Sargent's Solutions

Alan Sargent is an independent gardens consultant. His latest book, The Landscaper's Survival Manual, is available from www.alansargent.co.uk.

Sargent's solutions - avoiding potential pitfalls when accepting extra landscaping work

Taking a considered approach can help prevent welcome requests for extra work becoming a curse, Alan Sargent explains.

Sargent's solutions - take care of the T&Cs to ensure contract clarity

Clear terms and conditions and contract security can help smaller operators to avoid payment issues, says Alan Sargent.

Sargent's solutions - how to attract the best staff for your business

There are ways to find quality candidates for horticultural jobs if you widen your search parameters, Alan Sargent suggests.

Sargent's Solutions: What is the difference between a head gardener and gardens manager? Part 2

In the second of a two-part article, Alan Sargent looks at the functions of today's gardens manager.

Sargent's solutions - the benefits of CPD for your business

Continual learning is an essential part of the job and professionals should embed it in their work process, says Alan Sargent.

Sargent's solutions - what you need to know and do before becoming a sole trader

Careful preparation is essential for anyone moving from a full-time job to being self-employed, says Alan Sargent.

Sargent's solutions - self-employed vs employee status? The pros and cons

Think long and hard before deciding to switch from self-employed status to a full-time position, Alan Sargent advises.

Sargent's solutions - protecting your professional integrity

There is a way to ensure your clients appreciate that you are more than just a general dogsbody, Alan Sargent advises.

Sargent's solutions - this issue he works through the pros and cons of rebranding

Rebranding can be very useful but avoid confusion or clients could think that you have ceased trading, Alan Sargent warns.

Sargent's solutions - pay attention to detail to avoid contractual pitfalls

A focused and thoroughly professional business approach can help to prevent potential disputes, says Alan Sargent.

Sargent's solutions - caution advised in signing up to perfection

Any request from a potential client for a 100 per cent clean and tidy job should set alarm bells ringing, Alan Sargent warns

Sargent's solutions - investigating the business case for investing in new kit

There are solid business reasons for improving efficiency by investing in new equipment.

Sargent's solutions - facilitating staff training

Training for gardens staff can be arranged through colleges or by bringing in skilled artisans on-site, Alan Sargent explains.

Sargent's solutions - managing a garden part-time

Being asked to look after a garden on a part-time basis raises many issues that need to be addressed, says Alan Sargent

Sargent's solutions - managing landscape business expansion

Care should be taken when expanding a rural business to win more work in lucrative larger towns, says Alan Sargent.