SAVE 25 PERCENT ON SELECT CERTIFICATION EXAMS
Now through February 28, 2011, members and nonmembers alike can enjoy up to 25 percent off and company discounts on select certification exams. It’s a great time to get Landscape Industry Certified and save! The discount applies to the following exams:
Discounts do not apply to computer testing fees.
For more detailed information about individual and company discounts, contact the certification team at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (800) 395-2522.
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GET RECOGNIZED FOR YOUR COMMITMENT TO SAFETY
All green industry companies and branches are invited to participate in PLANET’s Safety Recognition Awards Program, sponsored by CNA. This program is nationally recognized and reflects the dedication of green industry companies to creating and maintaining safe work environments. Participation in the program may translate into lower insurance premiums and reduce costly workers’ compensation claims. There is no entry fee, and the application, which is now available online as part of the Safety Recognition Awards Program brochure, must be submitted to PLANET by April 29, 2011.
Members of the STARS Safe Company Program (Safety Training Achieves Remarkable Success), signed a pledge to commit themselves and their companies to improving safety awareness, and participating in the awards program is one of the items committed to when they signed the pledge.
The safety awards program covers the period of January 1, 2010, through December 31, 2010. To participate, companies must submit a copy of their application, OSHA Form 300A Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses, and a copy of their year-end vehicle insurance claims summary report from their insurance agents. They must complete a Safety Program Checklist, which is included with their application, and are encouraged to return the benchmarking form, also part of the application.
Safety Recognition Awards are presented to companies in the following categories:
- No Vehicle Accidents
- No Injuries or Illnesses
- No Days Away From Work
In addition, companies that have participated in previous awards programs are eligible for the Most Improved category. Companies may also qualify for the Overall Safety Achievement Awards (gold, silver, and bronze levels). To be eligible for this award, they must demonstrate outstanding safety performance in the workplace based on their combined fleet and employee incident rates.
PLANET provides award recipients with press releases, touting the efforts of their companies to promote safe habits in the workplace, to distribute to media and help them stand out from the competition.
For more information about the Safety Recognition Award Program, contact Cheryl Claborn, go online to the Safety Recognition Program under the Safety & Risk Management tab at LandcareNetwork.org or call the PLANET office at (800) 395-2522.
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EXCERPTS FROM STATE OF INDUSTRY INTERVIEW WITH PLANET PRESIDENT AND PRESIDENT-ELECT
The following excerpts are from an interview with PLANET President David Snodgrass, Landscape Industry Certified Manager, and President-Elect/Secretary, Gerald J. Grossi, Landscape Industry Certified Technician, conducted by Landscape & Irrigation magazine. Be on the lookout for the entire interview in the February issue of Landscape & Irrigation.
Q: What are some of the key issues that will be at the forefront for our industry in 2011?
David: I believe that the key issues will be the following:
Jerry: In addition to the issues Dave mentioned, and in no particular order, I personally feel that the following will also be key issues in 2011:
- The economy.
- Negative criticism by activists. We need to do a better job of telling our story about the good that our industry does along with all of its positives. It is hard to believe that the green industry would be the one that is getting the negative criticism. This just shows that every industry is subject to scrutiny.
- Green opportunities that present themselves. There are efforts being made to limit what we do around sustainability; however, at the same time, there are an abundance of new green opportunities that didn’t exist before.. Since we are the experts, we can take advantage of these opportunities. We know how to install rain gardens, green roof and walls, recycle water, and so on. Some opportunities are diminished when new ones present themselves.
- Labor continues to be a big issue and will likely remain as such. The immigrant labor force is important to us and therefore we need to fight for it.
- Restriction of water use. Water touches all aspects of what we do and any restriction of it will affect our industry. For example, the WaterSense program. People are starting to adopt it as a model for local governments to use. There is a 40 percent landscape restriction that goes along with this. Green building initiatives will also affect how we use water and our landscapes in the future. I believe there will be other water issues in 2011 as well.
- Banning of fertilizer and pesticide products without justification is continuing. Once the state has adopted it, the next state does, and so forth.
- Everyone should keep abreast of the news and stay on top of business issues, such as health care and government regulations.
Q: What is your boldest prediction for 2011?
Dave: Our economy is recovering, but we must be patient as it will be a slow and steady pattern of growth for our industry.
With respect to the housing industry, prices are low, and we should accept that they will continue to be slow to appreciate. Many homeowners are unable to sell their home at this time, so they will wait it out. While doing so, they will continue to make home improvements, which is a strong addition to the work that we do.
Sustainability is long term. Companies should better position themselves and offer sustainable services and products, which will help build their reputation for being sustainable. In a tough economy, price plays a big role. As the economy improves, customers will be able to afford what’s important to them, and being green is going to be one of those.
Customers are beginning to ask for certified individuals and companies, which will continue to become the norm. As the demand increases, companies that are not positioning themselves with certified staff may find themselves losing out on certain projects.
The Industry will continue to thrive. We do so much that gives people pleasure, which is incredible and probably the main reason we are in this industry. However, we do have to work on countering the negative attacks on our industry.
Jerry: I don’t have a crystal ball, but I would predict that not only will we continue to see the price of gas increase at almost $4/gallon but that the price of fertilizer will double. I believe that once we see more confidence within our industry that our economy will improve at a quicker pace. I hope this improvement will occur later this year or early next year.
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PHOTO GALLERY OF AWARD-WINNING PROJECTS
Missed your opportunity to see the presentation of all the award-winning Environmental Improvement Award projects at the Green Industry Conference or just want to see them again? Now, you can check out a photo gallery of these projects at LandcareNetwork.org/awards!
The photo gallery features five areas of distinction, including Commercial Contracting, Commercial Landscape Management, Interior Plantscaping, Residential Contracting, and Residential Landscape Management. Take just a few minutes to peruse these breathtaking images that showcase the depth of skill and talent in our industry.
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LEARN HOW TO UNLOCK AND IMPLEMENT INNOVATIVE IDEAS AT 2011 PLANET EXECUTIVE FORUM AND LEADERSHIP MEETING
From February 16 to 20, 2011, green industry business owners and managers are invited to gather at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island Florida, to learn ways to unlock innovative ideas and/or to implement them during the PLANET Executive Forum and Leadership Meeting. Business leaders who attend will have the opportunity to be involved in breakfast roundtables, innovation lunches, leadership meetings, various networking opportunities, and still have free time to enjoy the southern hospitality and amenities of the luxurious The Ritz-Carlton.
Communications coach, columnist, and author Carmine Gallo will kick off the event with what promises to be an engaging multimedia keynote presentation, sponsored by Caterpillar Inc., and titled, The Innovation Secrets of Steve Jobs: Insanely Different Principles for Breakthrough Success. Gallo will share about the effective communication skills he has learned directly from the men and women who run such admired companies as Google, Starbucks, Cisco, The Ritz-Carlton, and many other global brands.
In keeping with the theme of Innovation & Technology, Langdon Morris, recognized as the world’s leading expert on innovation, will deliver an interactive presentation, sponsored by Vermeer, with individual and team activities with focused work, dialog, personal conclusions, and action planning for participants. And, rounding out the educational offerings will be Gene Marks, small business management columnist, author, speaker, and business owner, who will answer a number of questions, including the following: How one business person generates more leads through social networking, why some bonus plans work and other fail; and which key economic indicators are worth tracking to drive business decisions. His presentation is sponsored by JOHN DEERE.
Hotel reservations can be made by either calling The Ritz-Carlton at (904) 277-1100 and asking for the PLANET rate $229 or visiting ritzcarlton.com,selecting Amelia Island as the location, and using the group block code of PLNPLNA to receive the group rate.
For more details about the 2011 Executive Forum and Leadership Meeting, go online to Events/Education section of LandcareNetwork.org, check out the event brochure, e-mail Joan Haller, or call the PLANET office at (800) 395-2522.
PLANET thanks the event’s sponsors, particularly Platinum Sponsor Caterpillar Inc., Gold Sponsor Vermeer, and Silver Sponsor JOHN DEERE, for making this all possible.
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WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU!
We value your opinion, so we’d like to know, how are we doing? Help improve your association by providing feedback on our e-mail and print communications! Take a few minutes to provide your feedback by going online to http://tinyurl.com/PLANETNews. A printed, postage-paid copy of the survey will also be included with the February issue of PLANET News. You can make change happen today!
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SPONSORSHIP AND CAREER FAIR OPPORTUNITIES AVAILABLE FOR 2011 PLANET STUDENT CAREER DAYS
In a few months, hundreds of the best and brightest green industry students will gather for the 35th Annual Student Career Days (SCD) to be held March 17–20, 2011, at Joliet Junior College, Joliet, Illinois. Please note: The early-bird registration deadline is February 9, 2011.
SCD is a three-day event for students enrolled in interior and exterior horticulture programs at two- and four-year colleges and universities from across the country. Each year, close to 900 green industry students from more than 60 schools demonstrate their skills in real-world, competitive events and have the opportunity to participate in a Career Fair where they have the potential to be hired on the spot!
Green industry companies that participate in SCD, get double the return on their investment. They get the chance to observe the students demonstrating their skills in the competitive events as well as to showcase their employment and/or internship opportunities during the Career Fair and get their name in front of an eager audience of next-generation industry professionals.
Each booth at the Career Fair includes an area where companies can conduct on-site interviews, and companies have the opportunity to be a Lead Sponsor for a competitive event, which they can design, or to be an Assistant Sponsor or Donor, who assist the Lead Sponsor.
Opportunities still exist for competitive event sponsors and career fair participants. So, if you are interested in being a competitive event Lead Sponsor, Assistant Sponsor, or Donor, visit the SCD Web site at StudentCareerDays.org, or contact Anna Walraven at (800) 395-2522.
Sponsorship opportunities also exist at the Silver and Bronze sponsorship, Student Reception sponsorship, Giveaway sponsorship, and other sponsorship levels. To learn about these opportunities to reach hundreds of students, faculty members, and current green industry professionals, contact Dina Wiley at (800) 395-2522.
PLANET thanks Platinum sponsor STIHL Inc., Gold sponsor JOHN DEERE, Silver sponsors Caterpillar Inc.; Gravely, an Ariens Company Brand; and New Holland Construction, and Bronze sponsors BRICKMAN and Husqvarna for helping to make this event possible.
For more details about PLANET’s 2011 SCD, contact Anna Walraven at (800) 395-2522. You may also register online at StudentCareerDays.org.
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THINK SPRING; ALSO THINK 2011 PLANET DAY OF SERVICE
Spring really isn’t all that far away now, so, as you gear up for the busy season, don’t forget PLANET Day of Service, scheduled for April 22, 2011.
PLANET Day of Service is an opportunity for PLANET members, state associations, supplier members, PLANET partners, and other green industry professionals to come together across the country for a day of giving back to their communities through volunteer landscape, lawn care, tree care, or interior projects. Day of Service helps to shine the national spotlight on our industry and to educate the public about the important role it plays as a steward of our country’s green spaces.
Projects can be large or small, from landscaping schools, city parks, court houses, libraries, baseball fields, playgrounds, and senior citizen homes, to giving a facelift to a local landmark, creating vegetable gardens, or adding plants to spruce up an interior space.
All the information you need to plan your project can be found at the planetdayofservice.org Web site. For more details about the PLANET Day of Service, contact Heather Finney at email@example.com or call the PLANET office at (800) 395-2522. For information about sponsorship opportunities, contact Dina Wiley.
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PLANET TO HOST SERIES OF FREE WEBINARS
PLANET will be hosting the following series of FREE educational webinars in February and March. Save these dates and check the Webinar page under the Events/Education tab at LandcareNetwork.org for more information.
2011 PLANET Webinar Series
February 2 from 1:30 p.m.–2:30 p.m. — Win More Work: Streamlining your Estimating and Bidding Process Using Microsoft Excel, Phil Harwood, Landscape Industry Certified Manager, Pro-Motion Consulting, LLC
February 9 from 1:30 p.m.–-2:30 p.m. — Growing With a Little Help From Your Friends: The Measurable Benefits of Peer Groups, Jeffrey Scott, Landscape Success Systems
February 23 from 1:30 p.m.–2:30 p.m. — Where Did My Profits Go? Pricing to Win Without Losing Profits, Rich Arlington, Rich Arlington & Associates
March 2 from 1:30 p.m.–2:30 p.m. — A Leaders Guide to Growing Forward in Today’s Challenging Times: The 10 Fundamentals That Growing Forward Leaders Need to Know and Practice, Bill Arman & Ed Laflamme, Landscape Industry Certified Manager, The Harvest Group
March 9 from 1:30 p.m.–2:30 p.m. — How to Get Media Coverage of Your Events, Lisa Schaumann, Bendure Communications, Inc.
March 23, from 3 p.m.–4 p.m. — THE POWER OF COMMUNITY SERVICE: Grow Your Business Through a Systematic Approach to Community Service, Jeffrey Scott, Landscape Success Systems
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PLANET AEF SEEKS NOMINEES FOR OUTSTANDING EDUCATOR OF THE YEAR AWARD
Nominations are now being accepted for the 2011 PLANET Academic Excellence Foundation (PLANET AEF) Outstanding Educator of the Year Award. Educators selected for this award must be a professor at a two- or four-year institution with significant programs dedicated to the green industry field. They also need to have devoted time, energy, and enthusiasm to their programs and to have made a noteworthy contribution to education in the green industry.
The nomination form is available online and must be submitted to the PLANET office no later than February 7, 2011. Nominations may be submitted by current PLANET members and by students who must solicit a PLANET member to endorse their selection. This award will be announced during the Closing Ceremony at the PLANET Student Career Days event, March 17–20, 2011, at Joliet Junior College, in Joliet, Illinois.
Past recipients of this award include Frank Millsap of Richland College (2001); Steve Angley of Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo (2002); Martha Hill of Hinds Community College (2003), Kent Hammond of Ohio State University-Agricultural Technical Institute (2004); Grant Reid of Colorado State University (2005); Phil Allen, Ph.D., Landscape Industry Certified Manager, of Brigham Young University-Provo (2006); Jack E. Ingels of State University of New York (SUNY)-Cobleskill (2007); Rex Bishop of North Metro Technical College (2008); Brad Rowe, Ph.D., of Michigan State University (2009); and Harry Ponder, Ph.D., of Auburn University (2010).
For more information about the PLANET AEF Outstanding Educator of the Year Award, contact Kristen Nolton, or call the PLANET office at (800) 395-2522.
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