Steve Griggs – Owner of Steve Griggs Design

Communicate! Communications is key!

Entrepreneur Steve Griggs brings decades of experience and expertise to every landscape design challenge. He combines formal training, an artist’s sensibility and a commitment to client satisfaction. His passion is contagious, and he transforms front and backyards of homes from the ordinary to extraordinary.

Steve Griggs Design specializes in: landscape design, swimming pools, outdoor entertaining spaces; re-invention and renovation of urban spaces; design and development of luxury homes and communities.

Where did the idea for Steve Griggs Design come from?

I took an aptitude test in high school. . .one of those tests in which you answer a bunch of questions and then at the end it tells you what career you would succeed in. Well mine pointed me in landscape design. I went to Mississippi State University, full ride and believe it or not I was a cheerleader there. I decided early on that I didn’t want to live someone else’s dream. If I was going to fail I’d rather fail on my own then depend on somebody else.

What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?

I start at 4 am every single day. I answer e-mails. The clients love it. They will frequently say “Wow he’s up at 4 am thinking of me?” I look at it this way, If I am starting my day at 4 in the morning and my competition doesn’t start until 8 am, I have 4 hours ahead of them! It is a no brainer they simply cannot compete. At 6 am, I will take my dogs for a 30-minute hike, or ride my bike. It helps to clear my head.

How do you bring ideas to life?

I use a can of spray paint! I spray paint the ideas right on the grass. Clients can’t visualize a blueprint they need to see it. So, I spray paint out the outdoor kitchen or swimming pool right in front of them so they know what it will look like when done.

What’s one trend that really excites you.

I love being able to extend the outdoor season in the northeast by creating outdoor kitchens, fire pits and outdoor night lighting.

What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?

I answer emails at 4 am. Communicate! Communications is key! All the parties involved need to communicate and that means me and the sub and me with my clients. . . all of us together work as a team to get the job done. The clients NEVER should be left in the dark. I always tell them our goals and targets for the week and give them a job schedule. And I always, always stick to it. If some unforeseen circumstances arise, I communicate that to the client, always.

What was the worst job you ever had and what did you learn from it?

Working for someone else for a year back when the market crashed. What I learned . . . I never want to work for someone again!

If you were to start again, what would you do differently?

Go bigger and go faster! And become the expert quicker. I’m writing a book now, but I should have done that sooner.

As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?

Start at 4 am and always be upfront with clients. Don’t tell them what they want to hear, tell them the truth like it or not.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business? Please explain how.

Becoming an expert period!!! And be omnipresent. . . . be everywhere and don’t hide. TV commercials and social media has helped me immensely. Also, I give my cell phone to all my clients and tell them to call me anytime!

What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?

In 2008, I couldn’t sell a flower so I expanded into home renovations and construction. I learned not to put all my eggs in one basket, you need multiple flows of income so when there are dips you are protected.

What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?

A home maintenance business. A lot of my clients are too busy to deal with running the house from painters, plumbers etc. They need a person that with one call, they can do it all. They need someone reliable and dependable. There are too many fly by nights who aren’t reliable. If you can master this call me I have plenty of clients for you.

What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?

I donated to a charity a client was sponsoring. I always give back I develop good relationships with my clients and I care abut them. I am not just there to take their money. It is important to build relationships. It drives me.

What software and web services do you use? What do you love about them?

Job nimbus project management software, my whole team uses it. It keeps everyone accountable and clients know what to expect and when.

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?

Be Obsessed or Be Average” by Grant Cardone or “10x” by Grant Cardone. To be successful you have to be obsessed with your cause otherwise your just another guy. 10x book is about whatever you think will only take a certain amount of effort it’s usually ten times that amount to achieve real success.

Key Learnings

  • Communicate! Communications is key!
  • I learned not to put all my eggs in one basket, you need multiple flows of income so when there are dips you are protected.
  • Always be upfront with clients. Don’t tell them what they want to hear, tell them the truth like it or not.


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