Q & A with outgoing president of Landscaping New Zealand – Bill Holden

What has pleased you most during your term as president of Landscaping New Zealand?

Networking is the best way to stay ahead of the game these days, and our Tihoi  and Dunedin Conferences, our fantastic Awards dinner at Larnach Castle last week-end, and in particular, the landscaping demo we put on at Ellerslie in March were great fun events assisting us in our goals. I also gained much satisfaction watching our people who entered the Awards, walk away with plenty of booty, giving them material presenting marketing  opportunities second to none.

Bill Holden

What have been some of the challenges?

‘ What do I get out of being a member of LNZ?’ One gets tired of reminding people that, what one gets out of something is directly proportional to what one puts in. Growing our numbers has always been a challenge, and it is pleasing to see our membership rising again after several years of decline. We have had to battle hard for our share of support from our industry partners, but we feel we have proven that we are great ‘bang for bucks’ and that there is huge value in putting our brand alongside other quality brands. It’s also been slow going  replacing the old ‘LIANZ’ brand with our smart new Landscaping NZ logo, but I think people are gradually getting used to it.

Where do you see the state of the Landscape Industry currently?

It is certainly tough out there, particularly in Auckland.  One has to be sharper with their pricing to win the work these days, and that can often compromise the quality of the workmanship. But the majority of our members I have talked to in recent weeks,  have ample work ahead of them on their books.  I believe that if you keep a keen eye on the market,  focus hard on the quality of your service and end product, you should get through the tough times o.k. The LNZ decision at Sunday’s  AGM  to engage a paid executive officer, should assist in our passion for  projecting  positivity into the landscape industry, by holding stimulating promotional events.

And where to for you and your business?

I am pleased to be leaving the association in good hands, so my challenge now is to focus on my own work. I have some exciting projects on in the Coromandel and around the Bay of Plenty, and my goal is to enter one or two of them into future Awards programmes to maintain momentum. I am lucky to have some great contractors at my disposal, (Landscaping NZ members of course!) and if they play their part well, I might even find a bit of time to get out and catch a fish or two! 

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