When I started Maven Landscape Services in 2006 (formerly GreenScapes Landscaping & Pools), I had some fairly fixed ideas of how to build a successful company. I firmly believed in operations — that if I was executing well and providing a quality product, customers would keep coming back.
While the customers kept coming back, it wasn’t always easy. And I learned some hard lessons along the way. One of the biggest lessons has been how crucial the employees and how the culture I promote at the workplace influence a job well done.
Growing up, my grandfather owned a farm and a masonry construction company. He knew all about working with his hands. I learned a lot from him — but what really stuck was how hard he worked and how he served others. His tireless work ethic and servant leadership brought him long-term success.
At Maven, there are five core principles that make up our company culture. These aren’t set in stone, but they’re helpful guidelines that we think help everyone involved in our business — from employees to clients.
- A relentless pursuit of quality — I believe that this is the reason Maven is where it is today. We don’t settle for incomplete jobs or shoddy workmanship. At the end of the day, I believe that everyone working at Maven — myself included — should be happy about the work they’ve done. They should be proud of what they’ve been able to accomplish.
- Growth and improvement — Mistakes happen. It’s a fact of life. As humans, we don’t always get it right. But it’s the ability to pick ourselves up again after failing and learn from our mistakes that influence whether our company will succeed and grow in the long-term. I don’t believe in harshly punishing employees for mistakes providing they’re willing to use it as a learning experience.
- Leading with humility — I strongly believe that we work not for our own benefit, but the benefit of others. Work is about serving others and putting their needs before your own. Beyond this, there needs to be a symbiotic, mutually beneficial relationship between the employer and their employees. I love hearing that our customers are complimenting our team. It’s great to hear stories about crew members going that extra mile by stopping their blowing or mowing when customers walk by, saying hello, or helping a customer unload their car.
- Equipping others to succeed — At Maven, we try to build on each employee’s already existing strengths and put them in positions to succeed. I encourage supervisors to take a “hands-off” approach that prevents micro-management. Employees should have a “can-do” attitude and work well independently.
- We love people! — This is the linchpin of all of the other principles. To me, my employees and customers are like friends and family. My employees are part of a team working towards a common goal. I try hard to get to know them on a personal level and understand what motivates them, so they can do the best job possible. We have occasional barbecues where the team gets to know each other better. Health and dental benefits and competitive wages don’t hurt, either!
Maven’s mission as a company is rooted in a passion for the outdoors and a sincere belief that life is much better outside. We make it our duty to keep your outdoor spaces beautiful. And the best way to possibly do that is through a healthy, supportive workplace culture. If you’d like to partner with us for landscaping services, please get in touch with us. We’re looking forward to getting to know you better.
Written by Brad Tatum, President