Landscaping And Lawn Maintenance

 
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Old 09-21-2014, 01:33 PM   #1
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Landscaping And Lawn Maintenance


This is my first post here so Ill give a little bit of background on myself first. I am 21 years old and I have been working on a sea-going tug for three years now. Im am at sea for two weeks and home for two weeks and during the time home I run a small erosion and sediment control company that i started about 1 year ago. It does ok, but work is limited for small outfits like mine without the skills or resources to do larger, more complex jobs.

Because of this, I plan to start a lawn maintenance and installation business this coming spring (In addition to my current Business). I have already created a start up plan and ad campaign, and am confident that this coming season will be successful. My fiancé will loosely monitor my crew and handle payroll and the like while i am away, But I am still planning on using crew tracking software (any brand suggestions?) to monitor the business from the boat.

But I am here to find out how others are retaining employees through the off season. Retention of good employees is important for any business, but even more so because I do not have the time to train and monitor High school kids every summer. I know some guys up north do snow removal, but there isn't much snow in SE coastal VA, and I have zero experience in that type of work.

Any advice on the matter would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 09-24-2014, 12:05 AM   #2
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Re: Landscaping And Lawn Maintenance


I have absolutely no experience in landscaping or lawn care business.

With that said, my first red flag into running any business is what you typed here...

Quote:
My fiancé will loosely monitor my crew
My personal opinion is...unless you have a person you will pay to monitor your crew closely, you will be nothing short of a failure.

All the hi-tech in the world won't match someone on-site, making sure the customer gets what they paid for and that you are not getting screwed in the process.

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Old 09-24-2014, 01:03 AM   #3
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Well robie, you my friend are a prime example of the major downfall of this forum. The negativity and lack of CONSTRUCTIVE criticism is astounding. I did not mention that my fiance has a degree in business management. I also left out the level of management experience my crew leader has. I did this because neither where pertinent to the original post. I did however mention that I am already running a successful business with my current management. Have you ever seen the owner of a large landscaping company that is on the job site monitoring his crew on the daily basis? No.he is in the office doing business. My office is simply in a remote location half the time. So if anyone has any comments that are actually relevant, I would greatly appreciate them.
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Old 09-24-2014, 12:03 PM   #4
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Quote:
Well robie, you my friend are a prime example of the major downfall of this forum.
Sorry for my input. Good luck.
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Old 09-26-2014, 12:00 PM   #5
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Re: Landscaping And Lawn Maintenance


Robie is right, unless your fiance knows how things are supposed to work your crews are going to shovel her BS.

If you only want to paint half a picture, expect to be judged on only the painted half.

As for keeping crews busy in the winter, most crews here in Ontario switch to plowing in the winter.
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Old 10-02-2014, 03:56 PM   #6
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Re: Landscaping And Lawn Maintenance


Plan to keep 1-2 key people year round. Let them train the "seasonal" employees.

Look for maintenance accounts you can get on 12 month contracts. You'll have to do full service: mowing, pruning, turf treatments, leaf removal, irrigation winterization, occasional snow removal... not just mow and go. Summers will be lean, winters will be fat. If you can manage salary rather than hourly for your key people, that's even better.

Also, listen to Robie. Sometimes constructive advice is hard to hear. If your foreman has years of experience in the field, and your fiancee has a degree with the ink still wet, he'll make her believe anything he wants to.
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Old 08-02-2016, 09:57 PM   #7
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Re: Landscaping And Lawn Maintenance


You got alot of work ahead of yourself, start reading and educate yourself
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Old 08-03-2016, 08:25 AM   #8
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Re: Landscaping And Lawn Maintenance


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You got alot of work ahead of yourself, start reading and educate yourself
Been 2 years, I'm sure he has a handle on it now.
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Old 08-03-2016, 08:56 AM   #9
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Re: Landscaping And Lawn Maintenance


Let's do a where are they now segment, I would like to know if the fiancée was able to loosely keep things running.


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Old 10-23-2016, 08:42 PM   #10
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Re: Landscaping And Lawn Maintenance


Our business, Entreprise Lévisienne started small. But through the years, we are slowly gaining big amount of profit. You can do it! Just believe in yourself.
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Old 10-23-2016, 11:58 PM   #11
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Re: Landscaping And Lawn Maintenance


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Been 2 years, I'm sure he has a handle on it now.
Or he's deep in the weeds.
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Old 01-02-2017, 07:09 PM   #12
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Re: Landscaping And Lawn Maintenance


Doing a lawn business is quite lucrative. Just some quick math here:

$140/month fee is your typical homeowner. You dispatch a guy to do the lawn for $40 twice a month which means each mow is $30 net in your pocket. If you can grow your business so that you can assign a guy to do 4 mows a day that's $120 net to your pocket. Now, if you have 10 people working for you at that work load, that $1200 a day net to you.

The point is, you've got to think big and think systems. If you can bring in $400k a year in income, you can afford to bring on a couple permanent guys to watch and manage your crew. Build a customized workflow app that lets your guys check-in when at location etc.

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Old 01-15-2017, 08:19 PM   #13
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Re: Landscaping And Lawn Maintenance


For landscaping and lawn maintenance, I've found through much trial and error that there are 2 important things for keeping busy during the off season:

1) 12 month contracts
2) Booking customers for December and January ahead of time. Advertise 10% (or less depending on your margins) discounts for those that book you for those months. Although depending on where you live sometimes it's out of your control, because of weather conditions.

Hope that helps!
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Old 01-17-2017, 07:38 PM   #14
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Re: Landscaping And Lawn Maintenance


It's best to read up and educate yourself on the topic, don't just let your fiance loosely watch. They're working for you. It's best to take time to read up on landscaping and lawn care. Good luck

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Old 01-17-2017, 07:43 PM   #15
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Re: Landscaping And Lawn Maintenance


Lol guys again this topic is from 2014, OP is long gone.

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