33 episodes

Hardscape Growth: A podcast for business leaders in the trenches, is a show focused on helping hardscape professionals find success in growing their businesses.
We’re talking with business leaders, designers and experts who are shaking things up in the hardscape world. Each episode will dive into real, honest conversations with the people who are making a difference.
From pavers to profits and everything in between, if it can help you succeed, we’re going to cover it. Tune in and stay up to date with the latest trends, strategies, tools and techniques. We’re here to help you grow!

Hardscape Growth Hardscaper

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 11 Ratings

Hardscape Growth: A podcast for business leaders in the trenches, is a show focused on helping hardscape professionals find success in growing their businesses.
We’re talking with business leaders, designers and experts who are shaking things up in the hardscape world. Each episode will dive into real, honest conversations with the people who are making a difference.
From pavers to profits and everything in between, if it can help you succeed, we’re going to cover it. Tune in and stay up to date with the latest trends, strategies, tools and techniques. We’re here to help you grow!

    Project Management: Staying Ahead of Material Shortages w/ Kevin Moore

    Project Management: Staying Ahead of Material Shortages w/ Kevin Moore

    Kevin Moore is the VP and COO at Carroll Landscaping Inc. and is responsible for operations, sales and project management. 
    His belief is that leaders in all positions, be it owner, manager, project manager, foreman… exist to serve their teams. To facilitate their work. 
    Therefore, a project manager facilitates the execution of a project.
     A big key to this? PROACTIVITY.
     He believes this role should aim to never be putting out fires, never be reactive. 
    Over his 30+ year career in the industry, some basic actions have made his life easier. Relying on his well-worn clipboard, Kevin is an avid note-taker and list-maker.
    In this episode, we asked this project management master how he stays ahead of the current challenges with material shortages. He answered the bell with some good, actionable tips from his own business. 
    Things we covered: 
    - Daily game plan prepared the night before 
    - Scheduled and consistent communication with teams 
    - Transparency and empathy when setting expectations 
    - Proactive approaches to purchasing materials 
    - Importance of a strong network
     If you want to be the first to know about educational events coming up in your area, sign up for Hardscaper News. 

    • 1 hr
    How to Fearlessly Tackle Material & Labor Shortages

    How to Fearlessly Tackle Material & Labor Shortages

    Courtney Schild is the president of Dutch Barn Landscaping and Pools in New Lenox, IL. He acquired t he company in 2018 after founding his own landscape company a few years earlier. He joined us on the show to talk about how he’s addressed the two biggest issues plaguing the industry today: material and labor shortages.
     
    For both, his solution has been simple. Be proactive.
     
    We started the conversation with how he goes about stocking inventory to supply his projects. How that has helps his operations run smoothly and what implications inventory and inventory management have on his business. We looked at the steps he took to build a plan and how he executes it.
     
    We ended the conversation talking about his approach to hiring, training and retaining people. He’s not afraid to get the best talent available, even if they don’t have industry experience, because he’s willing to invest time and resources into them. His belief: investing in them now will pay larger dividends later.

    Referenced in this episode:
     Investing time in training your teams with tools like Hardscaper.com 

    • 59 min
    Fit for the Job: Fitness & Nutrition in Hardscaping

    Fit for the Job: Fitness & Nutrition in Hardscaping

    Becky Fidler (@beckyfidlerfitness on Instagram) joins me on the show to talk about her journey in the hardscape industry and the role that fitness and nutrition play in the continuation of her career.
    Becky joined the hardscape industry in 2011 after deciding that desk jobs and low pay were not for her. She was seeking a career that would be more personally fulfilling and improve her ability to provide for her family.
    It’s no secret that the industry is a male-dominated one. It’s also one where, historically, brute strength and prior experience were absolute pre-requisites for the job. That’s what makes Becky’s story so special.
    In the beginning, she had never laid a paver and barely weighed more than some of the materials that she needed to handle. To say she wasn’t welcomed with open arms is an understatement.
    Her first weeks on the job were physically and mentally demanding as she tried her best but would feel like she was letting the crew down because she wasn’t good enough. Her lowest point may have been when she couldn’t even get a wheelbarrow up the ramp into the dumper and would need to wait for someone to help out.
    That’s when she doubled down. Committed to succeeding in the trade and being a valuable member of the team, she began to focus on physical fitness and nutrition.
    While working, she earned an Associate’s Degree as a Physical Fitness Specialist and became a Certified Personal Trainer, all with the intentions of becoming a better laborer on site.
    Today, Becky still finds herself on the job every day and helps with hiring and training of new team members.
    We wrap up the interview with helpful tips for improved mobility and health through proper stretching and dietary supplements. 

    • 1 hr 17 min
    Building a Reputation as a Technician & Artist w/ Chad Quenneville

    Building a Reputation as a Technician & Artist w/ Chad Quenneville

    Chad Quenneville started Natural Design Landscapes in Cornwall, ON, ten years ago.
     
    Early on, a lot of the company’s work was small and lacking in creativity. Gradually, Chad started taking design chances, which led to greater satisfaction in his work and improved profits for his company. By elevating his company’s project “standards” he was able to attract a more discerning clientele that was willing to hire him for his expertise and his creativity.
     
    Another key lesson he learned in the process was to go the extra mile to make his clients happy. For example, he filled in the planting beds with quality topsoil, even if it wasn’t part of the original project scope or contract. Sometimes, those smaller details go a long way in building a reputation and earning quality testimonials and referrals, the latter being Chad’s only form of marketing.
     
    In this episode, you’ll also hear about:

    Shaking off the starving artist mentality
    Doing cool stuff to gain referrals instead of advertising
    Balancing larger corporate jobs with smaller artistic jobs
    Building an amicable reputation among competitors

    Chad’s million-dollar company has a phenomenal reputation and a strong relationship with their vendors, sub-contractors and other tradespeople. He may have grown his company backwards according to business wisdom, but his art speaks for itself.
    Check out these resources we mentioned during the podcast:

    Natural Design Landscapes is a certified Techo-Pro 
    Find photos of Chad’s work on Instagram 

    Find this interview and many more by subscribing to Hardscape Growth on Spotify, on Apple Podcasts, or on our website .
    Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for Hardscape Growth in your favorite podcast player.

    • 37 min
    Building a Better Company By Empowering Your Team w/ Matthew May

    Building a Better Company By Empowering Your Team w/ Matthew May

    This recording is with our first returning guest on the show, Matt from Hardscape Ottawa. He was featured in our second episode released on Feb. 5.
    The conversation revolves around a book by L. David Marquet, a retired U.S. Navy Captain, called “Turn the Ship Around!” based on a true story of turning followers into leaders.
    Matt and I got on this topic as we have had many conversations over the years about building a better company through its people.
    Through a few stories, Matt walks us through the leadership ladder and the 3 C’s (Confidence, Control and Competency), and provides some practical advice on how to instill these principles within a team.
    Follow Matt @hardscapeottawa on Instagram or visit his website at www.hardscapeottawa.com. 
    Find this interview and many more by subscribing to Hardscape Growth on Spotify, on Apple Podcasts, or on our website.  
    Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for Hardscape Growth in your favorite podcast player.

    • 1 hr 1 min
    How to Succeed w/ The Power of Expert Positioning w/ Mike Arnold

    How to Succeed w/ The Power of Expert Positioning w/ Mike Arnold

    Mike Arnold is the President of Creekside Outdoor Living, based in Crown Point, Indiana. They focus on being outdoor living design and build experts and they strive to show this through everything they do by emphasizing the details.
    For example, the clients’ homes in the 3D renders have gutters, on the project every miter cut has to be perfectly symmetrical, the joint sand needs to be just below the paver’s chamfer… They focus on the details because, to them, the details matter.
    This focus shows itself in their content marketing strategy, too. While lots of contractors have found success showing backyard transformations, or showcasing the design process, Mike has figured out a way to make his love of details be the message that helps define his company’s brand online.
    The result? More leads of higher quality and prospects that value what Mike’s team loves doing most. You don’t need fancy metrics or KPIs to see that impact.
     
    In this episode, we cover that and a few other topics including:

    The concept of expert positioning
    Overcoming fear and guilt in order to charge appropriately
    Acknowledging that a prospect, a client, a vendor, an employee or a stranger all have one thing in common, they’re all people, and they all want to feel the same things early in a relationship

    There’s a moment in the show where Mike talked about how he was beginning to dread his sales process because it was all about hunting down his prospects and constantly following up and how now, because of an effective content strategy, he has more leads of better quality and doesn’t need to waste time following up with the wrong customers. He has shifted where he invested his time to drive better results for his company, without investing more time.
    Referenced Links:

    Instagram handle: @creeksidenwi
    Website : https://creeksidenwi.com/

    Find this interview and many more by subscribing to Hardscape Growth on Spotify, on Apple Podcasts, or on our website.
    Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for Hardscape Growth in your favorite podcast player.

    • 1 hr 5 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
11 Ratings

11 Ratings

JordanRoberts817 ,

Jordan Roberts

Great content, informative any hardscape business owner should be listening to this

Mike Pletz ,

Mike Pletz

Great host, show, and guests! This is great for the industry! Looking forward to hearing more from this.

AlexCadieux ,

Can’t believe how much great information all of these contractors are sharing!

I’ve learned so many tips to make my business better because of this show. Thank you!

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