2014 Young Entrepreneur of the Year
This Could Be YOU!
Name: Carter Drake – 2014 Champion
School & Grade: Junior at Fort Atkinson High School
Business Name: Dreamscape Landscaping
What inspired you to start your business? Tell us about your inspiration, your idea and how it became a reality.
I had always enjoyed working out in the lawn as a child with my dad. As I grew older I began to do some of the tasks on my own. I have always dreamed of starting my own business. Occasionally I helped my neighbors with the leaves in the fall or mow while they were on vacation, but it never went much farther than that, until the spring of my sophomore year. Our local FFA chapter holds a labor auction every year and my advisor told me that there was an elderly lady that wasn't able to bid on anyone and was in need of help with her lawn. We began to talk and I submitted a quote. She accepted it and I was hired. The next summer I continued to work for that lady but soon word caught on and I began receiving calls from all over town and it was then that Dreamscape Landscaping was born.
Describe your product / service, purpose / goals, features / benefits, unique selling point.
Dreamscape Landscaping offers a constantly growing service list from mowing in the summer and fall to snow removal in the winter, I do it all. As my skills and business expand I am able to invest in new equipment which allows me to offer new services to my clients. My main goal through all of this was to provide great service at a price that was easily affordable, expanding my reach to potential clients. Also because I am a one man operation, I can keep rates down because I don't have employees to pay.
Tell us about yourself and how you make your business succeed.
I am a junior at the Fort Atkinson High School; I'm a very hard working person. I prefer working over sitting on a couch watching TV. I am dedicated to all that I do and even in tough situations if there is a job that needs to be done I will get it done the way it should. I have taken classes in plant science, landscaping and horticulture. I also know how to fix small engines which in this business, allows me to do a lot of repairs on my own saving me both time and money. I envision Dreamscape Landscaping continuing to grow. Now that I have seen what I can do and the potential that this business has, I plan to continue to expand both my client and service list, and look forward to implementing new advertising strategies this coming spring. In any growing business taking risks plays a roll. During the continuing growth of my business I'm constantly taking risks that will help me grow, but at the same time could hurt me and my business if not closely looked at. For example early this year I purchased a trailer. That was a risk I needed to take in order to grow my business, and because of this risk I was able to provide services to clients that would otherwise be impossible. My biggest obstacle this summer was balancing the time. I have a Go- Getter personality and occasionally bite off more than I can chew. I have seven clients, showed at county fair, and work as a cashier at a local grocery store. This forced me to budget my time and continue to provide the great quality service my clients have come to expect.
What are your future goals and vision for your business? How do you propose to develop your business?
I envision my business client and service list continuing to grow with new advertising ideas that I plan to begin using this coming spring. I plan to further the extent of my advertising by using door hangers and flyers, and making weekly updates to my website as well as continuing to make investments that will allow my business to grow. With my growing service and client list I have begun to look into the possibility of hiring help for the summer in order to provide excellent quality services to more clients.