The Daily Star
Shop Talk is a weekly column featuring locally owned and operated businesses. This week, we talk to Jeremy Hanselman of Hanselman’s Quality Turf.
How long have you lived in the area?
I have lived in Delaware County all of my life.
Tell me about your business:
Hanselman’s Quality Turf specializes in providing aesthetic and quality work in all areas of landscaping and lawn care. The services I provide include weekly/bi-weekly mowing and string trimming, the design and/or maintenance of landscape and/or flower beds, and garden construction and maintenance. I consult with customers, provide free estimates and answer questions concerning their landscape needs.
Describe a typical day in your business:
Because a majority of the work I do is weather-dependent, a typical day is hard to define. A typical lawn care day begins with routine equipment checkup and/or servicing.
Once that is done, I load up my truck and trailer and head to do the lawns that are scheduled for that particular day. I have a schedule developed for weekly mowing.
How did you get started in this line of work?
I began mowing lawns when I was in high school. Ever since then I’ve always had a love for the outdoors and the sight of a nicely kept landscape. Due to that love, I pursued and completed a degree in turf management from (the State University College of Technology at) Delhi, where I not only accumulated valuable knowledge in my field but also gained hands-on experience through school projects.
Where do you see this business in five years?
In five years my goal is to have gained anywhere from 50 to 60 residential lawn contracts along with one or two large commercial lawn contracts. I would also like to add snow removal to my services. In five years or less, I plan to add at least one full-time employee to work alongside me.
Describe a memorable moment in your workplace:
I have been the head groundskeeper for a customer for over six years now. My best memory to date is the changes that I have implemented to the landscape over those six years. The transformation of what it was to what it has become is very memorable to me.
What have you learned from your work?
The main thing that I have learned from my first few years is that if you want to be successful in this field, you have to be willing to strive to provide perfection to your customers.
All in all, when you put all your efforts into a project, you receive the satisfaction of a project well done and the satisfaction from the customer when you give them exactly what they were looking for.
What is the most challenging part of what you do?
The most challenging part of my field is being at the mercy of Mother Nature.
The most enjoyable?
The most enjoyable part of my job is after I finish mowing a lawn or constructing a landscape bed. I get the utmost satisfaction by looking back over the lawn or project and seeing the beauty that the outdoors can possess.
How do you define success for your business?
When I think of success in my field, I think of customer satisfaction. I do not believe that success is defined by the amount of contracts I have, but by the quality of work that I provide to my customers.
What are some advantages as well as drawbacks of doing business in this area?
One advantage of working in this area is being able to work on a large variety of property types. With so much diversity in the lay of the land, it makes work more challenging while also interesting with something new on each project.
A drawback would be that some traveling is required because the contracts spread out over a larger area due to the rural nature of this area.
What sets you apart from your competitors?
The one thing that sets my business apart from my competitors is the basis of quality in my work. I strive to be a perfectionist for my customers because I feel that in a tough economy, my customers deserve nothing less than perfection and quality for their money.
What advice would you give to someone trying to enter your field of work?
Some advice I would give would be to not expect anything to be given to you. The more effort you put into your work, the more you will get out of it. When you achieve your own personal goals through hard work and perseverance, the satisfaction is phenomenal.
Shop Talk interviews are conducted by Terry Hannum. For information, call The Daily Star at 432-1000, ext. 217, or e-mail email@example.com.