The Business of Interior/Exterior Landscape
by Joelle Steele
For information about Joelle Steele's background in the horticultural industry, please see her detailed horticultural bio.
The following are some of Joelle's previously-published (and regularly updated) articles about the business side of the horticultural business. You can also reader her articles about indoor and outdoor plant care.
2016-04-22: Avoiding The Traps & Pitfalls of Being an Owner-Operated Business: How to be your own boss and avoid the problems associated with lack of structure, discipline, and adequate budgets; wearing too many hats; doing dirty work; getting sick; expanding the business; and selling out. (3,870 words)
2016-02-21: Tips for Surviving & Thriving in a Difficult Economy: Help for you and your business during an economic recession. (1,394 words)
2014-06-21: How to Solve the Most Common Web Site Mistakes: Explains why you might be making your Web site difficult to navigate or view, and how you can fix it. (1,812 words)
2012-10-11: Why Does Every Landscaper Need A Good Contract: Illustrates the need for a good contract. (996 words)
2012-05-28: Reducing Interior Landscape Maintenance Costs Through Effective Design and Installation Practices: The title says its all -- learn how to keep maintenance costs down for your clients. (1,681 words)
2012-03-11: Office Plants-How Clients and Janitors Can Protect the Interior Landscape: Whether you are a client of an interior landscaper or a janitor cleaning an office with plants, you can learn to protect the interior plants in the office. (2,075 words)
2010-11-04: Mall Developers Can Profit From Learning About Landscape Design: Whether you're developing a mall or some other large complex, you can save money by understanding what's involved in the landscape design process. (2,259 words)
2010-09-09: Working With Designers-The Interior Landscaper's View: How to connect with and successfully work with a designer. (1,498 words)
2010-09-12: Does Your Contract Protect You From "The Worst That Could Happen"?: When you write your contracts, be sure to anticipate the worst case scenario and be prepared in case it happens. (936 words)
2010-08-19: On Being A Professional: Licensing and certification, trade associations, awards competitions, and educational opportunities.
2010-07-22: Personnel Maintenance: Basics of personnel selection, including the establishment of policies and procedures.
2009-09-06: Put It In Writing - Contracts for Individuals and Businesses: A quick overview of various kinds of contracts and their use and applications to individuals and businesses.
2009-03-02: Bidding and Contracts for Interior Landscapers: Some basic background in bidding, plant leasing, maintenance, and contracts for interior landscapers.
2008-08-12: Trade Secrets: Non-Solicitation and Non-Competition Clauses: The basics of how such contracts work to protect not only employers but employees as well.
2004-05-28: Photographing Your Sales Portfolio: How to set up the photo shoot, do it yourself, or work with a professional photographer.
2002-07-23: Building A Strong Business Foundation: Goal setting, planning, standardization, and making changes.
2002-02-25: How to Run A Successful Business in 10 Easy Steps: Dealing with the law, getting insured, ongoing education, setting standards for yourself and your business, setting goals, seeking professional advice, getting organized, taking part in your industry, spreading the word about what you do, and taking some time off.
2002-02-22: Guaranteeing Client Satisfaction: Give clients the word (in writing); personality conflicts; dealing with mischief-makers, meddlers, and other problem clients; getting paid; and tact and diplomacy.
2000-07-22: Solving Problems & Making Decisions: Looks at 15 steps to effective problem solving, and also the basics of sound decision-making.
2000-07-21: How to Evaluate Your Company & Write A Business Plan: Explains how to accurately and objectively evaluate your company so that you will have all the information necessary to create a business plan or revise an existing one.
2000-07-20: Communication-The Key To Successful Client Relationships: Communicating through your advertising, the telephone, in-person presentations, written agreements, administration, maintenance, handling problems, and handling problem clients.
2000-07-18: Time Is Money: Explains how the way in which tasks are performed by your employees can directly translate into corporate waste, costing you money in the process.
2000-01-16: Alternatives to Driving Downtown Maintenance Routes: Ways to manage your service routes to reduce vehicle costs and non-billable driving time.
1997-05-21: Landscaping the Indoor Environment: Understanding the indoor space, maintenance concerns, pest control, special services, and public relations.
1995-06-21: Working With A Landscape Designer: Describes what a landscape designer does and how the design process works.
1995-03-14: What Maintenance Accounts Say To Me (and What They Should Be Saying To You): What all of the following say about your business — account type, location, time allotment, frequency, design, installation, replacements, training, variations in methods used on the job.
1994-08-19: How to Hire an Interior Landscaper: All of the things to look for when hiring someone to supply and maintain interior plants for your home or office.