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  • Employee Problem

    During the winter I hired 7 people, all paid $10.00/hr to do snow removal.

    We used a variety of shovels and two snow blowers, alone I could take on a driveway + walkway in 40 minutes - 1 hr in the worst case scenario (business owner power I guess?)

    My workers were lazy as heck, I fired 4 of them the first 2 weeks, I was losing money.

    So eventually I decided to take on all the driveways/walkways myself and have my other 3 guys pass out flyers for snow removal, one of them would drive the route as 2 hopped out & passed flyers door to door.

    So what happens? I bump into the driver I had hired, & he tells me that I owe him money.

    FACT: he worked 4 hours passing out flyers, he received payment the first 2 hours of work with a $15.00 bonus, & the next 2 hours weren't because he went on vacation before I could pay him. ($20.00)

    It is fair that I pay him, I was generous enough to say I'd pay him 4 hours work instead of 2 hours, and then he says "you owe me a lot more than $40.00"

    I told him to contact me tonight (he didn't) so I now have time to collect suggestions from all of you.

    More info:
    The first night was a test night to see if he's any good, I sent him out with another guy, gave them 100 flyers & 2 hours later he shows up saying he's going to call it a night. .... How many flyers did they hand out? 25 flyers in 2 effing hours. I fired the guy who was riding shotgun (he always showed up late), but unfortunately I couldn't fire him aka the driver at the time. I never called him to come back to work after.



    So what do I do? I owe him $20.00, I was kind to offer $40.00 (just incase I decided to use him again I wanted to be on good terms, stupid of me)

    Then he asks for MORE money, should I whack him over the head or what?

  • #2
    What is he claiming you owe him the money for? Was there more work he did that he felt he was not paid for?
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    • #3
      What is he claiming you owe him the money for? Was there more work he did that he felt he was not paid for?
      Well he shoveled some snow with the crew, shoveling no matter how you put it sucks! I mentioned to him at the beginning that he will be paid $10.00/hr & he accepted. I paid him for that, so I guess he feels it was unfair. The pay per hour is better than most jobs, but the job itself is labor & tough, but for a few hours a day he shouldn't complain because of the flexibility with school. No one else that has worked for me has had a problem with the pay or the work.

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      • #4
        Do you somehow track your employee hours, be it with a time clock or a log book? If so, I'd definitely show him his records and have him explain to you why he should be getting paid more if his hours are clearly logged.

        For those of you who don't record hours, I'd highly recommend it. There are some great applications out there that let your employees punch in/out right on your office computer (free and otherwise). Check 'em out.

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        • #5
          You owe him for the hours he worked only. Regardless of how crappy the labor was, the time he worked was the time he worked. Thats all you owe him for.
          Northern California

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          • #6
            I ran into the same problem. I paid an employee a whole days wages to pass out fliers but after some research found out he pretty much put them in the trash and went home and didn't hand out one single flier. Now according to the law I could have filed a complaint with the police but rather decided to not call him back to work. What I would honestly do it make up a fake legal letterhead and send it to him claiming to be the law office representing "cheese2009 lawn care" or what ever the name is. Tell him that you were informed there is an effort to file a claim or complaint on the company and you need to gather information before court proceedings. At the end of the letter put something like.

            Police report # 1234565789
            D.A. File 4569

            I garon damn tee you will never hear from him again.
            White Company

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            • #7
              What is your view on the best way to handle it for new business owners? If you could do this over again, how would you handle it differently?
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              • #8
                I ran into the same problem. I paid an employee a whole days wages to pass out fliers but after some research found out he pretty much put them in the trash and went home and didn't hand out one single flier. Now according to the law I could have filed a complaint with the police but rather decided to not call him back to work. What I would honestly do it make up a fake legal letterhead and send it to him claiming to be the law office representing "cheese2009 lawn care" or what ever the name is. Tell him that you were informed there is an effort to file a claim or complaint on the company and you need to gather information before court proceedings. At the end of the letter put something like.

                Police report # 1234565789
                D.A. File 4569

                I garon damn tee you will never hear from him again.
                That is fraud, impersonating law enforcement and a host of other criminal charges, then Breeze would be in hot water
                Andy
                Halifax, Nova Scotia

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                • #9
                  That is fraud, impersonating law enforcement and a host of other criminal charges, then Breeze would be in hot water
                  ya I was kinda of the same opinion.
                  Colton
                  Mountain View Greenskeeper proudly offering yard care in the East Valley of Arizona.

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                  • #10
                    In the past when I wanted to hand out flyers, I always made sure that I was the driver and had two people doing the deliveries. That way there was no way they could just toss them in the trash cause I was right there with them. Or have someone that you highly trust do the driving for you if you don't have the time. Many times, I would choose to do them myself to area's that have rural tubes out at the street for newspaper deliveries.
                    http://www.lunchesruslawncare.com

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                    • #11
                      In the past when I wanted to hand out flyers, I always made sure that I was the driver and had two people doing the deliveries
                      When you did this in the past, what kind of response rate did you get? Do you still distribute flyers like this or have you moved on to other more effect marketing methods?
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                      • #12
                        The response rate is around 1-2%. I feel that getting my business on Google maps was the smartest thing I did this year. Key words in my website make all the difference in the world. Google maps is even above the search engine results and is more golden than search engine placement.
                        http://www.lunchesruslawncare.com

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                        • #13
                          Do you feel you cut back on distributing flyers because of the success of google maps?

                          It's amazing how experimenting with a number of different methods can really help one that works in your area.

                          What works in your area may or may not work in other areas, but it's good to know the different kind of methods out there in order to have things to test.
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                          • #14
                            I still distribute flyer's. Based on the fact that I always tried to include a coupon on them for the most part with not getting any coupons back, I would say that flyer's are only good to put the name of your business in the minds of potential customers. Maybe some just don't want to use the coupons. We tripled business this year. I did:
                            • Google Maps (Excellent)
                            • Google Adwords (Put $100 on account in April 2010, still have $93 available Oct 2010, so not the effect I thought I would get)
                            • Flyer's (blanket coverage, plus on streets we already service once a month, will do this again for fall cleanup advertising)
                            • Free Classifieds
                            • Craigslist & Backpage (I put an HTML ad by hosting it on an image hosting site)
                            I use the following HTML code to do that

                            <img src="insert image address here">

                            It's important to note that you cannot make the picture a clickable link to your website. You can only include a link to your site as a text link.

                            Various yellow book sites
                            1. Yellowbooks.com, magicyellow.com etc


                            Free listings on other business sites
                            1. Merchant circle
                            2. ultimate guide
                            3. search sight
                            4. super pages
                            5. local search
                            6. insider pages
                            7. metrowny
                            8. topix
                            9. local.com etc

                            The more of these you find the better.

                            I am already preparing for next year. Instead of flyer's all the time, I am going to go with post cards and distribute them like I would a flyer. Post cards last longer than a piece of paper and more likely to be kept. They will be more targeted instead of general advertisement. For example, In spring I want to push spring cleanups, mulch installations & weekly mowing, during the summer months I may advertise for hedge trimming, driveway edging, weed whacking, etc.

                            The biggest thing I do will be just before Christmas, I plan to get desk calendars and am making referral cards to give to my customers. This is big I feel to grow more for next year. The calender will have our logo on them so it will always be in front of them all year long.
                            Last edited by jymie; 10-01-2010, 06:30 AM.
                            http://www.lunchesruslawncare.com

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                            • #15
                              As a side note, if you are on a site which allows clickable pictures use the following code to do that:

                              <a href="insert your website address here"><img src="insert image address here">
                              </a>

                              Good luck!
                              http://www.lunchesruslawncare.com

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