Women in landscape: Cindy McCord Email
Written by Colorado Green NOW   
Wednesday, December 22, 2021 01:00 AM

Colorado Green Now

Before starting her own Colorado company in 2005, Cindy McCord (Owner, Bloom Floralscapes) already had years of industry experience. She had worked at her family’s Texas-based landscape company and built a commercial portfolio of 150 properties. So why start her own company? “I wanted to ‘own’ my own time and increase my earnings by taking risk.”

Her thoughts on her career experience:

Gender disparity
I have always been treated with respect by male colleagues, coworkers and vendors. That said, I have had a few unnerving moments with a couple of male clients who were verbally abusive and sought to intimidate me. These were moments I learned from. I improved my approach and set firmer boundaries.

My greatest mentor in business and, life in general, was my father and there is definitely a void since his passing in 2018. I do have other relationships with a couple of industry veterans that I feel are trusted ‘advisors,’ mostly men.

We need more women, though it is a hard industry. The hours can be particularly demanding, especially with Colorado’s seasonality. If you want to be taken seriously, you have to get your hands dirty—literally—and be willing to learn and experience what it means to work and lead in the field. One of the benefits is not being stuck behind a desk/computer every day.

I also see that many young women entering our industry do not want to manage or supervise a team. Being willing and able to manage, teach, train and develop people is the greatest opportunity in our industry. You must be open to honest feedback about your performance. A good mentor, employer or supervisor will be honest with you about your performance and share opportunities for personal development. It is human nature to hear this as criticism. If delivered in the right way, it is for your benefit.

Benefits of women in industry
Women bring incredible skills, both technical and soft skills, to this industry. Diversity as a whole is so important. Groupthink is boring and creates a vacuum in a team’s ability to adapt.

I would like to see more collaboration among women in our industry. I get the sense that men collaborate more within their networks (even with competitors). 

Read the full coverage of women in landscape in the November/December 2021 issue of Colorado Green magazine.

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