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Thread: Stand Strong
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Old 06-06-2009, 11:38 PM
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Steve
 
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Default Stand Strong

Today was going to be a business free day. The boss wanted me to work on our yard (her flower gardens to be exact). We went to Lowe's for her flowers. I wore my T-Shirt with company info on it and drove my Ford Explorer (Company signs on it) over her objection.

While there, I had 5 people ask for information. I gave them each my magnetic business card and answered their questions. My wife was glad to get her flowers but a little angry at my making appointments (I didn't make any for today so I wouldn't have to sleep with the dog)!

When we got back home, a realtor was showing the foreclosed home to my right. I had tried to get her business earlier this year and she wasn't interested. The lawn, about 1.75 acres hadn't been mosed since the first week in April. The grass was at least knee high. When her clients left she came over to talk to me. Wanted the property taken care of.

I told her that it would take at least 3 runs to mow the lawn and gave her a quote of $200.00. for a one time mowing. She told me that was ridiculous, she could get someone to do for half that price. I said that $200.00 was my price and that I would require half down and the balance upon completion and walked away.

Two other companies came to measure the lot while I was working on my lawn. At 6:00 she called me back and my price wasn't out of line and could I do it tomorrow morning because she was showing it again in the afternoon. I said I would need the $100.00 deposit first. At about 7:00 she was knocking on my door with$100.00 cash and wanted quotes for 6 other properties.

The point I'm trying to make is that I didn't lower my price (although I considered it). I will do it myself and I want $50.00 per hour. I have no travel time and I am sure I can do it in under 4 hours but I wanted to establish my price.

She then told me that she couldn't do business with anyone who didn't have liability insurance and that none of the other people she called had it and she had to get it done by her husband and son and they didn't have the proper equipment (only a residential push mower).

Now she wants me to do 5 properties at my one time mowing price and then mow every 2 weeks under contract. I imagine all are in the same condition as this one and would not give her a price without seeing them. I bought a new mower yesterday. A
Poulan Pro Lawn Tractor, 19.5 Hp. I went with this because of price and that mowing is only about 10% of my business. I was looking at the various stand up mowers but decided to go with price. When people want mowing again I will get the improved mower and have the Poulon for my home mower.

The point is, don't cheapen your service costs. Provide them with the service they need at the price you need to grow. Remember, you are in business 24/7/365 and you want to stay in business.

Steve
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