I don't think the lawn Bus. is worth it in the long run

Discussion in 'General Industry Discussions' started by Jpocket, May 15, 2006.

  1. KTO Enterprises

    KTO Enterprises LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,286

    Life is full of choices. No one forced them to become a firefighter. If that is what they wanted to do with their life, fine. But don't take advantage of the benefits that I pay for to come in and cut my throat.
  2. dgZtrak737

    dgZtrak737 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 120

    If I was "BIG" and professonal as you like to advertise, I had all of those "3" years experience like you. I wouldnt be worried about a little firefighter with a murray and 10 yards. Theres no way hes making money RIGHT!!!!!!!!!!
  3. KTO Enterprises

    KTO Enterprises LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,286

    You have no clue how it damages our industry and if you did you would understand the position I make.
  4. txgrassguy

    txgrassguy LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,083

    I have this too say about people who choose to operate as a "LCO" in their off time or down time.
    This type of work is physically demanding, does not offer instant gratification as far as monetary wealth is concerned, and requires a dedication beyond what Kelly days offers.
    To the other that are part time/weekenders: Learn the market, the demographics, both social and economic, capitalize on the opportunities and grow a BUSINESS, not a HOBBY.
    Essentially everything comes down to simple economics.
    Either you produce part time what you are receiving from a full time job or you are just dreaming.
  5. boxsky

    boxsky LawnSite Member
    Posts: 178

    Ditto. i don't give a crap if that non licensed or insured person is making money. They ruin the industry and their work usually looks like crap. They also take money away from me and my family.
  6. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    It certainly is rough, I'm finishing my 6th year and it gets harder every year and there's no question about it, I constantly find myself upgrading and fine-tuning things to meet the new demands, in a world where I too get pickier and pickier.

    The hard part is seeing the upgrade that's necessary, I don't always see it right away but sure enough there's almost always something that can use fixing, not so much the machines (that too) but more so the MO is what usually needs attention.

    My latest upgrade for instance is pricing x credit risk (aka pita factor).
    Sound nuts? Back in the older days, and for several years I got to where I simply RAN from pita or red flag jobs, didn't want nothing to do with any of it. More and more I got pickier, more and more I saw things I didn't like, and more and more I ran, until I had (and have) almost no customers... Just today one tried to jerk me around, wasn't the first time this one pulled my chain but it was the last, I put my foot down and that was the end of it right there.
    So what to do?

    Way I see things, the real problem with a pita or a credit risk is the extra cost.
    It's not that they're being a pita or a credit risk per se, it's the fact it takes extra time, hence cost.
    Some don't pay, others agree and do pay but always want extra, I won't go for another rant but lets just say each red flag means THIS one's going to be special.
    Hence, a special price for a special customer.

    And why not? Sure beats driving all the way out there, seeing the lot is a disaster and knowing they're not willing to pay so driving back home without even getting out of the car... Why not stop real quick, do some FAST math, fast enough to where the price is right no matter the circumstances, generally speaking we're talking anywhere from 20% to 200% above normal.
    Sure, most say no, and I must be NUTS!
    But that was the outcome already anyhow, right?
    And, sooner or later one of them says ok, do it.

    Now some of them never pay, once again it takes some careful figuring because in the end that money has to come from somewhere. Some larger companies generally split the cost of deadbeats between all customers, but in my small business I like to sock it to the deadbeats, I find it unfair that my great customers have to pay for these slackers, so I make the credit risks pay for it all, one way or the other, the price is always higher for a credit risk or a pita.

    Some never pay, others waste a good amount of my time before I can skedaddle outta there, it really is frustrating.
    But others do, I've gotten $100+ an hour before.
    I'd have to guess it adds out, I just started with this system this year, I'm sure it will take time before it's right.
    It's nothing new, veteran Lco's and other small business owners have played this very quoting game for many years.
    Evidently it does work, there must be something to it or these nutsos wouldn't be quoting $1,600 for $600 worth of work...

    The point is thou, there's always another step to be taken, another rung to climb.
    Rest on your laurels and it's like a slow slide into the land of doom.
    It never really ends, it's never really over, we fight and fight until the day we just can't do it anymore, those who lose the will, well for those I suspect it's not worth it, but so long one can tackle the new challenges with yet another solution, it keeps on getting better and better.

    My take on things.

    Yes I do see that, somedays.

    Other days what I see is the fool RUNS across the street to snag a customer away from out under my nose, but careful observation tells me later they got stuck with yet another pita.

    Once again it all adds out, chances are less than 1% that they snagged a really good one, odds being in my favor anyhow, most anyone who flags me down on the side of the road doesn't think much of me in the first place.

    Perspective, vision, and all that crap lol.

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