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Making the decision to hire?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Mowin4cash, May 29, 2000.

  1. Mowin4cash

    Mowin4cash LawnSite Member
    Messages: 160

    I have reached the point in my solo venture here that I either have to get rid of some customers and stay solo, or hire someone and keep the same customers and take on some new ones. Just a couple of years ago, I couldn't beg for enough lawns/sites to do, now I'm working 7 days a week at least 12-14 hrs a day. Don't want to get burned out. God forbid another 3 day rain event. I had a temp agency send out a guy to help me one day at 11.75 hr. He was dumb as a box of rocks. You guys who have been solo, and then made the decision to hire, what steps did you take, or what advice can you give? Thanks in advace. Mike<p>----------<br>When the mowing gets tough, sharpen your damn blades!<br>
  2. bdemir

    bdemir LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 610

    I have hired some guys from temp agencies and they always turn out to be not that great but an add in the sunday paper usually does the trick for me im in Michigan. Also school is getting out try to find a 12th grader who is graduating and likes to cut grass. Dont over work him because they get bored real fast. Keep him interested and make sure you pick a good one. Try to find a kid who workd on cars, usually mechanically inclined kids make good learners for lawn care. Good luck
  3. steveair

    steveair LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,073

    I agree with bdemir. Look for a highschooler, one who is not going to college, and who is looking for a career. Try to find someone who wants a career, not just a job. Training a new guy everyweek gets very costly, not along with being a pain in the ass.<p>It sounds like you definitely need help. Just be sure to give whoever good incentives. Pay him well, and hopefully it will pay off. When they ask for a raise, think about how much work it is by yourself, then think about how nice it is to have someone else there. <p>Other good sources are colleges. At least for part time summer help. But the main key is trying to find someone who you can train and keep around.<p>steveair
  4. Wes H

    Wes H Guest
    Messages: 0

    I'm in same boat as mowin4cash. But I'm not workin 7 days for 12 to 14 hours. I'm hiring a couple of high school guys next week. I had a couple of people work for a while, then start not showing up or calling off. It's hard to schedule the work when you don't know how much help you've got.
  5. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,695

    Mowin4cash wrote:<p>{I'm working 7 days a week at least 12-14 hrs a day}<p>There is no doubt in my mind that you should hire at least one person now. Keep in mind though that each additional helper only reduces time spent on a job by around 33% over 1 person doing the job. I am in the same boat as you are right now except that I have not overloaded myself with customers. I am working 8 to 10 hours a day cutting grass 5 days a week with overflow jobs on Saturday, 30 to 60 mins a day on paperwork and around 2 to 3 hours on the weekend doing machine maintenance. Yesterday I decided to go ahead and get more customers (I have 3 to bid right now) and hire the guy down the street who's been bugging me for a part-time job.
  6. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,028

    No advice just a thought - it sure is better than sittin on your hands at home . Sounds like your doin good - keep it up. Good Luck.<br>
  7. Charles

    Charles Moderator, Friend, Angel
    Messages: 11,810

    Hope you are luckier than i was in hiring employees. Now if you were to hire a big crew it might be worth the hassle. But one or 2 employees most likley will be a pain in the ass to deal with. One thing I found is that when they don't show up for work or want time off. You are left to deal with all that business alone until you find a replacement or they come back. Looks to me if you are working 7 days a week your business has gotten out of control and it might be a good idea to cut back on your work load. Most of us have followed this pattern. And most of us have found it difficult to get good dependable, intelligent, employees. But if you are determined to do it go ahead. Guess you will find out if it is worth it to you. Just like some of us did. Just buy you a mega phone so your employees can hear you yelling at them over the equipment noise lol. Increase your liability insurance and get them workmans comp
  8. GrassMaster

    GrassMaster Senior Member
    Messages: 447

    Hello Everybody:<p>Just a few of my thoughts!<p>1. Make sure they are 18 or older.<br>2. Make sure they have a good driving record.<br>3. Make sure they have transportation.<br>4. Make sure they are not Rocket Scientist.<p>If you have enough work for 3 employees hire at lest 4 min. or 5, Why? They have to take off when they have to break wind, they layout when their tummy hurts, girl friend mad & so forth. Oh yes, don't forget they got to go get insurance on their car. LOL<p>Between all the time off & laying out you will not be forking out but around 3 salaries anyway. <p>Hey, you get in bind on hours, everybody likes to take off early on Friday. Also other days of the week too! That's why they work for us.<p>Don't hire rocket scientist or go getters. The know it alls never last & the go getters are wanting to learn the trade & try to put you out of business. I loved my competition myself, because they kept me in business.<p>If you have to raise your voice at them, find someone else to do your job. If you worked for someone that Yelled & Cursed don't worry about it, because the Big man up stairs will sort them out when the time comes.<p>Yes, I got upset with my employees & I dealt with it. Not by yelling or cursing them. They act up with me I would take them in a heart beat to trim bushes, pull weeds & do initial clean ups.<p>There is always the way to discipline them that always worked for me, when you catch them doing something wrong & you tell them about it. <p>Make sure you later ask them as many times as possiblle & say or ask others in front of them,&quot; Hey Robert did you get the tools out of the backyard?&quot; No matter what it was related too or what they are doing at the time. Even if 6 months later.<p>I found out that the first employee was most important! I went that extra yard for my first one. People can say what they want but pay isn't most important issue. It's how they are treated! The first one will work the second one, when your not around & will be the person that runs your first crew. This employee is very valuable.<p>No one man is a success by himself it takes plenty others along the way to make him successful, I don't care who it is!<p>----------<br>GrassMaster - Home: www.lawnservicing.com<br>My Start Up Page www.lawnservicing.com/startup/
  9. Nilsson Associates

    Nilsson Associates LawnSite Member
    Messages: 243

    Just do it, working by yourself limits your income to probably under $75,000 and all that does it keeps the lights on.<p>A-1
  10. bdemir

    bdemir LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 610

    Grassmaster,<p>that is some good advice and you are right. I can tell you have much experience with employees and their dealings. I am going to use some of that advice for sure thanks for the help.

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