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Am I out of my mind????

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by JBMiller616, Oct 30, 2008.

  1. JBMiller616

    JBMiller616 Senior Member
    Messages: 267

    Some people think so.

    I work for a property management company in Hartford, CT as an assistant property manger (desk job). We own about forty rental properties throughout Hartford, West Hartford, Wethersfield and Canton CT. I have been with the company for about a year and a half and I like my job for the most part, I just wish I was paid a little more. My company has a full maintenance staff of about eighteen guys and we do all of our own snow removal. About this time last year the owner of the company approached me and asked me to do some research on buying a third plow truck for the company. He knows I'm really into cars, trucks and pretty much everything with a motor. I looked into everything and ended up getting a great deal on a left over 2007 Ram 2500 SLT Reg cab with a Fisher 8.5 HD MM2 setup for about $28k out the door.

    So after the purchase of the truck I was thinking to myself that I might like to give plowing a shot. I had always wanted to give it a try. So I asked my boss if he'd be cool with it and he said fine, but he wouldn't be able to pay me for it (I'm salary at $28k/yr). I didn't really care. I use to have a little bit of what you would call a drinking problem, so I don't go out to bars and stuff like that like most people my age. Basically I thought this would be a good way to get out of the house. After my first storm I was addicted. Addicted to this site, addicted to watching the weather, addicted to pushing the white stuff around. I plowed EVERY storm we had last year for no pay what so ever. I think I saved my boss a few thousand dollars because he didn't have to pay a guy OT to plow.

    Now the season is about to crank up again and I'm trying to decide what to do. I know some of you are business owners so I just wanted to get some opinions.

    If you were my boss would you have thrown me a bone? Do you think I would be justified in asking for a little compensation this year? If you were me would you be working for free? Am I out of my mind?

    I know my boss has a lot of trust in me. He knows that I know my ****, that I'm dependable, responsible, and that I treat the equipment like it's my own. I'm his go to guy when it comes to our equipment. I'm just thinking that it might not be a bad thing if he were to show me a little appreciation monetarily. I'll be out there no matter what this winter.

    Sorry for the book, but what do you guys think?
  2. VBR

    VBR Member
    Messages: 67

    whats the worst he can do? say no? i say go for it!
  3. Woodland

    Woodland Senior Member
    Messages: 269

    No, you should not get paid extra for plowing. You are a salaried employee, period.
  4. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    Your not union. At most he could give you some comp. time.
  5. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,883

    With add responsibility should receive added compensation.
    You were getting a set salary for the work you were doing.
    Now the responsibility of plowing has been added to your responsibility's warranting a raise..

    He could say yes, he could say no, he could say let's see what happens.

    If you don't ask, you will never know.. It feels better when you know....jmo
  6. 042500hd

    042500hd Senior Member
    Messages: 251

    The first year was free training for you and free labor for your boss. Now that you've got some experience you should receive some type of compensation, I understand you like it but it's crazy to do it for free. You could go run someone else's truck and make $20 an hour and keep the job you're at. If you ask and don't get anything I would pass on doing it for him. Don't let anyone take advantage of you. I'm a business owner and would never think of doing that to an employee. If you work you get paid salary or not if you're putting in extra effort to help me I want you know I appreciate it.
  7. bltp203

    bltp203 Senior Member
    Messages: 484

    You could always ask.........maybe you could justify it by saying how much better your treat the equipment or do a better job then the other employees.
  8. JBMiller616

    JBMiller616 Senior Member
    Messages: 267

    Agree to an extent.


    Very well put.

    It's the truth. We lost two blowers last year because the boneheads operating them didn't check the oil. Tomorrow I'm flushing fluid on all three plows, installing a new harness for the plow lights on one of the trucks, and the boss want's me to give the guys a "seminar" on how to check the fluids in the machines and trucks.
  9. Woodland

    Woodland Senior Member
    Messages: 269

    It sounds like you have taken on some added responsibilities. I don't know what your original job with the company was, but from what you describe, you are expected to perform some equipment maintenance work and are perhaps expected to help out with the plowing? If this is the case, then it may in fact, be time to talk about a raise in general. The flip side of that equation is, however, that if your boss is still "letting" you plow, in which case, you are, in reality, taking work (OT as you described it) away from another employee. Either way, good luck and have fun plowing.
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2008
  10. JBMiller616

    JBMiller616 Senior Member
    Messages: 267

    Well before last year we were only running two trucks. When we got the new one I started plowing with it. Like I stated above, the owner trust's me with his equipment. No where in my job description does it say I have to do any of the things I described above. The owner just kinda discovered that I was more mechanically inclined than your typical office staff. I drive a desk as my normal job. But wearing a tie to work everyday gets old for me and sometimes I just need to get my hands dirty.

    I also have a good working relationship with the maintenance staff, and I'm positive if any of them felt as if I was taking work away from them they would let me know, and if they did, I would gladly step aside. 90% of them however, hate being bothered with plowing, shoveling and snow blowing.
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2008
  11. edmioduski

    edmioduski Junior Member
    Messages: 3

    Believe me, plowing is fun. But it's GREAT because we get paid to do it. I would venture to say that none of us would go through ALL the agonies of plowing if we didn't get paid. That fascination will wear off once you have to work on that new set up in the middle of the night or your dead tired after plowing 24 hours straight. I would talk to your boss about a one lump sum at the end of the season so it's kinda of like a savings plan for you. Never know, you get one big check it might be enough to invest in a plow for next year or later if you want to go solo. This might also make it possible for the boss to structure your "bonus" check under office work as opposed to paying you extra every week during the winter and having to list that income under plowing for liability insurance purposes. Just some thoughts. I agree with others though. I wouldn't let an employee work for nothing. Your doing more than everyone else that sits behind a desk and goes home early because the snow's starting to fly. Good luck
  12. JBMiller616

    JBMiller616 Senior Member
    Messages: 267

    I only had one twenty hour day last winter, the rest were 8, 10, 14 hour days, sometimes after putting in a full day at the office too. I had a sheer pin go on one of my blowers last year too on one of my last properties of the night, luckily I kept a few spares.

    I can't say I ever got tired of it. I'd much rather be out there busting my ass than sitting at home on my ass.

    As for my boss, I'm going to talk to the owner of the company tomorrow. All and all he is a good guy, it won't hurt to ask.
  13. BlackIrish

    BlackIrish Senior Member
    Messages: 902

    A salary of $28k is at best 45 hrs a week.Office all day then plowing all night shoiuld at least get you the next day off. If that's not the case its time to renegotiate, how many after hour plow hours are we talking about?
    But it also sounds like your skills and responsibilities warrant an increase also. Whatever you do don't word it like " Give me a raise or else" cause it hurts when the door hits you in the ass.
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2008
  14. JBMiller616

    JBMiller616 Senior Member
    Messages: 267

    It depends, for instance one of the storms last year we didn't have anything plowable until about 4:30pm. Office closed at 5:30pm (got in at 8:30am) and didn't get home till about 2:30am. I was back out at 7:30am doing clean-ups.
  15. bribrius

    bribrius PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,609

    considering what you make for money now and where you live. I wouldnt put in any extra effort. Your working extra for free when you must be near the poverty line. I would put in the least amount of hours possible and not volunteer anything unless i knew my paycheck was going up.
    If i knew my check would go up, well then, that is different. But for what you make he should be happy you show up for work at all.

    And YES. your taking money from other employees because you stated your boss doesnt have to pay them overtime to plow. They would also use what it cost to plow in house as a comparison to what it might cost to sub it out to a outside snowplowing company.
    I wouldnt say your helping at all.
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2008
  16. Longae29

    Longae29 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,953

    I'm a salaried (plus commission of course) employee, I get the next day off after a night of plowing (if feasible) in addition i get paid hourly for every hour over 10 hours of snow plowing / salting in a week. I think thats a really fair way of going about it.
  17. redman6565

    redman6565 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,411

    everyone's situation is different but as a son of the owner, i know i appreciate all of my main guys and i try to go out of my way to show them that. sometimes they come to me (like you would to your boss). i dont mind being asked for more pay, specially when i know the person is worth it. so basically, if you are worth it, then ask for it. you do a great job and you help him, its the least he could do.
  18. mitts_39

    mitts_39 Junior Member
    Messages: 5

    just joined, but it seems to me that there's some value to your time. if you plowed other lots & areas, what would be the going rate? i'm guessing that after the first storm of the year, if you've found work that supplements your time & pays more, then it may be worth it. Maybe there's a happy medium to what you would make plowing elsewhere & what the boss would pay someone else. if you're able to hit somewhere in the middle, it saves you the convenience of driving to other locales. when more word gets around the office, you can end up building a few more "clients" at your pace, too.
  19. JBMiller616

    JBMiller616 Senior Member
    Messages: 267

    I appreciate all the opinions and advice guys. I'm going to talk to the owner when I get a chance and see what he says. When I began do it last year I mainly did it just because I enjoy it, and it gets me out of the house. I still enjoy the hell out of it and I can't wait for the season to crank up again. It would just be nice to be making a little extra on the side this time around. Like someone stated before, I look at last year as practice/proving myself, and I think I've done so by showing the people I work for that I'm responsible with the equipment, I have the ability to fix things on the fly, and I had no casualties (tail lights, mail boxes, tail gates).

    We'll see what happens!!!
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2008
  20. Grampa Plow

    Grampa Plow Senior Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 274

    Most of you think that because a person is salaried, your boss can make you work65 hours a week and only pay you X amount of money. NOT the case. That's only if you're in a management position. If you don't hire or fire, and a few other small things, you should be getting overtime pay for over 40 hours. My wife worked at John Deere (in the office...non-union) and anything over 40 hours she got paid time and 1/2. I was Union President for a place that I worked...same thing. If any of your are doubting Thomas' please contact the Wage and Hour Division of your home state.