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Employees vs. subcontractors

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Here is how Troy Tiedeman assigns work.

Lee Chilcote | November 14, 2011

Troy Tiedeman has two types of employees: subcontractors and full-time workers. Each of these serves a distinct purpose, and both are needed to keep his company going.

Yet the owner of Tiedeman LLC in Clare, Mich., trusts only his full-time employees to perform his core service. 

“We would never sub out our pesticide work,” he says. “We more or less sub out our maintenance and snow removal work, but all of our pesticide work is done in house.”

Why? First, because pest management is a highly specialized service that requires experienced, well-trained workers, he says. Second, it is the company’s largest source of revenue, and he wants to ensure it’s done to his exacting standards.  

“The biggest thing that we train our employees on is that they’re not just treating a property, but they’re also working with clients and noticing things about the property,” says Tiedeman. “They’re not only providing services, they’re in a sales role, too.”

That’s important because Tiedeman relies upon his employees to sell new services to clients. “Most of our work comes from up-selling to our current client base, not getting new clients,” he says. “We’re constantly presenting information to our clients on how they can improve their property, and how we can make it look better for them.”

Like many business owners, Tiedeman says it’s not easy to find good workers these days. However, he has nonetheless managed to find reliable employees by hiring individuals that lack in-depth experience, yet are open to learning new things.

“We like to hire people that are trained and educated a little bit – even though we know we’ll have to retrain them,” he says.

 


This is one of three stories that appeared in Lawn & Landscape's Growing Green e-newsletter. To continue reading about Tiedeman:

Narrowing focus: Tiedeman grew its profit by decreasing services and becoming a niche company.

Selling attention and detail: Tiedeman found customers will pay more for better service.

 

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