There’s an old saying in business: You’re only as successful as the people you surround yourself with. I believe this implicitly from my experience in the corporate world, working with other trade groups, and certainly, most recently, serving as your president. It’s been an exciting and very rewarding year for me in many ways, from the industry professionals and volunteers I’ve come to know, to the PLANET staff members who make the organization run so smoothly. Their combined contribution bodes well for the industry and the future of PLANET.
Following are just a few of the past year’s highlights that I believe standout among others, all of which could not have been accomplished without the efforts and support of those mentioned above.
Certainly, an important one is the addition of the Irrigation & Water Management Specialty Group. Since many members already offer this service, adding this group seemed logical. Doing so also brought on board those dedicated exclusively to providing irrigation installation and maintenance services, further validating PLANET’s role as the “voice of the green industry.”
This past year, we’ve made great strides in reaching out to past presidents whose experience and wisdom are pivotal to our continued growth. We’ve engaged them at the Green Industry Conference (GIC) and other events and keep them updated through a bimonthly past presidents newsletter.
In addition, PLANET launched a few initiatives to accelerate membership numbers and further enhance the effectiveness of its well-received certification program. To help expand the membership base, leadership has been in discussion with state groups to allow their members to become eligible for PLANET membership. This effort, under the leadership of Ohio Landscape Association Executive Director Sandy Munley, will continue this spring to include a focus group comprised of other state leaders.
PLANET also enlisted a new PR firm, Four Leaf Public Relations, to help promote PLANET and to educate consumers about our industry and about the importance of hiring a well-educated, professional company that has Landscape Industry Certified staff.
The PLANET staff and leadership continue to put incredible effort into key events such as the GIC and Lawn Care Summit. Once again it proves that these venues are important not only for the information they convey, but also for the networking opportunities they offer attendees.
I haven’t even mentioned PLANET Universe, other educational resources, or the community service programs, such as PLANET Day of Service, Renewal & Remembrance, and PLANET Gives Back. Committees are also hard at work with Student Career Days and Legislative Day on the Hill—all of which continue to receive wide support among membership and the industry.
This is a dynamic organization with unlimited potential that is made possible by its leadership and other volunteers, the PLANET staff, and its CEO Sabeena Hickman, not to mention the ongoing important support from the industry. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed being PLANET president and welcome Glenn Jacobsen as your next president. His talents and leadership skills will carry forward an agenda that promises a great future for the people of PLANET and the industry.
Norman Goldenberg, Landscape Industry Certified Technician
Immediate Past President