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Why all the hostility?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Cosmic Hippo, Mar 3, 2009.

  1. Cosmic Hippo

    Cosmic Hippo LawnSite Member
    Messages: 26

    I've been watching this site for a long while now and I truly believe it is as good a business resource as there is on the entire world wide web, for any industry.

    I've read nearly every thread on this site posted in the last several months. And my enthusiasm for what I learn from so many good and generous business men and women is sometimes tempered by frustration at the prevalence of the so many utterly negative posts this site seems to also generate. I'm not talking about the constuctive criticism or cautionary tales, which are invaluable. I'm talking about the nearly belligerent posts that seem to have no purpose other than discouragment

    Before I rant to much, I certainly would like to reiterate my thanks to all of the good people here who are kind enough to share their expertise, ideas, and encouragement to us "newbies." There is no reason for you to do that except that you are good people who want others to succeed as you have. And all of us who are berated by so many here for not spending 20 years as some kind of a weedeater apprentice for a bonifide LCO before daring to venture out there ourselves, we are very thankful for what you do here. I'm sure more than most of you realize.

    But, I hope you will permit me a small rant...

    Those of you who say time and again something like, "keep your job, don't get into the biz", that it's terrible for this reason or that... why do you even do this kind of work??? Really? Perhaps you can extend some of us the benifit of the doubt that we are sufficiently introspective to determine whether we want to try this or not. I never see the question, "should I try this business?" But I often see the questions, "how can I make this work? How can I get started?" Why are there so many responses that say in varying ways "don't even try", that we are not ready, that we don't have what it takes, that we don't know what it takes, that it sucks to work in the heat and we'll all quit by June, that we're just idiots who have been laid off from "regular" jobs and think we can magically ride our way to paradise on a $100 used snapper, etc?

    Another question: why all the defensiveness about the trade? Is there some sort of insecurity about the legitimacy of the profession? From some the overzealous comments, I surmise that there is. I think we all realize that there is a wealth of knowledge to be gained in this field. And I think we all know that most anyone can mow a lawn. The preceding two statements are not mutually exclusive. I can mow a lawn. And some people, many who visit this site, can make it into an art. My dad was a golf course superintendent for a major course, and a bit of a botany afficianado. From him I have been astonished to learn how much there is to know about groing grass and about managing it. Does it take that level of expertise to keep a yard nice? No. Do you need it to begin a small business? No. Does that knowledge have value? Yes! Will it help one manage turf better? Will it help create a better business? Absolutely! In short, we novices all know how little we know and how much we have to learn (that's why we come here). You don't have to beat us over the head with it when we ask a question that you deem elementary.

    And, really...sorry, but why is it that the most vehiment criticisms come barely legible? I mean, typos and misspellings are common to all of us, but you could at least use complete sentences when criticizing us. We're all in a hurry, but a period at the end of a sentence or two should not be hard to manage, especially when you are lecturing us about our professionalism or our ability succeed in the business world.

    Anyway, after my ranting I understand the irony and perhaps hypocrisy of the following request, but...Perhaps we can tone down the hosility just a bit. And please don't tell me that I am going to be eaten alive "out there" if I can't stand the criticism here. I can stand it just fine. I just have a response to offer it.

    I am sure this post will make me unpopular and I do regret that part of it. To those of you who have responded constructively to my many questions, I thank you again. And, as always, good luck to all of you this coming season!

    The Hippo rests.
  2. supercuts

    supercuts LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,808

    yes i agree, but if your asking a question and looking for us to spend our time helping, make a good specific question and tell us alittle about yourself. what do you have for equipment?, experience?, how old you are?, what state your in?, etc. not the "what mower should i buy?" questions. well how big are the lawns? do you any mower now? how much money are you looking to spend? are you planning to do this for a long time? simple info that would help us give good advice. after coming on here for a while and trying to help is annoying to see so many horrible question wasting my time, and miscatorgized threads.

    and i think the site should require us to list our age, years of service, and part or full time to help us understand who we are talking to. i know some will lie but most wont. it will help us all know how we are speaking with. if you agree at it to yoru signature like mine. not how many shovels, wheelbarrels, and trimmers you have
  3. LKNBigFish

    LKNBigFish LawnSite Member
    from NC
    Messages: 222

    i also think alot of the hostile/defensive posts are the result of someone either asking a vague question and getting broad responses or more often asking a question then not getting the response they wanted/were expecting.
  4. Coastal Lawn Maintenance

    Coastal Lawn Maintenance LawnSite Senior Member
    from VA
    Messages: 485

    i do agree with the matter. People jump down each other throat to quickly on some matters. i do have to agree when u see a post that im 16 have all this equipment and have x amount of yards that this is hard to believe. Now some people at this age could have it ,but we dont have anything to go on but what they say. i do see where all u come from with people who lie on this site. i do agree with the vague questions are what get people ranting off. u can agree or disagree i just spoke my 2 cent on this matter
  5. Toxey

    Toxey LawnSite Member
    Messages: 83

    Thanks for this thread. It does not matter what question is asked the same people have the same smarta$$ response. I can name a few on here that are the smartest people in the world and should be worth millions. I love this site but trying to bash everyone that post something about starting a business is crazy.

    CLARK LAWN LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,526

    i dont think anybody starts out to bash some one. i happens when they dont get the response they want then they try to argue with people that know what they are talking about that they are wrong. another thing is when people come right out and say im not going to pay taxes, have insurance and all the rest it gets alot of people pissed because it makes us all look bad.
    when someone comes on here and says i have no expierence but im going to start a biz and they are told to go work for someone first to learn the ropes they get offended because hey anyone can cut grass, how hard can it be.
  7. Coastal Lawn Maintenance

    Coastal Lawn Maintenance LawnSite Senior Member
    from VA
    Messages: 485

    i understand where u are coming from that how i started was working 2 years with a company. and your right they don't come out and immediately bash some one until that person says something to provoke it but there is alot on this site
  8. BigDigger

    BigDigger LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 314

    Yeah I have seen the throat jumping here.

    In my humble opinion, this is not rocket science, There is no reason to make it complicated, You need to work hard, have a solid business base, whether from experience or from establishing one with this business, and you need to go out there and do the best damn job you can for whatever you charge.


    I find the same people who seem to be negative on this forum are the ones who treat beginners like crap, and then talk about how important customer service is. It all starts here, it's how you treat anyone you come into contact with. This person you so despise could just as easily be a customer, would you so casually treat them like this?

    These people have a choice to honestly see them selves as the person who should present themselves as a roadblock to anyone looking to get into the business. Or like many others do in the (and get this folks) STARTING A LAWN CARE AND LANDSCAPING BUSINESS FORUM, offer helpful and constructive input and advice.

    So while I agree there is certainly many keys to success in this business, and much is required of someone who would accomplish much, it should be clear that this is an information forum and except for a few on here I am certain that not all of us have a Yale Degree. Stop acting like your running a multinational and instead impart some of this good wisdom you have those who would seek it.

    As a couple of the previous posters stated however, if someone new comes on here and beaks off and generally makes trouble, by all means handle it, however let's not consider the statement *I am new to this business and want to start one up* as a sign of beaking off ;)

    Last edited: Mar 3, 2009
  9. DynaMow

    DynaMow LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 570


    Are you serious hostility? You have no idea what you are talking about. If you don't like it get out. Hostility? Maybe you need to get into a maid service business and then you can where a skirt! Hostility? We are the friendliest people on the internet. I can mow way better then you anyday!

    Of course I hope you all know I am just playing.
  10. Toxey

    Toxey LawnSite Member
    Messages: 83

    Well said BigDigger. We need more people like this on this forum.

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