NALP seeks members, nonmembers for peer groups


The National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) seeks members and nonmembers for its peer group program. It currently has five groups with four to six landscape companies per group. A sixth group is expected to launch soon.

Bruce Wilson
Bruce Wilson

“Any company can apply and will be considered for new groups as they form,” said Bruce Wilson, lead facilitator for NALP peer groups. Wilson, an LM columnist, is managing partner of green industry consulting firm the Wilson-Oyler Group.

Additionally, there are a few openings in existing groups for companies that meet the following criteria:

  • $5 million-plus in annual revenue, commercial maintenance focus in either the Sunbelt or Snowbelt;
  • $5 million-plus in annual revenue, residential design/build focus; and
  • $2 million to $5 million in annual revenue, maintenance focus.

The association founded its peer group program two years ago in response to member requests.

Sabeena Hickman
Sabeena Hickman

“We launched the NALP peer group program because members told us that they wanted the chance to network and develop relationships with similar, noncompeting companies who were experiencing the same challenges,” said Sabeena Hickman, NALP CEO. “The peer group program has allowed our members to network and learn from peers on a much deeper level and has led to very meaningful and long-lasting business relationships.”

The NALP peer groups are facilitated by the Wilson-Oyler Group; Wilson determines the make-ups of the various groups based on compatibility. Wilson-Oyler has led independent green industry peer groups for a decade.

George Hohman, LIC, president and founder of Akron, Ohio-based Turfscape, has been a member of a Wilson-Oyler peer group for more than two years.

“The reasons that I’ve found peer groups to be so valuable are that they provide you with the opportunity to benchmark your company against other companies in the group, they hold all members accountable to other owners in the group by making commitments at each meeting on certain goals, and they allow you to network with other landscape professionals and owners of well-run companies.” he said.

The NALP peer group fee structure ranges from $3,000 to $9,000 per company per year, depending on annual revenue and NALP member status.

The fee covers the facilitator’s administration costs and travel expenses; it also includes an annual benchmarking report. Peer group members pay their own travel costs and incur additional costs for meetings held beyond their groups’ predetermined number of in-person or teleconference sessions.

Interested landscape professionals can apply at the NALP website.

Marisa Palmieri

Marisa Palmieri

Marisa Palmieri is an experienced Green Industry editor who's won numerous awards for her coverage of the landscape and golf course markets from the Turf & Ornamental Communicators Association (TOCA), the Press Club of Cleveland and the American Society of Business Publication Editors (ASBPE). In 2007, ASBPE named her a Young Leader. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Journalism, cum laude, from Ohio University’s Scripps School of Journalism.

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