Gardening Business Training

Gardening Business Training Session

Gardening Business Training – Valuable, varied…and fun!

Gardening Business Training – What’s the story?

Here in Ed’s, we rounded off the first week of February with our first gardening business training session of 2020. Consequently, the office was a real hive of activity, even more so than usual! And so, we were delighted to welcome many of our Gardening Business Owners, from a whole range of locations, for a valuable training afternoon.

As always, we covered a range of relevant business issues. Furthermore, the Ed’s way of doing training is that we all agree a list of hot topics with our Business Owners on the day. Without a doubt, we find this is fundamentally much better than coming up with a dry pre-fabricated agenda.

First and foremost, this means that we train our Gardening Business Owners in matters in which they are really interested.  Thus, topics that will make a difference to their businesses. We take the view that training for training’s sake is of no value at all. Training must add real value for our team of busy Business Owners. This training ethos runs through Ed’s. It applies to new Business Owners, who have a tailored training programme for their own specific needs. Equally, it applies to planning training sessions for Gardening Business Owners who have been with Ed’s for twelve years or more. The Ed’s mantra is that training should ALWAYS make a difference.

The Format

First of all, our training session kicked off with an overview from Ed himself on the big picture in Ed’s. This is always useful for our Business Owners as it puts their own business efforts into context. Next, we welcomed new Ed’s Gardening Business Owners and then cut to the main agenda , which focused, first of all, on agreeing the hot topics of the day.

We always love hearing our Business Owners putting forward their ideas on their hot topics at a specific point in time. After agreeing the hot topics, we split into groups, mixing up new and experienced Business Owners. Notably, we all find that it is so beneficial for business owners with a whole range of different levels of experience and perspectives to contribute to a wide breadth of discussions.

Our aim is to strike a balance between keeping discussions informal and flowing but also capturing the essence through a structured approach. We find that breaking into small groups for initial discussion works. The next stage is to have group presentations to feed that input into the whole group. The Office team are very experienced facilitators and this helps us to make this fluid approach work!

The Proceedings

In Friday’s session we covered a whole breadth of hot topics, ranging from ‘What makes a really good customer?’ to ‘Key considerations when employing staff’. Breaking things up with some fresh air, we did an outdoors practical exercise on estimating some tricky jobs. In addition, we had a presentation on physical wellbeing from one of our experienced Business Owners, Richard from St Ives.

Finally , we were able to squeeze in a great session from one of the large gardening equipment suppliers. He spoke to us about latest developments in the world of gardening equipment. We found it really useful to have his expert opinion on kit performance.

After all that talking, we were certainly ready for some refreshments. We like to have an informal social element at the end of our training sessions as it gives Business Owners the chance to get to know each other better.

The Feedback

After the event, we always ask our business owners for feedback so that we can continuously improve our training provision…

First of all, we got a five star review from Paul, who runs his gardening business in Swindon. Paul said” I thought it was a really great session. Well worth the time out of my business. It was really useful content, the time flew and it was fun. It’s always great to see the other Business Owners too. All in all, a great Friday afternoon.”

Next, Dave, who runs his business in Andover, was equally positive. He said “The Ed’s training sessions are really spot on. I always look forward to them. The things we cover are always really interesting and you leave with ideas and solutions that make a great difference to your business. I really like the team aspect as well. It’s all done in a fun, fresh way too. Actually, great training is one of the real advantages of being part of Ed’s.”

Finally, Nigel, who runs his business in Worthing fed back, ” I find these get-togethers so useful, as well as motivational. I thought that the small group exercise of pricing up the jobs at the front of the building were very enlightening for future reference. Thank you!”

A final key measure of success is that the Office team always enjoys running the sessions as much as our Business Operators enjoy participating. This has to be a key ingredient of a successful and fun training event.

If you would like to find out more about life as an Ed’s Gardening Business Operator, please do get in touch.

Gardening Business to go!

Gardening business far below

Gardening Business winter activities

A Gardening Business is perennial…

In Ed’s we find that our Business Owners are busy delivering gardening services for most of the year. They have a number of regular customers who want them to visit all year round.

However, January and February do tend to be our quietest months before spring springs and we all get extremely busy again.

Our Gardening Business Owners usually get everything ship-shape for the very busy rest of year in those two months. Business reviews are completed, vans serviced, meetings with accountants scheduled etc.

…yet there’s still time for some fun!

It’s also  a great time to refresh, catch some winter sun and take some time out while  the rest of the working population is struggling through dreary January.

A few examples of what our Gardening Business Owners have been up to since the Christmas break.

Steve’s great escape…

Gardening Business Owner Hersham Steve Frise

Steve Frise, is our Ed’s Gardening Business Owner in Hersham. Steve has been running his Ed’s business for almost twelve years.  He just got back from a great holiday in New Zealand. Here’s what Steve has to say about it…

Why New Zealand?

“My nineteen year old son is following his blossoming football career in New Zealand and is staying out there for a year. It’s been a great opportunity for him and, aside from loving his football, he has fallen in love with New Zealand. Inspired by his enthusiasm, it set me thinking a few months back that maybe I could take a few weeks break in January and go out to visit my son for a few weeks. Quickly, this grew from a vague notion to me booking my flights!”

Who held the fort with your Gardening Business?

“I have a very well-established Ed’s business. I joined Ed’s over ten years ago and I have built a really strong business. My business has lots of lovely customers who are happy for me to work through the winter. However, I also have a really good team of employees, so although the business still runs, I really don’t have to be there all of the time. I can take some time out, with a clear head and just enjoy myself.”

The verdict?

“My New Zealand trip was just wonderful. Aside from the beauty of the country, I was able to spend some great time with my son. What job gives you the freedom to be as spontaneous as that.  My wife has been very gracious about the whole thing, especially since she couldn’t get the time off from her job to come along!”

“I feel refreshed and ready for the season to kick off again. All we need is some of that lovely New Zealand sunshine now!”

David’s winter adventure…

David Ross, joined Ed’s in October 2019 to run his Ed’s Gardening Business in Royal Tunbridge Wells. David has just got back from an amazing trip to USA. We asked David for the lowdown…

” I started my Ed’s Gardening Business in October 2019. I’ve completed all my training and have put all the building blocks in place to get my business started. I got some good experience in delivering the Ed’s services in the last few months of 2019. I’m in great shape to make the most of the year ahead.”

The travel opportunity

“Over the Christmas break, out of the blue, the opportunity arose to go out to the States to see my brother and do a road trip in Utah and Colorado – an absolute dream for me! At first I felt a bit guilty about jumping at it. I’ve only just started my Ed’s Gardening Business. However, I chatted it through with Ed and our joint conclusion was to go for it.”

“I’ve got everything in place for spring. I know the work will be plentiful to say the least. There was absolutely nothing to stop me from going ahead and having a wonderful time… with peace of mind.”

The verdict?

“As it turned out the trip was indeed absolutely wonderful. This was my ‘view from the office’ in January! The salt plains just outside Salt Lake City, Utah.  What an amazing sight.”

“I’m back now, over the jet lag and looking forward to an Ed’s training session with all the team next week. I’m so glad I took the opportunity. I feel energised and really positive about all the opportunities and challenges the year ahead will surely bring.”

“Who knew that running a gardening business could come with a jet-set lifestyle!”

If you would like to find out more about life as an Ed’s Gardening Business Owner, please do get in touch.

Gardening Business in Ramsgate

Ed's gardening business Ramsgate takes off

Gardening Business in Ramsgate – How has Mark’s business taken off?

Gardening Business in Ramsgate – The Background

Mark Stanton joined Ed’s Garden Services in January 2019.  He joined Ed’s to set up his own gardening business in Ramsgate, Kent. Mark joined Ed’s in search of career fulfilment by doing something he loved, far away from the Corporate world. It is true that he was also looking for a healthier lifestyle. This meant resetting the balance in his life.  Mark felt that it was important to him to reclaim the thrill of doing a job that he loved.

At Ed’s it is really important to us that Business Owners can achieve their goals.  However, this applies not only to the financial goals.  Indeed, the lifestyle ones are hugely important to us too.

Recently we had a catch up with Mark and asked him for some honest feedback on how his Ed’s venture is panning out for him so far.

Ed's gardening business Ramsgate van

 

Over to Mark…

“Well, I can honestly say that my Ed’s experience has significantly exceeded my expectations. I knew that I very much enjoyed gardening and I knew that Ed’s was a really professional Franchise business.  Taking both factors into account, I was reassured that Ed’s would probably work out well enough for me.”

My Gardening Business in Ramsgate’s success…

“However, what I didn’t really expect was the scope of the opportunity to build a business. There has been so much work available to me since I started that I have been able to build very strong foundations in my business much earlier than I thought was realistic.  The process my business has made is nothing short of amazing.  It’s no coincidence that the level of support I’ve got from the Ed’s team has been excellent. I knew I would be supported but I really didn’t expect it to be so personal and guiding. You just get the feeling that everyone is rooting for you to succeed right from the start. That is incredibly reassuring when you are in the early days of a brand new business.”

My fulfilment…

“Another thing I underestimated was the general sense of wellbeing and freedom I get from this career. I love the fact that I can shape my days how I want, doing something I love and don’t waste time on long commutes. One particular day stands out in the summer when I was driving along the coast road to another good job, watching the sun glistening on the water thinking “How could work really be any better than this! If I had to put how I feel about my job on the happiness barometer, it would honestly be off the scale.”  

My health and wellbeing…

“My business figures are looking really good but the other big bonus is that my figure is looking much better too! I’m already much trimmer than I have been in years and my health is massively improved as well. This is factual as I had a recent health MOT and absolutely everything was way better.”

My family’s take on it…

“And last but not least, my wife is just as delighted as I am with my Ed’s venture. I had been so stressed at work before Ed’s and she had been very keen for me to do something which would make me healthier and happier. She wholeheartedly agrees that Ed’s has certainly done that for me! My long commute is a thing of the past. Consequently, we have much more quality time together.  It’s still a bit of a novelty me actually being home at a decent time in the evening.  Even the dog is happier as I can pop home to have lunch some days!”

Tunbridge Wells Gardening Business

Tunbridge Wells Gardening business equipment

David sets up his Tunbridge Wells gardening business

David Ross has just joined Ed’s to run his gardening business in Royal Tunbridge Wells. With very strong business experience and a real drive to run a good business, we are sure that David will do very well with his new venture.

David Ross - Ed's Operator Tunbridge Wells

David shares a few thoughts with us on his decision to join Ed’s…

My background

“I’ll tell you a bit about how I went from sales management to running my own Ed’s gardening business. I had spent many years working in sales management in a visual communications business. I had the classic “good job” scenario. However, the flip side was that I also had all the stresses and corporate issues that go with the territory. I had got to a stage where I just wasn’t fulfilled and I wanted to do something else for my physical and mental wellbeing.

My job criteria

I really wanted to feel excited about my job – my next job had to be something that I wanted to get up for in the morning. Because I’ve always loved the outdoors and, particularly doing practical, physical work in a natural environment, running my own gardening business seemed like a good option for me. Also, my neighbours frequently joke about the time I spend cutting back and tending the wooded area beside the estate where I live. Those who know me well say it’s been clear that I’ve been a frustrated gardener for a long time. I just had to realise it!

The selection process

When I started thinking about alternative careers, it was obvious the type of work I enjoyed. I focussed my research on relevant businesses. I found out about Ed’s early on in my search and was immediately impressed by the quality of their online presence. Indeed, I was also impressed with the initial communication regarding the details of the franchise. When I moved on to talk with the Ed’s office team, this was only reinforced. The Ed’s team were friendly, professional and very knowledgeable. They also had a clear passion for the business. I could see that the signs were all very good. I also knew for sure that I wanted to move on to the next stage and find out more.

Face to face meeting

I came in to meet with Ed with my wife and we were both very impressed with the quality of the franchise business. We were also struck by the professional but friendly and frank way it was all presented to us. I can spot a hard sell a mile away, given my background, and with Ed’s the feeling we got was quite the opposite. To be honest, it was very refreshing. The clear message I got was that of ‘take your time and work out if it’s right for you.’

My next steps

We learned lots about my potential gardening business and I felt really keen to go ahead. However, I would be lying if I said I didn’t feel trepidation about jacking in my job. I was quite open about that after the meeting. The feedback I got from Ed’s was that they wholeheartedly agreed that the timing had to be right for me, it was crucial to me getting the best possible start to running my business. No pressure, no negativity, just a ‘let us know if/when the time is right’.

My timing

Over the following months, we kept in touch and I kept thinking about Ed’s and what it would be like to be part of the team. I knew everything stacked up for me about Ed’s, it was just finding the courage to make the leap. Early summer this year I realised that it was time to move forward.

Getting out on the job

The next stage was to me to go out with an established Ed’s Operator to get a good insight into what Ed’s was really like. I went out with Bob, who runs his business in Horsham. Bob previously worked in risk management so he was a really good person to talk to! I had a field day (excuse the pun!) on my day out. He is a great guy who is running a fabulous business. What’s more, he has a lot of passion for what he does. We share a corporate background and we clicked right away. Again, I felt I could ask any question, nothing was too daft.

Bob even let me loose on a lawn (with close vigilance!) and was really pleased with my work. Even if I say so myself, my stripes weren’t half bad for a new guy on his work experience day!

Tunbridge Wells Gardening business lawn mowing stripes
David earns his lawn mowing stripes

A Tunbridge Wells gardening business was born!

In a nutshell, I knew my hunch was right after my day out. I had been in my element. I made my mind up to definitely go for it and the rest of the joining process ran like clockwork. Having gone through the remaining steps, I came in to the office and signed my contract. My Ed’s business was born!

Now I’m all ready to go with my business and I am really looking forward to getting started. Of course, I still feel a little bit apprehensive. However, when I speak to Ed’s Operators who have only been going a few months and are already going great guns, I feel absolutely fine. I know that will be me in a few months time! The main thing is that I am totally reassured by the fact that I know that I am in extremely safe hands.”

Ed’s wishes David all the very best with his new venture.

Gardening Business in Andover

Dave Garden Business Owner Andover Topiary

Dave reflects on his shipshape gardening business…and life

Dave Laing - Ed's Business Owner Andover
Dave Laing – Ed’s Business Owner Andover

There’s nothing we like better than catching up with the business owners of an Ed’s gardening business.  We often have a catch up when they are taking a well-earned coffee break.  We believe that effective coaching is at the very heart of Ed’s success.

Even once our Business Owners are very well established, communication is always strong and we love to hear what’s going well as well as giving ongoing support when required. 

Dave gives us the low down…

Earlier this week, we caught up with Dave Laing.  Dave runs his own successful gardening business in Andover. He joined Ed’s in May 2017 so is now into his third year of operation as an Ed’s business owner.  Dave took a few minutes to reflect on how he is feeling about his Ed’s journey. This is what he had to say:-

“Well, here I am with a great little gardening business. I’ve got forty great regular customers now, which was my target from day one. My business really is running smoothly now and I have a very strong sense of achievement.”

The gardening business road so far…

“I don’t want to sound smug but I really am in a very good place with my business now. I can see the fruits of all my focus and planning. At the start, the Ed’s team always stressed how important it was to put strong building blocks in place and I really took that on board and followed their advice to the letter. I am really pleased that I did that as I can see now how important it is in building a very strong business. My financials are looking really good and life is really very enjoyable. I still love gardening and get a real kick out of a job well done. I think my enthusiasm comes over with my customers and they are a really loyal, lovely bunch of people.”

Life in general…

“At a personal level, I can honestly say that life has never been better. My wife and I had a fabulous holiday in Namibia earlier this year and we are planning a trip to Corsica later this year and are also going to Cuba in the New Year. I feel fitter than I have in years and feel a lot younger than when I started my business with Ed’s.”

“When I joined Ed’s, I wanted a successful business, of course. However, I also wanted a good work/life balance and I’ve definitely achieved that. I work four and a half days per week now as I like to get finished around lunchtime on a Friday so we can have a really good weekend and some quality down time.”

“Ed’s really has been the best thing I have ever done career-wise.  My only regret is that I really wish I had started my business five years earlier, when I think about how disenchanted I was in my corporate job in that period. If I had known then what I know now, I would have jumped ship in a flash!”

…And the future for your gardening business?

“I can see me running my Ed’s business for many years to come.  I’ve found my niche and I can’t ever imagine being employed by someone else ever again. I love the freedom too much. I might go down to a four day week in ten years or so though!”

 

 

 

Gardening business Norfolk

Beautiful woodland garden in rural Norfolk

Stuart’s gardening business office for the day

The perks of running a gardening business!

Stuart Thackeray has an established Ed’s gardening business in rural Norfolk (North and West). It’s a stunning part of the world and Stuart loves being able to live in such a beautiful place, as well running a successful garden maintenance business

The background…

Having spent many years commuting into London from New Malden to work in the City as a systems analyst, Stuart really was ready for a change of career. He originally joined Ed’s in 2014 to build a gardening business in New Malden. He loved the gardening and was amazed at how quickly he could establish a good business as part of Ed’s. There was only one thing missing.  It was in the wrong location for him to feel truly fulfilled. 

Stuart had grown up in rural Norfolk and had always longed to move back there. However, he had felt that it was just impractical from a career perspective.  The seeds of an idea were germinating though…. Maybe maybe Stuart could do a job he loved in a place that he loved too?

Completing the dream lifestyle…

Stuart says ” I was amazed at how well the Ed’s business model worked when I started my gardening business in New Malden. I was pretty sure I could do the same thing in rural Norfolk. I knew that my customer profile and that the typical garden would be different. Yet I also had a strong hunch that I would be able to run a really good gardening business there. Indeed, my hunch was right!”

Stuart now lives in a listed cottage with outbuildings (and the obligatory Aga to dry his gardening socks on!) He says ” When I talk about our life now and how different (and better!) it is, I risk sounding like a bit of a cliché! But it really is wonderful. No more traffic congestion and my day consists of working in a variety of different gardens, mainly in rural villages around the one in which I live – Whissonsett, near Fakenham. Sometimes I have my sidekick, Monty, our Hungarian Vizsla,  with me, depending on whether the weather suits him to venture out or not! My customers love it when he decides to grace us with his presence. He usually gets a more enthusiastic welcome even than I do.” 

Gardening business helper Hungarian Vizsla dog

“So what’s the downside? Well, irritatingly I guess, I don’t really think there is one. You get the odd day of weather which is not as good as you’d hoped but give me that over a stuffy, claustrophobic commute into Central London any day. Each to their own, I suppose, but I wouldn’t swap the life we’ve built here for anything.”

 

Gardening Business In Oxshott

Garden Business Owner Oxshott - Chris Webb

Chris Walker has recently joined Ed’s to run his Ed’s gardening business in Oxshott and surrounding areas. Chris comes to us with a lot of sound, practical business experience. We are sure he will apply this well to his new Ed’s gardening business.

We asked Chris for some background to his brand new Ed’s gardening business:-

The background…

“ For many years I played a very active part in the running of a sizeable and successful family business. We realised our goal of selling that business around two years ago. However, I stayed with the business for a period to help with the transition. Once the business was well and truly handed over, I started thinking about what I really wanted to do next. I was very fortunate to be in a position to have such a free rein to decide what to do. However, I was conscious that this was a great opportunity. That made it even more important to make the right choice.”

“I needed to take a systematic approach . So, I sat down and thought about what I really enjoyed in my previous job and also what I wished it had that it hadn’t! There was a clear tick in the box that I knew I really enjoyed running a business. I was good at working with customers and wanted to do something where the results were really measurable. On the minus side, I wasn’t getting enough time to spend with my young (and growing!) family.”

“I thought about a range of things but I kept coming back to how I would love to be gardening all day. The great outdoors has always held great appeal for me and I am happiest when I am physically active. I also wanted to run a proper business and didn’t really fancy starting from scratch. Whatever I did, I wanted it to be a quality business too.”

“My idea started to crystalise…a gardening franchise business was the way forward…”

Why an Ed’s garden franchise business…

“Fortunately, I happened to know another Ed’s business owner. I knew that he was really enjoying running his business and was happy with the decision he had made. Next, I contacted him and asked him to meet up for a chat. In the meantime, I read up on everything I could about Ed’s. I was impressed with their brand and the quality of everything I read online. When we met up, it was clear that he backed all this up and had never looked back since starting this business. I was more than happy to move on to the next stage. We then set up a meeting with Ed and the Office team.”

The decision-making process…

“I found the process really easy and I was pretty convinced even before going into the Office. The Ed’s set up is ambitious, professional and supportive and they have a great brand as well. When I met Ed, he was as I expected. He came over as very switched on and clearly focused on continuing to develop Ed’s but also approachable and likeable and, very importantly, practical. It struck a chord with me that he ran his own Ed’s gardening business on his first step of the journey. I got all the information and have followed the process to the letter but, to be perfectly honest, my mind was made up from the first meeting.”

“After I signed up, we started putting all the building blocks in place for my vehicle, kit, training etc. I have now gone live and what a brilliant time of year to be starting a gardening business!”

The future…

“Clearly my immediate plan is to get a really efficient Ed’s business up and running and performing well. On the longer term, I’m trying to keep an open mind but, I must say, I do like the idea of having a few teams of staff and running quite a sizeable outfit. I know the Ed’s business model can take me there. I’m also really looking forward to getting some life-work balance into my life and spending precious time with my young daughters. I’m happy to work really hard but I love the idea that I can work that to fit my personal commitments too. I am really happy that I’ve made my decision and I’m so looking forward to getting started properly and to getting to work in some gardens.”

We wish Chris all the very best with his brand new Ed’s gardening business.

Gardening Business Training for Success

Gardening Business Growth…

The Masterclass…

We had a really excellent Ed’s gardening business franchise training session last week. Many of our Ed’s Operators attended a fantastic workshop.  It was run by local businessman … Phil Harrison.

Phil has experience of successfully growing a significant gardening business over a period of thirty years into what is currently a million pound concern.

In Phil’s words, ”I really enjoy the role with Ed’s. It reminds me of  when I was striving to develop my own business. At the time, there wasn’t the opportunity of joining a successful gardening franchise business that would help set you up and support you through the early years.  I really was making it up as I went along! It’s really enjoyable meeting the Ed’s Operators who all have a burning desire to move their businesses forward.  They have a great brand and support system with Ed’s.   There is really nothing stopping the Operators from reaching for the stars. For my part, if I can share any of my experience with them to help them through the challenges they will face, I’m more than happy to do so.”

The Format…

Phil started off his workshop with an overview of his own journey to success.  This was appreciated as some of our newer Ed’s Operators hadn’t met him before. He then moved on to split the attendees into working groups to discuss and feed back on specific topics, such as ‘how to recruit and keep the best people’ to other performance-enhancing subjects. In this session, Phil moved between the groups when they were discussing their topics and then facilitated the feedback sessions.

Eds Operators enjoying training session

Even Baloo was paying lots of attention to the proceedings!

Baloo paying attention in class

With all the formal discussing done, we moved on to the informal socialising part of the session, which was equally as valuable. Over pizzas and drinks, the Ed’s Operators were able to catch up with each other and also have specific chats with Phil on a one to one basis.

The Reviews…

As with all our training sessions, we asked our Operators for some constructive feedback. We got some very positive reviews: –

• Steve’s review – Steve has been an Ed’s Operator in Hersham  for more than ten years, told us, “I thoroughly enjoy listening to Phil. He really knows his stuff and has done so well with his business. There are always good ideas to take away and implement in my own gardening business. The social aspect is great too; we’re very lucky to have such a good group of Ed’s Operators. It never really feels like work.”

• Marcus’ review – Marcus joined Ed’s last year to run his business in Streatham told us, “I was very impressed with that training session. I am ambitious about where I want to go with my Ed’s business and that’s exactly the kind of training session that fuels my drive to take my business as far as I possibly can. The focus is very much on the practical and tactical and that is hugely helpful. Phil is really inspiring.”

• Mark’s review – Mark , who has very recently joined us to run his Ed’s business in Ramsgate, said, “Training sessions such as these remind me of why I was so sure Ed’s was the right franchise for me. I could never get access to this kind of stuff if I were going it alone. The pitch is just right. Phil is very informative but fun and never patronising. I wish my training sessions in my previous corporate life had been half as valuable as this!”

The  Conclusion…

So, how did we do? All in all a great training session and at just the right time of year to fire up and focus our Ed’s Operators on what they want to achieve in the season ahead.

Spring Flowers were in attendance too

We’d like to say a huge thank you to Phil for putting together such a valuable training session for us. We also wish all our Ed’s Operators  all the very best with their businesses for the season ahead and beyond.

Gardening business in Ramsgate

Ed's gardening business Ramsgate van

Mark Stanton has just come on board to run his own Ed’s gardening business in Ramsgate and surrounding areas. His career experience gives him a great foundation for running an Ed’s business.

Mark’s very own gardening business! We asked him to tell us a bit about his decision to join Ed’s:-

The background…

“ Well, my background is in electrical and electronic engineering. Before joining Ed’s I was a European Sales Director for a large American Company. I had worked there for 30 years and managed a team of European salespeople.

Although I had a successful career, increasingly I felt that the joy had gone out of my job. I was travelling way more than I wanted to.  My health was suffering due to stress, poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle. My wife was frequently telling me that she would rather I was fit, healthy and alive than a successful businessman who was ill and highly stressed. We realised it was time for a major rethink.

As luck would have it, redundancy came my way. I needed an opportunity like this and I jumped at it! The question was the what next? I have always found gardening and designing gardens enormously therapeutic, relaxing and rewarding. It’s true that I loved doing both my own garden and the gardens of friends and family.  I even completed a diploma in Garden Design – just for fun! When I was particularly stressed through work, my wife would banish me to the garden for a few hours. Afterwards (apparently!) I returned a much happier person! All of this gave me the answer I needed. The future had to be a career switch to a gardening business!”

Why Ed’s garden franchise…

“I was attracted by the challenge and freedom of running my own gardening business.  I also knew that a good franchise framework could help me to have a scale of gardening business to generate decent earnings.
My next task was to find the best in the business.  Following much research, I decided there was no question that was Ed’s. Their brand, in particular, impressed me hugely.”
The rest is history and an exciting new chapter in my life was to begin.”

The decision-making process…

“It’s really funny but I felt I already knew a lot about Ed’s even before I’d spoken to anyone in the Ed’s team. Their public domain information was very informative and gave a great insight into what the Ed’s business and business model are all about. It was all very professional and informative but clear to understand where the value lay.

When I came to speak with and meet Ed and the Ed’s team, it all just reinforced my initial impressions. The feeling was they were very professional without any corporate stuffiness and there was a real sense of ‘all hands to deck’ to help Operators realise their ambitions. Although I asked all the difficult questions to be absolutely sure, it was an incredibly easy decision to make. I knew I loved gardening and I had every confidence that Ed’s was the right vehicle to support me through to achieving my goals. I felt like I just fitted in from the outset.

I’ve now done most of my training and have got my garden business set up and ready to go. There has been a lot to organise but I have been guided through it and have really enjoyed the whole onboarding process. It has all gone very smoothly without any glitches at all. It has been infinitely less daunting than setting up an independent business would have been.”

The future…

“My main challenge, after 30 years in a corporate world, has been to have the self-belief that I can become successfully self-employed. However, I’ve come to wholeheartedly believe that I really can. However, it is still great to have the safety net of a successful franchise behind me. I am now more excited than nervous about the future and it helps knowing that my wife and family (not to mention the Ed’s team!) all believe in me 100%. I’m more than ready to go and just can’t wait to get on with building my gardening business.”

We wish Mark all the very best with his Ed’s business.

Marcus goes global!

Marcus, our Ed’s Operator in Streatham, had high ambitions for his business when he joined Ed’s early this year. However, not even he thought he would be expanding his business overseas before the year was out!

Marcus told us all about his latest venture as follows…

“I’ve done quite a lot of work for a lovely customer with a stunning house. They have a beautiful garden and I absolutely love working in it.  They have been very pleased with the results of my labours and are now one of my firm regular customers. I know they really appreciate my work and I get on very well with them.”

“However, I was stunned when they asked me if I would be prepared to do some gardening for them in France!  It turns out that they have another lovely property in the Dordogne region of France. That garden needs a bit of care and they think I’m just the man for the job! They’ve offered me an all expenses paid trip there in springtime if I would be happy to go and sort things out for the season ahead.  They even invited me to fly my family out and tag a few days holiday on to the end of it to explore the region. What an opportunity!  I was really flattered that they were so happy with my work that they are prepared to go to those lengths.”

“Of course I said Yes and will manage my workload to fulfil my commitments to my other regular customers”

“So we are all good to go. All that remains is for me to brush up on my French. My tools are all very well maintained but, I have to admit, my French is just a little bit rusty!!”