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Time to Push Your Reset Button!

Press This Button for Help!Time to Press the Reset Button!

This is not a question, it is a statement! There are times that life becomes so confused that it is just better to press the reset button and reprogram our lives rather than try to make-do while the darned thing is out of whack.

Recently I was talking with Matt Horn, owner of Matterhorn Nursery about his plans to totally reinvent his garden center. While Matt has been one undisputed leader of innovation in the garden center business over the years he realizes that it is time to re-engineer the concept of Matterhorn Nursery. The story has something to do with goats, and you’ll have to ask Matt about that.On the supply side of the business Don Eaton, owner of Eaton Farms also has a long history as an innovator having developed the Pennsylvania Pride brand sold only in independent garden centers, and a 3-Year consumer warranty. Don recently announced to his customers how he is pushing the Reset Button for his company.  Imagine this, selling only container grown trees to independent garden centers. But Don is not only selling trees. You’ve got to Click HERE to read Don’s Weekly email letter.

Cover story of Today's Garden Center, July 2010 - Wilson's Garden CenterWilson’s Garden Center in Newark, Ohio pressed their Reset Button this spring with a new Nexus Atrium style structure that replaced an older gutter connect greenhouse. Owners Ned and Mitzie Wilson reported in a Today’s Garden Center article that “the time had come for some big changes if they were to remain relevant to their customers. Plus, they have a new generation of Wilson’s, Brian and Holly, ready to take over operations, and they needed a solid business situation to manage.”

Is it time to get in touch so we can help you press the Reset Button on your company?

PRESS the Reset Button for help!

9/22/2010 Update – Since Matterhorn Nursery has filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy as reported by Today’s Garden Center magazine, I am adding this footnote. It appears that Matterhorn’s chickens were counted before they hatched and the money to fund the reset of project turned out had at least partially been spent before it was in the bank. I am hopeful that Matterhorn will accomplish the financial restructuring necessary to emerge from the protection of the bankruptcy court. The most frequent cause of garden center financial difficulty is funding improvements from cash flow rather than from net profit, or long term financing.

5 Responses

  1. Sid,

    Timely message. We are trying to figure out how, in the face of all the challenges we have on our plate, to reinvent our business in a manner that we can accomplish what we originally set out to do when we moved to Ohio from New Jersey 13 years ago: enjoy a good quality of life in a beautiful setting on our own land, and make our living where we live.

    The reset button is an excellent way to summarize what we must do.

    I have asked my wife and son to put their life goals in writing, and I’ll do the same. Then we’ll compare notes. The next step will suggest itself.

  2. Lets see: farmers market sales 1977, pick your own started in 1978 inded 2005, remote flower sites only in 1988 still going on, fall entertainment in 1990 ended 1995, seasonal garden center 1997, cut flower production for pick your own 1997, year around garden center 2000, 2007 back to seasonl garden center

    I guess I don’t see the big deal about hitting the reset button. Perhaps business should watch the numbers and pull the plug quicker and react faster to the numbers. Change should happen.embrace it.

  3. I think embracing the change is the hard part. My dad and I were just talking about this today — in the context of successful restaurants that are profitable for many years but don’t change. Customers just get tired of it. The hard part for the owners is to make the change while they are still profitable enough to do it right and not wait until drastic measures are required. The leap of faith is the tricky part, it seems to me…

  4. It costs less to change before you can’t change Elizabeth. Jack Welch, former CEO of GE said in his book, Straight From The Gut, “the costs of fixing a troubled company after the fact are enormous – and even more painful.” The greatest leap of faith might be believing you can NOT change and customers will continue to find your business relevant, or more relevant. Not a likely outcome.

  5. Great plan Steve. While you’re asking, ask this way. “IF time and money were no object, what would you do?” If you don’t qualify the question that way too many people will answer from inside their time and money box, which is way too small.

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