Making The Jump, - General Discussion - Contractor Talk

Making The Jump,

 
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Old 02-24-2013, 05:36 PM   #1
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Making The Jump,


Hi all, (sorry for the no spell check)

I've been a loyal, dedicated, direct employee for a three-five man construction company. (Frame to Finish) I got on with this GC right out of high school, I am now 29. I've seen enough in the field to realize that most direct sub's in their thirtys are miserable, for one reason or another. I have reached the point where I feel like I can handle the responsibility of running a similar sized company, and want to make the jump. (yes I know more headaches, more sleepless nights, more stress, more $) I've reasearched my comp/liabilty/llc and have schedualed a course in my state (MA) to obtain my liscense. My problem is this- Every time i begain to mention my desire to "go on my own" or ask a simple pricing or such, my bosses defenses immedately go into full force. "Why would you want to do that? You make a good living with me...do you want to raise a family? Theres no way you can do both. Its so much harrrder these days, i wouldnt even think about it in your shoes." Now bear in mind this is a man I respect, and I want to pick his brain for his vast experience. He has created a good lifestyle for himself/family, and I use him as a measuring stick for what you can achieve in the trades...... I also need him to sign a letter of attestion for my gc test, and I fear what the answer might be. So after that long winded paragraph I have two questions: As an Employer, how would you want your long term employee to approach you about this situation? Would you be supportive or try to retain your capible emp who "you got green and payed lean" Second, can someone point me to a thread for "starting out" I could use any tips I can get! (notice no direct pricing questions!
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Old 02-24-2013, 07:57 PM   #2
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Re: Making The Jump,


Don't worry about supportive, pick his brain, blah, blah. Just tell him when the exam is scheduled and ask for a great letter. It's what I'd expect. I wouldn't try to talk an employee out of it - the paperwork and the test do that without my help.

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Old 02-24-2013, 08:28 PM   #3
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Re: Making The Jump,


If you prefer to keep your CSL test confidential you can submit your W-2's as proof of experience instead of a letter from your employer.
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Old 02-24-2013, 09:20 PM   #4
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Re: Making The Jump,


Quote:
Originally Posted by CarpenterSFO
Don't worry about supportive, pick his brain, blah, blah. Just tell him when the exam is scheduled and ask for a great letter. It's what I'd expect. I wouldn't try to talk an employee out of it - the paperwork and the test do that without my help.
Thank you, being direct might be the best approach
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Old 02-24-2013, 09:27 PM   #5
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Re: Making The Jump,


Quote:
Originally Posted by markpage
If you prefer to keep your CSL test confidential you can submit your W-2's as proof of experience instead of a letter from your employer.
That will be the route I take if I have too, but there's various reasons I'm trying to avoid that.
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Old 02-24-2013, 10:47 PM   #6
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Re: Making The Jump,


disenchantedsub:

You've made this guy a lot of money and you're going to make him more the longer you stay. He does not want you to leave, trust me. Ask for some equity in the company or else you'll quit. You may be surprised.

Joe
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Old 02-24-2013, 10:57 PM   #7
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Re: Making The Jump,


Quote:
Originally Posted by Kowboy View Post
Ask for some equity in the company or else you'll quit. You may be surprised.
Ask for equity in my company and I'll offer you a share of the overhead too. That's where you'll find your surprise.
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Old 02-24-2013, 11:01 PM   #8
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Re: Making The Jump,


I bet you a buck and a half that if you tell him how much you appreciate him for all he has done for you to date and how much you respect him for who he is and how he handles himself, then proceed to ask him to continue to support you in your next level of progression that he will come around and be in your corner for years to come.

You need to explain to him that this is something you need to do as a man. It has nothing to do with him and how he has treated you. Quite the opposite, actually. Without him as an example, you may not have ever had the inspiration to make the move.

Honestly sharing yourself is a very powerful tool. And it will come in very handy when dealing with clients.

I bet he will even toss you some work from time to time.
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Old 02-24-2013, 11:33 PM   #9
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Re: Making The Jump,


I am in the same boat. 29, and slowly working to make the plunge.

I have slowly been working to achieve my goal actively for 2 years, so not a rush decision.

Set goals, have a business plan. Identify where you can carve out a niche in your market. Network with friends, family etc.

Good Luck with your endeavours!
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Old 02-25-2013, 11:51 AM   #10
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Re: Making The Jump,


Quote:
Originally Posted by markpage View Post
If you prefer to keep your CSL test confidential you can submit your W-2's as proof of experience instead of a letter from your employer.
Does that work in every state?
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Old 02-25-2013, 11:52 AM   #11
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Re: Making The Jump,


Quote:
Originally Posted by maxwage View Post
I am in the same boat. 29, and slowly working to make the plunge.

I have slowly been working to achieve my goal actively for 2 years, so not a rush decision.

Set goals, have a business plan. Identify where you can carve out a niche in your market. Network with friends, family etc.

Good Luck with your endeavours!
And the most important thing, no be afraid to go for it. You can always come back and work for someone else if things don't work out. The rewards outweight the risks.
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Old 02-25-2013, 05:07 PM   #12
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Re: Making The Jump,


Quote:
Originally Posted by maxwage
I am in the same boat. 29, and slowly working to make the plunge.

I have slowly been working to achieve my goal actively for 2 years, so not a rush decision.

Set goals, have a business plan. Identify where you can carve out a niche in your market. Network with friends, family etc.

Good Luck with your endeavours!
Good luck too you as well! When you get to our age you start to feel the pressure knowing if you don't do it soon, you prob never will.
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Old 02-25-2013, 05:10 PM   #13
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Re: Making The Jump,


Quote:
Originally Posted by Kowboy
disenchantedsub:

You've made this guy a lot of money and you're going to make him more the longer you stay. He does not want you to leave, trust me. Ask for some equity in the company or else you'll quit. You may be surprised.

Joe
I can only imagine the expression on his face if I asked him this! He's old school, would never go for it... It's his baby though, would never expect that
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Old 02-25-2013, 09:21 PM   #14
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Re: Making The Jump,


Quote:
Originally Posted by Kowboy
disenchantedsub:

You've made this guy a lot of money and you're going to make him more the longer you stay. He does not want you to leave, trust me. Ask for some equity in the company or else you'll quit. You may be surprised.

Joe
I agree. Keep in mind that at times you may make the same money you do now on your own. I would expect to share profits with someone that has been with me that long and seemed like they wanted to be on their own in the future if they were worth it to me. Good luck.
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Old 02-25-2013, 10:53 PM   #15
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Re: Making The Jump,


I am 26, 2 years on my own now, going into the 3rd year soon. I sort of jumped in head first though. I was doing night and weekend jobs on my own and I was getting stressed out. Talking to my wife one morning after sleeping in we decided I should just go for it right then while we didn't have any kids.

I called in and quit that morning, I had enough work lined up already to keep me busy for about a month, luckily right as I would wind down a job I would get a call for a small repair and I pretty much jumped around town all year doing small jobs.

It was scary the first year, I about broke even after buying tools and one or two estimating mistakes.

Learned more in 6 months as far as what works and what doesn't than I did in 6 years being an employee.

If you are confident in your abilities, and are willing to bust your ass even after "work" is over for the day you will do just fine I would bet.

Last edited by NYCB; 02-25-2013 at 10:56 PM.
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Old 02-26-2013, 12:29 AM   #16
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Re: Making The Jump,


It's all up to you . Do you have good Payin wage plus benefits . Do you want to jumpin and deal with the public more . Deal with customers who no matter what can never make happy . Have employees that act like kids instead of men . Figure out where next pay check will come from . It may look and seem easy to own business but its hard work . You will found out its Easyer to do the work then run the business . Showing up at 7:00 and leavin at 3:00 with no care in the world something's is great feeling .
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Old 02-26-2013, 09:51 AM   #17
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Re: Making The Jump,


Quote:
Originally Posted by Tinstaafl View Post
Ask for equity in my company and I'll offer you a share of the overhead too. That's where you'll find your surprise.
That is a good one!
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Old 02-26-2013, 10:21 AM   #18
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Re: Making The Jump,


Some bosses are supportive with the growth and professional development of employees but most are not. Get you ducks in a row with your future business so you know what you need to do.
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Old 02-26-2013, 10:44 AM   #19
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Re: Making The Jump,


I guarentee your going to be in for a big surprise. Running a company is more work than u realize. Maybe think about this. Talk to your boss... You said you respect his opinion.. Tell him you take his advice to heart and appreciate his concern but you still feel that you are ready for more. Ask him how he feels about expanding.. Maybe you can head a different department.. Youll essentially be in charge and have the decision making power, yet still have him to fall back on for advice. Let him know you dont want to leave him but you arent happy. Ask for more responsibility.. With that comes more pay. You dont have to go on your own to do what you want. Plus its hard to find soneone you trust and can work well with. It sounds like yal have a great relationship. Kind of father sonish. figure out what it is that you want to do and propose it to him.. Sell him on it. personally i think having a mentor like him would be extremely beneficial. and you can make more money together for both of you. tell him you want him to let you figure it out on your own. give it 6 months with no help or advice from him. youll be forced to figure it out or your idea will flop. be resp for hiring and firing and department structure.. Marketing.. Getting the jobs everything! if you find out you really want what you think you want then you will make it happen. if you cant do it... You still have your job and you know what more you need to learn from him.. Youll be able to direct him in teaching you. that being said, you have the drive but it doesnt sound like you have the direction. So theres the first step. stsrt working on a business plan. Its overwhelming to most because they try to do everything at once. just take it slow. one section at a time. try to do one section a week. Just worry about completing one before you even think about the next. good luck.

Last edited by madrina; 03-05-2013 at 07:25 PM.
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Old 02-26-2013, 04:33 PM   #20
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Re: Making The Jump,


Wow thank you to everyone who replied to my thread, I really appreciate the feedback! Will keep posted on how things go...

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