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No Experience Necessary: Taylor Kelley

U.S. Lawns has been helping people become their own bosses and build sustainable commercial landscape businesses for more than 38 years. Our proven business model, training, and personalized support in all areas of commercial grounds care means you don’t have to have to be an expert to get started. Our franchisees come from all sorts of backgrounds, and many enter with zero landscape experience.

Taylor Kelley, owner of U.S. Lawns in Las Vegas, is one of those franchisees who joined the U.S. Lawns network, as he puts it, “knowing zilch about landscaping”. Yet, in just three short years, Taylor is running an impressive commercial landscape business with multiple trucks, a crew of workers, a business manager, a tree trimmer, and a part time irrigation expert. And his business continues to grow. 

Even before joining the brand, Taylor’s resume was impressive. Over the years Taylor has worn many different hats, none of which involved a mower. He is a musician, owned a sport fishing company and worked as a manager in aerospace manufacturing. However, he found himself lying awake at night, wanting more control over his life. “As a manager, I felt like I was just feeding the next level. There was constant pressure. I wanted to build and grow something for myself; something that was mine,” says Taylor. 

Having previously started company, a sport fishing company in Baja California, Taylor knew he was not interested in building a business from scratch. This time he wanted to invest in a concept that came with a proven system and strong support.  “I narrowed my search down to two options. One being leadership, which aligned most with my experience and landscaping. I have no idea why I picked landscaping! It was the furthest thing from my previous path, but for some reason I checked that box.” 

Checking that box led him to U.S. Lawns. “I saw these other owners who were able to scale their business with the help of U.S. Lawns. I knew this was a team I wanted to be a part of,” adding,” I believe in the U.S. Lawns business model. I really feel the success of all the all stars out there in the network. Those are my dreams and milestones.”

On a recent episode of the U.S. Lawns podcast, Taylor recalls just how little experience he had when he joined the nation’s leading commercial landscape company. “My first contract was a 50-building apartment complex, but I didn’t even know how to run a mower! It was me and just one other person, one truck, a mower, a hedger, and a line trimmer, that’s it. And here I was trying to act like a national company,” he says. 

Helping him get from the guy “who couldn’t even run a mower” to a well-respected and profitable Las Vegas commercial landscape business owner was U.S. Lawns. “The support team was right there, helping me figure it out,” says Taylor, “They even went out to some properties with me to help me figure out how to establish metrics that worked for our unique situation.”  

In addition to the support and proven systems of the brand, Taylor adds, “There is a confidence that comes from being a nationwide brand with a recognizable name.”

  “It’s not about being the biggest landscape company in Las Vegas, I want to be the best, the baddest, the one everyone goes to,” Taylor says, “When you are the best your phone will ring off the hook. People know they will get what they expect from you. The work sells itself.”  

He goes on to say, “It’s about building relationships with your clients. They know I will go the extra mile for them and do everything I can to make their life easier. I want them to see me as a trusted advisor.” 

As for what Taylor thinks it takes to be successful with U.S. Lawns, none of it has to do with having previous landscape experience.  “You must be all in when owning a business. You can’t have just one foot in and be successful. In the beginning it takes putting in the hours,” he says, “You also have to believe in the system and to be willing to listen. It’s an all or nothing thing.” 

To hear more about Taylor Kelley’s journey, listen to this episode of the U.S. Lawns podcast here. And to learn more about how you can take control of your future through business ownership just like he did, click here for more information.  

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