Continual learning is an essential part of the job and professionals should embed it in their work process, says Alan Sargent.
Careful preparation is essential for anyone moving from a full-time job to being self-employed, says Alan Sargent.
Think long and hard before deciding to switch from self-employed status to a full-time position, Alan Sargent advises.
There is a way to ensure your clients appreciate that you are more than just a general dogsbody, Alan Sargent advises.
Rebranding can be very useful but avoid confusion or clients could think that you have ceased trading, Alan Sargent warns.
A focused and thoroughly professional business approach can help to prevent potential disputes, says Alan Sargent.
Any request from a potential client for a 100 per cent clean and tidy job should set alarm bells ringing, Alan Sargent warns
There are solid business reasons for improving efficiency by investing in new equipment.
Training for gardens staff can be arranged through colleges or by bringing in skilled artisans on-site, Alan Sargent explains.
Being asked to look after a garden on a part-time basis raises many issues that need to be addressed, says Alan Sargent
Care should be taken when expanding a rural business to win more work in lucrative larger towns, says Alan Sargent.
Aftercare and educating your clients can stop your work being neglected after you have finished a job, Alan Sargent advises.
Steps can be taken to back up your professional approach when working for a main contractor, says Alan Sargent
The importance of highly skilled senior gardens staff is overlooked in the rush to make cost savings, Alan Sargent warns.
Presenting terms and conditions is expected of you as a contractor, writes Alan Sargent
Gardening Team Leader
Garden Transformation North London
Gardener - RHS level 3 diploma or similar
Stefano Marinaz Landscape Architecture London (Central), London (Greater)
Daylesford Estate Cotswolds
Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) Woking, Surrey
Surrey Private Estate Surrey