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gatewayuser
12-21-2011, 02:49 PM
Hi everyone, I use to be on here but haven't been on in a few years. I started in 2004 and primarily focus on maintenance services, we use to be a full service company. I've been honing the business down to what I enjoy doing. I may expand back to landscaping but I will have someone running that side of things this time. In the last few years landscape services haven't been as strong as they once were but maintenance has had a huge increase. For the 1st time next year we will be subbing out lawn treatments, after the Imprelis issues this has made me feel stronger towards this move. I run two trucks but at one time ran 3 and we see a near 100% customer retention rate. I scaled down to a one man show 3 years ago to be able to get a fresh start, fast growth can really kill a company if you're not ready for it (I wasn't, 300% growth). Now that we think we have it fine tuned I'm going to be shooting for large but controlled growth. I will try to keep everyone updated through the coming year.

Steve
12-22-2011, 11:04 AM
Welcome back!

Can you give us some of your insight as to why too much growth was too much? How did it effect you and what about it made you want to scale back?

after the Imprelis issues this has made me feel stronger towards this move.
What was this about?

gatewayuser
12-27-2011, 01:23 PM
Welcome back!

Can you give us some of your insight as to why too much growth was too much? How did it effect you and what about it made you want to scale back?


What was this about?


Sure, the main problem was that I didn't have any kind of real management in place for the growth. Also I didn't have the man power to complete jobs in a timely manner and started to get behind to the point of really ticking people off. I never had complaints until that point and its not a spot I want to be in again, that's when I decide to downsize.

Imprelis was a herbicide that went on the market this year for use on weeds in turf. Pretty much everyone used the product and it was found that it was killing tree's which caused a recall by DuPont and the EPA. I personally know of a landscaper that had over $1,000,000 in trees killed or damaged by Imprelis. Luckily DuPont is being pretty fair about it.

mark123
12-27-2011, 02:27 PM
... Imprelis was a herbicide that went on the market this year for use on weeds in turf. Pretty much everyone used the product and it was found that it was killing tree's which caused a recall by DuPont and the EPA. ...

I used it this past year and it did a fantastic job. No trees killed. I really hated that they recalled it. I had used all my stock before they asked for it back though so I didn't have to go through all that.

The worst part is that it had the lowest toxicity toward mammals but since it hurt one single species of tree they took it off the market. Trees are more important than humans I suppose.

Steve
12-27-2011, 03:40 PM
Sure, the main problem was that I didn't have any kind of real management in place for the growth. Also I didn't have the man power to complete jobs in a timely manner and started to get behind to the point of really ticking people off. I never had complaints until that point and its not a spot I want to be in again, that's when I decide to downsize.

Are there warning signs newer lawn care business owners should keep an eye out for to prevent this from happening? Or is this something that you just can't see until everything blows up?

gatewayuser
12-27-2011, 08:09 PM
Are there warning signs newer lawn care business owners should keep an eye out for to prevent this from happening? Or is this something that you just can't see until everything blows up?



The two biggest are when things are just not getting done in a timely fashion and when you start having massive amounts of stress in your life, both should be a warning sign.

gatewayuser
12-27-2011, 08:11 PM
I used it this past year and it did a fantastic job. No trees killed. I really hated that they recalled it. I had used all my stock before they asked for it back though so I didn't have to go through all that.

The worst part is that it had the lowest toxicity toward mammals but since it hurt one single species of tree they took it off the market. Trees are more important than humans I suppose.


I know what you're saying, I loved the product too and had no issues. Problem is they were a common species that a lot of customers have (had).

Steve
12-28-2011, 01:03 PM
Now that we think we have it fine tuned I'm going to be shooting for large but controlled growth.

We have seen quite a few lawn care business owners on here scale back to being a one man show. What is your view on how to implement more controlled growth?