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Home » Newsletter » Summer 2013 Issue 6

Opportunity Knocks

Smith Lawn Management (SLM) of Thaxton, MS has a simple, straight-to-the-point business goal — "Exceed customers’ expectations by offering the BEST quality work and products at a fair price to its customer."

Owner Bo Smith and his team have been hard at work delivering on that goal since 1999. "I started my business specializing in lawn maintenance to residential and commercial customers," says Smith. "We quickly built a reputation as being an organization that delivers good work and soon our customers were asking us to do other work like landscaping, irrigation and hardscapes.

Smith pounced on the opportunities to expand his business and quickly built a team of experts on the landscaping side of his business. SLM's expanded landscaping service develops customized plans for new construction, deliver complete site makeovers, work on specialized landscaping features and install irrigation and low-voltage lighting systems.

"It was a big decision to expand into different areas because we wanted to ensure that we would be able to deliver the same level of service that we have with our lawn maintenance team," explains Smith. "We grew our team by hiring a few graduates from the landscape contracting program at Mississippi State and purchasing the right equipment.

SLM's landscaping crews utilize Takeuchi compact track loaders because these units don't punish the turf like traditional skid-steer loaders. "Part of doing the job right is ensuring that we don't create extra cleanup after the job, says Smith. "The flotation of compact track loaders helps to reduce turf damage and these units have a higher operating capacity than wheeled units, which comes in really handy when we're moving heavy objects like landscaping boulders or rolls of sod."

"Truth be told, we didn't start with Takeuchi compact track loaders," Smith adds. "We tried out a few competitive units before and had some issues with service support and quality of the equipment. Our first equipment partner focused on supporting larger construction equipment than our compact track loader and didn't have someone locally to meet our needs. After that, we went to a brand that you see everywhere, but we just weren't satisfied with the quality of the product. Finally about three years ago, we decided to purchase our TL250 compact track loader and then added a TL240 a year later. We have been extremely happy with the performance of these units and the support from our local dealer."

Smith is also quick to point out that his operators really like how roomy the cabs are on the Takeuchi compact track loaders. "My guys spend a lot of time operating those machines and that extra space makes a big difference to their comfort."

The SLM crew makes sure their Takeuchi machines get a workout everyday by outfitting them with a wide range of attachments to accomplish a wide range of jobs. "We use the bucket a lot but we also have a grapple bucket for placing larger boulders, a trencher attachment for irrigation installation, land planes for finish work and a mulching attachment for weed and tall grass maintenance.

Smith's calculated expansion to his business continues to deliver solid return-on-investment that extends to the lawn maintenance side of his business. "Many of the commercial businesses that employ our landscaping services will start having us maintain their lawns," says Smith. "In fact, our work has proven to be the best marketing program we could ever use. Our trucks are our billboards but the quality of our work is why people pickup the phone and call us."

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TL10 & TL12 Compact Track Loaders

These powerful new Tier 4i track loaders are making a serious impact on jobsites all across the country – find out more about the TL10 & TL12 Compact Track Loaders here.

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