April 16, 2017
By Myscha Stafford
LO Membership and Chapter Coordinator

Myscha StaffordThis April marks my three-year anniversary with Landscape Ontario. It’s hard to believe when I joined the LO family, I was still writing my final exams for my last year of university. That feels like a lifetime ago. In the last three years I have gotten married, bought my first house, been on my first plane ride, played my first game of golf (which still has yet to improve) and I’ve been on stage with Mark Cullen and the legendary DeeGees band. These are just some of the highlights of a very amazing three years.

In three years, the LO membership family has grown to over 2,600, new endorsed supplier programs have been added, chapters have been busier than ever and the horticulture profession is thriving in many new ways.

Last month’s Canada Blooms was a magnificent showcase of the work by LO member companies and the sights of the show were the perfect way to kick-off the 2017 landscaping season. April marks the start of one of the busiest times of the year in the landscaping world, so pick a date on the calendar for some time in early July to have a special outing with your family and/or significant other.

Priorities this season

With the new season underway, what are your goals for the year? Are you trying to grow your company, increase sales, or take on larger projects? Perhaps you have new staff members on your team this year. How do you plan to onboard these individuals and keep seasoned staff motivated in their work? Your crew is a direct reflection of your success and your staff help to shape your company’s reputation with clients and industry colleagues.

Aside from hiring the most qualified workers for a position, it is also key to have a team that creates a healthy workplace environment where staff are actively engaged in the company they work for, beyond their paycheque. When staff members feel they are valued in a company and there is room for growth and development in their career, they are far more likely to perform to the very best of their abilities and also return the following season.

Here are some ideas to help kick-start a happy team environment this spring:
Company clothing is a great way to make your staff feel like part of the team. It also shows an added level of professionalism to your clients when your staff are uniformed. As an added bonus, you could purchase LO’s special Canada 150 Horticultural Professional shirts for your staff. These are available for order at horttrades.com/canada-150-shirt.

Mark’s Work Warehouse discount cards are available to all LO members and their staff. Why not give your staff the discount card so they can save on their annual purchase of safety boots, rain gear, etc. Discount cards are available for pick-up at Landscape Ontario, or we would be happy to send them to you.

After the wild ride of April and June, reward your staff with a fun day on the golf course (possibly at one of the many LO chapter tournaments) later in summer when things are a little less hectic.

Fostering a positive team environment and utilizing the resources available to you to do so, is a win-win-win for you, your staff and your business.

Summer member events

Your membership team is looking forward to a summer full of golf and baseball tournaments, site visits and member appreciation days. If you have a job site you are extra proud of this season, please let us know. We love visiting members at work and this gives us a chance to thank your clients for hiring a Landscape Ontario member. We are continuing our member appreciation days this summer and our goal is to host at least one of these events in each chapter throughout the summer. If you are looking for an additional way to motivate your team, bring them to one of our member appreciation days and let us treat them to breakfast. If you have a garden centre, nursery or supply yard and would be willing to host us for the day, please let me know. Member appreciation days begin this May, so be sure to check LO’s weekly enews and coming events on horttrades.com for locations and details.

Wishing all the best to you and your staff this season!
Myscha can be reached at myscha@landscapeontario.com or 1-800-265-5656 ext. 2333.