September 9, 2015

The Leadership and Growth Connection

By Jeff Harkness I’m having a running dialogue with a client that involves effective leadership style. To his credit this client is changing after I pointed out his approach and routine was limiting the company’s ability to grow and attract quality talent.  This owner is fair, but often manages with stern in your face comments, is never wrong, certainly impatient and at times just negative. Sound familiar? It leads to the question, “Are leaders born or made?”  The answer is both, but data shows more leaders are made than born into greatness.  This path isn’t easy, but rewards and growth […]
September 9, 2015

Timing is everything, but don’t be fooled….

By Jeff Harkness Right now your phone is probably ringing off the hook with every “business broker” and “deal guy” saying they have a deal for you.  Sound familiar? Are you really ready? The industry has been buzzing as word spread about a pending mega deal between two industry household names.  While we will continue to monitor the “opportunity or fallout” regarding this and other deals, the fact is, activity is picking up and so are business valuations. What information can you trust? How do you evaluate a “sale” pitch for your company?   Ask for help and as the economy […]
September 9, 2015

Setting the Record Straight: Three Exit Strategy Myths

By Jeff Harkness Have you heard “timing is everything?” It’s tough to make money these days. Times are different as compared to 5 or 10 years ago. The fact is the economy is slower, immigration reform is a battle, fuel costs, taxes, Obama-care and pricing competition are all keeping companies guessing and on their toes. So what’s your plan? Do you have an exit strategy? How about an operating strategy that coordinates with your exit plan? Are better days ahead after November?  Take control and start planning. The bottom line is, in today’s economy, you have to be a smarter […]
September 9, 2015

Don’t Ignore your Balance Sheet. It will Make or Break you!

By Jeff Harkness Here’s a news flash! Spring arrived some 30-45 days sooner this year! While this means opportunity and potential business for some companies, others will experience a substantial short fall in profit and a tightening of cash flow. What happened to all the snow? Cutting warm season grass in March….Yikes! Steady the ship and get your arms around your Balance Sheet. Start with these: 1. How much profit and cash is being eaten up by Balance Sheet transactions? A. Look at your current amortization schedules on existing debt and identify the next 12 monthly required principle payments. B. […]
September 9, 2015

Growth – Don’t Let It Be Your Silent Killer

By Jeff Harkness The phone is ringing more, economic outlooks have improved and more jobs are closing. It’s time to double your business, increase staff and purchase that additional bucket truck.  Right?  Not so fast! Successful business growth requires leadership, a sound financial strategy, staff capacity and smart market timing. Growth while rewarding, can also be stressful, frustrating and run companies straight out of business. Simply put, here is a blueprint for success and how to avoid the growth pitfalls. 1. LEADERSHIP AND PEOPLE: Leadership is defined as “a process of social influence in which one person can enlist the […]
September 9, 2015

Focus on Teaching Character and Process

By Jeff Harkness I’m watching a transformation happen in a client’s business. It’s exciting to watch. We started this phenomenon with a simple decision to invest in training our staff and weeding out the low character people on team. It sounds simple, but all too often it is overlooked due to time constraints, bad hiring practices, tight purse strings, or a sheer bull headed owner mindset. I believe the biggest difference between the Green industry and Corporate America is management talent; more specifically, the dollars and commitment corporations make to developing leaders and creating a culture where people want to […]
September 10, 2012

Three Point Group facilitates the sale of Town & Gardens, Ltd.

  New York, April 20, 2011 – Town & Gardens Ltd a premier landscape installation and maintenance company operating in Manhattan, New York City has concluded the sale of their business to a strategic industry buyer.  Town & Gardens Ltd and the acquirer are both regular PLANET award winners for their design, installation and maintenance services. Three Point Group, Inc. was engaged by Town & Gardens Ltd in 2008 to establish a transition and succession plan for the owners with the idea that they and the employees would continue to work for the company.  The plan created with key employees […]
May 4, 2012

Fundamentals Series

Number 3 Velocity and Pace A successful owner manages the velocity or pace of their organization. He or she must be prepared to upshift (i.e. increase sales, pricing adjustments, collections) or downshift (i.e. cut spending, quality control, manipulate crew size) the focus of the organization at any moment. This may involve contract reviews, employee one-on-ones, group planning meetings, or even organizational changes. Interpretation of timely and accurate data against goals, plan or budget creates accountability and thus a forward looking mentality. This approach “bucks” the norm as most owners and managers tend to review historical data or have “rear view […]