The Stages of Growth with Ted Carter

May 23, 2024 | Growth Tips, Income, Podcast Series: The Ultimate Landscape CEO, Strategy, Time Management

Ted Carter, is President of Pinehurst Landscape Company in Glen Arm, Maryland. They focus 85%  on residential landscape design, build, and maintenance. The company employs around 40 people during peak season and aims to surpass $6 million in revenue this year.

Pinehurst was founded by Carter’s father in 1964. Initially a lawn mowing business, it evolved into a landscaping company. Ted Carter formally joined the company in 2009, following a significant revenue drop during the recession.

We cover many critcal stages of growth that Ted experienced. 

Challenges and Adaptations: Ted faced numerous challenges, including financial struggles and a key workforce crisis in 2018 when they didn’t secure H2B visa workers. This led to hiring issues and morale problems, ultimately teaching the importance of company values and aligning staff accordingly.

Financial Health: Over the years, Pinehurst shifted its strategy by focusing on value and realistic project bidding. Ted emphasized the need for accurate job costing and avoided underbidding, which helped stabilize the company’s financial health.

Developing a Leadership Vision: Ted’s leadership journey involved overcoming initial defensiveness and fear, building a supportive team, and setting ambitious goals. His focus on creating a professional work environment and strong company culture has contributed to Pinehurst’s continued success and growth. Carter is actively working on delegating key responsibilities, such as financial management and sales, to trusted team members. His goal is to focus on strategic vision and employee relationships while ensuring the company runs smoothly.

Acquisition Success: Ted Carter discusses Pinehurst’s successful acquisition of a company owning a Christmas Decor franchise. This move not only extended their seasonal business but also brought in skilled employees, contributing significantly to their growth and success. Carter is exploring further acquisitions and diversification into new services like pool installations. He recognizes the potential in expanding their offerings to meet client demands and attract new business.

Employee-Centric Approach: Carter emphasized the importance of a supportive and growth-oriented workplace culture at Pinehurst, focusing on employees’ well-being, personal growth, and ensuring they feel valued and respected. This is a huge cornerstone of their company.

Personal and Professional Integration: Carter highlighted the inseparable nature of personal well-being and professional success for entrepreneurs. He advocates for a balance between work and personal life, believing that personal growth and support directly impact business performance.

Summary

Ted Carter, the president of Pinehurst Landscape Company, shares his journey of taking over the family business and growing it into a successful company. He discusses the challenges he faced during the economic downturn and how he navigated through them. Ted emphasizes the importance of investing in employees and maintaining company culture. He also shares his experience of joining a peer group and the impact it had on his leadership skills. Ted’s story highlights the significance of making the right calls, building confidence as a leader, and embracing growth opportunities. In this conversation, Ted Carter, President of Pinehurst Landscape Company, discusses the company’s growth and talent acquisition strategies. He shares how Christmas lighting has been a successful recruiting tool and talks about the potential for future acquisitions and new services. Ted also explores the importance of engaging architects and home renovators in the landscaping industry. The conversation delves into the significance of pool construction and the potential for fiberglass pools and plunge pools. Ted discusses his role as President and emphasizes the company’s employee-first culture and focus on personal growth. He also touches on the challenges of delegating responsibilities and marketing. Ted expresses his long-term involvement with the company and his passion for sailing. He concludes by expressing gratitude for the team and highlighting the value of peer groups in personal and professional development.

Takeaways

  • Investing in employees and maintaining a strong company culture is crucial for long-term success.
  • Overcoming fear and making the right calls are essential for business growth.
  • Joining a peer group can provide valuable insights and support for personal and professional development.
  • Building confidence as a leader is a journey that requires self-reflection and a willingness to learn and adapt. Christmas lighting can be an effective recruiting tool for landscaping companies.
  • Engaging architects and home renovators is crucial for business growth in the landscaping industry.
  • The construction of pools, particularly fiberglass and plunge pools, presents opportunities for expansion.
  • Creating an employee-first culture and prioritizing personal growth contribute to the success of a landscaping company.

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