Certifications can set a company apart from the competition and give clients confidence in their investment with a landscaping firm. Industry professionalism is a priority at Sunrise Landscape + Design, where president and CEO Joe Markell encourages continued education.
Markell is part of the PLANET’s Trailblazer program and participates in Leader’s Edge, a peer mentorship group. Sunrise is active in national and local associations. “We learn a lot from the industry about how to be efficient and what other companies are doing,” he says.
These associations provide a venue for sharing ideas, and a resource for earning important industry accreditations, Markell says. Sunrise holds Certified Landscape Professional (CLP) and Certified Landscape Technician (CLT) designations from PLANET. The company is certified to install concrete pavers from the Interlocking Concrete Paver Institute (ICPI) and segmented retaining walls. Sunrise is a Certified Horticulturalist by the Virginia Nursery & Landscape Association, and is even certified in first aid and CPR by the American Heart Association.
“Certifications help separate us from other companies, and there is a lot of competition in our area,” Markell says. “The more you can show your competence through these accreditations, the better. It says a lot about our commitment to customers.”
The certifications give Sunrise an edge when competing against other companies for jobs, Markell believes. Plus, it attracts the right type of client to the business. “We have found [that certification] brings the client who is looking for that professionalism and excellence,” he says.