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Quality vs. Quantity


Lawn Maintenance / Lawn Renovation

A great way to talk about all things lawn care related. Grass, turf, shrubs, trees, aeration, fertilization, reseeding, hydro-seeding, mowing, grub control, chemicals and pesticides. Ask questions, give answers. Grow!
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Old 07-03-2006, 05:37 PM
tiedeman
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I was wondering as how much of you sacrifice quality for quantity? I know that we have all done in the past and are perhaps still doing it, but why do we do it?

Why not have a small number of customers of where you charge top dollar and provide top quality service, compared to have large number of customers with moderate quality?
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Old 07-03-2006, 06:43 PM
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This is an interesting question. When you first start out, don't we all want as many customers as possible? Don't we shoot for the highest amount so when friends, family members or other lcos ask, we can say we have x amount of customers? It's like a way to show how big you are.

Then over time, some business owners decide they want to find a niche. Where a smaller group of customers would be willing to pay more for the same service. Less customers = less potential headaches.

It makes you wonder how much headache we put up with due to our ego.
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Old 07-03-2006, 07:35 PM
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Being that I had prior experience with the green industry and always run numbers prior to doing things, I've always said I'd rather have 30 customers at $40 a pop instead of 60 customers at 20 a pop. But when your starting you also have to take on almost anything that comes your way I think.

My preference I'd rather have the large lots, thats why I'm heading that way next year. Your there longer so theres less fuel costs, your not running around as much which is less stress in it self (I hate driving!), larger places are normally not as picky as a small residential home too. I've found that with the larger places, if I give it a good clean look the people are just thrilled, but on these smaller homes where people can see every little thing they want it to be 150% every time and will still nit pick.
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Old 07-04-2006, 04:40 PM
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I have always been towards the smaller quantity. It would be great in my opinion to only have about 5 large accounts.
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Old 07-05-2006, 02:12 PM
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This is very interesting that you are both looking to go in this direction! I think it's going to give you more of what you want.
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Old 07-05-2006, 02:38 PM
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I know that people always talk about going huge and getting big. Yes, that is great. I was kind of there once, I was in the medium range, and it was a total headache. I had approx 3 full time employees, and 2 part time employees. It was hard to try to keep up with the quality of the work, when there were so many jobs to do and get done. I constantly had call backs over and over gain. It was a nightmare!

Since I went back to only working solo, the only call backs I get are for pesticide applications. Basically questioning about why a certain weed wasn't taken care of. Offer than that, I have not had a single call back in regards to lawn maintenance at all. I am actually really proud of that.

Sure I probably will not remain small forever or I my go into the contractor area where all i do is draw up the estimates and contracts, and then sub-contract out the work. But at least now I understanding the quality side a lot more than before. I was just too rushed before to actually stop and look over the property and figure out how could I actually make this property look better.

Trust me, it's very hard to concentrate on 100% quality. There are so many times that I want to skip an area of trimming, or not blow off a side of a fence area where grass hit, or not bag a lawn because I know that I can get away with it....it's very hard.
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Old 07-05-2006, 06:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [b
Quote[/b] (tiedeman @ July 05 2006,3:38)]Trust me, it's very hard to concentrate on 100% quality. *There are so many times that I want to skip an area of trimming, or not blow off a side of a fence area where grass hit, or not bag a lawn because I know that I can get away with it....it's very hard.
I hear that. If I'm in a bad mood I'm like that. Today just wasn't my day, I've been pretty down in the dumps lately, things aren't exactly where I want them, but I know I won't sign up any commercial work right now which is where I want to be. So it's hard to sit idle (somewhat). I'm trying to get more residentials for now and I'm going to put out commercial "feelers" now and try to get my foot in the door with as many places as I can right now and just wait for bid time. But today I ended up waiting until almost 1 before I went out! I figured it'd be better to sit around and collect before I go out and cut corners because I knew I would if I wasn't feeling up to par.

Troy, I listend to the podcast you did and how you talked about your employee issues plus the few things you say on here about it. And I think if you try it again and hire employee's, you'll probably do better this time around. For one you already went through employee's once so you know what to watch for. But also your perfecting your business in the solo state, so I think that will help you big time when/if you get employee's again. I ran the 2 crews for the other company and that was my learning base, I know what to watch for now and how to keep employee's in check, so hopefully things will go smooth when the time comes for me to hire employee's. Hopefully my brother will be able to handle it, he's a pushover
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