How Open-Book Management Changes How We Communicate With You

A recent Gallup poll reported that 34% of Americans are actually engaged in the work they do. By “engaged,” they mean “those who are involved in, enthusiastic about and committed to their work and workplace.”

34% is the highest total ever on this Gallup poll, which has been running since 2000. Why is that?

I know that for many, work is drudgery — a place to make a living but not grow as individuals or as a team. And that same drudgery leads to complacency and jobs with cut corners, missed deadlines and overextended budgets.

Here at Landscape America, we wanted to do something to prevent complacency in the workplace. One of the ways we did that was by adopting Open-Book Management in 2019. We’ve written about it before, but if you want a quick summary, Open-Book Management is a style of management that gives employees access to company financial information so they can think and act like owners. They also earn regular bonuses when our company profits.

So what’s my point in all this? One of the biggest benefits we’ve seen since switching to Open-Book Management is an increase in the amount and the quality of our communication — not only between team members but with clients and customers like you too!

Here are three ways we’ve seen the change.

Winter training in the yard.

1. Less supervision. More coaching, training and competency.

When work is “just a job,” there needs to be more supervision. Supervising can lead to micro-managing as supervisors make sure that unmotivated team members don’t mess anything up. This communication never contributes to growth.

With Open-Book Management, a job is no longer “just a job,” and the playing field is leveled for all involved — from owners to management and crew members too. Now that our team views their work as building a business — a business that they have a stake in — we need less (if any) supervision.

The focus is instead on communicating in a way that encourages coaching and training. This way, each person can grow in their skills and gain competence. That competence has led to more happy customers in the past two years.

Handing out Q4 bonuses for 2020!

2. A polite and courteous team, no matter their role.

If ever there’s a miscommunication between you as a customer and someone on our team, we’re better equipped than ever to resolve concerns.

Instead of phrases like “sorry, just following policy” or “sorry, that’s not my job,” whoever you speak with will politely point you in the right direction.

Since our team thinks and acts like owners, they’ll act the same way around you. And that means everyone you speak with will want to go the extra mile to resolve any issues that happen to come up!

3. The “motivation factor” and quicker response times.

Ultimately, engagement at work is about motivation. Our team wants to succeed because they know what’s in it for them.

A more engaged team is far more motivated to do a better job. Every team member matters and makes a difference in their work, but with Open-Book Management, they know how much of a difference they actually make.

When our crews are on your property, you’ll experience this motivation first-hand. Our team’s words matter, but yours matter even more! I don’t want this post to sound like I’m boasting or bragging. I can’t deny that I’m proud of our team, but what really matters is what our customers are saying about us.

I’m reminded of some of the snowstorms we’ve seen in 2021. Our team performed so well that I was prompted to post about it on LinkedIn — on three separate occasions! (One of which I reposted one of my colleagues, Peter Roberto.)

If communication has been an issue with your landscape or snow & ice management firm, get in touch with us — you’ll see what a difference good communication makes!