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CHEESE2009
06-23-2009, 10:01 AM
Ok, so I have taken on quite a few jobs & the lack of time I have is making me look bad. Lol.


I dropped my assistant off at the weeding job & mowed my lawns.

I picked my assistant up & went to a house that needed a hedge trimmed ON TIME because they were going to take professional family photos on their yard. I got it done, thank god.

So I trimmed & mowed the house that has had me waiting for them to call me back to work because they needed to put grass seed down... It was a big job.

Then on that same day one of my other customers needs her hedges trimmed & has been on my @ss for 2 weeks. So I told her I'd do it today.

The problem, I have a few more lawns to mow today, an estimate to give, hedges to trim, & a garden that needs to be weeded & finished today as promised, but it's no where near finished.

All these customers expect me to serve them today first priority, but I'm screwed on time & not sure what to do.

Should I do, I have my assistant today.

a) Trim hedges with my assistant

b) Weed the garden with my assistant (I don't think I'll have time to trim then)

c) Drop my assistant off to weed, trim the hedges alone, give the new customer an estimate, meet up with my assistant & finish the garden off. Do my lawn mowing tomorrow?

The hedges & weeding NEED to be done today. Yesterday I picked up my assistant & 4 hours she had 5 bags full of weeds, great, but the garden looked horrible still... It's making me nervous!

If I don't get the hedges done, I'm worried this customer will be on my bad side. I gave her an estimate a week ago, & this week the hedges tripled in size!!! So now it's a big job as well....

The space in my truck is limited, I'll be running around a lot picking up & dumping weeding job & hedge trimming job crap... I just don't know where to start... It's already 11AM & I got a few houses mowed...

StartALawnCareBusiness
06-23-2009, 12:02 PM
Breeze:

When back-logged, my strategy has always been to service the greatest number customers as possible as quickly as possible. This normally means doing the easiest and quickest jobs first.

I would rather have 1 ticked off customer with a big job left to do than 10 customers with small jobs waiting for me. Explaining why you're late to 1 customer is easier than explaining the same thing to 10 customers over and over.

Once caught up dedicate serious time to that one remaining customer.

CHEESE2009
06-23-2009, 04:57 PM
I'm so happy the day is over!

I started off by giving an estimate for a new customer. Big yard, easy going people.

I dropped my Garden Weeder off. Now this is where my day was ruined. I didn't care about the weeds, or the job. It's the damn city workers who have been harassing my worker.

I asked my worker if she'd rather skip today so she doesn't have to deal with them bugging her, that I'd call the guy who hired me & he'll surely understand. Instead she said she'd rather stay!

I rang the doorbell to talk to the home owners assistant (this customer is busy enough to have an assistant) & explained that she was being teased.

I mean, the city workers were obviously lying down taking a 2 day break on the friggen lawn where she had to work.

The customers assistant said she'd take care of my worker, to just ring the bell if anything. She even said she'd tell them off, or sit out with my worker.

ANYWAY, I'm busy... I had to right away go do my hedge trimming job alone which took awhile, it was a disaster. First off, my gas hedge trimmer was stolen so I was borrowing a pathetic battery one. I cut down a tad of the hedge & whaty'da know, this thing jams constantly & BOOM it decides to stop working.

Now being myself, I got creative. I said a bunch of curse words while I got my whippersnipper out & started to hedge trim with it... MAN what a nice job!!!! I can't believe it worked better than a stupid battery trimmer!


So I'm done hedge trimming, did a cleanup & now it was time to mow some lawns. I bang out a few & meet up with my Garden Weeder.

I had to install weed block in a small garden in the backyard, BOOM done.

I head out to the front yard & see my worker picking weeds in an area she doesn't have to, being wasteful of our time.

This is where I got p'd off!

I explained to her, "Your good at weeding, you make me proud. Now imagine if you tackled a garden with some strategy. Don't forget to search around bushes & rocks, under & in between everything!"

She said, "Don't worry, I will impress you!"

.....

So now back to reality. I come out to the front, & see her doing useless work. I take one look around & start to lose my head...

Scott: What the he*l did I say? You don't listen do you? What did I tell you?

Worker: I thought you'd be happy, I worked hard!

Scott: Not hard enough, look, WEEDS, right there, WEEDS. The bushes have weeds poking up & you couldn't see them? You couldn't rip out the dead flowers & plants? Just what I said earlier, you missed every weed around the objects! ... WE WILL BE BACK TOMORROW!

She freaked out & started to weed them out so she didn't have to come back tomorrow, & I grabbed the tools & said;

"YOU ARE FINISHED, your too damn tired to take this seriously right now, so 8am tomorrow morning we'll be working together to make sure it gets done right. If you wanted to work like a city worker, then you should have told me first hand."


_____

So also being myself. I unloaded my equipment & was going to drive her home. But she ran off instead.

I called her & explained that it was a long day, that everything was rushed & I just wanted at least one thing taken care of. I said she did an excellent job, better than I could do, that she's perfect at what she does. Then I made her laugh by saying, I'm a cranky ****ole, I know & you know it, don't take what I say too personally. You are more efficient & hard working than everyone I've ever met! I'm sorry I was angry, it was my own fault that I blew up. I shouldn't expect you to do so much.

I really want her to be a leader, so I don't have to inspect her work every time she says she's done. I want to trust her with these jobs, they are being booked like crazy now & I need her to be the best 100% every second she's working!

I was a really big jerk today knowing she could fill 6 bags of weeds in a few hours which was a few months earlier.

Today she filled up one bag in 5 hours. I kinda expected more, only because I saw how well she did the first time. It was a dreadfully hot day today, & I didn't stop for a second. Last time I brought some food over to her & we took a break. I even helped her out. I guess she was starving, all she had was 2 bottles of water all day out in the hot sun.

THOUGH, she makes $12.00/hour

.........

How do you deal with your workers when it's just ONE OF THOSE DAYS?!

Give me a scenario of what you've been through.

lol

Steve
06-23-2009, 08:40 PM
The thing I wonder in this situation with your employee is, ultimately why was there a problem? Do you feel the employee just didn't listen to what you were saying or you didn't tell them enough information in order for them to achieve the goal to your specifications?

How can this be resolved so it doesn't happen again in the future?

CHEESE2009
06-24-2009, 01:37 AM
The thing I wonder in this situation with your employee is, ultimately why was there a problem? Do you feel the employee just didn't listen to what you were saying or you didn't tell them enough information in order for them to achieve the goal to your specifications?

How can this be resolved so it doesn't happen again in the future?

Well if I'm working on a garden with my helper, I'll make a fair split in pay.

Though I have trusted her to take on jobs & lately I haven't been able to get to any of them for awhile & she's completed a few great jobs after I trained her.

I have started something new & not too profitable, but it gives my company a good name.

I basically give my employee 80% of the profit Breeze makes for each garden. This way I don't have to deal with their c*ap & don't have to worry about them quitting. It gives them something to look forward too, unlike an employee being paid peanuts who will sit around in the dirt playing cell phone games.

I'm very generous, but that's why I get so strict. If they stay longer than the price I asked for the job, I have to pay her $12.00/hr... sofar it hasn't gotten to that, she's actually really good. I just didn't want her to get comfortable with slowing down, I love it when she works like a champ. I have 4 more gardens booked & she has to understand that I've accepted to do them, because I can rely on her to be efficient & hard working.

The total amount for all the gardens are

$115
$75
$50
$180

And that's good money, and it's all hers pretty much. I just rather tell the customers I can't do it, then to spoil my company name. I'm throwing away money to create a name, not to let it blow away.

I don't lose anything really, I profit small, but on a good day it's like she's her own company & I'm making a few bucks. Though I am the one who finds the jobs. I just need her to be a leader. I'll eventually tweak the percent if I find her a partner, more profit for the company, & they will be paid regularly.

This is just a simple way to get known, and so far it's working well besides today which was pretty much myself under stress.

Steve
06-24-2009, 04:13 PM
That is very interesting. Keep us posted on how all this works!