Doubting Tom's when you decided to take the plunge?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by capnsac, Jan 9, 2008.

  1. capnsac

    capnsac LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 702

    Hey everyone, I wanted to get everyones two cents on the question. When you started your lawncare business were there a lot of naysayers telling you that it is a hard business, and that they have seen so many people start a lawncare business only to fail? I for one have had this problem from just about everyone I have come across, even a friend of mine who has his own lawncare business saying its too tough. His reason for this was because he will bid a commercial property only to have it underbid by 15 dollars and lose the account.
    I am just getting fed up with the piss poor attitudes people throw out there, and it makes me want to succeed that much more. :weightlifter: I won't rub it in if I do, but I will gladly say that I am not going out of business anytime soon. I hope I'm not the only one who is having/had this problem before.
  2. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653


    "First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win."
    -- Mahatma Gandhi

    That stuff goes on for some time, but I'd have to say it was the fighting part angered me the worst.
    To me everything else was weak in comparison, to this day I hold a deep resentment on that note.
  3. capnsac

    capnsac LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 702

    The sad part is some of the naysayers are my own family. This is how my family has been though throughout my life, whenever I have wanted to do something off the norm they have doubted me. They say they are only trying to warn me, and that they hope the best for me. It is the inflection in their voice that tells me what they are really trying to say though. I have to be upbeat though, I have a big hill to climb, I just want that grass to start growing.
  4. hackitdown

    hackitdown LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,650

    Most people just looked at me like I was being foolish.

    It is hard for most people to understand why anyone would want to deal with the heat/cold/bugs/poison ivy/PITAs/noise/sweat/risk/low pay/hardwork.

    Come to think of it, it is hard for me to understand...
  5. Grits

    Grits LawnSite Silver Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 2,994

    You will ALWAYS encounter people like this. I did, and still do. Mainly from family. I believe it is because they think they are looking out for you. But they don't have a clue. It takes a different kind of person to have big dreams and actually try to follow through with them, this is what some people don't understand and they will never understand. Just take what people say with a grain of salt. Don't argue with them, just let it go in one ear and out the other. Don't let negative people bring you down.
  6. zz4guy

    zz4guy LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 901

    Some of my friends thought it was stupid and that I couldn't make a buck doing it. But they had to eat their shorts at the end of the year when I showed them the money that came in :laugh:

    Only thing you can do is IGNORE them.

    People who say that so many people fail in this biz need to define "failure."

    If you quit in two years because you lose interest, does that really mean you failed? Not in my books, especially if you made good money.
  7. crazy4green

    crazy4green LawnSite Member
    Messages: 50

    i still have in-laws telling me lawncare isn't a real job even after found out he made less than me everyyear and has a so called real job as manager at same place for 15 years. guess the point is forget about them it is a hard biz but if you work hard you can be on top
  8. Exact Rototilling

    Exact Rototilling LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,378

    There is a level of risk in stepping out. In my family those who have a very low risk tolerance tend to be the biggest naysayer. Thankfully my wife is very supportive except she wants to take time off for vacation in the middle of the summer. ;)

    I really wish I had done this earlier. I admit I listened to a family member far too long who was nothing but 95% discouragement in starting any kind of service industry company. "Just get yourself a decent time card punching job and be done with it already." "Go back to school yet again", "You can't make decent $ doing this, can't compete with kids with mowers, tiller might fall out of your truck, this could happen - that could happen."

    Guess what - Warren Buffet didn't get to be where he is today playing it safe. Warren Buffet or Donald Trump didn't get to where they are by getting a secure gov't or civil service job with good retirement and playing it safe.

    I believe many people think of small business ventures and they automatically think of how most small businesses fail. When I was in high school I wanted to have my own business. Most said just pick 12 hours out of the day 6 to 7 days a week and there you go. Truth is - Lawncare is a fairly ideal business that doesn't require a missive overhead to get started.

    I refuse to go with the herd and shuffle off to a regular job. I've been self employed in another area since 2001 which provides me a huge advantage with a flexible schedule and income base. I'm a free spirit independent thinker and I refuse to conform to what family might think is best or right. I'm 100% committed to making go of this. As long as there is food in the grocery stores, banks are open, gas stations open and I'm able bodied I will stick with it.
  9. mattmus4357

    mattmus4357 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    I started when I was 16 out of the bed of my truck. My mom thought I was stupid and kept telling me that I needed to get a "real" job. Then when I wanted to expand and get new equipment before last year, she wouldn't help me with a loan because she just new I would fail. So I got my dad to help me. I shut her up at the end of the season by showing her that I made $20,000. So now I'm gearing up on season 3 and setting my goals for at least $30,000-40,000. Not bad for and 18 year old.
  10. Midstate Lawncare

    Midstate Lawncare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 267

    They are all jealous! They always wanted to own their own business, but never had the stones. If you get tired of their crap, tell them that they are jealous b/c they have to work for someone else and you don't.....then smile and walk away.
    And your friend doesn't want you to start up b/c you will be more competition for him, and will be the guy who underbids by $15. payuppayup

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