Meet the 20% Woman

Oct 25, 2021 | Growth Tips, Income

This week Loriena Harrington (Beautiful Blooms Landscape, WI) was awarded the Women Entrepreneur of The Year award by the National Association of Landscape Professionals.

I am super proud of her and was delighted to write a letter in support of her (see at bottom).

She was the subject of another consultant’s newsletter recently, outlining her bold moves in raising pricing this year.

Meet the 20% Woman: Loriena Harrington. Share on X

Loriena’s Bold Move 

“In July – I sent out a mass email to 240 clients reluctantly announcing an 8.5% surcharge for the remainder of the season. I had to account for the mid-season wage increase I was about to give to my existing staff so that I could increase the wage scale and attract more applicants. Materials/deliveries / etc. also needed to be compensated for as they were all on the rise too.  

The result… two people canceled contracts. Many (15-20) sent letters/responses of understanding. and three sent actual thank you letters — thanking us for being responsible to do what we felt was necessary to maintain a quality workforce and grow it.  

I was amazed. And I am proud of the bold…not timid…move to do this.” 

The 20% Net Profit Woman is Bold

Bold is what I preach, and it is why I chose red instead of green for the color of the leaf in my new company logo. Because fortune favors the bold.

Loriena is achieving 20% net profit because she is bold in many ways.

She revamped her company’s service mix, re-focused in on what she loves and does best, has followed my margin guidance, and has embraced her inner boldness.

Many people question if 20% is possible. Sam Bauman comes to mind (love you, Sam). When I first met Sam, he challenged me over and over (in a nice Canadian way) if this was possible, certain it was not. But once he got on board his profits have begun to rise. I have no doubt he will get there for all his in-house work.

My hat goes off to all of you who are bold, and to Loriena for leading the way in 2021 and beyond.

P.S. Here is what I wrote the board of NALP on Loriena’s behalf:

May 6th, 2021

To whom it may concern:

It is my privilege to write in support of Loriena Harrington, a nominee for the 2021 NALP Woman Entrepreneur of the Year award! 

I have known her for many, many years now, coached her over the years and watched her interact in my peer group for many years.

She was recently awarded Jeffrey Scott’s 2021 Mighty Oak award for Outstanding Achievement in the landscape industry. She was awarded by her peers, many of whom own larger companies than hers. The reasons cited for her award include:

  • Revamping her company completely, dropping divisions that didn’t fit her vision and replacing revenue, transforming its focus
  •  Having her best financial year (revenue and profit) ever in 2020
  • Implementation of technology and automation at a quick pace keeping up with the changes in the market
  • Investment in the careers of her team, raising up a solid leadership team
  • Able to strike a healthy work-life balance, taking enough time off in the winter to travel and recharge, and continue her learning.

This is her second time receiving this Mighty Oak recognition, which puts her in rare company indeed.

She has become a natural leader in her (my) peer group, like a captain on a sports team that has the big C on their jersey. Others look up to her and listen to her, and she has a positive impact on my groups.

Not only that but she now also formally onboards all my new members to all my peer groups, because she understands both the details and the bigger picture of entrepreneurial success. She loves teaching and guiding.

I have watched her evolve her company from a typical start-up (we do everything) into a sharply focused organization with great systems, a clear market definition, and a powerful brand. She is also exploring bringing her key employees into a possible ownership position, which is very forward-thinking.

Honestly, Loriena would best be suited for “Landscape Entrepreneur” of the year, not just “Woman” entrepreneur. She is better than so many entrepreneurs I know, and those that know Loriena look to her as a forward thinker.