Reflect on Landscape Survey Results as it Pertains to Your Business.Outside Contributor
This past spring a national landscape industry publication conducted a survey and asked the following question, “if you could fix one economic challenge to help your business in 2015, what would it be?”
Before we dive into the answers we would ask you to consider the simple concept we all know which is cause and effect. When you actually consider the answers to this survey question, we consider it to be more important to look at what is actually the business challenges that caused these responses.
Let’s take a look the top three responses behind the question, “if you could fix one economic challenge to help your business in 2015, what would it be?” These three responses made up 70 percent of all of the responses.
- 36% – Better candidates for hire.
- 20% – Customers cutting back / cancelling services
- 14% – Access to capital.
Better candidates for hire
The quality of the employees you have on staff is critical to your success, so we understand this answer. But if we peel this onion back a bit and reflect on your business, and what you have under your control, would you answer this differently?
- What is your hiring process? Do you have a process?
- What sources do you use to look for new employees?
- What does your company do to attract the best candidates? This question is not about compensation.
- Does your leadership abilities make your employees a part of the business?
- We know landscape work is hard physical work, but how do you handle work place safety?
- Do you have uniforms for your employees so they take pride in working for your company?
There are a lot of questions here that are under your control as a business owner that can help you attract the better candidates to hire. You can sit back and blame the overall quality of the labor market, or you can put your attention on the factors which are under your control.
Customers cutting back / Cancelling services
You will always have customers that are looking to trim expenses and your services. That’s because you are competing against other expense choices your customer has to make. Should they get outdoor lighting or a new television set?
Again, let’s get back to the factors YOU have under your control in the management of your business. When customers are cutting back or cancelling your services, we challenge you to consider the reasons why!
- Has your service been of the highest quality?
- Have you been reliable and dependent?
- Are you creating a great customer experience, and results that tangible to your customer?
- How is your on-going communication with your customers?
- Do you have a process in place that documents and tracks the reasons why customers have cut back or cancelled your services?
- Your job as the business owner is to methodically look at every reason why your customers may cut back or cancel on your services.
- Do you know what it cost you to acquire customers?
Access to capital
Why would people say that access to capital is one of their economic challenges? This certainly begs the question about the overall financial health of companies which gave this response.
One of the biggest challenges any business faces is cash flow. Do people need more access to capital because their cash flow is poor? Why is their cash flow poor? There is plenty of capital out there for people to access today to people who have excellent credit and payment histories.
Make sure you look at the business reasons behind the answers to these questions. At Landscape Today we want to help you grow your business by realizing that it’s not about the “landscape industry” – it’s about how businesses are run and managed.