Mowing lawns is a rite of passage for most young men. Most do it begrudgingly as a required household chore, some do it to earn a little extra money, and a few are just looking to get out of the house and stay busy. One 17-year-old took it far more seriously than just a part-time job to earn a few extra bucks — he built an empire from it and earns six-figures a year.
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RJ Duarte started mowing lawns when he was eight years old. He tagged along with his older brother who was doing it for a little spending money. “I found something that I enjoyed doing,” he said. “It might sound weird, but mowing lawns when you’re little is kind of fun.”
Duarte, who is now a high school senior in Colorado, didn’t do any fancy advertising for his company, GreenWorx. According to Fox News, Duarte’s impressive success is simply due to his company’s reputation and positive word of mouth. “We worked kind of all summer and all year…,” he said when asked how he found his success. No magic formula apparently, just hard work.
GreenWorx Landscaping saw such success that Duarte had to enlist help from one of his fellow classmates, Owen Johnson.
The two knew nothing about running a business. They were just two hardworking boys who knew the importance of delivering a quality product that would speak for itself.
The two business partners have other full-time and part-time workers who handle the day-to-day activities. “At one point during the summer, when we’re at our peak, we had 14 kids on one day, but typically we run about five or six full-time.”
Moneyish reported GreenWorx’s two biggest clients are a massive waterpark and a golf course. They clean up any lawn-related messes, plant new plants and, of course, mow lawns.
Duarte has a work ethic that would match anyone twice his age. He stated in a recent interview that he wakes up as early as 2:30 am in order to get as much work done as possible before he gets to school.
The hard work has paid off with numerous accolades. “I started mowing lawns when I was eight years old and I just kind of grew it from there, you know, as I kept going it turned into more and more and then, you know, like 2012, I brought on a business partner, Owen Johnson, and then in 2015, we won the Young Americans Bank Business Award and it’s just kind of gone up and up from there ever since,” Duarte said after winning Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2016.
Duarte, even with his success, still values getting an education and told Fox News he will be attending Colorado State University next semester.