Anybody ever overpay?

Discussion in 'Employment' started by Proscapes, Jun 18, 2008.

  1. Proscapes

    Proscapes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 8

    I've got a small, residential design/build company with a few employees.

    I hired a guy who had 5+ years experience in related landscape/tree care. His previous jobs paid quite well. After hiring him, I found he has an average skill level, but the production level is not warranting the rate I'm paying. I've paid laborers a lot less who have put out the same level of work.

    Be interested to know what others have done in a similar situation.
  2. cod8825

    cod8825 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 501

    If in the interview he explained that he did something that you found out he can't do you could fire him for lying. I would see if there is something that he exagerrated on and hold him to it. In my opinion I always start low and explain that after a time they will get raises based on production after a probationary period. I deal mostly in applications and mowing so it is a little different in landscaping. For me it is the little things like hustling that makes the difference for me. Tell him why your going to dock him.
  3. ponyboy

    ponyboy LawnSite Bronze Member
    from ny
    Messages: 1,586

    several years agao when it was me and one i would over pay him because he never missed a day and way a good worker not the best but steady and good. long story short i now have 12 employees and i could not justify over paying him anymore told him he would be paid the same as the others so he left. now this year he is back and happy to have a steady paycheck everyweek. smaller lco have a higher demand for good workers so they will pay more the bigger lco workers are a dime a dozen so they pay little i fall in the middle and pay in the middle but there is 6 days of work all year, do what is best for your money, fire pay cut or keep over paying its on you
  4. Mrs. H

    Mrs. H LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 708

    We've done just what you've done. David usually goes to them after a week or two and says "Hey, you're not what I expected at all. You're (too slow, don't know how to do the job, don't know how to use the equipment...) I'm going to have to lower your rate of pay take it or leave it.

    Those guys don't usually last the season and someone new comes along that can actually do the job.
  5. JohnnyRoyale

    JohnnyRoyale LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 616

    We have a trainee working for us now, and he came from a government sponsored training program. We get an $8 dollar an hour subsidy for taking the guy on for his first 500 hours. The only stipulation is we have to pay him $15 an hour to start. I told him during his interview he has 10 weeks to show us he's worth the $15, at contract end, otherwise his rate of pay will have to be adjusted. Looks like he's going to be earning minimum wage if he keeps going the way he is. Another one of my guys approached me yesterday looking for a raise as his probationary period was over last week and he didn't see an increase on his cheque. Told him I would be talking to his foreman this week and let him know where he stands. He'll probably leave when he finds out he's not getting a raise.
  6. richallseasons

    richallseasons LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 479

    Minimum wage here is $7.65 per hour soon to be $8.00 and I start everybody off at $10.00 per hour on a 3 month probationary period where they can prove themselves and be adjust upward or they may need more training or they may leave, most do leave as I have found that 9 out of 10 guys that come to you saying that they have experienced and can do this that and the other thing are not worth the time it took them to tell me that.
  7. chuck simpkins

    chuck simpkins LawnSite Member
    Messages: 14

    replace him!!!!! do it quick and don't look back!!! i will not waste my money to feed someone else.......WE ARE ALL IN BUSINESS TO PROFIT!!!!!!
  8. Proscapes

    Proscapes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 8

    Thanks all for for your advice. It's all good stuff for now and the future. I overpaid him and the ROI just wasn't there so I let him go and hired someone else for $3.00 less an hour. My employees learn trade experience and that has value for them.

    The gist of the whole thing is that I'm in control of my business. Isn't that what we love about it?

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