As mentioned previously we had started the business in March but didn’t actually move to Texas until the end of May. June therefore, was a MUCH better month for us and we had some serious learning to do. We were lucky to have a couple clutch employees that were willing to keep taking on more work. Sadly, June was also the first month that we began to really learn how difficult it can be to find good help.
The growth from May to June was fun and awesome, but it was also very overwhelming as we had not really planned for it. We put up ads on craigslist and hired the fiance of a girl I had gone to school with. The problem we made was hiring without a good screening process. A good employee does not necessarily need to have a ton of landscape experience. More importantly they need to buy into your vision and be willing to learn. Go to craigslist and look at the job postings for landscapers in your area. Mostly likely they all say something like “need 2 guys tomorrow to mow lawns! will pay $10 and hour. MUST have experience.” To often LCO’s go through crew member after crew member trying to find that diamond in the rough. Very small chance of that happening. If you post the job in that manner you are telling potential empoyees that its okay to start right away leading them to believe its not a REAL job and they can quit, show up late, smoke at customers homes etc. . . Don’t fall for the “immediate hire, train on the job” mentality. It just doesn’t work. Rather we have finally come to adopt the “Who: The A Method for Hiring” . . . everything has changed. Take your company seriously and so will potential employees. The book is about $16 but you can most likely find it in the library.
The only real way to make a hiring system work is to fully embrace it. Don’t fall for the trap! Take time and you will find the right people for your team, and in the end that is all that matters.
In June we operated one crew most days with the exception of days were we had several big jobs scheduled.
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