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critique this statement

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Nebraska, Oct 3, 2002.

  1. Nebraska

    Nebraska Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 32

    How much money would your business loose if your customers, employees, or tenants could not safely access your establishment? Is that a responsibility your willing to trust "part-time Joe" with his quote for $45 per hour?

    is it too harsh or direct? told it to a guy the other day who wanted us to re-bid a property we've been doing for 3 years cause he found someone to do it cheaper...but never had a problem with us.

    Bid was increased 10% over last year..(typically we increase it 3-5% a year)

    Just gets to me!
  2. Mick

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

    Tell him "No problem, you get what you pay for" and walk away.
  3. Nebraska

    Nebraska Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 32

    I propose a manadatory federal and state "re-education camp" for everyone regarding snow and ice!
  4. speedracer241

    speedracer241 Senior Member
    Messages: 325

    I agree!!
    I got a "Well go ahead and put in a bid" the other day from a "new" manager on a lot I serviced last year.
    Last year, the manager was just thrilled with the service we provided. The property owner never grumbled about out the bill and paid it in a very reasonable time.
    We went over the new managers head and contacted the owner direct, hope to hear we have the lot again this year.
    If only we could skip ahead a few weeks,
    Mark K
  5. Nebraska

    Nebraska Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 32

    contract reads 30 Day notice for termination automatically renews annually...if it happens quick enough; would give proof to the new "management"..versus "part-time Joe" who isn't off work yet.
  6. MGardner

    MGardner Senior Member
    Messages: 106

    That`s just it, part time Joe can service the account @ 45 hr with no expenses , get there at his leisure or even make it look good because part-time Joe has nothing better to do but to play contractor. I wouldn`t let anyone near my res-or bus. without good insurance..............................the minute you are doing something for hire it is commercial use as far as I know, so these part-time Joes more than likely are not telling their insurance guy the whole story, if something were to happen an adjuster would see through it. I tell or try talk to my customers about these scrubs and why it is they can afford to work for hire for next to nothing.:realmad: I ask them if they would want a service provider on premises if they knew he was under or uninsured.
  7. SnoJob67

    SnoJob67 Senior Member
    Messages: 384

    As a fellow plowman, I feel your pain. On the other hand, some customers will take offense to the tone of that statement, if you will.

    There are some companies that are going to take the lowest price, period. You have to learn how to recognize them and let them go politely. Asking a few basic questions right away will help determine what is going to drive their purchasing decision.

    There are potential customers that are frustrated with their current contractor and are just looking for a better option. If you sell the customer on the value of good service and the fact that mediocre service comes at bargain prices, the type of customer I want sees value in that.

    I am real careful about how I discuss competitors with potential customers. I definitely try not to nitpick fellow contractor's work, but will politely agree if the customer points out flaws in their work.

    I often find customers that have been educated by unscrupulous or unknowing contractors at the school of hard knocks. When the customer expects service at 7 am and nobody shows til 10:30 am, when the storm ended at midnight the night before, it isn't tough to sell that customer.

    I explain that many people guess at pricing with the best of intentions, but don't take the time to accurately assess what costs will be associated with the work. Once that contractor realizes they are not making money, corners are sometimes cut in an attempt to make a profit.

    Some get terrible service cause they just aren't willing to pay for better. If I have learned one thing it is qualify, qualify, qualify! Don't bother with the customers paying way too little unless they have learned their lesson and are trying to get a service upgrade.
  8. Nebraska

    Nebraska Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 32

    well worded and very thoughtful snowjob67!
  9. THREE W

    THREE W Senior Member
    Messages: 122

    It is all about being professional, If a competitor can provide good service and has found some way to do it for less then good for him.

    If they are cutting corners, then the service will be less and the
    business may suffer and come running back to you. If they don't have insurance, then as soon as they get sued, they will come back to you.

    It does sound however, that everyone assumes to be a "professional plower" you have to have a big fleet of trucks,be a big business, lots of employees.

    IMO, a professional plower is anyone who does it right.

    1. Takes care of the customer as requested/agreed in contract.

    2. Attempts to do a "great job" regardless of problems

    3. Takes pride in the job

    4. Has equipment serviced/ready

    5. Improves the image of Plowing.

    These things should apply whether you own 50 trucks, or 1. If a customer is not looking for this, So be it.
  10. Tommy10plows

    Tommy10plows Senior Member
    Messages: 345


    It is really very simple, I told them if you pay peanuts you get monkeys. Don't get agravated over the ones who think you work for the honor of doing their drive. Quote me "If they won't pay, don't stay."

    You have my permission to fire the following customers:

    1. slow pay / no pay
    2. whiners - do mine first because.....(fill in the blank)
    3. the ones who constantly block you in when you show up in
    middle of the night because they have to be out by 5 am
    4. chiselers - ones who agree to your price and then try to negotiate you down after you do a supurb job. That is why snow plows work so well to clear a drive and work even better to put the snow back in where you got it from.
    5. Any one you see that publicly abuses their spouse, significant other or child in front of you when you are doing their job, that's verbal as well as physical abuse.
    6. Persons who give you bad checks
    7. People who accuse you of all sorts of non existant damage to
    their property, shrubs etc.
    8. Customers who call you "buddy", "Mac", "Cuz" or some other
    such nonsense.
    9. Customers who ridicule you or your truck or your efforts.
    10. Customers who are rude to your dispatcher, whether she is
    your wife, son or daughter, mother or father, or a paid real
    live paid employee.

    All of these people should not be on the road in a snow emergency. You are doing a wonderful public service by making sure they cannot get out of their driveway.
  11. Chuck Smith

    Chuck Smith 2000 Club Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 2,317

    Re: Pricing

    :nod: LOL