Why are so many LCO's Solo?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Ecoscape01, Mar 29, 2007.

  1. Ecoscape01

    Ecoscape01 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 375

    I was just reading another thread about start-time/end-time and Wells mentioned that an LCO Owner's job is primarily to sell the business. This made me think. I've seen lots of profiles on here of guys and gals who have been at this a while and remain solo. So what's the reason? Just wanted to get everyone's take on it.
     
  2. Mr Priceless

    Mr Priceless LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 412

    mainly because many people (like myself) believe that your business is more efficient and has a larger profit margin if you remain solo. Quite a few people mentioned that they usually wouldn't grow for too many headaches with employees constantly quitting, insurance, management, etc.
     
  3. Woody82986

    Woody82986 LawnSite Silver Member
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 2,128

    I haven't ever really wanted to deal with the headaches thatcome along with hiring more people to work. In my mind, I can keep it much more simple if I stay solo. I also know without a doubt that the quality is there when I do the work myself, and it just adds one more thing to wonder about whn I hire someone to do the work for me.
     
  4. lqmustang

    lqmustang LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 620

    I am solo. I've often thought about going bigger, but the more I think about it tho I have no desire to increase much beyond where I am now. I believe in the lawn care business, you do your best to stay small, or go real big. That area in between is just a killer. You have to deal with employees tearing up your equipment. You have to deal with payroll, which also includes keeping track of and paying more taxes plus workers comp. Not to mention solo you can often get by working out of your home. Add some employees and you will outgrow that real fast and end up paying for a shop, whether that be renting or building. And for all the headaches of having a few employees, the reward to me isn't worth it. If you double your gross with that extra crew, you sure are not doubling your net after all the expenses associated with that crew.

    That is just my opinion, and I'm sure others may disagree, but that is why I plan on staying where I am now, and I also plan on retiring in another 15 years. :)
     
  5. martinfan06

    martinfan06 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 631

    Well depens on how big, I would like to one day have a max of 2 rigs on the road 1 being run by me and 1 beign ran by my partner. Trusting unproven people with your business is really scary, just not as many good people left anymore good help is harder than ever to find. IMO
     
  6. daveintoledo

    daveintoledo LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,587

    while there are many arguments for both sides of the solo operation, if a company isnt growing, it becomes stagnant......

    a business must grow and hire employees, and all the responsibility included with that to reach its full potential......

    mowing at 60 years old doesnt sound so appealing to me... i think a solo op is a good place to start.... but you need to expand...

    many here have already expanded and then went back to being solo...... i guess its not for every one,

    for me this endeavor is a capital building program for future investment.... i have to grow......:usflag:
     
  7. YardPro

    YardPro LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,563

    this will probably make a lot of people mad, but i think the reason most stay solo is because they do not have the skills it takes to run a large business. The biggest hurdle is getting the first two employees...

    as for the headaches, they come with rewards... you get hurt or sick, the business will still run itself and you draw a paycheck. You take two weeks off, the business still runs and you get a paycheck... you will also have something that is worth something that you can sell... it will have equity.

    as daveintoledo says, busting your hump at 60 will not be possible.
     
  8. daveintoledo

    daveintoledo LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,587

    pretty much sums it up.....
     
  9. lqmustang

    lqmustang LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 620

    I thought about saying that as well. I worked in various stages of management in my previous life. From retail store level management to multi state regional management. I don't want to deal with employees anymore. I really like the simplicity of doing business for myself, by myself. There is no right or wrong way tho.
     
  10. lawnguyland

    lawnguyland LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,108

    Reason for solo is employees= headaches. Stay solo or go big.

    That being said, if I get hurt it's down to the corner to get me some workers!

    I might do the employee thing again, but I love to be Hans Solo for now.

    I can't deal with other people's BS, especially when I can't undersand the language!
     

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