In America the question is not ‘do you
have lawn care?’ that, after all, is a given; the question is ‘which lawn care
company do use?’ ‘˜Across the pond’ lawn care is viewed as more of an essential
service than a luxury. In the state of Michigan alone there are hundreds of
companies vying to treat your lawn. Their lawn care industry is huge, they have
a wealth of experience and are no doubt in a position to show us a thing or two
that they have learnt along the way.
At Greensleeves we are certainly not
ones to rest on our laurels, we are constantly questioning and investigating
how we can make our service better for our customers and what additional value
can we add to our offering? So when the opportunity arose to pay a visit to the
country that claims to be the leader of lawn care it was a ‘no brainer’, as
they say in the US.
Two of our directors David Truby and
Phil Paddock travelled to the USA at the beginning of May and were generously
hosted by Real Green systems, a lawn care software company with its roots
firmly in the industry having evolved out of a lawn treatment business. Over
the course of four days David and Phil experienced lawn care like they had
never seen before. ‘The sheer scale of the industry is huge and we were excited
to see how they operated and if essentially their offering was the same’. David
The market in which they
operate is much more competitive than that of the UK with hundreds of lawn
care companies in operation in one area. Their focus on sales and
marketing is unbelievable and the way in which they implemented it was light
years ahead of where we are in the UK ‘“ there systems are fully automated to
cross sell based upon individual customers’ preferences and the range of
options available to their customers is staggering.
‘Real Green took us on a tour of some
of the treatment routes in the area we were staying and it was immediately
apparent that the style of lawns they treat is different. The lawns are much
larger than ours and the vast majority are open plan with very few hedges or
fences similar to our new build housing estates but on a much larger scale.
Whilst the grass itself in the regions visited is very similar to that of the
UK, they have many more pests to deal with, some of which will wipe out an
entire lawn in no time, therefore their focus on pesticide treatments is much
stronger.’ added Phil.
‘Due to the fact that the lawns are
larger the equipment also is much bigger in size ‘“ they couldn’t believe we
used knapsacks to treat ‘“ they opt for ride on style equipment to cut and also
treat. Lawns are cut much higher than the usual height in the UK and are
therefore much greener and lusher, although the frequency of once or twice per
fortnight is the same.’
They packed in an awful lot on the four
day visit however David admitted it wasn’t all work and no play. ‘The
hospitality we received was exceptional, whilst there we were transported in a
private jet and taken to watch a traditional baseball game, nothing was too
much trouble and we even got our name on the big screen which was fantastic!’
In conclusion the visit was certainly
an eye opener, we took some major learning points away with us and whilst we
are not about to replicate the American market David and Phil both conceded
that whilst we already place a strong emphasis on customer service at
Greensleeves we can certainly take a page out of the USA’s book and focus on
adding additional value to our customers through enhanced education.
For more information please call 0808 100 1413.