Prior Experience

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Flipperneck, Mar 4, 2004.


Prior experience

  1. Yes

    8 vote(s)
  2. No

    9 vote(s)
  3. Glad I didn't

    4 vote(s)
  4. Wish I did

    4 vote(s)
  1. Flipperneck

    Flipperneck LawnSite Member
    Messages: 164

    I was just wondering how many people have experience working for a Good LCO before starting out on their own, And how many that didn't think they should have learned a few more things before hand. Just wondering. Its not rocket science this stuff but learning other peoples ways before adapting to your own usually works out for me. I just learned a year ago how to use an excavator and a backho, I don't think I would have ever had the...To buy one and learn later if it was my own equipment.
  2. mbricker

    mbricker LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 505

    Right Flip, I sure wish I had someone teach me some of the stuff I learned the hard way.

    No doubt there are still things I am doing the hard way but haven't realized it yet. Finding lawnsite in Jan. and reading everything you smarter guys post has opened my eyes some.

    Thanks, to all who are willing to share. (And thanks, to BobbyG for some laughs)
  3. fga

    fga LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,449

    I worked for a huge company and learned the equipment, procedures for maintainace and landcape,.

    Then worked with a family member who was starting from scratch, learned the "business" part from watching his paperwork, billing (he had me run them to the mailboxes), etc. Now he has over 400 weekly accounts!!

    Then, my first year in biz, a buddy of mine with an LCO, needed a guy 2-3 days a week, in the beginning I had the time so, I did both, still watching how other people run the show.

    There's always something you'll learn only from experience!!! Usaully a bad experience.
  4. Flipperneck

    Flipperneck LawnSite Member
    Messages: 164

    I am gonna have a hell of a time learning the business side to all this. I can estimate, schedule and perform just about anything in the industry of maintenance, landscape, and hardscape, but the only thing I know about paperwork I learned here, the state website and IRS website.
  5. fga

    fga LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,449

    A good accountant is worth a million bucks! My guy is crazy, he charges me $400 - 500 a year, and he's saved me thousands. He said "wait til this year, now that you're a daddy, you gonna be giggling!"
  6. swim

    swim LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 357

    Worked at a condo complex for about a year after high school. Learned many things about landscaping. It was about 10 acres of all mulched plant beds. Took us half the summer to mulch it with 2 people.
    Then went to army learned how to grow up and be dependable. Also became a mechanic in the army.
    Worked for a small tree service company for 1 year after that. Learned alot about tree work and how not to run a business. It went under.
    Then to being a mechanic. Learned how to fix my own equipment with that one.
    Worked for a huge tree service company after that trimming trees away from power lines. Learned how to be safe with that one and not get killed.
    I guess that would rank my answer as a yes.
  7. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Messages: 10,178

    no experience at all prior to cutting my first customer. took my grandmas old murray 21" pushmower, out of the back of my pickup, and cut my first client for $15, minus a 10% senior discount, that left me $13.50 for the cut. customer came out b!tchin, " what are you doing, you're cutting in circles, you're supposed to be going in straight lines." i'm like, "are you serious?" i cut his cr@ppy lawn like 12 times before i asked to get paid, he said i was only there twice. argued with him, ended up settling for the $27 bucks. that was the first and last time time anyone ever boned me out of money. then his house burnt down the following year.......... what a shame. to answer the topic at hand, yes, i wish i had prior experience. i had no clue how to cut a lawn, talk to a client, price the work, or run a business. but, THAT WAS LAST YEAR, this year should be a little better.
  8. NCSULandscaper

    NCSULandscaper Banned
    Messages: 1,557

    No prior experience and dont wish i had any either. No decent companies to work for in this area, so it would have probably hurt me.
  9. Flipperneck

    Flipperneck LawnSite Member
    Messages: 164

    Hey Bobby,
    In a couple of months when I start I'm sure I'll have some free time on my hands. If you have something you don't know but don't want to turn down email me if its worth my while I'll help you out any way I can. Its only 30 min. between here and there.
  10. specialtylc

    specialtylc LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,656

    I had zero experience before starting my company. And glad I didnt work for someone else. After watching some of the other co. in my area do things the hard way, im glad I didnt learn their methods.

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