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What would you do? (new worker)

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Lawn-Scapes, Apr 26, 2005.

  1. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,810

    Need some advice...

    I hired an employee last Monday and here's a little background info.. He is 26 and lives with his girlfiend with a baby on the way. He doesn't get along with her and is not sure the baby will be his. He doesn't have a license or car due to an unpaid traffic violation (which means I pick him every day - about 30 minutes out of my day). He has been arrested and did 18 months for beating the living daylight out of someone... on parole.

    He answered the ad I ran and said that he had 2 years experience. I can tell he has some experience but not the level I expected... However I saw potential and he has gradually improved over the course of 7 work days. He comes to work every day (because I pick him up) and works hard. Except for this past Saturday... I made it clear that I needed him this Saturday and he said no problem.. he needed all the hours he could get. Well I went to pick him up and he got in the truck slumped over looking like sh!t. I said "what's wrong?" He said he was out all night (no sleep) and he felt like sh!t. I said "can you make it?" He said he didn't think so because his friend gave him "E" and it messed him up bad. So I dropped him back off......

    Sunday night he apologized and said he f'ed up. He said he would be ready to go Monday morning. So being a nice guy and figured everybody deserves a second chance.. I said okay, don't let it happen again. Besides that... I'm desperate for help. Yesterday and today it was business as usual.

    Okay.. here's where I need advice. I received another call in answer to my help wanted ad. The guy sounds like a great prospect.. experienced from a reputable company, transportation and well spoken.

    What would you do?
  2. bicmudpuppy

    bicmudpuppy LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,781

    Wonder why the second guy needs a job? This may sound harsh, but you've got a bird in hand. Yes, you had a bad experience with that Sat. AM, but......anyone with any work experience not been there at least once? I'm a square and not sure what "E" is. I'm hoping I'm wrong, but doubt it. In this buisness, a perfect employee with all kinds of experience is hiding something too.
    Just my thoughts...

    HOOLIE LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981

    I've been thinking of this scenario myself, my new guy sounds like he might be the twin brother of your new guy. I know sooner or later, someone better will come along...what to do? I suppose, you could make up a reason why you don't need his help one day, and see if the other guy could 'fill-in' for the day, see how he does. Maybe that's not the most ethical thing to do, but, if you're relying on just ONE worker to help, you want them to be good.
  4. MMLawn

    MMLawn LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,569

    Based on what you said I personally would never have hired the first guy. The "E" has I'm sure you know is Ecstasy (Meth) so he has it bad and I'm quite sure is also a Major Violation of his Parole and as soon as they Drug Test him which they will he'll be gone anyway, so I'd hire the 2nd guy or keep looking is what I would do.
  5. siclmn

    siclmn LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 364

    This guy knew that you were going to pick him up the next morning and he still stayed out all night. He is not ready to grow up yet. You will end up trying to be his father and you will loose. Hire an adult and there will be less screw ups.
  6. impactlandscaping

    impactlandscaping LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,332

    Tom, are you sure this guy isn't from Morgantown? LOL..Welcome to the world of employees. It really doesn't get any better or easier once you add employees. A good worker with good ethics is a rarity. You have to take some bad with the good, you just have to decide where the line of balance rests. Drugs are a big no-no, and a sure sign of things worse to follow with this guy. You can't get attached to employees, either. Once they try to become your "buddy", they think they have earned some perks like coming in late or calling off, etc, because you're the number one guy. Never let them forget you are the boss, not their friend. I would check out the other respondent, you are losing time and money by picking him up and dropping him off each day. Get someone who can at least drive themselves to your house / shop each morning.

    HOOLIE LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981

    Sounds great...and where, pray tell, can I find one of these 'adults'...cuz I've been lookin' and I ain't seen any around...
  8. pagefault

    pagefault LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 492

    Fire him. I've had employees like that in the past and they never get any better. You gave him his second chance when you hired him. That was admirable, but now it is time to cut him loose. God only knows what kinds of problems he will cause if you keep him.
  9. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,810

    I'm pretty much hearing what I was thinking. BTW, I didn't know his life story when I hired him... I learned a little each day.

    Before I kick this guy to the curb... I think I'll try out the prospect as he may not be all that he made himself out to be. At this point in time.. I cannot be without a decent helper.
  10. MMLawn

    MMLawn LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,569

    Give the first guy the day off, tell him you are slow that day and bring in #2 that day to try him without #1 knowing.

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