1. Missed the live Ask the Expert event?
    Catch up on the conversation about fertilization strategies for success with the experts at Koch Turf & Ornamental in the Fertilizer Application forum.

    Dismiss Notice

Getting Dirty

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by eskals, Aug 18, 2000.

  1. eskals

    eskals LawnSite Member
    Messages: 210

    Normally I work w/o the help of employees. However, as I have begun to tackle some bigger jobs, I have hiried some help. I hiried two guys that I know from high school (I am only 18). One is a sophmore and the other is a junior. When working as a crew, the young guy is always the cleanest at the end of the day.

    Today, we had a job trimming some bushes, pulling weeds, and yanking out a small tree. When the customer comes out to pay me, he asks "how come you're so dirty and he (the youung guy) is so clean?" (We were both wearing white shirts, and mine was filthy). He also does very little w/o gloves on.

    Do you guys think that this is an issue? I know that he works slower than my other guy, but I also pay him less.

    Is getting dirty an accurate gauge of work done?

    I know what my decision is, I would like to hear your opinion as I have little experience with employees.



  2. Twotoros

    Twotoros LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 494

    I work smart and hard and at the end of the day I look like a pig . If being a pretty boy has become part of the job then I guess I should quit and go work at the slaughter house . If I had a customer judge me by my looks I would 'SET HIM FREE" like the turd in the toilet he is.
  3. Twotoros

    Twotoros LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 494

    Contact me at the slaughterhouse I guess .

    I start out clean but................. them 90 degree days , sweat and all that dust just love me to much .
  4. richard2

    richard2 Banned
    Messages: 101

    for $50, plus shipping, on your credit card, i will send you a shirt that looks as if you have worked a full day and a half digging foxholes or planting trees or whatever...on the back printed in large blue letters is one simple word,"CONSCRIPT" you should get one for your guy and make him wear it....even when you go out for a beer in a couple years!
  5. trimmasters

    trimmasters LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 264

    Being 18 my self with 4 full time workers, maby I can be of some help.

    Hiring frinds can be the best and worst thing you could ever do. they will work vary hard and care about your business and help you be sucsessfull or they will see it as an oportunity to take advantage of you bigtime, and screw up and otherwise good frindship. as I see it your frinds are your frinds and employes are just employes. treat them fare but you dont want to get budy-budy with them.

    I could go on for hours with this!!

    feel free to give me a call if I can help
    John W Bell
  6. bob

    bob LawnSite Platinum Member
    from DE
    Messages: 4,260

    Eric, This reminds me of a question. Do you trust the mechanic with clean hands or the one with dirty hands? Only you can be the judge of how hard your guys work.
  7. eskals

    eskals LawnSite Member
    Messages: 210

    I am all for the "work smarter not harder" system. If there was one thing I learned from working as a carpenter, it was to work smart. I try to get this across to my guys. If you have to go back to the trailer for a tool, then take the one that you are finished with back. Its the little things that help to save time and energy.

    However, I have a hard time keeping clean when the weather is hot and we are trying to muscle a 300 lb. tree stump into the trailer. There are some jobs that are just plain dirty, and I believe that this is often why the homeowner hires me to do them. They just don't want to get dirty.

    Andrews--Sorry if this post isn't meaningful. Being just a junior member, I don't want to start a war here, but please respect others posts. What is meaningful to you might not be meaningful to me and vice versa.

    trimmaster--I agree with you on hiring friends. Its not a terribly great idea (These guys weren't my friends, I just knew who they were and that they lived close by).

    I previously had decided to give the guy another week and mention this to him...



    BUSHMASTER LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 519

    Well clean or dirty uhmmmmmmmmm....
    i come home not so nasty how? not beacuse i work less but after each job when i go to blow i take my WET TOWEL and head toward the water spickit and spend less than a minute on a sponge bath keeps me cool and clean why clean ......
    more cofortable. and you never know when you'll meet i new customer first impression.
  9. bondlawn

    bondlawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 47

    Some people can produce just as much work as the next guy, but not get dirty doing it. When I was a kid I watched my Dad rebuild a refrigeration compressor (the size of a catapillar engine) while wearing a white dress shirt. He tucked his tie into the shirt, rolled up his sleeves and started work. When he finished the shirt had no grease on it. Many years later I went to work for the same company and did the same kind of work. Needless to say I looked like I had been rolling around in a grease pit after I did the same job. I've never figured out how my dad does it.

    On the other hand if your man is not producing the work, maybe its time to hunt for new help.
  10. greenflag

    greenflag LawnSite Member
    Messages: 92

    All I can say is that employees are one of the reasons I am getting into this business. I have had three in my other business. I made the mistake of thinking that because I have always cared about my work that they would too. Needless to say, they didn't. As time went by, they started taking more and more advantage of my kindness, and eventually my partner and I were faced with the unpleasant prospect of having to fire a friend because they were screwing us, whether they realized it or not. So keep business business, and make sure everyone knows you are the boss, not a buddy.

    David Burrow

Share This Page