PDA

View Full Version : Beginner Mistakes: Executive Mowing


Steve
01-12-2007, 08:36 AM
Beginner Mistakes from our friend Jim of promower.net (http://www.promower.net) http://www.gophergraphics.com/images/jim-small.jpg

Here are some things beginners often get wrong:

Executive Mowing: This is that wonderful scheme where you send out the troops to do the grunt work while you sit home by the pool. This one belongs in your “Maybe someday” file. For beginners it’s usually fatal.

gatewayuser
01-17-2007, 05:00 PM
Been there done that and it hurt big time! I learn from my mistakes.

Steve
01-18-2007, 10:10 AM
What was your experience on this?

skyjack_1
01-18-2007, 11:08 AM
No way. Too scary for me. I was the man, the one pushing the mower. After 12 years and still being in school, almost there. Got H2B coming in April. Way excited, and nervous. http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/newbie.gif

Steve
01-18-2007, 11:15 AM
Quote[/b] ]No way. Too scary for me. I was the man, the one pushing the mower. After 12 years and still being in school, almost there. Got H2B coming in April. Way excited, and nervous.

Welcome Skyjack_1,

How will this effect your business and upcoming season?

gatewayuser
01-18-2007, 09:38 PM
My experience was that I #1 did not plan right, #2 my employees did not have a hand book that laid down the rules of what I expected. #3 The routing was not routed well enough which hurt me in labor and fuel costs. #4 Proper training was not given. So it about killed my business and for the 1st time I had complaints and jobs were not getting completed in the proper amount of time. Luckily I realized what was going on and corrected the problems fast enough that I did not lose a single client.

Steve
01-19-2007, 01:26 AM
Do you now have crews that go out and do the work and are they achieving different results?

What would you suggest to the newer lco that is attempting to do this?

gatewayuser
01-19-2007, 10:53 AM
I will be sending out one crew by themselves this year and one with me aboard. I am changing the customers base and am not sure how many crews I will have this year. Some customers will be dropped and many will be gained.
I may need to run 2-4 but for sure 2. 1 landscape maintenance crew and 1 mowing but I may need to add 1 more mowing and 1 treatment truck.
And they will be awesome!
I would suggest not being in a hurry because it WILL harm your business. Also have your bidding perfect before hiring and realize that you should not bid at how fast you can get the job done bid it how fast your employees can accomplish the task. Slow growth is good growth but fast can be too but you need to plan ahead don't just take it as it comes thats fatal!

Steve
01-19-2007, 12:09 PM
What suggestions would you have to manage such crews when you are not on site. How do you make sure the job is getting done to the level you require? Do you use any motivational strategies to make sure they hit a certain quality level?

gatewayuser
01-19-2007, 12:47 PM
The key is hiring people you really trust if there is any red flags or bad feelings then don't hire the person. The other key is hire people that have education in the proper way of doing the job. The only downside with this is they might be set in certain ways and you also need to have this kind of employee sign a non compete agreement. You should really have all employees sign this kind of agreement.
I have promised lunch out on smaller jobs and dinner to Outback if they can complete larger jobs in a certain amount of time and done right. Well last year I had to buy a ton of lunches and a few dinners so it worked well. Also I may give bonuses to employees to help egg them on. I did hire an employee last year who needed no motivational help he did a great job worked hard and was just a all around great worker. Needless to say he is coming back with a higher pay.
Another thing I did was I walked around with the customer and employees and asked if there was anything that they would liked changed. I did that so the employees could better themselves by seeing what the customers expect not just what I expect from them.

skyjack_1
01-23-2007, 10:53 PM
Quote[/b] (Team Gopher @ Jan. 18 2007,11:15)]Quote[/b] ]No way. Too scary for me. I was the man, the one pushing the mower. After 12 years and still being in school, almost there. Got H2B coming in April. Way excited, and nervous.

Welcome Skyjack_1,

How will this effect your business and upcoming season?
Hopefully it will be good. This is the first time for such a drastic measure in hiring people. Granbury and surrounding areas are terrible for good employees. Nobody wants to work anymore. Changing some strategies.

Trying to learn some spanish. Buying some good books to help. Obtaining some new responsibilities.

I'm just now starting to do contracts. Got a really nice one made up. Spent a lot of time on this thing. That is what got me started on these forums. Now just making up contracted services to sell. Got it done, and now just got to sell, sell, sell. Have clients already, and hope they have no problem making the transition. Doing only bout 30-40% to start off with.

Can anybody tell me of some mistakes made with contracts? http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wheelgator2.gif

tiedeman
01-24-2007, 09:41 AM
1. Make the contract not only friendly for you, but also for the customer.

2. Make sure to spell out your late payment policy.

3. Also include in there exactly what is including with that particular service. I remember about 5 years ago I had one customer think that trimming the shrubs was included with the lawn maintenance price.

4. Spell out the termination process and any cancellation fees if any

5. Don't forget to put down what you are responsible for and what you are not responsible for.

6. Don't have the contract two complicated. How many customers do you think that you will sign up with a three page contract? Very few probably. Try to make it simple stupid. I used to have two page contracts, but now I have them down to just one page.

skyjack_1
01-31-2007, 03:18 PM
This was very helpful. Thanks. http://www.gophergraphics.com/forum/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/yourock.gif