People’s Choice Fred of the Year

What does it mean to be selected as Blades of Green’s People’s Choice Fred of the Year? This title is a huge honor because each individual at our company votes for the winner. We recognize a team member that has made a huge impact on their team, not based on sales or production numbers, but based on how they exude our company values. The People’s Choice goes above and beyond for their teammates, company, and clients, helps out in any area needed, and they take ownership of their work.

What does it mean to be a Fred? Mark Sanborn, motivational speaker, and leadership expert, tells a story of a postman named Fred who transformed the way he viewed customer service and what it meant to go above and beyond. Fred, a seemingly ordinary USPS carrier, exemplified all of the positive factors that go into exceptional customer service. Blades of Green adopted The Fred Factor in 2014, which outlines what it means to be a “Fred” with four simple, but truly impactful principles:

  1. Everyone makes a difference.
  2. Success is built on relationships.
  3. You must continually create value for others, and it doesn’t have to cost a penny.
  4. You can reinvent yourself regularly.

Simply put, a “Fred” is someone who goes above and beyond the normal call of duty, regardless of recognition or reward.

Congratulations to our very own James Banashek for being chosen as our People’s Choice Fred of the Year for 2022.

Here are some things our team had to say about James:

James always has a beaming smile on his face and lights up the room. He always takes a moment to ask how you are doing and genuinely care about your response. He has helped almost every department at one point or another. James is very deserving of this award!

James always pops in to say hello to me and I love our little chats.  Even when he is extremely busy, he always takes time to attend the communication committee meetings and provides very valuable input!

James lives and breathes the BOG way. His positive attitude is authentic and contagious with his colleagues, as well as our clients. Thank you for constantly setting a good example for our newer team members and always going out of your way to help out others!

No matter what James is going through, you can always count on him to give his best for our people and our clients. It has been a pleasure to watch him grow in his role over the course of the last several years. One thing is for sure, if he puts his mind to something, he will make it happen. We are lucky to have him on our team.

12 Tips for a successful interview

A job interview provides the opportunity to showcase your unique personality, skills and potential.
Being prepared for a job interview can help you feel more confident and present yourself in the best possible light, increasing your chances of landing the job. Whether it’s researching the company, practicing responses to common interview questions, or preparing a list of questions to ask the interviewer, taking the time to prepare for a job interview can make all the difference.

1. Come to an interview prepared – research what the company does, who you are interviewing with, and some history about the company. Take time to visit their website, social media pages, Glassdoor, etc. 

2. Dress to impress! It is important no matter what position you are interviewing for.

3. Bring a portfolio, or at the very least, a pad of paper to write on and a pen. 

4. Prepare questions! Always ask questions! Feel free to write them down ahead of time and bring them to the interview. Questions not only help you show interest in the position and company but are a good way for you to find out more that you may not be able to gather through the company’s website or social media.

5. Practice! It may seem silly, but practice makes perfect! There are so many online resources that provide sample questions. The company may not ask you those exact questions, but having an answer prepared for that question may be applicable to another question the interviewer might ask you.

6. Interviews are nerve-wracking, we know! But don’t let the interviewer know. Never apologize for an answer and never say, “I don’t know” or “I am so nervous”. The interviewer wants to see that you can perform under pressure. Have confidence! You can do this! Don’t be afraid to take time to gather your thoughts before you give an answer to a question. You don’t get bonus points for getting through the interview the quickest!

7. Bring a copy of your resume. In most circumstances, you won’t need it, but in the event that you are prepared for it when the interviewer doesn’t have it, it will give you extra “brownie points”. Also, it is a great resource to refer back to during the interview and can help jog your memory when and if, you get stuck on a question that is asked. 

8. Read the information/instructions that the interviewer gives you carefully. 

9. Sometimes companies might want to see the projects that you have worked on that showcase any applicable skills. Be ready and prepared to refer to that or offer that information at the interview.

10. Be early, but not too early! In fact, it might even be a good idea to map out the location the night before to make sure you know exactly where you are going and ensure that you leave your house with ample time to get to the interview at least 10 minutes before it is scheduled. 

11. Do you know what you are looking for in an employer? An interview is a great opportunity to ensure that you are also getting out what you want from an employer, as well. Take in the environment, the personality of those you are meeting with and anyone that you have ancillary interactions with. They all matter and will tell you a lot about the company. 

12. Always send a handwritten note or email afterward to thank the interviewer(s) for their time. It is a great touch and will certainly set you apart from other candidates that they might be interviewing.

Q & A with Kelly F., our lawn division manager

Meet Kelly, our talented lawn division manager, with 20+ years of experience in the lawn care industry. Kelly started as a technician and worked her way up through the organization, so she knows a thing or two about what it takes to make your lawn look its best. When she’s not managing our clients’ lawns, you can find her strumming her guitar, camping, exploring breweries and wineries, or taking her shot at the pool table.

What interests you about BOG?

What interests me most about BOG is how innovative we are as a company. No matter what the idea or where it comes from, every department within the company is able to come together to collaborate on an idea. In doing so, we are able to turn a sometimes simple idea into something amazing. Knowing that you can implement innovation like this really makes us stand out as a company.

What are you looking forward to this season?

What I am looking forward to the most this season is getting all the technicians trained to be able to do both lawn and exterior pest services at a property. This will be a huge benefit to the client! If a technician notices a problem during the client’s property inspection that we have a solution for, multi-service technicians will be able to easily diagnose and treat all at the same time! This will ensure that the client is preserving their investment.

What do you want everyone to know about you?

I was born and raised in La Plata, MD and recently moved to Anne Arundel County. I have been in the lawn care industry for almost 22 years. I started out working on a golf course and after 5 years of working 7 days a week, I was ready to find a better work-life balance.

I started out as a lawn technician and worked my way up. Actually, all the current managers on the Production side initially started as technicians and worked their way up. I think it’s good for the technicians to see that we’ve all been in their shoes. I really enjoy all that goes into the process of improving our client’s lawn. There is a lot more work than you would think that goes into just spreading some ol’ fertilizer and spraying some weeds.

If you could have any super power, what would it be?

If I could have any super power it would be to teleport. That way I could take a quick trip to a tropical paradise for my lunch break and get back to work!

What is one goal you are currently working on?

One goal I am currently working on is attempting to refinish my first piece of furniture.

Meet Tameka, our Production Trainer

Meet Tameka, the queen of good vibes! Not only does she effortlessly charm her teammates with her infectious smile, but she also throws a mean punch, thanks to her fitness boxing classes. When she’s not dominating in the ring, you can catch her cheering on her daughter as she wows the crowd at dance competitions.

But wait, there’s more! Tameka is on the brink of achieving a major life milestone: she’s completing her degree program in May. Let’s give her a virtual round of applause for this incredible accomplishment – way to go, Tameka!