• Online Events For Landscapers!
    With GIE+EXPO cancelled, virtual education and product launches are filling up the fall. Check out dates for Caterpillar, Exmark, NALP, and more. Click here to learn more.

What would you do?


LawnSite Senior Member
am recently considering getting out of the field and hiring another laborer.
I currently run 2+ myself, on 2.5 lawn cutting days, and 2- 2.5 landscape install days. I have been in the field, and selling, and doing all the office work etc. for over 16yrs. I am getting to the point of not liking my job anymore, with all the stress and my body taking a beating lately. My problem is there really is not enough revenue for 3 guys and for me to draw some sort of salary... I do have some backup funds (personal) that I could live off of untill I can build up enough accounts or pick up more scape work. The newest hire#3 laborer, that I am thinking of bringing on board is my best freind whom worked for me about 7 yrs ago for a season. I think he could be a LONG term worker and possible leader. He recently lost his job, and is in a pinch. And is willing to accept a lower pay than his previous job, due to the different type of field.
However, this season I just hired the #2 laborer who is inexperience in lawn care and am still training, but on landscape work, he is a good (Grunt) and knows basics, Grading, digging, etc. (Use to do cement work, so he can handle heavy work) even though he is not reallly experienced in laying brick or sod, or plantings, etc- but I am teaching him as we are on week #8 now.

My #1 laborer is my (basically) foreman who can run everything and knows how to manage the guys and run all equip( Except a backpack blower) - his back wont handle it. He is a salary guy, and has been with me for 7 yrs.
Things got tight last year and it was just him and I, and I think thats how my body got sooooo beat up. Now I am trying to figure out, how to get out and just manage my business, and not bust my ars everday out in the field.
What would any of you suggest?
Hire my freind and fire the #2 laborer who really is not catching on with lawn maint. so quick anyhow...and try my freind, or not hire my friend and work this season in the field with the my forman and my #2 labor?

I just think this oppurtunity if you will, that my freind is out of work now, and for years, I ve been telling him to come on board and down the road be my foreman. But he has been with another company for 7 years, and now that that company is just about folded, he HAS to get some sort of job.
I am in a pickle... hire or not, pay me or not? Really this is gonna be a tough year as it is... but MY BODY is not in the best shape right now, with a few annoying injuries, on top of some personal/business stress...


LawnSite Member
Concord, NH
My thought is this: let the slow guy go in place of hiring your friend (who has a better track record with you anyway), thus making your existing work more efficient and probably taking at least SOME of the physical stress off of you. Then, once you've been able to build up a little more work, bring on a guy part time as needed to the point that it becomes necessary to keep him full time. I don't see any reason you can't hire someone 20 hours/week if that's all you need him for (heck, there are probably guys who have that bit of extra time that they need work). Then you're still keeping your salary, your buddy (a good worker) has a job, and the clients are better cared for than before and it only took a small change in personnel. Good luck!



LawnSite Member
Triangle, NC
Which wears on you the most? Maintenance or landscaping? Are any of your friends cops or firemen? I use a buddy of mine is a fireman when I need an extra body. It may a little amateurish, but it could help you in the long run.


LawnSite Senior Member
The pros and cons are

New hire
has already plowed for me in the winter
Shows up everyday.
Has a vehicle
His cons are- he's a slow learner
not take initiative- must hold his hand "type"

Friend pros are
he;s somewhat exper. and quick learner
reliable-potential for l/t empl.
Hungry for money.
His cons are...no vehicle, but lives close to me.
no plowing exp.
wont qualify for unemplyment this winter.. so would have to find a job in 6 mos. and he;s a bit out of shape.