^^^^ Very well said. You are blessed, as am I, even tho a small company-ish guy.
@blairandgretchen you are~
I didn't make it, but I want other startups to learn from my mistakes.
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Seriously there is no sinking feeling like the sinking feeling you have when you finally meet a star employees wife and she's a nightmare. You can tell yourself 'it's not my business' but it's a real concern if you're thinking of giving them more responsibility. Great significant others make people significantly better and bad significant others will stop you from getting any traction in life.
I think part of the problem is that we tell people that 'love conquers all' when in reality marrying the right person is the most important business decision a person has to make in life. Man or woman. It doesn't much matter if she makes your heart flutter if she's got borderline personality disorder does it? (Speaking of BPD I'd rather date/marry someone with HIV) You can have fun with the BPD girl for a crazy week or two, but for the love of all that's holy don't marry her.
EDIT: And don't forget to get tested when it's all over. There's a non zero % chance that she actually has HIV.
EDIT: Yes I have been a manager and ruled someone out for promotion because their attendance wasn't perfect... and because I knew why it was a problem. I couldn't give him more responsibility when I knew for a fact that he was already at his outer limits. I'm usually fine with the guy who rolls in 15 minutes late every day... It's the guy who misses entire days because of personal reasons that's a problem. I'll keep him on because he's a great salesman, but I'm not going to give him a real job lol.fordconvert Thanks this.
2.Mechanic (independent,no dealers)
I went through what you did if not worse. I started out with a 96' Volvo. New motor (3406E),tranny and rear ends for 25k. I started out underfunded with only 14k including my down payment for my truck. Within 6 months I had 50k in the bank.
I was greedy and naive so I switched carriers to one that promised to offer even more money and just when I did that a hidden problem showed itself. The fifth wheel was jacked up with rectangular steel tubing installed incorrectly and it had rusted out under the fifth wheel and the frame had cracked 3 feet long along the flange. Then the frame rails twisted cracking multiple crossmembers and essentially totaling the truck. This was in the middle of my busiest time (spring) and right after I spent 20k over the winter (slow time) having the shop fix every little thing on it planning to keep it forever. Aside from ruined frame rails it was immaculate lol.
So I was losing close to 10k revenue every week it was down. I spent 2 weeks trying to decide if it could be fixed. The frame shops said the rails were too twisted to put a cut off on. New frame rails would have me down for another month or more and cost 10-15k to have done on a old Volvo that was hardly worth that 20k on the open market.
So finally I let the Volvo go and spend another month looking for a new truck. I finally find a 95 W900L with 640k original miles in immaculate condition with the exact same motor so In a pinch I could swap the brand new Cat out of my Volvo into my Kenworth.
I pull the trigger and purchase it. I bring it back to my shop and immediately spend 10k rebuilding the rear suspension,putting new drive tires on and putting all new fluids in everything. I knew this would have to happen so no worries.
What I didn't know, but soon find out is the camshaft is on the verge of total failure despite running fine. So new camshaft and rockers and theirs another 5k down the drain.
After 6 weeks and 60,000 dollars of lost revenue during my busiest time of year and a severely strained new business relationship I can get back to work!
30,000 miles later the injector cups fail. I spend 2 days in my back yard doing it and 1000 bucks in parts.
40,000 miles after that the head gasket completely lets go and I barely make it home. At this point I have my mechanic swap the fresh motor out of my Volvo into my Kenworth. This costs me 3 weeks more of down time and another 10k as I had a bunch of stuff done while the motor is out of the Kenworth. "might as well" stuff.
I tell them to put a new rear main in the New motor while it's out because it's been sitting for a while. They decide not to. It blows out and leaks everywhere on my first trip out. They eat that repair bill, but it cost me 5,000 in lost revenue.
At this point that 50k I had end of last year is gone. I've lost about 80,000 dollars in lost revenue. My tab at the shop is over 30k and they are charging 22% interest on it. I'm still paying 500 bucks a month in insurance on my Volvo that I can't operate because of the MCS 90 all trucks I own must be insured. Credit cards are racked up 10k trying to cover expenses and manage cash flow.
I pay off the Volvo finally saving me 500 bucks per month in insurance money. My bank loans me enough money to pay off the shop bill so i get a 22% interest loan down to a 5% interest loan. That was about 5 months ago.
I go back to the original company I had worked with initially before greed and naivete led me astray.Now I got the shop loan paid off. Credit cards paid off. 18k cash sitting in the bank.
The lesson here is if I had not had that great relationship with my shop and my bank that point where I had a 30k+ shop tab I couldn't pay would have been the end of the story and I'd be posting a thread like yours rather than the happy ending I have now.
It really is who you know. Since I decided (with my wife's blessing) to get into this business, I've made many contacts. From dispatchers to mechanics, to other truck/business owners. There are basically two worlds out here in the trucking industry. In one, they all say it's a bad idea, drive for a company for X number of years, you'll never make it; to folks literally calling people stupid for going O/O.
But there is also a world full of people whom encourage others to go for it. People that share their experience, and are willing to teach, help and mentor. This is the world in which I live. I'm surrounded by hundreds of years of experience. I've met with dispatchers, mechanics and business owners whom are guiding me along the way. Once I have my truck, I have options to use dispatchers with contracts that will keep my truck/trucks busy with contracts with large companies (whom shall not be named). I've traveled thousands of miles to meet with business owners and others in the industry, and plan to travel many more.
These same people have helped others as well. I've met/will meet them. There are success stories out here. Some with very little capital to get going, and they make it. I have decent capital, along with amazing mentors. Networking is not only key, it is VITAL to being successful. A forum and it's members are invaluable, but it/they not soothsayers. Glean what you can from here, but do not make the mistake of basing your plans, decisions and future for that matter, on the whims, biases, agendas and sometimes BS you'll find, or that may find you.
Again, there are some truly great folks here that give amazing advice and are very knowledgeable. Take it all in, and sift for the gold. Not all successful people post their success on forums. The ones I know, don't.
Edit: I'm not saying I'm a guaranteed success, that's silly. I'm just very confident.Last edited: Feb 5, 2017
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