Each year in August the Today's Garden Center Magazine puts out a call to all garden centers to fill out a lengthy survey on what they are doing and how well their business is thriving. This past year amidst getting ready for Gardenstock, I took the time to fill it out. It's actually a helpful survey. It forces you to evaluate how well you are conducting business. Are the finances in order are the greenhouses well stocked, are you actively engaged in your community; these are some of the topics covered.
I always feel a bit intimidated because we are such a small operation. And when going up against some really impressive and quite large businesses it's easy to feel, well, inadequate. But there was one area surveyed in which I did and do feel confident. And that has to do with our commitment to our gardeners and our community. The people in our community are the key reason we operate this small business.
So for at least that community part, it was a happy day. And the time was well spent getting me to think more closely about how we conduct business and where we could improve. So off it went, out of sight and out of mind until mid November when we received notification that we were to be named one of the Revolutionary 100 Garden Centers in the country for 2015. To say that was a shocker was a huge understatement. I had always filled out those surveys with the hope that I would learn something about how to better do business, not ever once, thinking we would get the call.
The 2015 Revolutionary 100 Awards program is run by the garden retail trade magazine Today's Garden Center and is sponsored by AmericanHort, the national association for the garden industry.
It's great to be acknowledged for hard work, but even better when it comes directly from the people you serve. For this year, I think we're starting out of the blocks on a positive note. In addition to the Revolutionary 100 our local community here in the Sauk Valley voted us #1 Favorite Landscape Contractor. That is a first! Bud and I are so proud of our landscape crew, Quin LeFevre, Jay Pauley, Josh Chastain, and Ryan Hermes. Those men work their tails off each season. We couldn't do it without them!
Pictured left to right:
Quin LeFevre and Jay Pauley hold up the Sauk Valley Media Reader's Choice Award delivered in late February.