5 Business Lessons From the Minnesota State Fair

Posted on Tue, Aug 30, 2016

Every year, The Great Minnesota Get Together draws almost 2 million fair-goers to Saint Paul over the weeks prior to Labor Day. The Minnesota State Fair, the largest of them all by daily attendance standards, is a massive, sometimes overwhelming, fried food frenzy that has everything from prize pigs to butter sculptures to grandstand concerts.


It is a right of passage for Minnesotans. And they know that in order to enjoy the fair to its fullest extent, you need to prepare and go about it like a pro. So here are the five lessons field service businesses that can learn from the Minnesota State Fair.

 

Read More

Tags: field service business

Why Lawn Maintenance Software Improves 1:1 Communication

Posted on Thu, Aug 25, 2016

Successful businesses know the importance of timely and personal communication. Customers want to be informed throughout the entire customer experience. When they first decide to give your business a call, they want to speak with a person that can take care of them. And if you’re initiating the contact(or your salespeople), you need to ensure that the interaction is personal and genuine. They want to have a contact they can call if there is an issue, they want to know they'll fix anything that might go wrong. 


As a business grows, it might become harder and harder to keep those relationships personal. You have more customers to keep track of, more moving parts and you need to start delegating more work. Essentially, as the business grows, relationships can suffer. It is why many consumers opt for shopping at smaller, locally owned stores. They like that they can speak with someone that has ownership over customer satisfaction.

Read More

Tags: lawn maintenance business

How to Optimize Your Field Service Website for Calls

Posted on Tue, Aug 23, 2016

Field service businesses need to consistently generate new leads in order to grow. Leads can come from salespeople calling out to customers, your field techs speaking with neighbors of current customers, referrals and, possibly the most important in the Digital Age we live in, your website.


Most forms of lead generation are active, meaning that you actively need to search out leads. But there are a few forms of passive lead generation. Passive lead generation is much cheaper than its counterpart. You don’t need to pay for the man power to seek out new business, you let the business come to you.

Read More

Tags: field service business

3 Reasons Why You Should Trade Lawn Maintenance Customers

Posted on Thu, Aug 18, 2016

I was recently at one of our customer’s offices and we were bouncing from topic to topic about their business. I was asking where most of their customers are located, how far they’re driving to jobs and how many jobs they can get done throughout the day. They mentioned something that I had never heard of businesses doing before. Last year, towards the end of the season, they “traded” customers with another business in the area.


They informed about twenty of their customers that they weren’t going to be renewing their contract the following year with them, but would recommend another company in their area that was one of their partners and the company that they traded customers with was comparable in service, they receive great reviews from their customers and had a great reputation in the area. In return, their business received the information for twenty customers that were closer to the city they were based out of. It allowed for their business and the other lawn maintenance provider they traded with to tighten up their service area and their customers received better service for it. It was a win-win-win. 


It sounds kind of impersonal at first and that trading customers could be bad for business, but here are three reasons why you should try it out with your lawn maintenance business.

Read More

Tags: lawn care company, lawn maintenance business

Transparency is The Only Way Field Service Businesses Can Survive

Posted on Tue, Aug 16, 2016

A new state law in Massachusetts might change how some field service employers are hiring new employees. The legislation that just passed makes it illegal for employers to ask a candidate their salary history until after the employer makes a job offer complete with compensation package information.


Massachusetts is the first state to enact a law like this(it doesn’t officially go into effect until January 2018), but there will likely be more states that will follow. It is a law that is made to protect employees from pay discrimination and protects employees from businesses that might use their salary history against them.

Read More

Tags: field service business, field service

Is a Four Day Work Week Right For Your Lawn Maintenance Business?

Posted on Thu, Aug 11, 2016

Lawn maintenance businesses are highly seasonal. Unless your business is based out of a state which is warm year round, you’ll have a busy season which is kicked off sometime before Memorial Day and ending sometime after Labor Day. In between the start and finish dates, you’re trying to cram as much work into those summer days as possible.


What happens is that you work incredibly long hours, push your employees your summer feels like work has taken over. Your employees hit a point when they feel burnt out - you feel burnt out. There was an article written in Turf Magazine about a four day work week. The article pointed out a few key points that you should consider. While it looks great on paper, it might create some friction within your lawn maintenance business. If you can pull it off, it might mean a greater work/life balance. But here are a few things that you should consider before implementing the four-ten hour work days.

Read More

Tags: lawn care business, lawn maintenance business

Why You Need to Regularly Fire Your Field Service Customers

Posted on Tue, Aug 09, 2016

I was out at one of our irrigation customer’s offices the other day and we were discussing all the aspects of their business. They position themselves as a “higher end” irrigation company, meaning they do large scale installs and service and also know that their pricing is higher than most of their competitors. They know that their techs are more experienced than many of their competitors and they also know that the work they do is quality work.


Most of their customers know this and understand it, too. They’re willing to pay more for their services, because they trust that they are going to get the job done right and they will be taken care of long after their system is started back up for the year or after a sprinkler head is replaced.

Read More

Tags: customer service, field service

5 Traits to Look For In Lawn Maintenance Employees

Posted on Thu, Aug 04, 2016

Hiring and keeping good employees.  


It is an issue for lawn maintenance businesses. The green industry as a whole is struggling to hire and retain great employees. Each year that we conduct our Green Industry Benchmark Report, a comprehensive report on the state of lawn maintenance, landscaping and irrigation businesses, we see that this is a growing problem for hundreds of businesses that we speak with.


So much so, that hiring quality employees is more of a concern than finding new work.

Read More

Tags: lawn maintenance business

4 Reasons Why Snow Removal Software Saves You From Lawsuits

Posted on Tue, Aug 02, 2016

We live in a pretty amazing era. We’ve seen so many different technological advancements in the past decades. We have houses, cars and phones that can all speak to each other and interact. It makes our life easier. Processes are automated in factories that once took hundreds of people to perform. Technology can make us more productive and also safer.


The era that we live in, while amazing, has also proved to be more and more litigious. In our most recent snow industry benchmark report, we found that slip and fall lawsuits are on the rise year over year. More and more snow contractors are being sued. And while some lawsuits might be frivolous and have seemingly no grounding, that doesn’t mean that they are automatically found not-liable.


As mentioned, technology can do some pretty amazing things. For snow contractors, tech can be a life-saver. One way that you can shield yourself from lawsuits is by using a snow removal software. Here are four ways that snow removal software saves you from being sued for a slip and fall claim.

Read More

Tags: snow plowing business, snow removal business

20 Helpful Lawnsite.com Threads for Maintenance Professionals

Posted on Thu, Jul 28, 2016

As lawn maintenance professional, you want to continuously improve your business every single day. It can be tough working on your business when you feel like you’re always working in your business. Lawn maintenance professionals are busy folks!


There are quite a few online resources for any business owner - the information ranges from finance, operations, marketing, sales and just general day to day management. One resource that is specific to the green industry is Lawnsite.com. Lawnsite is filled with useful information for all green industry professionals. However, it can be tough to navigate at times. So, we picked out twenty of the best Lawnsite.com threads that all lawn maintenance professionals should check out that can help improve their businesses.

Read More

Tags: lawn care business, lawn maintenance business