Benchmarks For Landscaping Crews

A friend of mine is in the fitness industry and recently he hired a sales coach to help develop processes for new salespeople.

 

Being the nosey girl that I am, I asked to see some of their notes, hoping to find a nugget that I could apply to the green industry.

 

One video I stumbled across was about how to increase call volume.  The coach suggested sitting next to a new salesperson for one hour of the day with a list of names and phone numbers.  Then just listen to their calls, offer zero feedback, and make a tally every time they complete a call.

 

The idea here is that since the boss is right there and there are no distractions, they are going to be focused really hard in making calls.  

 

Once the hour is up, the next step is to use this as a benchmark.

 

Say, “Okay Brad, you made 50 calls in one hour and scheduled 16 appointments. That means hypothetically you could be scheduling 100 appointments in an 8 hour day.  I know...

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May's Top Picks

Grab your coffee & sit back to enjoy this month's top picks from yours truly! 

 

Technology 

Everything You Need to Know About the New Gmail

 

Summary:  New in May, Gmail gives us features we've needed but perhaps didn't know we needed, all in one update - including snoozing, self-destructing emails and Google tasks in your inbox. 

 

My take: At first, I couldn't wait to turn on my new Gmail interface. But after using it for 2 days, I turned it back off. The new features are appealing, but I'm not comfortable yet with the new look.  Anyone else having more success? 

 

Digital Marketing 

Need to Spring Clean Your Marketing? These 10 Ideas Will Help.

 

Summary:  Every once in a while, you’ve got to clean up the parts of your marketing program that don’t regularly get your attention. In the everyday hustle, this stuff can easily get neglected.

 

Why I picked...

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What to Do When H-2B Falls Through

For over 30 years, employers throughout the United States have utilized the government issued H-2B program.  As seasonal businesses, this temporary work visa program fixed a problem of finding enthusiastic workers who are able to work according to weather constraints and/or periods of increased demand.

The Rise and Fall of the H-2B Program

The success of the program quickly caught on and hundreds of employers were benefiting from employing legal immigrant workers during the active growing season; later waving goodbye as they went home to spend time with their families while our work was slow.  

At its peak in 2008, nearly 95,000 visas were issued from the Department of Homeland Security.  

But, whether we saw it or not, the H2B program came with a cost.

And not just following the intricate job posting rules, or jumping through legal hoops in a timely fashion, or paying fees that increased each year.

The biggest cost, was that without realizing it, we abandoned all...

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3 Lawn and Landscape Leaders You Can Learn From This Winter

Jerry Schill

Schill Grounds Management, Ohio 

Jerry Schill is the owner of Schill Landscape Management a full-service Landscape Maintenance and Snow and Ice removal contractor providing services to Commercial, Industrial, Apartment, Retail, and HOA across Northern Ohio.

 

Company Expansion & Growth Without Pains 

He’s a mover & shaker in the Green Industry and this winter, Jerry’s top priority is successfully moving into his new location. They have 2 big branches and 2 satellite locations. The new office will be the largest branch for the team.

He laughingly admits he “over-did it” as he told me about how the ½ acre building is jam packed with a huge formal meeting room, a training center addition, full kitchen, and a robust fenced-in parking lot.

They found, purchased and closed on the property all within 30 days. Like you, I was wondering how he’s keeping his head on straight.

“We’re blessed to have our...

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2017 Landscaping and Lawn Care Trends

I've grown up in the lawn care and landscaping industry my whole life, and nothing excites me more than seeing our company grow along with others like us who are living out the American Dream.

The best way that I have found to stay current, is to talk to people within the industry and see what trends they've noticed on the horizon. 

Here you’ll find a collection of ideas from thought leaders around North America on what they believe are going to be the biggest trends we see in lawn care, landscaping and small businesses in 2017.

Robust Water Management and Water Reclamation Efforts


Reduced water usage and water reclamation is growing in popularity especially in Vista California where Heaviland Landscape Management President, Tom Heaviland is located.

Here’s what Tom said about the topic, “California’s current drought is being billed as the driest period in the state’s recorded rainfall history. We are currently entering our...

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How Dowco Survived a Year Without H2B

FOR THE PAST 20 YEARS, OUR FAMILY-OWNED COMPANY HAS APPLIED FOR OVER 40 WORKERS TO TRAVEL FROM TAMAULIPAS, MEXICO TO ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI ON TEMPORARY 9 MONTH WORK VISAS TO PERFORM LAWN CARE AND LANDSCAPING SERVICES FOR OUR CLIENTS.


Over the winter we jump through a few government hoops, pay a bunch of fees, send out renewals to our clients, plow for a few snow events, and vacation in the tropics with NALP.  When spring time comes, the Mexican employees arrive and it’s off to the races!  We get busy completing massive amounts of work and clients are happy. It requires minimal quality oversight because the same men have been coming each year and know our properties and training. We throw a goodbye party in November to say thank you and then the cycle repeats itself. 

For 20 years this process has repeated and our company has grown and experienced huge successes serving nearly 1,000 clients.  Until 2015.  

  • 2015 was the year that our help didn’t...
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