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Who would quit a job making $58000 to do this?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by kse1221, Apr 30, 2012.

  1. arninglawns

    arninglawns LawnSite Member
    Posts: 68

    In my opinion, it all boils down to spending your time training people and providing them with good equipment from weedeaters to scheduling software. I stuggled with, and I know many on here do, thinking I'm the only person in the world who can do what I do. Once you realize that is not the case, you can replace yourself. Always be thinking of ways to automate a process or make it easy for anyone to understand. I would highly recommend anyone to read the "Rich Dad, Poor Dad" series of books. It will change the way you look at your business. In the past 4 years, I went from mowing every single yard I have to not even knowing what yards in my neighborhood we mow, and taking Summer vacations to Europe with my family. I went from coming home filthy and exhausted to not even touching a weedeater for 2 years now.

    Some examples of systems I use:
    Train someone to bid yards over the phone at the time of the call. Create a formula that works for you, using square footage data found online. No more driving to every house, so they can waste your time with lowball offers, etc.

    Send invoices monthly via email. Takes someone less than an hour. No more stuffing envelopes or (shutter) driving around knocking on doors to collect.

    Scheduling software that maps your routes and optimizes them to reduce drive time for your crews. It takes a few minutes a week to sort the list for the crews. Send them as a PDF file to your crew leaders.

    Stop offering services that require you to go hold the customer's hand. Or better yet, sub it out. You could develop a relationship with a tree guy or a landscaper, and have them go take care of these jobs that suck up all your time.

    All of these things can be done from anywhere in the world with an internet connection.

    Hope this helps.
  2. vinnieobrien

    vinnieobrien LawnSite Member
    Posts: 193

    My wright stander is my yacht :D
  3. FoghornLeghorn

    FoghornLeghorn LawnSite Senior Member
    from Texas
    Posts: 752

    You must have a brain tumor that affects your cognitive ability if you're considering leaving that job for this crap industry...
  4. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 16,990

    This is my second go around in this business.

    I will say its my "PASSION" as I enjoy maintaing peoples homes.

    I had the deciend job when I stated my current business.
    I spent 1 year purchasing equiptment, I found a lot of graeat deals and most of my equiptment including truck is worth far more that what I paid for it. That in itself cut down on a whole lot of "RISK"
    I worked part time in my business for 2 years, I was able to work 4 10 hour shifts at my regular job and one day was Sunday, that left me 3 days to build my business.
    Ive been ful time for the past 3 years, the first year was a struggle, and its still a struggle to get through the winter.

    If your debt free and can pay cash for your equiptment I would consider quitting a decient job. Jobs arent that secure anymore anyways. That is provided this business is your "PASSION"

    All of the fellers in my aera are SOLO, I simply dont think a crew can compete with us on quality and price.

    Accoisanlly some sell their business and thats also a good way to start.
  5. DMVPropertyCare

    DMVPropertyCare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 39

    I did. I left my government job at Andrews AFB, MD to do what I enjoy. I was stuck in a position with no room for promotion. So i was locked in a GS rating that kept me from moving up. I am happy with being self employed. plus i work at night on a panama schedule as a DoD contractor. So im doing ok. My goal is for my business to excel but I know that takes time.
  6. cgaengineer

    cgaengineer LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 15,782

    Yeah...like take about another 15k of that 41k

    I'll call you later this morning D, wife's bday last night.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  7. The Yard Dog

    The Yard Dog LawnSite Member
    Posts: 70

    Great post.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  8. The Yard Dog

    The Yard Dog LawnSite Member
    Posts: 70

    It can be done and I am in the process of doing it now. I am a coach and a teacher and I have a crew that mows 135 yards per week. 2 years ago I mowed 20 yards per week, last year I hired 2 guys that did 80per week and by the end if this summer we will be doing 150 or more. Ive seen less than half of my yards and we make good money every week. Also I have done this while still working my other job. Do not listen to the naysayers on here talk about what can't be done. If you are organized and have a plan you can be successful and make plenty of money in this industry. Feel free to PM me your cell and I'll call u and talk about some of the things that have worked for me.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  9. PerfectEarth

    PerfectEarth LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,734

    Great thread. Reading it so far has been very therapeutic for me, lol... many great points.

    1. No one will EVER dedicate themselves to your business as much as you- this takes hours that even the hardest of workers will struggle with.
    2. Wife/Gf/fiance issues- MUST have someone who understands. I couldn't fathom doing this with a woman who groaned about my schedule- it simply wouldn't work.
    3. The actual WORK is easy. I can trim shrubs, weed eat, and plant trees all day long. Try wearing 87 hats (accountant, banker, salesman, mechanic, laborer, estimator, secretary, driver, manager, boss, delivery guy, hand holder...... and so on) and see how that goes.
    4. You pay yourself last.... I'll probably hit 100k in revenues at the end of this month and I've paid myself 3,000.00 this year.
    5. CASH FLOW, receivables, material expenses, suppliers, you must be on it ALL, all the time.
    6. Expect to do all "fun" things on weekend and evenings completely exhausted and wanting to crawl in a hole.
    7. Seasonality- as was said, how much cash goes out the door at the start of the year and then you have to wait until now to start actually building it up... OH, then you have a truck or machine that goes in and needs 4,000.00 in work... OH, then it's quarterly tax time...bye bye money... OH, then you're third guy quits. Rearrange the schedule....

    I'm preaching to the choir. Thank God it's rewarding work. ha
  10. highlander316

    highlander316 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 333

    BINGO! You really gotta have the heart and soul for this business.

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