Friendly w/ competition

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Guido, Jun 19, 2000.

  1. Guido

    Guido LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,087

    Albert, I can't understand your concept. Maybe If you can answer 2 questions for me and it will help. I'll tell you up front though, that a lot of what this forum is about (and hopefully where its headed in the future) Is us (as in contractors) working together (not physically, but in a business sense) to help raise prices accross the industry, etc. I don't think your attitude on this is a good one, but thats just my opinion, don't want to argue about it.<p>here are my questions:<p>1. Do you really think you &quot;pocess a knowledge&quot; (quoted from your post, kinda)that makes you cut grass better then the next guy, that if your secret got out, your competition would eat you alive? I envy you if you do. I don't think theres really any &quot;secrets&quot; in the business, besides what you may charge. Unless you have a magic way to cut mowing time in half or something, I don't understand why you wouldn't want to help &quot;raise the bar&quot; as homer puts it.<p><br>#2 Ties in with #1, again, I'm not trying to be negative, just trying to understand. If you don't want to be friendly with your competition as you said yourself in your post, why are you here? How do you know your competition isn't here? I've made a lot of friends on here. Whats your purpose, so far you said you do not want to be friends with us (your competition), and you don't want to share your secret knowledge, so just wondering what you expect to get/ and in turn contribute to the forum.<p>I Hope you don't take this the wrong way, I'm just trying to understand all views on this matter. Thanks in Advance!<br><p>----------<br>&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;&quot;Guido&quot;&lt;/a&gt;<br>David M. Famiglietti
  2. Charles

    Charles Moderator Staff Member
    Messages: 8,940

    This ain't something I am going to cry about. If they don't like me f'em. Who cares anyway? We all got our seperate jobs to do. Its not like we go to work in a factory together
  3. Bobby

    Bobby LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 258

    I think that people who don't charge enough, may be the mean ones. Lowballers have a high turnover rate. So they are alwayse on the edge. Higher rates with the quality, at least in my area, is the road less traveled. I like being on it and I wave to em all!<p>----------<br>Yesteryear L/S<br>Hollywood Fla
  4. eggy

    eggy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,085

    I must live in the freindly state...I asked several people larger companys about getting in the biz all helped over the past couple years I have become freinds with comptition, we give out help with equipment we also dont really try to steal accounts we know who is doing what...there is a few people in town who try to cut in but the are the fly by nighters who well are getting out of it about this time of year.....
  5. trimmer

    trimmer LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 293

    I don't know where ya'll are from but around here everyone is friendly to each other if I am out mowing a yard and another operation drives by they almost always wave and everyone knows who all the guys are from seeing them around. If I am mowing across the street from another operation and we are both by our trucks we sometimes will talk to each other if where not in a hurry. I have never heard of this problem. I've seen some of them around after hours and they tell me about there new mower and how sweet it is some other things. I have never heard this problem.<p><br>Exquisite Lawn Services <br>Central Flordia<br>Where the sun shine's all the time<br>
  6. Albert

    Albert LawnSite Member
    Messages: 4

    Guido,<p>You are right, in a sense, that there is no secrets in our industry. What is a closely guarded trade secret though, is &quot;attitude&quot;.<p>Allow me, if you please, to ellucidate what I mean. I have very few rules in my LMO. They are as follows: Clean shirts, shaven faces, thank you and please, smile when you speak to a customer, tip your cap to a lady, and a matter of honor waits for noone. The most important one is the thank you and please. All the other stuff derives directly from that one rule.<p>As to forums, while it may be true that some of my competitors may (and that's a big may!)be online. The chances are remote that they may put together the essentials in what I say into practice.<p>Mr. Phagen, glad to see you here. But if I might remind you, at your seminar held at the Tampa Fairgrounds in '98, you said something to the effect, &quot;Friendly with you competition? They're smiling in your face while they're trying to take your business.&quot; Now I admit I might have taken it out of context but I think the principle still applies. I might add that in my limited experience most of the players in the LM field are relatively unsophisticated in terms of business acumen.<p>Now having said all that, I will say that I am not above brainstorming, shareing info and all that stuff. I just don't want to do it with the guy I'm head to head with. As Mr Phagen can attest, here in West Central Florida you can't go two blocks without bumping into 3 grass cutting outfits.<p>Now as I have been thinking this over, I can see some benefit from dealing with organizations that are professional, ie insured, incorporatated, paying taxes, expanding the economy via job creation, paying their employees a wage they can live on (pretty novel concept, huh?), etc. But if you want me to chat it up with Joe and his cousin, or Mom and Pop, not likely. Even though they don't compete with me directly, they might, and that's enough for me.<p>Ok I'm off my stump!:)<p>Thanks,<br>Albert<p>
  7. HOMER

    HOMER LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,183

  8. Guido

    Guido LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,087

    Homer, LOL!! Albert, I know it probobly doesn't mean much coming from me but I think your a real professional. Thats the first time I was able to debate an issue with someone here that didn't turn into an argument. Even though I don't exactly agree with all your saying, I appreciate the fact that your man enough to discuss an issue instead of argue and throw blows. Thanks, we need more like you around here. <p>----------<br>&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;&quot;Guido&quot;&lt;/a&gt;<br>David M. Famiglietti
  9. Albert

    Albert LawnSite Member
    Messages: 4

    Guido,<p>Thanks for the kind words.<p>After thinking about it for the better part of the day, I came to the conclusion that perhaps I was a bit hasty in my original explanation/conclusion.<p>I think that perhaps my opinion was colored by several incidents that have transpired. West Central Florida is pretty competative, but the players I compete with are the fellows above me in terms of market share, capitalization, manpower, longevity, etc. I can see where communication with those players would benefit me.<p>Early in my LMO career, I made the aquaintence of a fellow who has a 5 truck firm. (I rank them that way.) Anyway he gave me some advice, which in hindsight I would have figured out on my own soon enough, but at the same time he pumped me for information in a most subtle way, that is he asked point blank. And in my hubris, I foolishly answered. Well, at the time I had a major client, and when it came time to renew the contract, who do you think got it? Since then, I haven't given an ounce of information.<p>Now, again in hindsight I realize that there was noone to blame, but myself. First year in operation, cocky, undercapitalized, and a lousy partner, bad combination!<p>Now comes the real question, how do you propose that professionals interact?<p>Homer,<br>Yes I am rather well educated. You'll forgive the overuse of adjectives, redundant phrases used to illustrate, and the occasional cliche'.<br>Actually I was a Biologist, (microbiologist to be exact.) then a bartender, (Rats just got bigger.) and I sort of fell into the LM industry. My preference is for civil discourse, as I enjoy the emotive qualities of a well thought out idea expressed in the english language. So, with your permission I will continue to tack up dangling participles.;)<p>Thanks,<br>Albert
  10. Lazer

    Lazer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,446

    The best way to learn is to teach.<p>The guys that don't share generally don't know anything.<p>Of the dozen or so guys I personally know who make a 6 figure income in this business - all are more than willing to help out with most any information.<p>The guys that are &quot;clutching&quot; of information are so narrowly focused and probably don't have anything worthwhile to share anyway. <br>They're too focused on making their weed trimmer payment that they view everyone else as a threat.

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