The Dirt - September 2010

Dos Gringos

The Dirt - September 2010

Hola! Back-to-school time is such a great part of the year – new faces and places, endless potential, and, my personal favorite, the promise of renewed productivity. Annie has enjoyed her first weeks as a third grader, and just-turned-four Jack is packed and ready for his junior year of preschool, where his favorite subject/part of the day is anything to do with finger paint and making a mess.

In many ways the team at DG spent the summer getting ready for "back-to-school." Beginning with two important trade shows in June and July and continuing through this month, we have traveled up a storm and met face-to-face with clients across the country in an effort to continue learning all we can so we can be the partner and solutions provider you deserve. Marco Rivera provides more detail below.

My “What I Did This Summer” report on the growing side of the business includes fascinating trips to Ecuador and Costa Rica and continued progress at our fields in Mexico. It’s no secret that we’re always looking for new elements that keep the Dos Gringos bouquet line on the cutting edge. And we want to take action on your requests as well. Right now roses are a logical next step for us in our bouquet division – and Ecuador has the most impressive roses we’ve seen. Altitude, water supply, and 12 hours each of day and night are an ideal combination for growing roses. Nothing that you don't know already. When we add Dos Gringos’ expertise in quality, transportation and logistics, we see some real opportunities for this team to be a premier provider. More to come on this by fourth quarter 2010. In Costa Rica, we see the possibility of growing a few summer "California flowers" in the winter there as well as adding some fun and funky foliages to our lines.

My "What I Did This Summer" report on the client side of the business includes fascinating trips to Florida, Arkansas, Washington, Minnesota, Illinois, and Utah. I always enjoy any chance I can to see our flowers in stores in action, talk with in store flower people (only for a few minutes I promise) and see how we can serve everyone better.

While we pursue new and intriguing additions to our offerings, the Sunflower continues to shine. Have you noticed their prevalence in magazines, catalogs, billboards and other media? Some examples below show their widespread appeal and how they “work” in such a wide variety of environments. If your customers are asking about Sunflowers, make sure they get the best quality and the greatest selection that only Dos Gringos can deliver.

Enjoy and Hasta Luego,
Jason Levin

Getting closer to clients: Face-to-face feedback key to true partnerships Two successful trade shows, 12 customer sample reviews and some really effective in-house training have the sales team heading into fall with a renewed emphasis and energy around building relationships that go way beyond selling and delivering flowers. As Jason said, we are as determined as ever to be the partner you seek and the solutions expert you need.

June's International Floriculture Expo allowed Giustina Shaha, Jenny Butterfass and me to talk with dozens of existing and potential clients about all the exciting items in our fall line - did you catch the photos in the August issue of The Dirt? - as well as some of the most intriguing Sunflower varieties in the works. Closer to home at July's FPFC (Fresh Produce & Floral Council)Giustina, Kelly King and I enjoyed extensive one-on-one time with floral managers at the store level. Getting feedback from those of you closest to the end user is invaluable. We appreciate your time and insight very much, and we intend to use what you've told us to make your jobs as easy and effective as possible.

We were fortunate to be invited to over 12 clients’ sample reviews across the country this summer.

This involves visiting the business and looking at everything from quality to design to transportation and logistics issues. Again, the feedback here is so important to us. We took away some constructive suggestions on packing displays and some of the tests we've conducted, and we hear your desire for more and better educational tools regarding handling and care of our products. You may have noticed that was a big part of our web site redesign this summer.

At the end of August the entire sales team spent a couple days immersed in a training program that really lines up with the way we want - and need - to approach our client relationships. We've been challenged yet again to avoid convention and tradition and to look at the whole process

anew: not to identify a problem and prescribe a "fix" but rather to listen very thoughtfully to all you're telling us and to translate that information into ways we can truly connect and work together for long-term success and satisfaction.

If this new "stuff" sounds a little daunting, no worries. The team here is always up for a challenge and a shot at improvement. We'll embrace this with the same can-do attitude you've come to expect, and we hope you'll hold us accountable along the way!