N59 W14397 Bobolink Ave., Menomonee Falls • www.villani-landshapers.com
Year Founded: 2000
Product or Service Offered: Commercial and residential landscape maintenance and design
CEO, President, Owner: Gino Vallani
Projected 2016 Revenue: $8 million
Target Clientele: Residential design/build clientele, homeowners in southeastern Wisconsin with home values of $400,000 and above, commercial landscape designers/builders, maintenance and snow removal clientele, business/industrial parks, condominium communities, health care campuses, universities and schools, and municipalities.
What has fueled your company’s growth?
“Overall, our company culture of education and support has created an ideal environment for growth. We value learning at all levels of the organization, and our commitment to growing our people at all levels has driven the company’s growth and development. We’ve learned how to recruit the right people for each position and have learned how to develop line-level employees into managers, and managers into true leaders. On the business development side, we’ve learned how to position our brand in the market and attract and develop salespeople who can bring our offerings to the marketplace.”
What is the biggest obstacle to your company’s growth?
“Landscaping is both a very seasonal and a very front-end-loaded business; we need to keep up with the rapid pace of training to staff appropriately for both of these challenges. Generally speaking, we are working in what people perceive to be an unskilled trade; however, there is a definite skill to landscaping work. We need to take an unskilled labor force and train them to the exacting skills and standards that we expect. Working to get people to understand this can be a challenge.
Finally, a rapidly inflating employee roster means that management gets spread thin at times and there are many more employees to manage than there are an appropriate number of managers to lead them.”
Do you plan to make any changes to your company?
“We are constantly working on improving our company. Currently, we are upgrading our internal software to be compatible with future technology. We are also looking to address some of our staff training challenges by developing a series of training videos. Recently, we have launched our commercial union division, United Landshapers, which opens up more opportunities within the commercial construction space.”
Who are the business people you admire and why?
“Within the landscape industry, I admire Mariani Landscape in northern Illinois. Having visited his site and observed his operations, I’m impressed by how professional and organized everything is, how much care for the employees is evident in everything they do, and what a great culture has been developed throughout the organization.”