This article was writen as a contribution to Valleyscape, a local landscape professional magazine.
As featured in Valleyscape(www.eldoradocommunications.net) April, 2017
There are two holidays in a year one could argue are of most importance in our industry. These days are reserved for us to contemplate the importance of our planet and our trees. They are Earth Day and Arbor Day, and they are full of opportunity for us.
In California, Arbor day is observed March 7-14. Historically, many schools nationwide commemorate this day by planting trees.
Earth Day is celebrated worldwide in April and this year on the 24th of the month. The holiday was created to raise awareness about environmental issues. There are many different activities that could be planned on this day.
As landscapers we are uniquely positioned to make a big difference during these holidays. Since both holidays are directly related to our work, not only can we make an impact inside our communities, we can also seize the opportunity to improve our businesses in more than one way.
Here are some of the ways you can use these Holidays to improve yourself.
Reconnect With Purpose
Everyday brings new information and distractions. Those of us lucky to have good team support generally keep our ear to the ground and listen for feedback. Much of our planning is based on how business is running and what others may be doing. On the other hand, owners with poorer support or bigger operations, may be entertaining surprise tasks and in some cases their daily to do list becomes more reactive.
Planning an event that is mostly selfless, and benefits nature can help us rekindle our sense of life purpose. The same is true for our management and sales teams. Experience has taught us that having a clear and meaningful mission is much more powerful then pushing to make the next sales goal.
Let your action plan be guided by purpose. Let it be your end in mind.
Develop Company Culture
It is no secret, the biggest challenge of growing a landscape company is finding good people to fill it. While it is important to offer job security and the best compensation package, great recruitment is about more than that. Do your employees find satisfaction in what they do?
Integrating a volunteer event for your office staff and field force is a powerful reminder that their mission is to improve their environment. Those who believe in the mission will find themselves re-energized. Those who don’t believe may begin to make way for others who do.
Lift Your Brand
Being part of projects that benefit communities can help strengthen current relationships as well as secure future ones.
This year we had the privilege of helping a small community in Duarte plant trees. It just so happens our maintenance contract for maintenance is up for renewal at end of month. Maybe our company stands out during the next round of bidding. Whether it does or it doesn’t, the work is done and we made the most of it.
So reach out to current and past customers to find your volunteer project. If you don’t find anyone in your professional circle pick up the phone and call your local schools or non-profits. Free work aimed at a good cause is generally not hard to sell. If you missed the window this year, add it to your 2018 action plan.