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h_soape
05-25-2011, 05:31 PM
Hi guys,

I am new to this forum, been browsing for a couple of months. This is a great resource. A little Back ground on me I am in the Houston area. I worked for a large insurance company for 3 years and owned my own agency for a year. I had a lawn care company for 3 years when I was in school. I had been toying with the idea of going back into lawn and landscaping since I left the insurance business. Finally have decided the start pursing it.

Here is where I am at currently- I have a push mower, weedeater, and electric blower (will need to probably get a gas powered blower). I have a truck capable of pulling whatever I need and my old mowing trailer that may be brought back into service when i get ready for a bigger mower.

I have came up with an idea for a name and wanted to get some feedback on it "Premier GreenScape" I will probably go get a DBA in the next day or two.

I have seen many yards in my area that are in need of some attention and some of those are for sale, so I plan to go after those first the cheap way, pound the pavement and phone.

I appreciate the info you have exchanged on here before and any feedback I may receive in the future

Sprinkler Buddy
05-25-2011, 05:56 PM
Welcome, I like the name, "Premier GreenScape". You sure you want to exchange the AC for the Heat?:D What did you go to school for? I also got a degree and still decided to do lawn care as well.

h_soape
05-25-2011, 05:59 PM
Degree in Animal Science

right now the A/C is me sitting on my butt, I am already out of the insurance business

Sprinkler Buddy
05-25-2011, 07:16 PM
Animal Science, Interesting Degree, What were you planning on doing with that? Mine was Exercise and Sports Science, thought I wanted to be a PE Teacher until I did my end-term.lol Figured I better find another line of work before I hurt one of those smart buts.lol

If your not too old, how about the Military. I was in the USMC, one of the best choices I ever made. Yut!! :D

h_soape
05-25-2011, 09:23 PM
I like Cattle, grew up around them. Not whip and ride cowboy style but the business side of understanding cattle and the markets. I still do some business with them. Didn't really know if i would use my degree for a living, just wanted a degree. It didn't slow me down in the insurance business and I actually took 1 turf class working on my degree.

Steve
05-26-2011, 07:32 AM
Welcome to our forum!

I like your name and think that will serve you well.

When you were in the insurance business, did you sell insurance? If so, will you be able to bring those skills to this business?

What lessons do you feel stood out from your experience in the insurance business?

h_soape
05-26-2011, 09:21 AM
Yes, I was selling insurance. Sales experience and business management are the two big areas of experience I think will help me.

My philosophy, Sell on quality and value. Don't compete with the area competition, that doesn't mean bad mouth them never bad mouth the competition. But let the prospect know what makes you different, what you will do that nobody else will. IF you qualify you value, you can tell people, "You can spend less if you look hard enough for less service, but you will pay for at some point. Probably in frustration and maybe in anger, you will pay for it."

Business wise- I know I could grow this business in a hurry but it would mean going in debt to do. I have decided to stay debt free or minimal debt level while building this business. I guess if I get a large commercial account that requires a bigger mower I would go into debt to get it, if the contract was structured right. I learned a lot about marketing, one of my former team members was really good with craigslist, google local, etc. I learned alot from her, and may contract her to handle that for me.

Big lesson- Say NO, I had clients in the insurance business that drove me crazy and I knew they were going to be trouble before I brought them in. Looking back I could have added many new clients in the same time that wasted baby-sitting these clients. Bad Clients are Bad Business, One Bad client will ruin your day.

I am sure other things will come up once I am more into this.

Steve
05-27-2011, 04:48 AM
My philosophy, Sell on quality and value. Don't compete with the area competition, that doesn't mean bad mouth them never bad mouth the competition. But let the prospect know what makes you different, what you will do that nobody else will.

Very interesting. How do you feel this could be applied to lawn care? What should you be pointing out that will make you different and mean enough to the client that they would go with you over others?

Big lesson- Say NO, I had clients in the insurance business that drove me crazy and I knew they were going to be trouble before I brought them in.

What kinds of warning signs should we all be on the look out for? Are there questions you can ask to help investigate this or is this more of studying the customer's personality and finding what their requirements are?