Editorial Advisory Board: March 2019

March 22, 2019 -  By
Editorial Advisory Board graphic (Graphic: Landscape Management)

Graphic: LM staff

What’s your best advice to help landscape pros get through spring preparations?

Landscape Professionals

Richard Bare
Arbor-Nomics Turf
Norcross, Ga.

“Take things one day at a time. Have a plan and a budget and stick to it. Also, delegate, delegate and then delegate some more!”

Troy Clogg
Troy Clogg Landscape Associates
Wixom, Mich.

“Plan for the spring in the fall. And the same goes for winter. Plan for next winter at the end of this winter. The best time to make a plan for improvement, growth or change is while it’s fresh in your mind. As the green season is winding down, it’s the best time to meet with your team and ask these simple questions: 1. What went right? 2. What went wrong? 3. What can we do to improve our results? From this information, you can create a list of behaviors that will lead you to your desired goals!”

Paul Fraynd
Sun Valley Landscaping
Omaha, Neb.

“Spring always tends to come quicker than we expect. Make a plan now to have your team ready for opening day. You will probably find that you can’t do all of things you wanted to over the winter, so focus on the core things you need to accomplish to get better. Have a plan and focus on the crucial ‘rocks’ that must get done and don’t let yourself get distracted with ‘shiny things.’ We like to focus on things that will help our clients and employees have a better experience working with our company.”

Luke Henry
ProScape Lawn & Landscaping Services
Marion, Ohio

“Spend half of a day out of the office, without distractions, and think about what did/did not go well last year. What things need to stop/start/change? Start tackling the items with the greatest impact.”

Chris Joyce
Joyce Landscaping
Cape Cod, Mass.

“Organize your spring preparations to create a process, break the process into individual items with a completion date on each item.”

Jerry McKay
McKay Landscape Lighting
Omaha, Neb.

“Make sure you staff up and get all your employees in the right ‘seats on the bus’ for the season.”

Bryan Stolz
Winterberry Landscape & Garden Center
Southington, Conn.

“One strategy that works well for us in the spring is to overhire for our initial mowing and maintenance crews. We plan our mow crews anticipating additional sales through the spring and early summer, reaching capacity in July. Until that point, those crews fill their extra time helping with spring cleanups, which reduces overtime. And the extra capacity allows our sales team to jump on any opportunities that come from competitors falling down on their spring startup work. There is some risk, because we are taking on the capital expense of a new crew without it being fully booked, but we find it a successful practice for supporting our organic growth.”

Industry Consultants

Marty Grunder
The Grow Group
Dayton, Ohio

“Plan every single day, week, month, quarter and year. All planning is good. Take charge of your calendar, don’t let your calendar take charge of you. This means blocking out time for all the things you need to do and saying no to a lot of things that don’t add value. I’m amazed at how poorly many landscape pros manage their time. They are reactive, not proactive. When you are proactive, you greatly improve your chances of success. Remember, most don’t like working for reactive people; it’s stressful and chaotic.”

Phil Harwood
Grow the Bench
Grand Rapids, Mich.

“Aggressively attack your plan with a ‘failure is not an option’ mentality. Put in the extra effort every day. Once you fall behind, it’s difficult to recover, so staying on top of everything in real time is the only way to succeed.”

Kevin Kehoe
3PG Consulting
Laguna, Calif.

“Do early contract renewals with the sales and account management teams to fill and communicate the schedules to crew and customers. Solidify the employment of the crew foreman. Get them hired with raises, etc., so you have the nucleus of the production team in place.”

Jeffrey Scott
Jeffrey Scott Consulting
Trumbull, Conn.

“Actively manage expectations of clients.”

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