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Storys about how you started you buisnes

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by MO TOYS, Sep 19, 2006.

  1. MO TOYS

    MO TOYS Senior Member
    Messages: 111

    I was just curious about how everyone went from a full time job to a owning a full time buisness.
    Another post aroused my curiousity. I would like to hear your stories
  2. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    Noone else responded to this, so maybe I can get it started.

    I am from Iowa and had never had to have snow plowed as it had always been done by the county. Here, I moved into a place about 1997 where part of the welcome was a recommendation for a plow guy. I hired it done until 2000, when I decided I could buy a plow and save a lot. Part of my research included the Internet and found Lawnsite with a forum for plowing snow - which became Plow Site in May 2003 - which explains my "Join Date". Being from Maine, I naturally bought a Fisher since there were no other brands being sold around here. The first time I'd ever even sat in a truck with a plow on it was when they installed mine, they backed it on the line and told me it was ready to go. I asked if someone could show me what I needed to know for operation and maintenance so they said "Sure" and sent a young guy out who looked at me like I was stupid. He asked what I wanted to know. I said whatever I needed to know, but first "How do I raise it to get it home?". He showed me how to use the toggle to Raise, Lower, angle Left and Right and said that was about it. So I took off with the plow as high as it would raise, straight for 25 miles to get home. Fortunately, worry about hitting another car kept my speed down. This was August or September so I had a couple of months to play around with it before it snowed. Then I decided I could plow for a few others to recoup the cost of the plow. October of that year, it snowed on the 30th or so, anyway I went to a neighbor who had a craft shop and asked if she wanted me to plow for her. She asked if I had my liability insurance which I didn't. She said to get that and come back which I did and plowed, almost backing into her car. That was my first customer and the last time I've ever been asked for insurance. That first winter, I didn't even make as much as the liability insurance cost. The next year, I decided to stand out among all the others around here with a plow, so I bought a sander. I also needed a bigger truck for the sander, so bought a one ton flatbed. I also introduced Magic Salt to Maine when I went to John Parker's BBQ (I think that was the following year) and brought back a pallet of bags to pass out and a couple barrels of Magic -0 to make Magic Salt with. I kept growing and now have decided to scale back, so this year I'm down to six or seven customers within a mile and takes about an hour. I sold the 1/2 ton Dodge and 7.5' last Spring and now down to the 3500. I've added a tractor with front end loader for making Magic Salt and home made rear scraper that could be used in a pinch. I'm building up the Magic Salt end, though.

    There has been a lot of help along the way and I'd like to thank those who talked me through several situations. I belonged to SIMA (Snow and Ice Management Association) for a year which was very beneficial. PlowSite and another snow-related site I am on several times a day and have been nearly every day for the past six years.

    Talk about an education!!! I didn't learn this much in four years of college and two years of graduate school.
  3. MO TOYS

    MO TOYS Senior Member
    Messages: 111

    that cool thanks for sharing. I dont know why i just like to hear the stories.
  4. mcwlandscaping

    mcwlandscaping 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,557

    i guess when i was around 10 years old, i mowed our lawn for the first time, and somehow fell in love with doing it...so, that day asked neighbors and got three of them, and i kind of took off from there from just mowing to lawn, landscaping, and hardscaping work....

    plowing: my dad plows his office parking lot with their one company plow for overtime as well as takes care of the grounds. when i was 8, dad taught me how to plow on my own since he was sick of it and within a few storms, i learned to drive in the parking lot and plow, while he shoveled the walkways. Ever since then, ive LOVED doing it and this year, i get a plow truck of my own!! Im WAY more psyched about the plow and strobe lights going on the truck this week than i was when i got my license!!

    short story i guess, but things have been growing exponentially on their own each year....i love what im doing!