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what would you do???

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by go plow, Nov 25, 2005.

  1. go plow

    go plow Senior Member
    Messages: 322

    i would like to start off with happy turkey day everyone!!!
    i went out to plow one of my biggest accounts that i have had for five years now, every year i call to see if they want me to sent a yearly contract, the owner of this factory, told me over the phone that he would like to keep me, he is pleased with the work i have done in the past...he tell me to sent him my contract, and make it for a couple years ,he says it would be one less thing he has to worry about!!! do i do just that, i go there , and its already plowed!!!!!! mind you that the contract is still in the mail... i check my voice mail, and he called me to tell me that his wife took it in her hands and signed a contract with someone else and that he is not please with her choice. in the voice mail he says that he would like to keep me in mind because he doesnt think that these people will last.....these people where never a pita ,,,
    so this year seeing how the price of salt/sand went up so much in my area, i figured well, i would eat some of the cost.. the owner has me do his house and the company ,also his fathers house, so i figured i would be nice to him. and i get this in return....... it is getting harder and harder to stay sain ......this place looked so bad , the loading dock wasnt plowed, and the parking spaces near the office door wasnt plowed... how can people do work like that????? im sorry , im writing a book lol i just need to vent... my girlfriend tells me that i take my customer's to heart..maybe i shouldnt care so much??? thanks guys for letting me vent....... you guys are great!!!!!
  2. BushHogBoy

    BushHogBoy Senior Member
    Messages: 665

    Don't know what I would do, that really sucks... I would be pretty upset I know that... but what would I say to the guy? I Don't know... I think I'd try to find a way to make it hard for his wife or the other plower LOL... find a way to irritate them so that the plower quits, and the wife leaves business decisions to the owner (husband)...
  3. gpin

    gpin Senior Member
    Messages: 390

    Keep venting to us but stay cool with the customer. I go through this all the time, but I keep my eye on the $. If I snap at the customer or enlighten him to what a **insert negative biology term here** his wife is, the business is gone for good. For all you know the owner is a loser and just blaming his decision on his wife. Keep in touch with the customer, don't badmouth the current contractor but make it clear you are available if he needs help.

    I'm not a landscaper, I only do snow work so I am lose some business to landscapers which is understandable. They are packaging their business. I've also been doing it for 24+ years and some of the new people are under bidding me. But I did that 20 years ago. I still have profitable work, but things are changing. There are guys who are just happy to be out there and they are less expensive than I am. Keep your options open. You can't control the other people out there, do the best with your business and move on.
  4. Pete7

    Pete7 Member
    Messages: 55

    I think the other guys had great advice. There is a local building supply salesman who has bid a ton of materials for me but can never seem to beat the other guys. Yet every time I see him he asks me to keep him in mind and it is his pleasure to put in bids. Be that guy..
    Every time you see the owner be friendly and cordial, otherwise when he gets rid of the current loser he may feel uncomfortable coming back. It is all just business...
  5. Kramer

    Kramer Senior Member
    Messages: 386

    Tell the guy you saw his wife making out with the new plow guy--that should take care of it! :salute:
  6. plowzilla

    plowzilla Senior Member
    Messages: 290

    .....these people where never a pita ,,,

    Hey, whats a pita???????
  7. douglasl330

    douglasl330 Senior Member
    Messages: 356

    When they do come calling!

    What will most likely happen is you will pick up one or two new accounts and after we get a storm that sticks around for a couple of days,they won't be happy with thier new guy. This is when you can charge a slight increase (about 10% or so). So smile and be happy and hope the new guy breaks real hard first big storm!!:yow!:
  8. dmontgomery

    dmontgomery PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,238

    P ain I n T he A $$
  9. 04superduty

    04superduty PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,354

    pita= pain in the arse.
    so far some good advice. wait till the first semi gets stuck at the loading dock and a wrecker has to come get him out. bet the owner wont like that.
  10. all seasons

    all seasons Member
    Messages: 61

    I hear you

    I had almost the same thing happen this year with one of my larger accounts,and the way i left it with the plant manager was very friendly and professional even though he went with a cheaper non professional.thats fine,i told him if you ever need us just call because it was more of a blessing for him to back out just as the paperwork got to him.I picked up several new accounts in his place which bring me more money and take less time.Its my belief that you need to maintain a positive professional attitude in any circumstance and good things will always come to you,even though they don't always show themselves right away,besides its his loss to loss a contractor that cares.
  11. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 28,365

    Personally, here is how I've handled it. I've had it happen twice so far in 10 years of plowing.

    The first, I didn't care if I lost the account or not.

    I've had it for 6 years, and this was 2 years ago. It's a manufactured home community, where I plow the roads, not the drives.

    It's on a yearly contract, I do the common area mowing, and plowing of the streets for one fee, year-round.

    The contract starts in May, and ends in April.

    Anyways, about 2 years ago, after about a 1" snowfall, while I was driving around, I'd seen it'd been plowed. The agreement was that I was at a 2" trigger.

    The next day I went and talked with the owner, and it seems that he'd hired a manager, and the manager didn't know of the already agreed, agreement.

    I said that's fine, you can either keep me on board and tell the new guy, sorry, but the new manager didn't know there was already someone on board, OR, you can buy out the rest of our agreement, for the rest of the 6 months and I'll be on my way.

    He told the new guy that there was already an agreement, and that the new guy was out of luck.

    The second time, was for a banker that I do, I've got 3 banks for him.

    Anyways, I've been doing these banks now for 5 years, and the beginning of the 3rd year, I'd already been out salting one time, and they paid the bill for it. The next snowfall, I go out to plow, and all the banks are already plowed.

    I said the same thing to the owner, "we already had an agreement, what's going on?".

    Turns out they had a new "business" manager for the 3 branches, that didn't know there was already an agreement.

    Same outcome as the previous.

    I guess the way I look at your situation, is that if you're only plowing by the push or per time, there's no real contractual amount of money that's being owed to you, since you haven't performed any work yet this year.

    Are you still doing the houses too??

    If you are, I'd refuse to do them unless you get the company back.

    If you're not, and you don't have a contract, then basically you're S.O.L. Sorry.
  12. Runner

    Runner Senior Member
    Messages: 957

    Nope. I would just hang in there, and don't go far. Stay in touch with him, and call and ask him occasionally, saying. "So,...how's your new guy working out with you plowing...?" Then ask him if he's had any slip and falls yet on all that ice and snow he has in front of his doors. But say it in like a humorous way, and stay cool with him.
    I had a pretty similar incident just recently as LwnmwrMan22, but I was on the other end. I bidded 2 Bob Evan's restaurants both of which I JUST got the chem. contracts for. Anyway, they had expressed that they wanted bids for their snow. I gave them the bids, and both said it looks great, and they'll get back with me. Well, the second one called me back with the go-ahead. The first however, the one who's GM I was in pretty good with, I had heard nothing from. I called one night before it looked like we were going to have a good icing. That GM wasn't in, but the manager on duty said she will be calling her at home soon, and will get back with me. Well, I later recieved a call that stated that the PREVIOUS GM had already made an agreement with the guy that was plowing to go for another season. So, I just said, ok, and let it go. It was just a "Keep me in mind, and call me if you need anything" type deal. She said thanks, and let me know she will DEFinintely be wanting my services for that particular restaurant next season.
  13. go plow

    go plow Senior Member
    Messages: 322

    thanks guys, you guys give great advise!!!!!! i think that like most of you have said , im going to let one more storm pass, then i will call him to see how things are working out.....I SINCE have gained 5 new accounts, its not as much as what i would have made, but its better then loosing the accounts and not replacing them with anything........baby steps lolol lol

  14. kingriver

    kingriver Senior Member
    from alaska
    Messages: 216

    He wins if you let it bother you. or should I say (she) :cool: