Ok where do I start. I have been on this site for many years and it has been a good "go to" when I need to know something or get different opinions on certain things. I try to contribute what i can but with business, kids, household and my fishing addition it's hard to sit on the computer (not knocking anyone who does). Hence my only 170 posts in 12yrs or so. Soooo here's my story and I'm just looking to see if there is anyone in a similar situation. I have been in business for many years. I have never really gotten any bigger over the years (my choice). I have had around 100 customers (+\-) for most of the years I have been in business, 90% of which have been high end full service residential. Not to toot my own horn but I am very good at servicing these properties and charge accordingly for my work. I am very hands-on (I fall into the thread by Sean "standing in the way of your......very nicely) and run a very tight ship for my customers and have never had to look for work (no advertising, all word of mouth). My philosophy was I go a little high on the estimate and if I get it I have a good paying customer if not i already have enough work, because I never wanted to get that big. This worked for me for many years. Fast forward to two seasons ago when this lovely economy started to take its toll. I was giving estimates and not getting to many back and also started to lose a couple of existing customers. Then I lost my main guy who has been with me a long time (it was kind of time anyway) and had a rough time replacing him. Then I lost one of my main accounts , probably 15-20% of my business to a large co. who is always more expensive. I know one of my problems is good employees. It is hard to get individuals to work because I am always on the job and there is not much time to screw around, as opposed to many of the companies around here that just deal with the fact that guys are going to slack off if they are not there to babysit. I know I am stuck in my ways and it is hard to change, hence the saying "can't teach an old dog". So I am trying to figure out how to change myself. I know some will say "well just change with the times" but I'm having trouble lowering my prices just to get the work. The hard part is that I know I can still make descent money charging less because I have very little overhead. I just am not into it like I used to be. I do not have any education after high school and have no business training (not that I think that is a too big of a deal). Now I know what I have to change but sometimes I just don't have the energy to implement what I know I have to do. There has to be other companies out there that are in this same boat and was just wondering how they might have changed or what they might have done to figure this out. I really don't have any other business to get into and I'm tired of killing my self (just had to have double hernia surgery) trying to run this show. Some of this I'm sure is winter blues but just wanted to see some of the responses I would get from posting this. Thanks for reading and have a great day!