thinking to myself....

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by tiedeman, Mar 9, 2004.

  1. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Posts: 8,745

    I have been doing a lot of thinking lately. I am trying to decide on whether to just go back to the one man operation or keep moving on. I am sick of paying the extra expenses, payroll, and taxes every month along with the stress of employees doing quality work. While on the other hand I like having the employees because they fill in for me and do work sometimes that I might not enjoy doing.

    To those that went back to solo from employees what do you think, was it a good idea, or not, etc? Some input please.
  2. jajwrigh

    jajwrigh LawnSite Bronze Member
    Male, from Martinsville, IN
    Posts: 1,405

    I never have had employees, but I considered a partner a few years back. I really enjoy the simplicity of a solo opp and I may stay that way permanently. Let me remind you that this is a great part time business for me and I haven't ever geared it towards my sole source of income.
  3. mtdman

    mtdman LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,137

    Tiedeman, if you haven't yet, read The E Myth. You are probably going through some of what he talks about in the book with employees and second guessing. This book has helped me see things differently, encouraged me to make the move to hiring people.

    I understand what you are thinking, though. I have traditionally been reluctant to get into the added headaches and responsibilities of employees. But, the biggest thing for me is I can't keep doing this alone forever. As I get older, I want to be doing less work and making more money.

  4. bastalker

    bastalker LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 965

    It depends on the help you hire. If they always show up on time, are enthusiastic, wanting to prove themselves for a raise, you are on the right tract.

    I had 4-5 guys working. It was a hassle gettin them to show up, be enthusiastic, an be a team player.

    I decided to down size, an have a helper. I will let you know how it went at the end of the year. I can tell you though, I was tired of the BS that employess added to my buisness..
  5. Moguy

    Moguy LawnSite Member
    Posts: 238

    Along with what mtdman mentioned about The E Myth, there is also The E Myth Contractor. Specifically, chapter 6 might be of some help in your thinking.
  6. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    I must be fortunate cause I have always had great guys. In fact, new people that come on board are referrals from them. I do pay well and give bonuses at years end so that helps too.

    BTW, I'd be lost without them...
  7. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Posts: 8,745

    I have one great worker right now...I think that I am just getting sick of forking over the extra money for salary to employees. I know that I could do about 75% of the work myself, but I am scared that I will be too stressed out by switching to a solo op. I can still bring in the extra money by subcontracting out a lot of stuff.
  8. gator-town

    gator-town LawnSite Member
    from bfe
    Posts: 92

    tiedeman ... I met with a potential client last weekend, of which he was one the six yards whereas he and his neighbors got together to form a group to get a group rate ... fine and dandy ... no windshield time ... their current LCO vanished off the face of the earth ... IMO they probably left in search of WMD, but that is another story ... this company had such a turnover rate that he never knew who would show up next ... that being said their first question to me was about my workers ... being that I don't have workers I was hired on the spot ... he told me after I was in the middle of all the bids after giving me the thumbs up ... I know this is an extreme case but the general consensus amongst the people I have met is that it is not a liability to be a one-man show ... in fact the last spring clean up I did I received a $30 tip for working like a mad man ...

    I see a part-timer in my future, but he will strickly be string trimming, edging, blowing, etc ... basically what ever involves standing ... I put it all on the line when I work and have never met my match ... I am sure you feel the same ... just a helper ... that is all you need ... no one will work as hard as you .
  9. tiedeman

    tiedeman LawnSite Fanatic
    from earth
    Posts: 8,745

    Well, update on the situation. I am going back over my numbers from the last 3 years to see what to do. I am going to make the decision tomorrow
  10. gogetter

    gogetter Banned
    Posts: 3,256

    I don't know your age tiedman, but make sure you ask yourself if you can (or want to) do this forever.

    You can only do so much by yourself, and you can really only do it so long.

    Also make sure to take illness and injury into consideration. And I'm not talking about the flu or a broken finger.

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