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Discussion in 'General Industry Discussions' started by Sean Adams, Feb 14, 2013.
Nope, we got 'em down here, too.
My work clothes:
a pair of Keen's or tall work boots, depends on the day and what I'm doing
company T-shirt, plain T, or a long sleeve button down (rarely, usually for estimates if I do, or short mowing days.
Jeans or Carhart type work pants, occasionally a clean professorial looking pair of cargo shorts, if its reaaally hot.
I've never been one to work shirtless unless I'm working at my place or a friends place or something.
One thing I've always considered is, while some women might enjoy the eye candy cruising around on a ZTR , their husbands, who are in most cases cutting the checks, might not appreciate it as much.
a few of them might be that way but I'm not the cheapest in my market. in fact I hear quite often from the seniors I'm more expensive than the last guy but I do a much better job quality wise and I continually show up regularly like I say I will.
what I have never heard is someone say they didn't hire me because I wasn't neat enough in appearance doing the estimate. nor have I ever been told by friends in the business who have multiple crews I'm not neat enough in appearance to do estimates. in fact my friend who's been in the business 13+ years and has 8+ employees goes to estimates with holes in jeans and shirt sleeves ripped off his shirt. this guy grows his business year after year after year.
There seems to be a few of those down here also, what's the bottom dollar. I'm glad that I'm at the point to where I can be take it or leave it.
I used to work for a guy who would do estimates in track pants and a white T shirt. He was rude/condescending and didn't act like someone who ran a seven figure company. The reason people chose him was because his work was better than anyone around and he ALWAYS met a deadline. You are right, people will hire guys like your buddy, but I'd prefer to at least look halfway decent when dealing with potential customers.
well I prefer to look half way decent as well. my point in mentioning my buddy is the point that there is more than one way to do things and perhaps polos and khakis for estimates aren't as important (not saying they aren't important though).
as I read these posts in this thread some of these guys seem to be trying to put down that its an absolute fact and if you want to succeed you have to dress nice when dealing with the clients.
as I said before its a nice idea and one way of doing it. but in my experiences and opinion it's not something that makes or breaks the sale.
there's a difference between looking half way decent, wearing khakis and a polo and looking like a slob. I don't condone looking like a slob but at the same time I don't feel polos and khakis are a necessity.
if you wanna do the polo and khakis by all mean go right ahead. if you feel it's necessary to your business and its growth, great keep up the good work. I'm just telling people my experience that it hasn't been as important as some make it seem to be.
The main point of this thread is this business is cut throat. At any time your bidding against numerous other businesses that all do great work on time. Why make it harder on yourself when it takes 2 minutes to put on a clean shirt?
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guess I don't see it as making it harder on myself and hopping others won't either.
why mess with changing shirts when I clearly don't have to? purhaps this image thing of lawn guys wearing polos and khakis is a location thing. maybe people expecting a guy to show to give an estimate with no grass stains on there shirt depends on where you live.
you clearly feel this is a very important, down right requirement in this business. and that's fine. you seem to have experienced something different than I have. but how are you gonna convince someone to start looking a bit cleaning when doing estimates is the way go when I've never experienced a problem with the way I look and I know some who are way more successful than me look worse than I do.
everything in this business is based off of personal experiences. I couldn't convince you to switch to toro and exmark mowers just because I happen to have had excellent luck with them when you have no problems with your jds and scags. just as you can't convince me to throw on a polo in the middle of the day to do an estimate because in your experience you loose jobs looking dirty when I've had no problems getting jobs with grass stains on my shirts and dirt under my fingernails.
I do my best to stay out of these kinds of threads and discussions but it bothers me for some reason when people try to make things in this business black and white and take some topics and try and pass them along as facts. most if not all of this business is gray, opinions and experiences. you do what works for you and adjust based on your experiences.
to encourage new guys to get into the business they need to see all opinions and different ways of running this business. we don't want someone thinking about getting into the business reading this threads and then think dam I don't wanna get into the lawn business if I'm gonna have to wear a polo and khakis all day or if I'm gonna have to use exmark and scag mowers.
the point of all this babble. run your business your way. do what works for you and remember there is ALWAYS more than one way to do something.
the point of any thread is to give people ideas of how to do things in there business and to get the opinions and experiences of those who run there businesses. I've done just that and so have you. it is my opinion and experience that polos and khakis aren't as important as some would make it out to be in landing clients.
If someone told you that there is just a chance to help your business that only takes 2 minutes and is free would you try it?
Do you have a 100% close rate on your estimates now? Do you think a potential client would tell you why you lost the bid? How
do you know how many jobs you may have missed out on?
Its so simple to just through on a clean polo shirt and not think about it!! Think about what your saying, you wont take two minutes out of your busy life on something that may improve your business. Something you care about and work very hard on.
Your right. There is always more than one way to do things. But there is always ways to improve. And little things that we do that can make a difference. Nobody is asking you to spend thousands on a marketing sceam that may not work. We are asking for 2 minutes of your time to put on a shirt that may help you land some nice jobs. But even if it doesnt help it was just 2 minutes effort, nothing lost, nothing gained...
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I like the idea you said , not leaving an opportunity to chance. For the sake of logic, I'm going to throw another variable into what has been discussed here: business acumen and the ability to sell. If I go to a bid looking sharp but lack sales skills, I may very well lose the sale to a guy who doesn't look as nice but excels in sales skills. If we are all being perfectly honest, this has all happened to every one of us when we were new to the trade. However, what if you have two different LCOs who both are competent sellers with extensive knowledge and experience in their field, and one of them is dressed sharp/clean and the other is unkempt? I think it reasonable that one would prefer the clean & nicely dressed guy over the other one.