From episode: EP38 - The Power of Business Culture with Matt Denyer
I want to know how you got into the green industry or into hardscape, because that story is pretty funny. Yeah, and where you were in life when that happened. I just want people to hear, you know? So I've always loved plants. I had like my own little nursery table in my yard when I was a kid and my grandmother has like a green thumb. And so that's like where I picked up the love of plants. Oh, nice. With grandma. Yeah. Yeah. I was working at my church. I was making a couple hundred bucks a week. I met my wife. How old were you when you were making a couple hundred bucks a week? Probably 21, 22. 21, 22. A couple hundred. Yeah. I was like, she's pretty and I want to marry her and I need some money to do that. So she ain't gonna want me at 200 a week. So I started doing whatever I could, man. I was like selling firewood in Florida, all the places I was selling firewood. I was cutting trees, I started doing landscaping, like whatever I could do. You were working with people or you were picking up odd jobs? Like Craigslist, like just posting ads on Craigslist, whatever I could do. I was cutting people's trees for free to get wood, to sell the firewood in Florida. Like the worst business strategy ever. Okay. But, but you learned something. I learned. Yeah. The tree guy was like, Hey, why don't you charge people so that you don't cut my legs out from under me? Anyways, long story short. So you didn't know you were uneducated about that at that point. I just, I just had my Jeep Wrangler and I'd throw a 32 foot ladder on top of it. Yes. And just rock it. That's awesome. But yeah. So I just started doing different odds and ends and I was coaching football, working at the church, you know, five or six classes in college, super busy. This lady that was a friend of my grandmother's was like, Hey, can you put in a paver patio for me? And I had done one in my little nursery area at my parents. I had like tables and water and I built my own patio. So I was like, sure. So I would do it like after football, like one hour a night, miserable, you know, like no tools, like you didn't make a dollar off of that. No, no, I, I stayed busy, but, but I loved it. And I was like, this is cool. I used a skill saw with a tile blade to cut the pavers. Like I just had no clue what I was doing, but whatever you, you were doing it. So I just kept picking up more jobs and you know, things at the church, I really loved working there, but it just didn't look like something full time was going to be on the horizon. And so I took a leap of faith, October, 2013 and went full time. And then my wife stopped working probably like a year later after we had our first kid. No, two years later, I'm sorry. There's been some hairy times and some trying times. And we were just talking, I kind of was riding two horses with one, but, you know, I was like maybe something will open up at the church and I'll, you know, you know, I hadn't fully committed to the business. I don't think God was honoring that because I was just kind of didn't know what I wanted to do. And so I kind of took it serious and I had a lot of different people that poured in my life and some mentors, a good friend, George that poured into me. And I finally like decided to take the business serious. And obviously now we're, you know, 10, 12 years down the road and we've accomplished some things, probably not as much as, you know, I've wanted to, but it's been an exciting journey and looking back, you know, it's always different looking back when you're in the moment, you don't always see it, but yeah, looking back, it was a weird path to get to where we are.