Having been with the brand for more than 31 years, Mike Carlo has a lot of insight to share. In the latest episode of the Discover U.S. Lawns Podcast, Mike explains what initially brought him to the brand and what things he has been intentional about as he has built his business over the past three decades. Dubbed “the godfather” of U.S. Lawns, Mike pours a lot of energy into mentoring and encouraging others and is a tremendous asset to the network of owners.
It all started when Mike was in his last year of college at the young age of 23, when his sister was looking to invest in a business as a silent partner. The two teamed up and set out to find a proven business model that was also highly scalable. They found U.S. Lawns offering to be a good fit for their investment goals.
Mike is the first to tell you that landscaping has never been a passion of his. Instead, he says, “I hire people who are passionate about it and my job is to keep them going.” For Mike the passion lies in being a business owner and leading his team. “The U.S. is a land of opportunity and being a business owner is the only thing to be,” says Mike.
Freedom and time are two of the most important things to Mike and he has built his business around these principles. One example of this is that he spends two months in the summer at his family lake house in northern Georgia, something he is only able to do this because of the great team he has in place. “I give them enough rope to do their job and nudge them when they get off board. But they have to have the opportunity to grow and also to make mistakes. It is their job to take advantage of the opportunity and run with it,” explains Mike. “My team is wonderful. I trust them implicitly and they trust me,” says Mike.
Among the many advantages that come with joining the nation’s #1 commercial landscape brand, the power of the U.S. Lawns network is one of them. “I love seeing other franchisees at meetings and conferences. My biggest takeaway from the meetings is the battery charging I feel when I am around them. It pumps me up and makes me want to do better,” says Mike, “When you are a business owner, you don’t really have anyone to talk to. There are no coworkers. But with U.S. Lawns, I have a whole network of owners to share the highs and lows with. It means a lot to me.”
In this episode, Mike also goes into why it is important to stick to the U.S. Lawns process and what he learned when he didn’t “stay in his lane”. Learn more about Mike’s journey by listening to the podcast episode here.
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