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Overcoming Perceived Inexperience

General Business Discussions

A place to talk about general business discussions.
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Old 03-13-2006, 01:28 PM
mowboy mowboy is offline
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This questions comes from Bjorn of Bjorn J. Marshall - Professional Landscaping and Design.

I am just starting my business up this year, I have done a lot of work with well know professionals in the area, but I am still young, 22yrs old, and I somehow think people will not trust my estimations to be the best, what can I do about this?

Hi Bjorn,

This is a great question. It can be a challenge for a young person to be taken seriously in business since you lack the experience of other more seasoned companies and even if you have experience, you may not be taken seriously. It boils down to confidence. If your prospects detect a lack of confidence in you this will likely scare them away. You don't want phony confidence either though. Most people can see right through this eventually. The best way to built confidence is through learning.

You need knowledge to show real confidence so keep learning and make sure all your customers know that you are an expert in this field. It seems you are on the right track - you have mentioned that you have some experience working with professioanls - so let your customers know that. You can mention it specifically (I have x years in the business) but more importantly show them you are experienced in the way you operate your business. Be professional. Show up when you are expected, dress smartly (company shirt?), have a professional attitude, have a clean truck, make sure your marketing material says 'I'm professional'. As well, use your knowledge about the industry when talking to customers. Don't point and talk about 'that bush'. Use the name of the shrub. Explain things like when to water the lawn, when to fertilize, how to make the lawn look the best. Basically let them know that you are knowledgeable in this field and this will speak volumes no matter how young you are.

I hope things go well for you this year! Thanks for your question.
Joel LaRusic
Consultant/Author, Start & Run a Landscape Business
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Old 03-13-2006, 05:27 PM
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Steve Steve is offline
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Hi Bjorn,

In addition to the great advice Joel had to say, I would suggest creating a photo book of your previous jobs. Nothing shows your abilities and talents more than a collection of photos of 'before and after.'
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