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Things I am doing right now...

Discussion in 'Christmas Trees & Seasonal' started by David Gretzmier, Jul 20, 2009.

  1. David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,646

    Looking at t-shirts,sweatshirts, and work jackets for my guys. T-shirts have to be worn everyday, except really cold weather days where it is unlikely to be exposed. and over a long-sleeve t is fine for those weird weather days of 40 in the morning and 80 in the afternoon. must be tucked in. must wear belt and jeans with no holes. must wear leather work shoes. etc. Shirts must be done by Aug 15.

    This year I am going with the darker ash grey, mainly for dirt and stain hiding ability. simple one color Christmas Light Install Crew on back in the largest letters that will fit. heavy weight cotton t-shirts, costwise around 3-5 bucks each for 75. 8 employees get 7 each, plus spares for when guys show up without a shirt, or when guys quit and you don't get them back. in both cases, shirt cost comes out of pay. at 10 bucks each.

    looking at new yard signs, but I still have about 50 left. these are disposable, so I buy in bulk every 3 years or so. I'd like to spend no more than 3 bucks per sign, and get at least 300 for 100 per year. Signs must be done by Sept 1.

    getting DVD's made from all my videos. in the past, I had a seperate dvd for each client in the work file, this year I want each crew to have just 3-5 dvd's with all the clients on them. That way when they lose a dvd, I already have a spare at the shop. believe it or not, I already have most of the videos on my computer, but making a dvd with 30-40 one to 3 minute videos is not easy or user friendly. all I want is the name of the client in alphabetical order on the DVD menu screen, and then burn it, but I have yet to find software to make it so. DVD's must be done by Sept 1.

    going to convention in Omaha this week to look at new product and marketing stuff from HBL. really just for fun, but it always gets me excited for Christmas lights.

    shop is pretty clean and organized, but I want to go through each file and make sure wreaths, boxes, and luminary's are where the file says they are, and get a feel for my left over inventory from last year. This has to be done by Sept 1.

    design an intelligence test for new employee interviews. I am trying to only hire roofers this year, so I want to test thier IQ with a simple 20-30 question IQ test from the internet to get the brightest among them. Folks can seem smart in an interview, but I need guys that can read driving directions, figure out how to add up amps, and also be problem solvers. and that requires a minimum of 110,120 IQ. I am done with employees who cannot add. Aug 15 deadline

    I am also trying to figure out a heights/ladder test for guys to make sure they are roof and ladder capable. Spt 1. deadline.

    Ladders,tools and trucks for 4 crews. last year I shot for it and failed. we barely squeaked by with 3 crews. with more clients onboard this year than last, I will be ready this year. I have 5 trucks, but need to probably buy 2 more box vans for primary. don't know if I will have the cash until too late though. we'll see. need a truck or 2 bought by Nov. 1.

    probably should have more on the list.
  2. OP
    David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,646

    Things I added to the list-

    Need a commision salesperson for commercial sales. I am getting this person by the end of July. reason ? If they can be self motivated to sell 3 jobs a week, they will make a grand a week. from Aug 1-Sept 15, they could sell 18 jobs in those 6 weeks. Can it be done? Absolutely, with the right salesperson.

    Looking at my closet, I need a few polo's and sweaters for myself and a salesman's uniforms. gotta get that done by Aug. 1
  3. OP
    David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,646

    added to list, graphics on one of the box vans purchased last year. done by Sept. 1.

    website done, Sept 1
  4. OP
    David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,646

    checking items off-

    2 sales folks hired, start monday Aug 3.
    Sales and myself uniforms paid for, at local embroidery place. done by next friday, Aug 7
    Graphics on box van paid for but need to design.
    convention done. great time
    DVD's in process, hired a company. 600 bucks, ouch.
    3 work jackets came in, need to go to embroidery
    worked on proposal inserts, 3 tab almost done with text.
    website work next week.
  5. OP
    David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,646

    working on items, but seem to not be checking items off

    t-shirts designed but not yet ordered. employees start aprox 34 days. gotta get that done tomorrow.

    put ad date on calendar to begin interviews for first 2 guys to start. ad hits paper Aug. 29, interviews on sept 1-6, choose 5, 2nd interview is heights/strength/ladder test and roof , hire best 2. still need to design intelligence test. I have less than 20 days to get that done.

    polo/sales shirts finally done. checked off. 24 shirts.

    3 tab insert in bid portfolio, text done and at graphic designer for punch. to printers next week.

    photo's for graphics on boxvan at graphic designer for text and cymk format.

    140 dvd videos are labeled and at video service for printing and duplicating to just 4 DVD's.

    Commission sales guys are thorn in my side on other thread. hired a new guy but not started yet. part time guy, last years shop foreman, is working 68 hours at his current job and has very little time to sell. officially going to part time sales guy next week, we'll see.

    getting yard signs at victory store.com, about 3.50 per 24x24 full color 2 side sign for 250. 500 is better deal, would actually save 250 bucks, but cash is always tight. not yet ordered, but I have about 50 signs and I don't hit these hard til Ocober anyway.

    September 14-30 hangs are booked for a 2 man crew with me helping. October is really spotty, need to call folks who normally hang in October. I need to confirm some commercial clients and get them up in October along with some harder residentials.

    I have never pushed myself this hard to be ready
  6. addictedtolandscaping

    addictedtolandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    from NY
    Messages: 569

    Hokie, Hotrod, Dave - I personally thank you all for your guidance, advice, help, suggestions. As I said, I would be compeltely and totally lost without the compassion and guidance from you guys. Hope to meet you all face to face at some point and thank you personally.
  7. turf hokie

    turf hokie LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,753

    No need to thank me, I truly feel that what goes around comes around. I would like to get together with you before the season starts. We are only about 1 1/2 hours away. And I am up more than halfway to you on plenty of occasions to set something up to grab a beer and chat. This way I can pick your brain on the HBL training as I have not been able to go yet. office is 845-735-2331 I will be out starting Friday for a week but will be checking messages.

    AND just to P-off the non-twitter fan.

    I ordered some of my marketing material last week to start envelope stuffing my lawn care customers as well as some of my friends customers.

    Ordered some neat giveaways for our local Chamber of Commerce Day where we shut down the street and have vendors, games etc. to have at our booth.

    I just ordered my HBL catalogs today.

    Working on my pricing structure for the upcoming season today, as we got our first real decorating lead on Monday, met with him yesterday and need to meet with him again tomorrow to go over the estimate. Normally I give them the estimate at the first meeting but he wants "it all" and we are looking at a 5 figure job with special order items. I dont think he will go for everything so we will see how far he will go and how much I will deal.

    Will order up shirts etc next week.

    Any more complaints from the peanut gallery???? Cause we can keep twittering if you like.....
  8. addictedtolandscaping

    addictedtolandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    from NY
    Messages: 569

    OK my update now.

    First round of material is in waiting to go up
    Business cards are proofed and at the printers
    Truck graphics are waiting for final approval - should have that today
    Going to use the "old" HBL catalogs before ordering the new ones, great incentive to get the commercial clients hammered out
    Hounding Mike about the apparel - much cheaper directly through HBL than I can get here
    Mailers are straightened out with Mike, again much cheaper through HBL than here
    Emailed studio8 about the lawn signs should be ordered this week
  9. hotrod1965

    hotrod1965 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 587

    This actually is a good thread. It's nice to see what you guys are up to right now...

    I'm just starting to get my pricing together for both retail and installation. I'm not seeing to many changes on the installation side and the retail side will have lower prices.

    Like Dave, I am on a quest to find that perfect sales person. Most people want me to pay them $50K a year to do hardly anything...

    I also need to clean the barn out and order/find some better tool boxes to hold plugs, wire cutters, clips..etc.

    I bought a ton of fliers last year, so I am good for this year. But I do need to get my summer news letter out to past clients. It's a good way to stay in touch.
  10. turf hokie

    turf hokie LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,753

    There he is, was wondering if you were sleeping hotrod.


    sold the first job today good size job, 2 crews all day....gotta love internet leads!!!

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