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A Disturbing Trend in the Green Industry

Discussion in 'General Industry Discussions' started by Smallaxe, Nov 29, 2012.

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  1. TX Easymoney

    TX Easymoney LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,082

    I don't put flyers on mailboxes--

    anyways, good to see a thread trying to hold guys more accountable-
  2. CowboysLawnCareDelaware

    CowboysLawnCareDelaware LawnSite Senior Member
    from DE
    Messages: 549

    It was Richard Martin's original statement that I commented on, it may not be nearly important as putting down herbicide's during a drought or not putting down contracted fertilizer. It is a fairly large thing because almost every start up guy does his advertising this way.

    I don't need everyone saying "I didn't do that" because there is no point to the argument.

  3. PremierT&L

    PremierT&L LawnSite Member
    Messages: 223

    I am a firm believer that this stuff has a way of sorting itself out. Businesses that operate with honesty and integrity are more successful in the long run in my opinion, and businesses that engage in dishonest practices like charging for application not made eventually pay the price.

    I always try to do the right thing, and I feel like it has paid off for me. I have taken over accounts where the clients fired the previous company because they suspected dishonest practices.
  4. Marcos

    Marcos LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,720

    This kind of crap has been going on around here for decades. Without a doubt a lot of people out there today learned these kinds of bad habits from managers they once worked for.
    Back in the early 70's, lawn care companies starting with Chemlawn began to set daily / weekly individualized employee production quotas. Things went fairly smoothly during those early years. Then competition really began to heat up, driving down prices, and sometimes with that, quality of service. Soon new emerging lawn care companies began hiring half-rate managers that typically would say or do virtually anything to get the sale. This poor middle-management eventually led to increasingly poorer training and supervison of lawn care technicians. It was around this point - approximately early to mid 90's - that customer service in the lawn care industry hit absolute rock bottom. It has yet to see a spark of genuine recovery.

    I've come to learn not to dispariage folks who mow unirrigated drought-striken turf or fertilize frozen ground. There are legitimate reasons why this sometimes happens. They're not sophisticated enough to understand that they need to expand their skill set into other areas (such as irrigation, stonework, pavers, lighting, ponds, younameit...)
    Or...they have a STUPID manager! :laugh:
  5. Fert33

    Fert33 LawnSite Member
    Male, from Central Pa
    Messages: 133

    In my area I wouldn't really call it dishonesty. We have a lot of guys under cutting price, because they don't have a clue on how to price. They don't have certain licenses they need to do the work they are doing. On second thought.....they probably do know that they have no clue, but act as if they do. Business ethics is an issue that can and will be argued for years to come.
  6. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    It is interesting to hear how people think about the way the business is going in their neighborhoods...
    I agree that most novices are clueless and they onlyimitate the big boys to schedule their apps, maintenance and mowings in a monkey see monkey do manner... My hope there is that eventually they learn what is really happening in the life of the plants under their care...
    I do not agree that there is ever a legitimate reason to mow dustbowls or fertilize frozen turf... Not only will I disparage their business practices to their clients I even call them reckless foolish and may need to be presented to the BBB... these people are a joke and make the industry look exactly as people suspectted all along,,, chronic unemployables who are mentally challenged... :)
  7. trooper8870

    trooper8870 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 241

    Check this out---- some of the lawn sprayers here apply up to 9 treatments per year. These cats are killing lawns by the dozens! It is a shame at the money they rake in for killing these peoples lawns by spraying and fertilizing lawns in July and August when there has been no rain for weeks and the temp is 100 degrees.
  8. weeze

    weeze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,845

    i don't pay attention to what everyone else is doing. i just do my own thing. it works for me.
  9. johnnybravo8802

    johnnybravo8802 LawnSite Silver Member
    from Ga.
    Messages: 2,313

    It's only illegal to put your flyer or business card inside a mailbox, not on the outside. If it were illegal to put on the outside, all kinds of people would be fined or locked up-we see it all the time.
  10. jrs.landscaping

    jrs.landscaping LawnSite Silver Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 2,762

    As far as the business practices, we had one instance where another company handled fert and we handled the mowing. The property had no irrigation, right before the worst part of the drought for us the company lays down an app of fert!!? Good thing the property was a contract, if it was pay per mow we would have lost over 3k waiting for the grass to recover. On the other side if it was pay per mow what are we supposed to do with the cooked turf?
    We have pay per mow accounts that if the grass is brown, and we leave it they will call the next day wondering why we weren't there to make tracks. Every situation is different, because one LCO mows in a drought because of inexperience doesn't mean we all fall into that catagory. Sometimes customers/situations dictate our actions, just my take on it.
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