Pondemonium 2014: My Recap of a Strong Event

Aquascape did it again…they rocked it.

Each year, Aqauscape hosts an event called Pondemonium. The best pond contractors from around the world all come together to learn and be recognized for their accomplishments to the industry.

Last Spring I wrote a recap of their event, Chicagomonium..you can find it here. If you are a contractor of any kind I suggest reading it.

I am fortunate enough to work with Aquascape and a number of their contractors as a coach. Being in this position I can’t help but observe and produce a number of random thoughts. Here are this year’s thoughts, the good and not so good. Enjoy!

  • Many of last year’s thoughts still apply
  • I still think I should’ve built ponds. They’re cool.
  • I’m glad to hear Motel is going to build again.
  • A week long event…great idea. Especially if you sent your Foremen for the training.
  • If you sent your staff here and don’t capitalize on the momentum created to make them better you have bigger problems than your people.
  • Great food.
  • I appreciated the transparency of all who spoke. We live in a real world with real problems. When the industry leaders get up front and bare all it’s a good thing. Learn from it.
  • It’s never a good idea to show up to a sales call with only one testicle.
  • I still have talks with too many contractors who haven’t attacked making the needed changes in their businesses. You may not feel it now, but you’re on your way out of the game. Wake up. Do what needs to be done.
  • Still too many people who think they can’t make money in their area. I call B.S. on that.
  • Spoke to 1 contractor who’s been in business more than 20 years. He said, “I hate computers and want nothing to do with them. I don’t get Social Media. I don’t get SEO or websites.” Not sounding very good, huh? Then, he followed it up with, “But I know it’s important..can you help me do it better?” This guy get’s it! We are currently talking about him outsourcing his SEO, Social Media & Blogging to my company.NEWSFLASH: As the CEO of your company, you don’t need to DO everything, but you do need have 100% buy-in to the important things and make sure they happen.
  • If you’re a pond contractor in the AquaScape family you need to know that Greg has your back.
  • Do the hard prep work now that will make your company stronger. Business is about to explode. Those who have a strong foundation will win. Those who don’t will crumble and make the industry look bad. Do your part to get strong.
  • Gerard’s hat totally got me. I was like “What’s up with that dudes hair?” #naiveattimes
  • Best industry event I’ve been to in years. The teaching, sharing, first rate service by the AquaScape team and conversations with so many awesome people.
  • If you struggle with finding good people take a hard look at these things: Vision..are you sharing it with your people? They need to know where you’re going. Money…quit being a cheap ass and pay better than anyone else in your area. Charge more. Add more value. Make more profit. You can do it. Get organized…great people won’t stay with companies that are always a mess. Get it together in these 3 areas first before you complain about how there are no good people.
  • Have weekly meetings. Still too many are winging it each week. That gets old and is costing you a lot of money.
  • I’m thinking of a pond guy in the middle part of America who wants his sales guy to go to Sandler Sales Training. Wondering if he’ll man up and do it or if he’s too chicken to massively change his income…
  • Is your budget done yet?
  • Listen to what Jennifer Zuri & Michelle Kurschner said about leveraging the TV Show. They know their stuff.
  • Plan a time this week to talk with your people about what you learned this week. Get their input too. What did they learn? What one change do they feel you can implement now to make the company better? Listen to them. Respect them. Give them a voice and it will lighten your load.
  • I hope you all see how important it is to track your numbers. The more info you have the better decisions you can make.
  • You should always be hiring good people. If you have 5 people now chances are only 1 is a stud. Replace the lowest ranked employee. Rinse and repeat. Keep expectations high. Mediocrity Dies Today.
  • “Everything is changing.” Are you?

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