What should I do????

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Jon99, Apr 5, 2003.

  1. Jon99

    Jon99 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 375

    Over the last 12 years, while working as a financial analyst, I worked for an LCO on Saturday's because I enjoyed doing it and that money was our vacation money..

    Last summer I lost my job and I decided I enjoyed the business enough to start a solo outfit.. I started advertising about a month ago and currently have 6 residentials and 1 commercial (will be two commercials when the second bank branch opens in July), while I am fairly pleased with my progress I need more income for us to pay the bills...

    Well the other day the guy I have worked for in the past called me, told me he saw I was starting up my own business, wanted to wish me luck and then asked if I would want to work for him a few days a week.. Is this a good idea or a situation waiting to go bad and one that should be avoided???
  2. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,501

    Unless you are independently wealthy, I would try it. What have you got to lose? You'll be making some extra income and probably learning a few things along the way as well.

    Good luck in whatever you choose:D
  3. Mickhippy

    Mickhippy LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,274

    Go for it but remember where your priorities lie. Might even make some contacts out of it!
  4. LawnMowerMan2003

    LawnMowerMan2003 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 768

    I had some success doing this before, but I also had people that gave me the hard stuff they didn't want to do and I didn't get very many regular customers out of it (I didn't try to steal them). I'd probably do it again now, if somebody offered and they paid me enough. I only have 7-10 residential this season (due to a broken collar bone last year) and it doesn't pay very many bills. Just make sure you have enough time left to continue marketing, so you can keep building your own business.
  5. wrtenterprises

    wrtenterprises LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 331

    This particular situation worked great for me. When I started out in the late 90's, I worked for a good friend who has one of the larger operations in my area. He threw some work my way, of course it was not the best, but it was work. I worked part-time for my friend and continued to grow my business. I took (2) seasons until I went solo, but in hindsight I do not believe I would be where I am today without the extra work and help.

    It can and will work if you want it too. Do not consider taking or bidding on anything your friend may want or have while you are working for him. This practice paid huge dividends for me. While it was difficult to see things pass from time to time, I still have a great friend in the business who to this day still passes work my way.

    We now bid on some of the same properties from to time, with no conflict of interest. Just a couple of LCO's trying to attain the same contract.

    Best of luck. Again, it will work for you if you want it too...
  6. Jon99

    Jon99 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 375

    My problem is this... If I am working for this other guy and a person approaches me about doing their yard, do I bite my lip and give him the other guys business card???? I think what I might do is ask to work solely on the large commerical properties so that situation is avoided for the most part..
  7. LawnMowerMan2003

    LawnMowerMan2003 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 768

    I wouldn't give a potential customer his business card. In my opinion, if somebody sees you working and has not hired him, you aren't stealing his customer.
  8. bruces

    bruces LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 648

    I've got a problem with that. If you are working for me, using my equipment, receiving a pay check from me, and a potential customer approaches you, then if you don't give me the referral, I don't like it.

    You've got a pick conflict there.

    Do what you think is right. That won't always be the most beneficial to you.
  9. LWNMWR1

    LWNMWR1 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 188

    you would lose a friend and a boss for sure if you got caught building your business on his time. i did it once and never got caught but felt real bad about it. never did get anywhere in that neck of the woods but my concience was not clear. talk with your boss and see how he feels about it. communication is tha key to ewverythingin life!!
  10. LawnMowerMan2003

    LawnMowerMan2003 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 768

    I guess I should have clarified whether he was using his equipment and getting paid by the hour or subcontracting. I was just assuming he was subcontracting, using his own equipment on his own time.

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