L & m refuse: focused on customer service


Courtesy of Waste Advantage Magazine

According to Kevin Lee, president and owner of L & M Refuse, located in Sandyville, OH, the secret to a successful business is excellent customer service. Originally merged with B & S Refuse, a company that his stepfather purchased in 1979 to grow his expanding business, L &M was bought a few years later by Lee and was merged with B & S to become the company it is today. L & M has 22 staff members with a facility that includes the main offices, maintenance and a yard for all their trucks. Covering Stark and Tuscarawas Counties with more than 10,000 residential and 600 commercial customers and roll-off accounts, L & M Refuse deals primarily with solid waste; however, they do offer recycling although it is not a major part of its business because of the cost.

Customer Service is Key
Lee says that the state of the economy in the past year has only affected their business in two areas. “The past two years have actually been the best we’ve had in business. We have been keeping pretty busy; however, lately, we have run into the problem of non-payment as a direct result of the economy.” Another challenge is that landfills also took a hit from the economy and have cut back two hours per day during the week and are closed on the weekends. Therefore, L & M trucks now only have certain times to get the trash to the landfills. In order to combat this, trash is picked up during the early morning hours of 4 a.m. and dropped before the landfills’ closing time. Despite both of these challenges,

Lee stays positive with the fact that the company is still showing healthy signs of net growth across the board. Lee firmly believes this can be attributed to the company’s great service to their customers. Rather than advertising their services to the community, L & M relies on word of mouth that has worked well throughout the years, as they have gained new customers and are going strong. “Our number one priority is service to our customers. We try to service them as best we can. We can’t please everyone but we do get great feedback from those that are satisfied.” L & M’s customers certainly know when the company’s truck is coming down the street. By painting every truck in the fleet two different colors, Lee stresses that it helps with customer recognition, “If you see a different color truck with an interesting decal on the side of it, you are going to want to stop and look, and find out who it is.”

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