Two Cents for the Little Guy

Lincoln Waste Solutions deals with about 7200 different haulers over the course of a year. Like everything in else life, some are good and some are not as good, and some are stupendous.   Waste Optimization is not an easy challenge and I like to think we are better at it than anyone else in North America. I have come to that conclusion because the vast majority of our business comes from people who are thoroughly disgusted with their current hauler/broker.  No one is ever disgusted with us.

That being said, I have to give the bulk of the credit to our haulers, and more particularly, the smaller haulers, those companies who have family members driving trucks and scheduling and making sure the lights are on at 6:00 every morning.  These are the companies that guarantee our prosperity.

Their success in our relationships rarely comes about from “discounting.”  They are not the companies trying to buy market share, or undercut their competitors until no one makes any money.  These are the companies who thrive on customer service, who know the high-value of what they provide.  These are the companies who winners align with in order to create successful relationships.

We deal with a lot of large haulers, publicly traded haulers, haulers who compete with us every day.  They do a good job and in some cases they are the OGIT (Only Game in Town) and we are forced to use them if we want to provide service for our customers.  But from my seat the difference between big and small is considerable.  Big can get the job done, but it is small who goes out the Friday afternoon before a holiday and makes a critical pick-up.  It is small who runs into the restaurant to ask a patron to move their car rather than double bill the client for another pick-up because he can’t great access to the dumpster.  It is small who jumps out his truck and throws the extra garbage bags in the dumpster…and never bill anyone or even needs to tell anyone.

Here’s to the privately traded company.  The sole-prop.  The three truck operation.  Here’s to the folks who bust their behinds to take care of our customers and never receive anywhere near their share of the credit.T If you are one of those companies, you can trust us on two things; we will always pay you within 30 days and we will always tell our customers that our success isl due to your hard work.



Honest, the Check is in the Mail

The waste management industry does not have the best reputation and this bad reputation is not only well deserved, it is continually sullied by so many members of our fraternity.  Client visits are fraught with prospects telling us how they cannot understand why their waste bills are going up, and up and up…this after all sorts of different bidders guaranteed them their bill would go down and down and down.  We get this. We understand.  The waste industry is old school and they are inherently used to billing whatever/whenever they feel like it.

Taking out your trash is not rocket science.  You hire a truck, he tips your dumpsters, he takes it to the landfill, he dumps it.  Seems pretty cut and dried to me but the reality is so different.  Yes, they pick up your trash and remove it…but no it is not simple.  The first problem you get stuck with is the mistreatment of the haulers.  The big waste management companies bully the haulers.  They don’t pay the haulers on time.  They make the haulers use landfills, not with the best price, but with the best kick-back to the waste management firm.  Waste management companies regularly hire haulers to pick up your trash…..but (and there are lots of buts) they can’t do it on their terms.  The haulers are hamstrung.  If the haulers complain they not only lose your business…they lose all the business from the big waste management firm.

Ok, so how does this effect you?  Remember, you hired them to take out the trash…and they do get the trash removed.   You negotiated a price to have your trash removed and the waste management company does not seem to ever service you for this price.  This does not happen month one….they wait a few months and then your bill looks worse than before.  They are trying to pretend that their costs are more expensive…but shouldn’t their costs drop….even occasionally?  Ever get a rebate check, generated when fuel prices go down, from any of the national waste companies?

The other issue is your rebate.  The big waste management companies are always blabbing how they “repurpose everything.”  They, “keep your waste out of the landfill.”  They “find a home for all of your trash.”  If this is true…shouldn’t you be receiving  large rebate checks?  Ever take a look at what shrink wrap sells for?  Or broken pallets?  How about used grease…ever look at The Jacobsen?  Yellow grease is selling for about $.38/lb.  You getting that big check?  Or is that check in the mail like the rest of the promises the large waste management companies gave you?