Need encouragement...

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by atasteofnature, Aug 23, 2008.

  1. atasteofnature

    atasteofnature LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 405

    I have been in the landscaping for 9 years and have a 2 year degree in the landscaping. I attempt to start my own business this spring and got ran over by the gas prices. I then went and worked for someone else and something isn't right. I enjoyed helping others in need and being to be with my family more. Have any of you tried and failed and got back on the horse and finally made it? Or do I just give it up? Thank you for the suggestions
  2. Patriot Services

    Patriot Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,020

    Get back out there! You probably have more experience and education than the people you are working for. Start slow even if it means taking a part time job a couple of days a week or evenings. Just to give you some steady income until you get your numbers up. Strive to keep your route tight, even if it means a longer workday. Pick an area that hasn't been too hard hit by the housing crisis and soak it with quality doorhangers. Now is a good time to pick up the customers that the wannabes have left hanging. hopefully your family supports you in this and is willing to help out with flyer distribution. Good luck and don't give up!:usflag::usflag::usflag:
    ericg likes this.
  3. kabrac

    kabrac LawnSite Member
    from Alabama
    Messages: 211

    I always knew I had A God given gift in landscaping. I could always work for someone else's company and succeed, but when I first tried to do it on my own I failed. I didn't have enough experience. Now I am working for a botanical gardens making $8.50 an hour and realized I'm never going to make it in life if I just give up after my first try. So now I have more and bigger goals, a business plan, ambition, etc. I also have seen how I've matured since I last tried, changes in my character, integrety, honesty, hard work, etc, and it shows in my work and people complement me. I believe in myself I know I will succeed. I work part-time now at my job and work in my own business part-time, hoping to go full time as soon as possibel. There are many things that get me down since I am growing slow and I seen tons of people out here with a truck and trailer w/ mowers and think why would someone call me when there are so many people doing it. It is then I'm reminded that I have a God given gift in this area and I'm a perfectionist dedicated to perfection and quality work. Don't get down on yourself. If you know you have God's gift in landscaping then NOTHING OR NO ONE WILL BE ABLE TO STOP YOU FROM SUCCEEDING, ONLY YOURSELF. Remember the saying "Rome wasn't built in a day"!!!!!!!
  4. atasteofnature

    atasteofnature LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 405

    Thank you guys so much. It means a lot to me. I know as long as I keep GOD first that everything will work out in his plan. I will try to get that part time job and take it slow. I have also notice my wrongs and where I can improve so I will continue to work on those. I am thankful to have a wonderful wife and three kids who love to see there daddy to good. Thank you once again for the ecouragement and GOD Bless.
  5. Az Gardener

    Az Gardener LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,899

    You need business education to be successful in business period. Once you have business education/experience you realize it is transferable, same principals work in most businesses. Once you realize that you will probably realize that you have picked one of the hardest businesses to be successful in. At least where you don't have consistent year around work.

    If you want to run a business, not own a job (solo operator) take some classes learn how to read a balance sheet, profit statement, calculate your costs, do a budget and projections, hire and manage people.

    If you want to landscape get a job with a good company and be an employee because the bigger you grow as a company the further you get from the work you love as the owner.

    Check out my e myth thread for some good business guidance. I got my business education from this coach as opposed to college. It cost about the same but was tailored to my needs at the time. I think it was much more valuable thab the college classes I took, boy were they out of touch and sterile.
  6. QualityLawnCare4u

    QualityLawnCare4u LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,758

    There is no one on here that has failed more times than me and I keep coming back!!( I have watched to many Rocky movies):) I have been kicked down so many times that its not funny. But let me tell you, I do NOT feel like a failure and have been doing this long enough to know what I am doing (not saying I don't learn something new everyday) but blame it on my area/economy where there are 2 LCO's for every lawn:laugh: The one thing that keeps driving me is the thought of going back into that 8-5, backstabbing, making someone else money, could care less about me job. I will starve before I give up. I may take on some part time job once in awhile to help but that does not bother me. Never feel like a failure, if you do you have already failed! I have had so many knives stuck in my back most folks in my shoes would have done thrown in the towel but I'm still good for one more round! Go for it!
  7. JohnnyRoyale

    JohnnyRoyale LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 616

    The real problem is that most guys just starting out confuse the true meanings of running a business and creating a job for themselves. Not to say this is your case, and please dont get offended by my comments, but I have seen many talented guys that felt it was time to venture out on their own, lose their shirts, and in some cases in just a few months after "getting into business" simply because they couldnt comprehend the concept of business, and how it is very different than being a solo operator.

    Business management goes far beyond actually doing the work-it requires planning, and the co-ordination and execution of systems on many different levels, including but not limited to marketing, sales, accounting, administration, etc. IMO, this is the most important and commonly overlooked component of starting and running a succesful business.

    Turning off my cell phone and hopping onto a zero turn for even a half hour during the day while the guys take lunch feels like a short holiday to me. Reality is, my business can't afford me to get involved in actually doing the work anymore. That's the easy part.

    My advice to you is to get educated in Business Management, partner with someone who is, or hire the right people. Any one of those options will cost you money, the question is what are you prepared to pay, and what are your objectives-why are you going into business. Only then, could you honestly say you are running a business, and not just a job you have created for yourself. Good luck with whatever you decide. But remember, business ownership is very complex, and just as consuming as actually doing the work.
  8. Puddle of Oil

    Puddle of Oil LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,202

    "the harder you fall the bigger you bounce"
  9. Frue

    Frue LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,472

    I quit my first year then started again and I have made it so to speak it is now my 10th year and I am still kicking. It takes a desire not to quit no matter what unless it is bankrupting your family.
  10. Dave_005

    Dave_005 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 359

    Go back out there and try again. the FIRST SEASON IS ALWAYS THE HARDEST !!! it takes time to acquire enough steady accounts. put out your flyers through the neighborhood, in the stores, anyplace you can think of, stop into some insurance agency's in your area and leave some cards there for people to see. then its just a matter of doing Good work and make sure you pay CLOSE ATTENTION TO DETAIL !!! the better the job looks when you're finished the more word of mouth willl get around. and the more accounts you will acquire.. the one thing you should NEVER do if you like this kind of work is to "Give Up" if you give up because gas prices got you. then you will never succed in this buisness. you need to make sure you charge enough to make a GOOD PROFIT regardless of the gas prices. we ALL have to pay the high price for gas, just make sure you figure the gas cost into your quotes. and remember the first year or two can be pretty lean sometimes as you;re the New Guy in the neighborhood so you have to build up your reputation from scratch. just Never "Give Up'" and try to Never Ever LOWBALL on your prices. Lowballing leaves money on the table for you and less profit and also tends to give you a very bad name among your competters.... Good Luck !

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