quality of work...if all else fails..kick his a$$..lol
  8. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,776

    I smell a liable/ slander suit.

    Talk to a lawyer, you might have a case.
  9. Grits

    Grits LawnSite Silver Member
    from Florida
    Posts: 2,994

    If your customers drop you over $5, then either they suck or you suck.
  10. J&R Landscaping

    J&R Landscaping LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,096

    Question::: How big was the lawn you lost (Size wise and what is your price per cut?) Since you state that he has 30-40 customers in this community, he may be able to do the work cheaper. I know I have a few stops with 5-6 lawns. I do them a bit cheaper then if they were 5-6 different stops because I'm saing time and fuel.
    I'm not defending his actions or nothing so. I do try to market my company in the neighboor hoods I work in. Yes, Some have other contractors come in but when I pass out door hangers or flyers, they get one anyway. This is only once a year though...I don't stalk them year round like the way this guy sounds to be.
    Your in a tough spot though. Though it does sound like he is the lower man on the totem pole in this case.

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