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“We gotta fix this.” Company culture in landscaping.

July 29, 2021

In this episode of the Green Industry Perspectives Podcast, Ty Deemer welcomes Arden Urbano, Vice President of Greenius. 

Landscaping companies need to reassure their employees that their needs will be taken care of. Employees are much more productive when they don’t have to stress about their financial situation, child care, healthcare, or workplace environment. You can help change the culture and your landscape company by introducing policies and benefits that relieve stress and remove external stressors from your employees’ lives. Not only will you have an amazing culture, you’ll be able to attract the top talent in your area.

You can tune in above on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Google Play, or anywhere you get your podcasts.

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IN THIS EPISODE, YOU’LL LEARN:

  • Why data is important for retention 
  • How to train new employees
  • How bad company culture can turn away good employees
  • Why pricing, margins, and recruiting are all related

FULL TRANSCRIPT:

Ty Deemer:

All right, everyone. Welcome back to Green Industry Perspectives. I’m your host, Ty Deemer, and we have a great episode for you today. We have Arden Urbano on the show, and we’re super excited to dive into everything that Greenius works on and how they help landscape companies efficiently train and educate their employees. Arden, Welcome to the show.

Arden Urbano:

Hi, Ty. Great to be here. Thank you for having me as a guest, much appreciated.

Ty Deemer:

Yeah, absolutely. So Arden, we start off every episode kind of the same way. And it’s asking our guests this question, in your experience with you working with landscape companies often, what are the top two to three things that you see in those companies that have helped make them successful?

Arden Urbano:

Wow, that couldn’t be a more loaded question there, Ty. So yeah, lots of experience here and talk to lots of owners, we have lots of clients. So I can say this to you, what I’m observing especially the last three years is a few things. There’s been a notable decline in the availability of workers, there is a war on talent out there. I know for sure the manufacturing side in the US alone, they’re short by almost a million workers. So we all can imagine that we’re all fighting for the same people.

Arden Urbano:

So I’ve noticed that there’s a difference in couple things, wage increases and people focusing on their culture. Culture has become like the biggest buzzword out there. Shortage of workers was last year, now people are starting to turn their attention and focusing on culture. And the bottom line for culture is that, why would I want to work for you? Before everybody to jump ship for a quarter, that’s not happening anymore.

Arden Urbano:

And so what I’m very happy to report and what I’ve observed over the last 13 years, is there is a big upswing to the perception of the industry, the perception of the job. It was just considered a low paying service job at some point. So I’m seeing that just a big difference there. Now, and it is a little bit of a biased opinion, because we are a software company. But observing from the people that I know that also use other business management software being an example, the best anyone in landscape could hope for, when it came to software, prior to us all coming to the market was accounting software. And that took 20 years of convincing. It was ancient, it was a dinosaur.

Arden Urbano:

So once they adapted that it’s still been spur them on to say, “Wow, this is a great thing.” Because if you ask any guru operator owner, who am I going to hire? Another landscaper or a manager, or I’m going to hire an IT person to help put these software programs in place? 100%, they would say another manager or piece of equipment.

Arden Urbano:

So what all of us landscape software-related companies have been trying to do and I think we’re getting successful, and as time wears on more successful, is to help them understand that there’s more components to a landscape company than just the workers. There’s a different way to go and get business, it might be marketing. So now you’re seeing marketing departments popping up, now you’re seeing… It’s like tattoos, once you started getting one, you can’t stop getting them. And I think for software, I know we use probably 15 different ones to run Greenius, because the efficiency level. And the it’s really, you don’t have to hire extra people necessarily, because they are just within the software, making your jobs and lives more efficient.

Arden Urbano:

So huge upswing, and profit. Nobody considered 15, 16, 20% profit margins until software came along. And now it becomes for the ones that have adapted it there. It has proven that they have a higher margin than most, it is razor thin, two to 5%. Who wants to work for two or 5%? That’s exhausting. So that’s a very marked difference, is what I’ve seen, is that people using software are ahead of the game, ahead of the curve occurred. They’re winning the game, and they’re eating up all the others. So those are two things there, Ty. I’m not sure if you want me to go on about a third or is that good?

Ty Deemer:

No, that’s perfect. And that gives us plenty to unpack later on in the episode for sure. So I also like having our guests just provide their background. And just tell us your story, long, short, whatever you want to go into. But how did you begin? Where did your journey take you and how did you end up at Greenius?

Arden Urbano:

Right. So that one has a couple of prongs to it. So prior to Greenius, I was a 25 year veteran on the drug big pharma side of the world, so peddling drugs for a living. So I went from scrubs to grubs, that’s how I explain that transition.

Ty Deemer:

I love that.

Arden Urbano:

Yeah, I haven’t used that in a while. But that’s what I use when people ask me, so trying to find a word that rhymes with grubs. So my brother, who’s the CEO of Greenius, is also a owner operator of a large landscape company here in Canada, or London, Ontario, Canada. He is 36 years in business. Smart guy, saw a big hole in the market, as far as… He also had a really good friend doing online and doing really well with that. Not so much equipment training, but on sort of regulatory.

Arden Urbano:

So he started his wheels turning. And so in 2008, that was when he hired Matt Crinklaw, who was a person that was on the development side, the video side to get the piece put together. And then at that point, it was a flatline until I came and then became a triangle. A triangle of key people, all in a co founding type roles, because Jay was backing in basically financially. And I brought probably the tenacity and the patience to call thousands of people and be ignored for most of it. The answer to the question, when we first came in was, “Who to train? Why would we even…” I thought, “Oh, wow, all the training we had to do in the old drug world, this is a no brainer, there’s no training.” Wrong.

Arden Urbano:

When there’s nothing or no competition, your first indicator is there’s no demand. So thankfully, we didn’t understand that, because we wouldn’t have lasted a year. So we persisted and pursued it and built our client base. We associated ourselves with guys like Jeff Scott, Jim Paluch. Other companies, other vendors, and slowly but surely built this into a sustainable business. And a real going concern in the landscape world, because it’s still not widely accepted, even with 600 clients is a fraction of what’s out there.

Arden Urbano:

But I think what we have done is actually, even if they don’t use our stuff, people are thinking about it now. They’re doing it, they’re doing their own version, because they think, “Oh, I can do it cheaper,” and you can’t. You just can’t out think software, you cannot be more efficient than it but very good to see that people use something, or you starting down that road. So now it’s starting to really sort of take hold. It took longer than we thought but like the guy that owns LinkedIn said, “People think it took no time, but it’s never less than 10 years to really get your claws in things.”

Arden Urbano:

So I was looking for that midlife. I had midlife crisis, job crisis, I thought I need a challenge way more than I expected. But the best use of my time and a real serious love for this industry and the people in it. Made some great friends over the years and absolutely have never had one minute trouble getting up and getting out there and working hard with the ultimate goal being to improve this industry. Yes, we’re making money at it. And yes, it’s a business. But really, ultimately, I feel we’re bringing a professional edge to this industry that was so lacking. And so the difference between now and when we started is just incredible. So that’s only going to get better. And really with any hope there’ll be some competition, because that just means there’s more of a demand. It might be slow, but competition is not a frightening thing, it actually helps the market expand. [crosstalk 00:08:52] So that’s sort of my story, my path.

Ty Deemer:

Yeah, I like that. I didn’t realize either in Greenius origin story that your brother was in the industry beforehand. And this was kind of something I’m assuming he saw a need for it in his business and then he was like, “Hey, we should do this for everyone.”

Arden Urbano:

Yeah, exactly. It was just sort of did… He’s not only a go getter, but a real forward thinker. He’s never waiting for anybody else to come up with the idea. He’s forever looking to see what he can do. And I’ll just say, his landscape company is top drawer, because he just… You’ll learn a lot out there and you take it and you apply it to your own business. Especially culturally speaking, they really do run a good show. And even though now in Canada, I’m not sure in the US, you can get a designation that says that you are providing a living wage for people. Because people start to care about that stuff, it becomes this next level thinking that it’s a great profession, you just want a good place to work. Most people just want a good place to work. So yeah, it’s been a very, very cool and interesting journey. [crosstalk 00:10:17]

Ty Deemer:

Yeah, for sure. I want you to provide some context for our listeners as we go into the next portion of the show. And just tell everyone the elevator pitch for what Greenius does, because I do think it’ll provide the context for some of the answers you provide, the questions I give you later on.

Arden Urbano:

Yes, absolutely. No problem at all. So Greenius in a nutshell is a SaaS, so a software as a service. That’s the buzzword for software, when anyone says they use a SaaS, that’s what that means. So we’re a software platform that delivers training, the bulk of it being for equipment, construction, maintenance, snow, and general training for the landscape worker and could lead right up to managers, as we have aid for soft skill or soft skill training in the two languages that are the prevalent languages in North America, which is English and Spanish.

Arden Urbano:

And it’s a full blown LMS, so it has tracking, every kind of report. 50 ways to send in a report and to view your data, to analyze your data. The newest tool, which is a 15 minute review, allows you from your phone app to actually review your workers and their performance, and they turn around and can actually evaluate their managers and the company.

Arden Urbano:

So that would be the third thing that is most prevalent today is that the company is… Because we have a lot of large companies, the key is to understand why people are there, why they stay, how are we going to make them happy? Without being able to analyze data and to be able to understand why people might stay or go, you’re going to consistently bleed people that you can’t afford to lose, because the cost to replace them is a lot higher. And the more you go into your C level, sorry, not C level, mid level managers, crew leads, those guys are gold bars, and there’s a shortage of them. So the feedback loop is huge. And the larger the company, the more these things are important. It’s just time and resources for companies that are small to medium size, there’s just so many jobs and everyone’s wearing so many hats, so it makes it a little complex. That’s definitely a key.

Ty Deemer:

For sure. Thanks for providing that context. I think, what I’m interested to hear from your perspective is, you talk about your customer base, 600 plus customers, that’s definitely a good amount. We know that the industry, it’s hard to know how many landscape companies there are out there. Where do you feel like most companies that you interact with that aren’t on your platform yet, where are they in terms of training their employees? Is it something like they bring someone on and then it’s like an apprenticeship and they follow someone around till they kind of figure it out? Is it, “Hey, [crosstalk 00:13:37].” Yeah. Or are a lot of companies trying to build together training programs? And what do you see the average approach to training in the space today?

Arden Urbano:

That’s a really good question. And I do see some change in some movement, but it’s basically the same sort of deal. They get to the crew, they’re pretty much… They’ll admit it, throw them into the hole, the lion’s den. I always call it hazing because it’s like, basically get thrown in there, and you’re kind of crossing your fingers as to see who’s going to survive it. Because you got these young fellows, there’s some bravado there. You don’t want to look stupid, so you get on a crew. It’s hot, it’s relentless, it’s hard work. A bit shocking when people leave.

Arden Urbano:

So the only thing we truly compete with is status quo. And the status quo is what I just described. They come in, they get thrown at a crew, they start working, they talk to the guy, they forever pull the highest paid guy off his job to show him what to do. Some have training crews where they go on and the guy gets evaluated by a training crew to see where he best fit. Again, that’s an expensive endeavor. And nobody’s saying to take that stuff away, we’re just saying that there should be some information.

Arden Urbano:

Most of our clients do pre employment testing, so they send these out to them, five to 10 of them, prior to even hiring them. Because landscapers don’t have much, the resumes are weak, they’re looking for, do you have a commercial license? Do you have a driver’s license? That’s a hard press thing in this industry, too. And criminal background checks, whatever. They’re doing these things as far as criteria for approving people to get a job. The job skills side of it, very little is done prior to them working. They’re just happy, like a warm body. So we don’t have a lot of competition, but we compete with people’s company’s own thinking of how they should be. And that’s only because the concept of training people is still foreign.

Ty Deemer:

Yeah. I would love [crosstalk 00:16:01]. Talk to me through, you mentioned the test that they send out before they even hire someone. That’s something that’s relatively, I’ve never heard that before. What does that look like for your customers? Is that through Greenius, and what do they ask?

Arden Urbano:

It’s actually the courses themselves. So say Ty, you’re going to work for me. So I enter you into the database, and I say, “Okay, you’re going to be on a maintenance crew, I’m going to send you a trimmer, mower, blower, edger, edges of fuel, truck and trailer. And I want you to do those before you report to work.” They watch the course, the video part, they do the testing, which it’s self mark, the computer marks it. They have to have a certain score to pass because you’ve set that as the company. And then it also produces a infield checklist, or a way to review the equipment in a methodical way.

Arden Urbano:

You don’t have to do that part prior. But if you have those six videos done, or 10, when they show up for work, we make recommendations. And the longer I go and the older I get time, the bossier I get, if it’s even possible. Is that we’re looking for clients who are going to follow our process and listen to what we suggest because it just won’t work. Unless you’re signing up for failure, we’re saying that if you follow this process… So when they get there on day one, it’s okay to orient them. It’s okay to take them around and show them who the boss is, who’s the owner, who’s the secretary, who does your paychecks. Buy them lunch, let him do some training. Is that one day going to kill you so badly for not having that body out there?

Arden Urbano:

Trying to get guys to slow it down is the hardest part because they’re just so production minded. But if you might slow it down, because there’s nothing that holds production more than someone cutting something off, or wrecking somebody’s car, or running over a kid’s bike. There’s so many things that you should know going into that job. So take a half day if you don’t want to… I say full day. But if you don’t want to go full day, do a half day, prepare these people, again, make them feel welcome. Make them feel like this is who we are, we want you to join our family, give them that. Everyone’s looking for a sense of family, everyone’s looking for a good place to be eight or nine hours a day.

Arden Urbano:

All of that can happen prior to hiring. It’s a way to get the courses done and it’s a way for you to gauge if they’re going to listen. If they don’t do the courses, don’t even bother hiring them. Don’t bother interviewing them on the next section. So it becomes ingrained in their hiring process. Many of the companies that advertise that they provide training by Greenius so that people are going, “Oh good, they’re going to train me.”

Arden Urbano:

The young folk today, they just want someone to show them. They’re not lazy at all. They just don’t know what they’re doing, because they’ve never done it. My kids aren’t allowed to cut my lawn because they do such a bad job. So no, they don’t cut lawns before they get out there in the workforce. So that’s a lot of today. Everyone’s going to college and university and stuff like that, do you think they’re moving a lawn? So the bottom line is that they just need some intel, a little bit of intel, they need to feel safe, they need to know that they’re going to be taken care of and not look like an idiot in front of other people. [crosstalk 00:19:24] That’s our premise there.

Ty Deemer:

Yeah, it’s really interesting. I love the idea that really from two perspectives. Number one, what you just touched on, I think that’s something that you almost see it as a standard response in an interview today, like what type of training is available to me in this role? And it really does touch on what the typical employee is wanting nowadays, they just want to know what are you expecting from me and how do I accomplish it?

Ty Deemer:

I love that that gets done in these videos to some point because I remember when I was in high school and I did my summer landscaping job, that kind of imagery you painted earlier about showing up the first day and being like, I don’t know, it being like a weeding out process. I think, I’m pretty sure the owner of the company or the crew lead that I was with was like, “Wow, you actually made it a full day.” But I just remember sitting there thinking, “That’s the hardest day of my life, that was terrible.” It’s just hard work. And I don’t think anybody can try to sell that short.

Ty Deemer:

But I think having some training and a little knowledge beforehand is good. But to your point too, you’re not going to waste your time on someone who isn’t willing to spend a couple of hours to a day going through videos and training, because obviously, they don’t want the job enough to be reliable to show up on time.

Arden Urbano:

No, they could just be spitballing, sending out resumes just to see what falls. And you know what, they have choices now. Why does somebody go to McDonald’s instead of a landscaping company? So it’s like a bunch of dogs fighting over the same piece of meat. And I watched it go really sideways in the last couple years. So now the attention has been had, now the owners are standing up going, “Well, geez, it’s all good and fine, I got all this work, but I got no one to do the work. So what are we going to do? We’re going to increase wages, make this a living wage, good job.” They got health care, a lot of them once they get to a certain size.

Arden Urbano:

We want them to stay, we want them to grow within the company, and part of growing within a company is education. Just because 65% at least in Canada haven’t graduated from high school. Well, at my brother’s company, they put them through a GED. Why not teach them English as a second language? There’s just a lot you can do to endear people to you, as an employer. And in this industry, those little things are everything. Having breakfast once a month, there’s just money has to be spent. It’s just a different thinking going forward, there’s just going to be a different thinking, if you want to be in the realm of the successful. So observation number four, right?

Ty Deemer:

Yeah, no, I love them. So on the minimum wage conversation, I think we’ve seen over the last couple years at a national level, whether… Well, I’m mainly talking from US perspective, that conversation kind of gets stirred up in new ways. And I’m curious, from your perspective, whether it’s the US or Canada, where do you see landscape owners falling on that conversation? Are you seeing more people open to the idea of like, “Hey, we just need to pay these people more.” Or is there a lot of pushback to that still? What’s kind of your pulse? And what do you kind of view as going to be the future there?

Arden Urbano:

Yeah, excellent question. And again, these are just my observations and opinions. These are not fact base. Some of it’s fact base, but a lot of it’s just what I’m observing, because you notice a lot when you hang out with a lot of landscapers. So on the wage thing, I’m just going to say in comparison, our minimum wage went to 15 bucks an hour, five years ago. And all the people that had minimum wage workers were going, “OMG, how are we going to make this work?” And it worked. They’re all worried because they’re… I’m just going to say this out loud and I surely probably going to offend somebody. People who are not properly pricing of their jobs, and not properly commanding the kind of money they need for their work are doing the industry a disservice.

Arden Urbano:

Bottom line is you have razor thin margins, and you’re just bouncing off crap your whole year. Because if you have a thin margin, you can pay people more. People go all weird with our pricing. It’s like, “Guys, if we’re not profitable, we can’t do anything. We’re hamstringed, we’re desperate, we can’t improve the system, we can’t make this better. What school did you go to that said that profits are a bad thing?” And I’ve looked at this as fear based, it might be a little lacking in education on a business side, but the ones that are trying to get forward, they join places like Jeff’s groups, peer groups. If you didn’t go get a business degree, there’s lots of help in this industry, with this using the softwares. The software that does provide that kind of information.

Arden Urbano:

So I’ve always been a fan that the more you give, the more you get. And when you pay more, you’ll get more. And it sounds really kind of hokey, but it just works because I’ve watched people do it, and they’re paying more and they still are making 10 points or more. And for me, don’t believe me, call somebody that’s doing it and ask them what you’re doing? So it’s a combination of things, it’s not just so dry. But I’m a fan of how somebody is supposed to be earning a living, and can’t feed their family is supposed to be enjoying their job? So the whole minimum wage thing in the US, it’s got to come up.

Ty Deemer:

Yeah. I tend to agree with you. To me, and you can look at it from a national level and see how we’re deciding it there. But forward thinking landscape companies really can’t wait for that policy. Because like you said at the beginning of the show, a way larger pool is competing for the exact same workers. And if you’re not ahead of other industries, once even that law is passed into place, you’re not going to be able to compete. So I don’t know, it was just interesting to hear your perspective on it.

Ty Deemer:

I kind of want to shift our conversation, you’ve mentioned culture a few times, and that’s definitely the buzzword going around the industry over the last what I feel like at least six months, landscape management on their LM150 list, that was their big thing. Our company culture drives highly successful businesses. And culture is really interesting. We talk about it on this podcast, probably second most to labor. And-

Arden Urbano:

Yeah. I think it’s overtaken that. Because they’re actually tied in. [crosstalk 00:26:18] You can’t really have one without the other. Sorry, not to cut you off.

Ty Deemer:

No, you’re more than fine. And I will say, when we talk about company culture, it does seem like kind of the status quo and culture is, “Hey, we have three to four, or three to five tenants on a board. And that’s what company culture looks like. And we let everyone know we believe in these five things, dependability, reliability, team, your generic stuff.” But you hear it all the time. And people say like, “Let me check that box.” But you mentioned something earlier about feedback and the feedback loop in a business. To me, something like that is actually what culture is. A team or a company that has strong feedback from their crews, to their middle management, to their C suite, or to their leadership team. Talk to me through what feedback looks like with the companies you work with and why it’s so profitable, company culture? Because to me, a process builds culture, not five words. And I would love for you to kind of give your spiel on that because I think you’ll have some interesting insights.

Arden Urbano:

Is that what we’re calling them now?

Ty Deemer:

Yeah.

Arden Urbano:

Interesting insights. Really strong opinions. [crosstalk 00:27:45] And again, it’s just what my own thoughts are on this. And so, a company culture is what’s actually happening. So you can… Every morning, everyone stands up and goes, “We believe in…” And you can have all that sort of lip service but I think there’s so many things that make up a culture. First of all the leaders, they make up the culture, they determine what that’s going to look like and everything else has to trickle down. How you treat people, how you treat the customers, how you dress. If you’re proud that your uniform’s clean, if your hair is tied back or kept nicely. And you can look around and you don’t have to know what their five buzzwords are, you just look at who’s mowing the lawn and you go, “[foreign language 00:28:31].” Sorry, didn’t mean to swear. Crappy company culture. Sorry. [inaudible 00:28:35]

Ty Deemer:

No, it’s pretty good.

Arden Urbano:

[crosstalk 00:28:36] They’re terrible. We’ve been locked down too long, Ty. So sorry. Yeah, when you look at company culture, when I take my brother’s company, just because it’s so close and it is so easy just to observe. The way they’re dressed, the way they look professional when they’re on site. The way they treat the clients, then they specialize in HOAs, which is not an easy job. And they go paint balling, and they do different things. But it’s also the way they’re treated. And it layers up, it goes from that C suite down through the managers and how they’re treating them and have some flexibility.

Arden Urbano:

It’s a wonderful thing to watch a company with a good culture. You need to have a little fun in your day, it’s a long, hot day. And weirdly enough 65% of people stay at their job, just because of who they work with. So understanding maybe the profiles of the people that work together, some of them just don’t get along. And so some companies do testing and actually match people up. They have a little more sophistication, again, using software to match up or to do disc profiling or… What’s that one called? It’s BNM or BMC or something. [crosstalk 00:29:49] You know which one I mean, the big… Everyone uses that. So there’s ways of making it so that a person enjoys what they’re doing, and there’s only one way to get that, and that’s to have the guts once a year to find out what people are saying about you.

Arden Urbano:

And I can’t mention this company because it’s a well known company, but the owner stood up at a group company meeting and he said, “How many of you guys would tell a friend to work here?” And he said, out of 150 people, two hands went up. He said it was the worst day of his life and he was upset all night, he didn’t sleep. And then he just came back and he said, “We’ve got to fix this. We got to fix this.” And so they went down the road of asking what the issues were.

Arden Urbano:

Even your managers, do you know how your managers are treating these guys? You’re getting as an owner, third and fourth hand information. But you do have to be brave, and you do have to care, you have to want to hear the information in order to make any kind of changes. Because the only one that likes changes, Ty, is a baby in a dirty diaper. Nobody wants change. So if you have the guts to put it out there to see… I don’t even know if I have the guts to see what people actually think of me. But when it’s done anonymously, you can take that to your management team and you can review. And you’ll see some common threads, common things that are coming out about how people are feeling, and where are the issues.

Arden Urbano:

And God bless you, get on a crew, let them know who you are, see what’s going on and maybe get some information from them. Because they’ll tell you all day long, they’ll tell you, it just a lot of us don’t really want to know, necessarily. But that’s what’s going to determine, I think long term success using the millennial workforce down the road, as they’ll say goodbye as fast as you can say their name. They don’t have the same-

Ty Deemer:

Loyalties. Yeah.

Arden Urbano:

Yeah, it’s a different day, right?

Ty Deemer:

Yeah, for sure. So someone’s listening to this episode and they go, “Well, I really do think I’m ready to ask or find the answers.” What does, in your experience again, all strong opinions here, what’s the timeframe for asking for feedback? Is it constant? Or is it better to just have uniform time periods where your employees just become accustomed? Like, “Oh, at the end of every month, I’m going to have the opportunity to talk to someone about this or submit a survey.” Is it better to do it in person or do you see anonymous is better?

Arden Urbano:

Anonymous. When we built ours, it was 100% do it anonymously. I mean, they’d be running for the hills, you ask them a question, they’re so afraid of getting fired. Some people are and that culturally, in our own culture, it’s almost like usurping authority. So some cultures, especially the Hispanic culture, very respectful, they don’t want to be dissing their boss. That’s tricky business.

Arden Urbano:

So when we say this Ty, if you get it done once a year, you’re doing more than most people. Because nobody likes doing employee reviews. They got all that oh, warm, fuzzy, “Oh, God, I got to have feelings. And what if he says something about feelings?” No one’s got time. So when you get it done, like what our software provides, once a year is plenty. And some people like to do the new people after maybe 30, 60, 90 days, maybe catch some issues early.

Arden Urbano:

But again, the reality is, you’re one lucky if clients are doing it once a year. They’re used to paper, that’s even the transition to get them away. Because ours ask you the custom due, you can put all your own questions in there, or you can use our templates. And that’s trying to get them to do that. They’re so busy right now. They’re so busy. So we’re trying to push them along to do it. So again, you’re lucky to do it once a year. And all we can do is continue to educate them, continue to say why is this a good idea. And for them to slow down, it just seems like an extraordinarily busy year, even more so than last year. I haven’t seen the likes of this in a long time.

Ty Deemer:

Yeah. We’ve seen kind of the same thing on our end, too. I think, you look back at 2020, bizarre year, crazy year. And the work never really stopped, if anything backlog was bigger than ever. And I think part of the reason why the year feels as busy as it is, is because there was no offseason last year in most places. It seemed like everybody just kind of went from one season to the next without really getting around-

Arden Urbano:

It’s ghost town. Trying to get anyone even on the phone. Like I said, we are lots of years in this and we know that summers are slower on the software front. People are often considering this and probably three quarters of the year and this part’s tough, that 100 days of hell. But 100 days of hell hasn’t stopped, usually by June, things start to slow, it’s way busier. Even the last year was busy and a lot of companies had record years, it’s even busier this year. So I’m really happy. Really, really happy that the landscapers are doing well. The 2008 recession hurt us, but this one has helped us. If we have to go through something that’s as horrible as a pandemic, there are people benefiting and I’m happy that it’s landscape, because it’s usually not the case.

Ty Deemer:

Yeah. [crosstalk 00:35:26] Yeah, that’s kind of a good transition to the last part of our show. I always like to ask guests towards the end, what on the horizon is exciting them or getting them pumped up for the rest of the year? Or what’s going on? So what for you, or maybe you at the team at Greenius, what are y’all gearing up for or looking for doing in the industry? Or where do you see the industry going that excites you?

Arden Urbano:

Well, yeah, it’s a couple. It’s a double, it’s a two fold answer. One is that we’ll just be so happy to be able to travel. We’re still waiting for the green light to cross over on land borders for the US. We have greenlighted the US to come to our country starting August, and we’re still waiting for Biden to make a determination. We still can fly there, but things like GIE… I mean, I haven’t been there and we missed two years. Oh, my gosh, I’m dying to see people. I can’t wait to see… It’s going to be like this massive reunion to get to see these people that we’ve known for a long time, to see our clients.

Arden Urbano:

We’ve got some big features in the works that are literally going to change the way the system runs. And putting some efficiencies in there that are going to… The labor is part of software until it’s fixed. But the list is long, and now the things we’ve improved this year are massive, biggest improvement since we built it. So we’re really excited about that. We’re excited to see our friends. I’m excited to get back to the US. Well, it is literally I’m an honorary… I’m a American anyway, because it’s North American. But I love the US deeply.

Arden Urbano:

I don’t listen to any of the crap, I don’t care who’s running what, I know what my experiences are every single time I go there, and they’re fantastic. The people treat us wonderfully. I only look at that, I don’t listen to any of the nonsense. So my good friends in America, I’m looking forward to seeing them. And just to get back to some kind of normalcy. And just, we had a record year again, just for a minute. You take those when you can get those. And it’s another record year and we’re hoping to continue to add many people to the roster of training for profit, training to improve your business, and keep your workers people.

Ty Deemer:

That’s awesome. Yeah, we’re excited to get back to events as well. We were doing some planning for the Lawn & Landscape Tech Conference down in Orlando at the end of next month. And it was just kind of going through everything. I was like, “Man, this is going to be great.” [crosstalk 00:38:13]

Arden Urbano:

I know, that’s not bad. What is that? Six weeks away not even-

Ty Deemer:

Yeah, it’s close. [crosstalk 00:38:18] Yeah. Very excited. So last little bit here. Anyone that’s been listening to show that is interested in Greenius and wants to understand how you all help landscape companies every day, how would you suggest either getting in contact with you or find out more information?

Arden Urbano:

Yeah. You know what, I mean, no hard selling going on over here. People like to do their own investigating. So the easiest way would be to go onto our website. There is a section there for a demonstration if you want to see how the system works, we do live demos twice a day, every day. And there’s also a section to fill out to see courses, to see what they look like. So you don’t even have to talk to anybody at this point. Go greenius.com is the website. Everything’s on there, the phone number if you wanted to talk to me directly. There’s other people that do sales, I specialize in companies that do 4 million in revenue plus, plus, plus. And then we have other people that handle companies of different stature because their needs are slightly different.

Arden Urbano:

So just get in there, check around, look and see if there’s anything interesting. And we’re more than happy to help you. I can say this truthfully, Ty, the balance of all of this is the help of getting software put in place which we do a great job at. And we have a great support team. It’s like everything in software is not the sale, and it’s really after the fact. And if you don’t have an IT person or people who are techy on site, which many don’t, that we will fill in that gap for you and make sure that experience is a good one and a very, very logical. We onboard you, we don’t like to muck around, we get you going, and it’s a pretty easy a go. So check us out.

Ty Deemer:

Yeah, absolutely. We’ll be sure to put a link to y’all’s website in the show and also the episode. But Arden, we covered a great amount of topics today. Thank you for sharing your insights.

Arden Urbano:

My pleasure.

Ty Deemer:

And we look forward to probably seeing you in [inaudible 00:40:20], here in a little bit. But thanks for being on the show.

Arden Urbano:

No, I don’t think I’m going to [inaudible 00:40:23], I’m sending a different team. But for me, 100% GIE, whether I got to walk across the boarder or limp across, wheel across, I’m there. So we’re looking forward to that. [crosstalk 00:40:37] Thanks for having me too, Ty. Thank you so much to you and your audience.

Ty Deemer:

Yeah, thank you.

Arden Urbano:

My pleasure.