GIE+EXPO workshops, hardscape demos and “kick-off” keynote

Valuable opportunities abound at the 2018 GIE+EXPO (Green Industry & Equipment Expo) for lawn & landscape pros interested in improving profitability. The show is set for Oct. 17-19 at the Kentucky Exposition Center.

New for 2018, contractors are invited to attend an opening keynote by noted explorer Dr. Robert Ballard on Wednesday at 1:30 PM. Immediately following the keynote at 3:00 PM, the show floor will open to the entire industry. The GIE+EXPO Workshops, set for Thursday and Friday, will cover a variety of management topics specifically for landscape contractors’ businesses. In addition, for contractors looking to diversify, Hardscape North America’s co-location with GIE+EXPO provides the opportunity to learn about expanding into the hardscape market.


Kick-Off Keynote Featuring Dr. Robert Ballard – INCLUDED WITH TRADE SHOW REGISTRATION

Wednesday, Oct. 17

1:30 – 3:00 PM

Science, Exploration and the Miracles of Human Achievement


In this gripping presentation, Dr. Robert Ballard will share his stories of exploration, environmental discovery and leadership. With a passion for the last great uncharted territory and a practical approach to team building and execution, Dr. Ballard will entertain and motivate as he discusses his discoveries and adventures, including the 1985 discovery of the Titanic wreckage. You’ll walk away inspired to think outside the box and take risks to achieve your long-term goals. Free with tradeshow admission, the keynote is sponsored by JOHN DEERE.



2018 GIE+EXPO Workshops


Thursday, October 18

8:00 – 9:15 AM

Hardscape Workshop 1: Manage, Motivate & Prepare Your Hardscape Team to Generate Winning Projects 

Jerry Gaeta
Today the hardscape contractor finds a very competitive, price-driven marketplace. The performance and efficiency of your field production is an advantage for securing contracts and profit. This workshop will explain the systems and steps that will prepare your crews for success. You’ll learn the information and planning that is needed for the crew to understand the scope of the work, including how to develop a realistic and manageable work schedule; track progress to achieve the intended estimated objectives; train, empower and mentor your personnel; and become a better leader.


9:30 – 10:45 AM

Hardscape Workshop 2: Better Job Costing and Labor Controls to Increase Hardscape Projects

Leslie Shiner
We are in a labor-intensive industry. Even with the modern technical advances, power tools and computers, contractors and subcontractors still need a labor force to install, and the cost of that labor force might be more than you know. This session will teach you to understand and measure the true cost of field labor.


1:00 – 2:15 PM

NALP Workshop 1: Commitment, Accountability and Communication…the Path to Keeping My Job Safe

Steve Hamilton and Art Marquez

How are you effectively engaging employees in safety efforts? Discover ways to break down barriers, keeping the information relevant and improving employee buy-in.  We’ll dive deep into commitment by leadership, obstacles to training, defined roles within the safety program and measured accountability.


1:00 – 2:15PM

NALP Workshop 2: Inspiring a New Generation of Landscape Professionals

Phil Harwood

What do your professional development plans look like? Solving the labor crisis requires a multi-tiered approach, from industry-wide initiatives, down to the individual level. Hone in on the individual by better understanding their unique talents, learning how to unlock their passions and discovering best practices for creating a comprehensive professional development plan.


2:30 – 3:45PM

NALP Workshop 3: How Much Equipment Do You Really Need?

Ed Schultheis

How do you know if you’ve got the amount of equipment you really need? We’ll explore methods for determining what equipment/vehicles your company needs, how much, and the key metrics used to measure what you’re really using. Prepare your own plan to maximize your return on investment and review how it impacts other areas of the business.


2:30 – 3:45PM

NALP Workshop 4: Design Build Systems That Start Clean, Finish Clean

Ken Thomas

Amaze your clients, improve your team’s quality of life and make more money! Design-Build Construction is fun, but complicated, which makes it hard to achieve predictable results.  Learn to simplify this exciting service line and achieve predictable results with a solid system that allows your team to sell and deliver quality work.


Friday, October 19, 2018

8:00 – 9:30 AM

NALP Workshop 5: Customer Relationships That Don’t Stink

Jeff Korhan

Unlock the value of customer relationships and make this business asset as strong as it can be. The debate today is whether customers have a relationship with products and services or the people in the business. When customers trust your business solutions and the people that make them happen, the upside potential for growth is unlimited. This program reveals dozens of little-known techniques that will take your customer relationships to the next level.


8:00 – 9:30 AM

NALP Workshop 6: Getting the Most Out of Your Managers

Bill Silverman

If you’re building a management team or want to learn to develop the managers you have into effective, empowered leaders who can run their functions without you, then you have come to the right place! Your success (and sanity) depend on your ability to build a team of independent, trusted managers who can take ownership. Your business is too complex to run everything yourself. Building your management team doesn’t have to be a frustrating process when you learn to develop managers who need less of your time.


9:45 – 11:00 AM

NALP Workshop 7: Turnaround Tour Round 2: Stories of Success

Brian Horn and Panelists: Bill Arman and Ed Laflamme

For the second straight year, Lawn & Landscape magazine and Bill Arman and Ed Laflamme of the Harvest Group have teamed up for the Turnaround Tour. Find out how Arman and Laflamme helped three contractors who were struggling to reach their goals finally breakthrough and achieve success.


9:45 – 11:00 AM

NALP Workshop 8: Next Level Marketing & Sales Strategies for Lawn & Landscape Companies

Dana Davis

Are you doing what it takes to run and maintain a high-level marketing and sales campaign? We’ll cover the steps to develop a marketing plan and then take it further and develop it into an effective sales program. Having a comprehensive marketing strategy for your lawn and landscape company can be a challenge. Learn how to effectively measure your results and use them to make the choices you need to grow!



Hardscape Demonstrations

(Held in the tented Hardscape North America Outdoor Arena in the Outdoor Demonstration Area)


The Hardscape Demonstrations will have a new format and presenter in 2018. Frank Bourque is an award-winning hardscape professional, speaker, writer, consultant and entrepreneur with an extensive background in business and hardscape construction. He will present Hardscapes Meet Water, where attendees will learn how to install hardscapes around pools and water features for long-lasting results.


Thursday, Oct. 18

10:00 – 11:00 AM

Tools of the Trade


12:00 – 1:00 PM

Base Construction & Paver Installation


2:00 – 3:00 PM

Raised Patios, Walls & Steps


4:00 – 5:00 PM

Outdoor Kitchens, BBQs & Fire Pits


Friday, Oct. 19

9:30 – 10:30 AM

Pools, Water Features & Hardscape Lighting


11:30 AM – 12:30 PM

Permeable Pavers 101


Each HNA demonstration is eligible for one ICPI Certified Installer Continuing Education (CE) Hour. Attendees should pick up a tracking form at the HNA registration desk at the tradeshow.


Registration Details

Registration in advance is required for the workshops and demonstrations. NALP Workshops: $85; Hardscape Workshops: $50. Those who only want to attend the HNA Demonstrations can upgrade their tradeshow registration for $50 to include all six live demos. Register for all sessions online at


For more Information

GIE+EXPO’s 2018 dates are Wednesday, Oct. 17-19. The annual event is sponsored by the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute, Inc. (OPEI), Professional Grounds Management Society (PGMS) and National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP).


For information: