Professional Painting Contractors Forum banner

21 - 40 of 52 Posts

·
"Member"
Joined
·
10,719 Posts
Each of my employees are given whatever information I feel is necessary to complete their job with optimal success depending on the type of contract. The only ones that know numbers of any kind would be the foremen. There is no reason for a hourly painter to know the cost of a project. Their job is to paint, not to control budgets or profits.
 

·
Almost Gone
Joined
·
10,730 Posts
Exactly, I had this one toothless guy - I was paying him $17/hr and he came to me saying he figured I was making good money off his back charging $20/hr and that he should ask for a raise. So basically in his mind I am making a 'profit' of $24 a day and that I should relinquish more of it over. Have fun trying to make a hillbilly like that understand why you are charging $51/hr to cover his $17/hr.

He was occupying before it was hip.
 

·
Almost Gone
Joined
·
10,730 Posts
I won a decent payout from a poker tournament recently. I made the mistake of letting my woman know the numbers...

Learning experience.
 

·
The Long Island Painter
Joined
·
396 Posts
Agreed. Or a bad estimate.
We all make mistakes.
Sometimes I would tell the guys I screwed up the price
and they might bring it under budget anyway.
I have done some bad ones over the years. It is o.k. as long as you learn what you did wrong.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14,407 Posts
I find it most helpful to tell painters at the beginning of a project, what their specific tasks will be in each phase and what the estimated man hours for each component are.

For instance,

Nate is going to be doing cabinet finishes. 78 hours
Alex and John will team up on trim prep and finish 167 hours
Sam will be doing window sashes 130 hours

These are not real numbers obviously, but if a guy knows what he needs to hit for production rates, he is much more likely to hit it.

If everyone hits it, the overall numbers work. If not, we look at why a number wasn't achieved and make whatever improvements necessary.

This makes alot more sense than telling guys that they need to make an $8k budget work. That means nothing.

Estimating can be looked at in many ways. If an hourly rate is used in estimating, on the flip side of it is the production per hour, per day, week and month. Those are the things that are most helpful to the guys swinging the brushes.
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
6,326 Posts
I think greed is harbored at every level of the totem pole, and workers are no different. They see themselves getting $17/hr and wonder why you have to charge $40 to make money. I've never known anyone interested in learning about balance sheets, indirect overhead, profit margin, etc. They just want more money. I don't blame them, but I just never seen any 'give' from their side either, their attitudes in my experience have been infantile at times. When I did share stories of attitudes of homeowners or told them the homeowner was unhappy about cigarette butts thrown on their driveway - all I got was to tell the homeowner to go F' off. Yeah, that's real good P.R., of course if I didn't collect the check - how could I pay them. Everyone talks about hiring 'good' guys -I never found any.
Sorry about your luck...I got 12 right now :)
 

·
Painting Contractor
Joined
·
2,565 Posts
Every employee has an e-mail account at ecopainting.ca
The Google docs folder named "Fixed comp" is shared (to view) with these e-mail accounts.
It contains a spreadsheet of every job
and the "fixed bank" spreadsheet.

So obviously the job cost part of the price they need to know to participate.
They also know what percentage the job cost is, so there you go.
Information of the Gross Profit is available as well for whoever wants to know.
A bit different for sure but works for us.
They know the budget, they manage the hours and even their payroll hours with t-sheets and the office.
Hardly any involvement from me/us other than some quality check.
Almost auto pilot.
And these job spreadsheets over a year have so much information.
For example Painter A has been producing $18.28 worth of work for a year, gets paid $17, so a raise is due.
If producing less than getting paid, they are helped to improve.
If there is no improvement, they will not work for us any more.
Transparency is a must for us.
I understand you need the right people to make this work
and they themselves weed out whoever does not fit in.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,726 Posts
Sorry about your luck...I got 12 right now :)
AAron really sorry you got some bad "painters". The guys I have don't smoke and if one of them gave me that kind of lip I'd put lumps on his head faster than he could scratch em ! Keep looking, you will find good guys for your crew.
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
6,326 Posts
AAron really sorry you got some bad "painters". The guys I have don't smoke and if one of them gave me that kind of lip I'd put lumps on his head faster than he could scratch em ! Keep looking, you will find good guys for your crew.
I think you mis read...I have 12 GREAT painters right now and don't want to loose a single 1.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,540 Posts
I think greed is harbored at every level of the totem pole, and workers are no different. They see themselves getting $17/hr and wonder why you have to charge $40 to make money. I've never known anyone interested in learning about balance sheets, indirect overhead, profit margin, etc. They just want more money. I don't blame them, but I just never seen any 'give' from their side either, their attitudes in my experience have been infantile at times. When I did share stories of attitudes of homeowners or told them the homeowner was unhappy about cigarette butts thrown on their driveway - all I got was to tell the homeowner to go F' off. Yeah, that's real good P.R., of course if I didn't collect the check - how could I pay them. Everyone talks about hiring 'good' guys -I never found any.

Dan my boy I think you have hit the nail on the head. You give up way to quickly and after a few guys you draw the wrong conclusion about all workers, it would seem. I bet you ask anybody who has and keeps workers all year round about their experience and they will tell you it ain't easy to find a good one but they keep trying until they find one, instead of just quitting and saying to themselves it cant be done. That seems to be a big difference in any successfully persons life some quit very easy and never accomplish what they want and some never stop trying learning from every experience, until they accomplish what they set out for heck I went threw 20 guys when I moved to Charlotte 9 years ago to find one good guy. I see things that you say like you didn't collect the check how could you pay them:blink: wtf, you should not even consider employees if you dint have the money in the bank already to pay them weather you get paid or not living check to check is a huge mistake. You say you never found any good guys I say you haven't looked at enough.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,726 Posts
I agree. If you're serious about the business you don't give up - on finding good people or anything else. And this IS a life long learning thing, I've been at it a looooooong time and continue to learn, about employees and everything else. Sites like this one can be a great help to all of us if it's used with the intent of learning. Not to mention having a little ha ha during down time. Gotta go finish my floor now, yall have a great day!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
107 Posts
The more I learn, the more I argue with the "closed books" idea.

Guys on the front line need to KNOW what it costs to run a business, what is involved, what YOU do to keep them working.

The typical employ simply cannot understand that it costs you $60/hr to run a man for $20/hr. He can't understand, because he has no idea of the hidden costs ... the hidden taxes, the workmans' comp, the licenses, the other insurances, the bookkeeping expenses, the OSHA costs, etc.

Nor does he have any idea of the effect taking an extra hour can have on a job.

We might have fewer problem with 'side work' and 'trunk-slammer' competition if our guys learned from OUR jobe the real costs .... rather than learning by doing side-jobs and 'spoiling' the business for everyone.
 
21 - 40 of 52 Posts
Top