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LM150 Lessons Learned: Q&A

June 12, 2014By

What do you know now that you wish you knew then? “I would have hired managers from outside the industry earlier.” –Keith Rotolo, senior vice president/owner, Rotolo Consultants (RCI) “The hardest challenge for any business owner is to let go and trust others to do tasks that you might not think they can do as well. It took me about seven years to... read more

LM150 Lessons Learned: Don’t ignore attacks on the industry

June 12, 2014By

No. 113 Lawn Dawg Nashua, N.H. Seventeen years ago, Jim Campanella was ready to branch out on his own after working for various lawn care companies in New England. In late 1996, TruGreen acquired Barefoot Grass, where he was the New England regional manager. The company offered him a job in Portland, Maine, but that wasn’t where he wanted to... read more

LM150 Lessons Learned: Ramp up maintenance sooner

June 12, 2014By

No. 64 McHale Landscape Design Upper Marlboro, Md. A self-defined “design/build snob,” Kevin McHale didn’t focus on bolstering a maintenance division when he and his brother Steve began McHale Landscape Design 33 years ago. “We just didn’t see the value of maintenance,” says McHale, president. “We were all about building, designing and constructing things. Maintenance was something somebody else did.” Which... read more

LM150 Lessons Learned: Embrace your mistakes. Plus, a few tips

June 12, 2014By

No. 22 NaturaLawn of America Frederick, Md. With 64 branches and sales nearing $46 million, the NaturaLawn of America franchise system has a thing or two to share about growing a business. Phil Catron, president and founder, has been in the industry since the 1970s, working for large and small lawn care companies before starting NaturaLawn. That said, many of... read more

LM150 Lessons Learned: Consistent marketing matters

June 12, 2014By

No. 100 Engledow Group Carmel, Ind. It’s common for company marketing efforts to go in fits and starts, especially when there’s multiple people manning the effort. That’s been the case for the 82-year-old Engledow Group, operated today by second- and third-generation Engledow family members. There were periods where marketing played a big role, says Marketing Director Joe Judd, who joined... read more

LM150-Lessons Learned: Spend more time developing systems

June 12, 2014By

No. 149 Emerald Isle Landscaping Denver On track to hit near $10 million in 2014, Emerald Isle Landscaping credits its success to the systems and processes it added about five years ago—it added an executive team this year to help standardize and streamline those. The 37-year-old company, which employs around 105, has seen significant growth in the past five years,... read more