This forum seems to be trying to rival <a href="http://www.pissandmoan.com/">pissandmoan.com</a> lately. Perhaps operators in the grounds maintenance industry don't realize that you are working in the service industry. This means that you are dealing with people, and often you are dealing with something very personal, the person's home. If you are not ready to deal with the myriad personalities of people, go work in a factory where you can just cuss the boss and the machine. People are most often really not buying a service based on value, but on percieved value. The person(s) providing the service guide this perception. Give me two operators in grass cutting with exactly the same equipment, and the one who takes the time to (appear to) present a personal service will go much further. Yes, you can do exactly the same job on three houses in a row, and have each homeowner believe that his job was special. Just observe a good waitress manage her tables in a lunch rush. And you deal with much fewer customers than the waitress. Until you can realize that you are selling a service, and you must have people who appreciate your service to make a living, you are headed for unhappiness. To dictate to a client what you will do and how you will do it may be possible in the present economy; you would have starved if you tried this during most of the last century. Many here would be a lot happier today, and more successful, if they put more into trying to please clients, rather than trying to find fault with them. Look at one example of a service business, transportation. Ocean liners, stagecoaches, passenger trains and city busses died - while their freight components prospered - in private industry, because the respective industries didn't need to coddle to fussy individuals and keep up with new ideas. It is always easier to deal with objects than deal with people, because the objects can't complain if they are (or aren't) offended. If you want to be a success, and be happy getting there, learn how to deal with people first, and learn how to recognize the people you personally cannot deal with and stay away from these. Most of all, just because you had a client for 2 weeks or 20 years, you should not count on them a permanent - you always need to let them know they are special. And don't forget PERCEIVED VALUE - you guide it.