Be careful and learn from my mistakes.

Anything can happen in life and sometimes that ‘anything’ turns out being an injury which keeps you from working. What would you do if you were injured or sick in some manner and had to take a week off from running your business? Would you be able to keep your business going? That is the question brought up on the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum. Some interesting points from the discussion really make you take a moment and think.

One lawn care business owner wrote “well it was Memorial Day weekend and I took the weekend to have some fun. My buddies and I took our dirt bikes up to the mountains this weekend to camp out and do some riding. Unfortunately on the trip I got a little reckless and had crash. It was not a serious one but enough that I hurt my leg and am unable to walk for a few days.

I am new in the business and have 14 lawn care customers right now. I do not have any other help, just me. So yesterday I called all my clients and told them that I was injured and that I would try to get to everyone’s lawn by the end of the week. I am hoping that I will heal up by then. If I am unable to get to them this week then I will adjust their monthly bill for the missed week. They all understood and were thankful for the call so I don’t think I will lose any of them as clients.

So my point is this, if you are new to the business and working alone, you have to think about what you do on your off time as well. If I would have injured myself worse than this, I would not have been able to continue the work and would have to give up the clients. Then when I healed up, try to start all over. Yeah it kind of sucks, but if you want to keep your business going and build it up, you have to let it run your life somewhat for a while. Just thought this experience might help out some of the other new entrepreneurs.”

A second lawn care business owner said “your business does run your life to some extent when you are working for yourself without any help. I can’t go on vacation, unless its like for a day, because I will miss out on mowing and I can’t go on vacation in the winter because it might snow when I’m gone. Can’t wait until I can afford an employee or two.”

A third added “a friend of mine has a small lawn service. He called me 2 days ago and said he was going on vacation for his graduation celebration and that he needed someone to cover his accounts. So I agreed to do it and got two compliments today from his customers because my work was better than his.

The first comment was because I edged the property with my trimmer real quick and the second was because I blew the grass off the back patio and around a pool. The last guy wanted to know if I was going to be the one taking over for my friend when he goes to college, so it seems he would like me to continue servicing his property.

My friend did mention that he might give me his clients when he goes to college, which would be awesome, but the only problem I have is that I think he doesn’t currently charge enough money. I guess I could just finish off the year after he goes to college and maybe at the beginning of the next spring, raise my prices a little. The properties are all water front on a very nice lake in a very high priced neighborhood. They are all a good 3/4 acre or more in size and he currently charges like $25-$30.”

A fourth shared “my brother and I are partners so we can cover one another. This does bring up a good point as you may want to look into loss of income or supplemental disability insurance. Even being down one week without money coming in could be real bad. I’ve had supplemental disability insurance at my old full time job and it was great. I was out once with broken ribs and another time with knee surgery. That insurance really saved my hide!”

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