How did you get started in the industry? I began as a joiner working in the construction industry but was always a keen gardener. While working on building projects in the London area, I began talking to landscape contractors I’d meet on-site and I decided I wanted to be outdoors more to help create places people would be happy to sit and relax in. I applied for many jobs, the first of which I secured working for a small family-run landscape business. I then saw an advert for a tree planter with Glendale Civic Trees. I got the job and worked my way up to the role of operations manager. In the 18 years I’ve worked for the company, I have never looked back.
What advice would you give to others starting out? The best advice I could give would be to choose a reputable company to work for and learn from, listen carefully to your peers, be flexible (we work long hours) and, above all else, enjoy what you do.
What is the best aspect of your job? The diverse nature of what we do — going from working at a high-end country estate in the Cotswolds one day to urban locations in city centres. I also really enjoy seeing customers’ reactions when they first see how we’ve transformed their land and enhanced their view.
What has been your biggest achievement at work? Being promoted to operations manager, and making the decision 18 years ago to come into this industry. I’m proud to say I still have the same amount of passion for the job today as I had then.
What does the future hold professionally? I’ll continue to develop in my role as operations manager, working towards becoming the general manager one day. It’s great to work for a company like Glendale that actively promotes personal and professional development. I’d also like to support the next generation of workers to ensure the skills of our trade aren’t lost.