Having the four lawn maintenance business success systems in place is the secret to having a business that will run without you, even as it grows.

Hey Clippers! Dave Tucker here, writing in from the beach. Okay, not really, but I certainly could be—and you can, too. You just need to have the right systems in place.

So, in the next few posts, we’ll talk about how to do just that.

A lot of new entrepreneurs make the mistake of building a business that relies on individual people. Of course, it’s important to have good employees, but if you’re too dependent on particular people, you’re in trouble.

Your business shouldn’t fall apart if one person—even you—walks away.

Ideally, your lawn maintenance business should be like a car. Just about anyone can hop in the driver’s seat and confidently drive it from Point A to Point B. Why? Because all the systems are in place. The transmission runs smoothly, the engine is well-tuned, and the tires are aligned.

The car runs exactly as you’d expect, so you can drive it without having to consult someone at every turn.

So how does that translate to a well-run business?

Over the next few weeks, we’re breaking down the four different types of systems your successful lawn maintenance business needs. I’ll also sprinkle in a few of my own thoughts about efficiency and systems.

The essential lawn maintenance business success systems are:

  • Employees
  • Vendors
  • Financial
  • And this week’s topic: Customers

Customer systems that ensure a successful lawn maintenance business

Creating happy customers is always the place to start and the following are the areas that matter most in this category.

Customer contacts database: Every single one of your customers should be entered into your database. You should be able to track down client-specific information in a matter of seconds. If you use CLIP, you’ll be able to keep track of contact information, billing, routing, costing, and other notes.

Customer service and satisfaction systems: Write down a clear procedure for scheduling lawn maintenance services so it’s easy for your employees and your customers. You should also have a recorded procedure for cataloging and handling complaints.

Services: Keep a detailed portfolio of all your services and what each service entails. This should include pricing information and any elements that differentiate you from your competitors. The goal is to make it easy for your employees to communicate your services to your customers.

Pricing: Your pricing method should be written down and easy to follow. You should also keep all your competitor price research in one place. In order to maintain profit margins, you must maintain your pricing system.

Marketing: Your marketing plan should be documented so it’s easy to execute without oversight from you. Write down the tactics you use, such as flyers, door hangers, print ads, or email marketing. Include login information for any software you use, such as email platforms or social media pages. Also, include updated reports about which marketing tactics yield the most leads and conversions.

Step one for creating lawn maintenance business success systems: Write it down.

Here’s the master key to unlocking success systems:

Document everything.

And I mean everything.

From bank account deposits to determining the optimal travel path for the day’s work. To grow your business, you must systematize it, and to do that you need uniform procedures in written form. In other words, documentation.

Writing down the details related to every procedure means anyone can pick up a document and know exactly what to do. When all your systems are recorded, you can rest easy. Your team has everything they need to make decisions without you, so you can step away.

Next week, we’ll talk about employee systems—and how to make it easy for your employees to find what they need.