About Dirt Monkey University

Dirt Monkey University is dedicated to the success of businesses in contracting, excavating, landscaping, lawn maintenance, snow plowing, and beyond.  We are here to provide education to small and medium business owners on how to effectively grow your business to the next level.

We cover a wide variety of topics including estimating (bidding), employee relations, personal development, taxes, business licenses, etc.  In our FREE members only section, we have organized a wide variety of education so you have a one-stop shop.

 


About Stan

Stubborn, not knowing when to quit – I decided to start a landscaping company. With no experience, no equipment, and no money I opened my doors.

 

What a journey it has been for the last 20 years.  I invite you to learn from me.  To avoid the pitfalls and mistakes I made all to often-before I started to figure it out.  Fact: over 90% of landscaping companies and outdoor focused business’s fail. Why? If you thought I could sum that up in one sentence, then you're wrong.  I don’t believe that it is possible to describe all the hurdles a business faces in one sentence.  What I do believe is that it’s avoidable.  Not only that, but I also believe and know you can make a lot of money working outside. How much you make is up to you, but if you're reading this, you're on the right track.  Information and knowledge are key, and that is what I am going to be giving you.  Everything that I think is important to establishing, running and growing a phenomenal outdoor focused business is here.

I did this for my kids.  The goal was to provide a detailed, clear explanation on how to make it in landscaping. If whatever they do in life fails, this will be their backup plan that I know will allow them to live a very comfortable life.

The only way that will work is if I am honest. I can’t sugar coat what is in this. Business is hard and often tiring. Above all else, this guide is designed to help you and them make it.   In  Beyond the Basics- you will see what it takes to Thrive- not just survive. I use a “win win” philosophy in business. This means that you will learn how to make a lot of money on a job-and make your customer happy. It is simple, elegant and repeatable-job after job.

Watch the video below for more of Stan's story!


About Phil

Phil Sarros brings over 20 years of landscaping and design experience and holds a Bachelors Degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Akron in Ohio. Phil is currently serving on the board of the ICPI (Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute) North Georgia Chapter. Phil is actively involved in speaking, education, and consultation for the brick and concrete paver industry. Phil Sarros founded Sarros Landscaping in 2002 when Phil and his family relocated to Cumming, GA. Thanks to many loyal clients in and throughout the Atlanta Metro area, Sarros Landscaping has grown into an established name with an impeccable reputation for quality and excellence.

 

Phil's Background

  • Bachelor’s Degree – Mechanical Engineering - University of Akron – Akron, OH
  • 2002 – Present: President, Sarros Landscaping – Cumming, GA
  • ICPI Certified
  • ICPI Instructor Certification
  • Level 1-A Erosion Certification
  • NCMA Certified Installer
  • NCMA Certified Instructor
  • December, 2004 – ServiceMagic.com Contractor of the month
  • 2004 – ServiceMagic.com Contractor of the Year Award
  • Featured on three HGTV programs
  • 2007 – selected as the Atlanta Dream Home Landscaper for Redbook, Women’s Day and Good Housekeeping Magazine

Phil's Articles

Phil has been an active member of the Lawn and Landscape Magazine Market Insight Council and regularly contributes articles to Lawn and Landscape magazine, the landscape industry’s largest publication. Select a link below to read Phil's articles.

  • Unraveled How Phil Sarros took control of his business and his life before it was too late
  • You are not alone: by Chuck Bowen – Editor – Lawn & Landscape Magazine – Supplemental to ‘Unraveled’ article above
  • Hardscape Guide: The 100% List Sarros Landscaping focused on what it wouldn't change first to find out what it should
  • Better Client Communication Creating a new customer communication policy will ensure you don’t miss any details
  • Welcome to Thunderdome Whether you want to play or not, online reviews put your reputation at stake 24/7. Here’s how to manage your clients’ expectations to ensure they feel taken care of
  • The Road to Ruin You’ll be sorry if you take shortcuts just to get a job
  • Take Your Time Hiring in a hurry is a great way to make your business a revolving door of employees
  • The Devil is in the Details Leaving out the finer points of a job description can open you up to get burned by a hire
  • Hard Knocks Don’t let your hardscape projects suffer by neglecting these five details
  • Don’t Hold Back Set your retaining walls – and company apart – with new, versatile designs
  • Sealing the Deal Five ways to turn hesitant prospects into long-term clients
  • Turn up the Heat The hot trend of outdoor fire pits and fireplaces can add to your bottom line – if done correctly
  • Outdoor Fireplaces Supplemental to Turn up the Heat article
  • Hardscapes Adding hardscape services to your company can help your bottom line, but it also takes continuous training
  • Staying Focused Use focal points in your hardscape designs to earn new clients
  • Waterscapes - Making a Splash Don't be afraid of waterscapes - the right designs and sales strategies get the job done
  • Profitable Practices: All Organic Since he’s dropped pesticides, Phil Sarros has watched his Atlanta business beat the odds

Phil's Background

  • Bachelor’s Degree – Mechanical Engineering - University of Akron – Akron, OH
  • 2002 – Present: President, Sarros Landscaping – Cumming, GA
  • ICPI Certified
  • ICPI Instructor Certification
  • Level 1-A Erosion Certification
  • NCMA Certified Installer
  • NCMA Certified Instructor
  • December, 2004 – ServiceMagic.com Contractor of the month
  • 2004 – ServiceMagic.com Contractor of the Year Award
  • Featured on three HGTV programs
  • 2007 – selected as the Atlanta Dream Home Landscaper for Redbook, Women’s Day and Good Housekeeping Magazine

Phil's Articles

Phil has been an active member of the Lawn and Landscape Magazine Market Insight Council and regularly contributes articles to Lawn and Landscape magazine, the landscape industry’s largest publication. Select a link below to read Phil's articles.

  • Unraveled How Phil Sarros took control of his business and his life before it was too late
  • You are not alone: by Chuck Bowen – Editor – Lawn & Landscape Magazine – Supplemental to ‘Unraveled’ article above
  • Hardscape Guide: The 100% List Sarros Landscaping focused on what it wouldn't change first to find out what it should
  • Better Client Communication Creating a new customer communication policy will ensure you don’t miss any details
  • Welcome to Thunderdome Whether you want to play or not, online reviews put your reputation at stake 24/7. Here’s how to manage your clients’ expectations to ensure they feel taken care of
  • The Road to Ruin You’ll be sorry if you take shortcuts just to get a job
  • Take Your Time Hiring in a hurry is a great way to make your business a revolving door of employees
  • The Devil is in the Details Leaving out the finer points of a job description can open you up to get burned by a hire
  • Hard Knocks Don’t let your hardscape projects suffer by neglecting these five details
  • Don’t Hold Back Set your retaining walls – and company apart – with new, versatile designs
  • Sealing the Deal Five ways to turn hesitant prospects into long-term clients
  • Turn up the Heat The hot trend of outdoor fire pits and fireplaces can add to your bottom line – if done correctly
  • Outdoor Fireplaces Supplemental to Turn up the Heat article
  • Hardscapes Adding hardscape services to your company can help your bottom line, but it also takes continuous training
  • Staying Focused Use focal points in your hardscape designs to earn new clients
  • Waterscapes - Making a Splash Don't be afraid of waterscapes - the right designs and sales strategies get the job done
  • Profitable Practices: All Organic Since he’s dropped pesticides, Phil Sarros has watched his Atlanta business beat the odds
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