Editorial Board   

Mr. Hutcheson

Ken Hutcheson

President, U.S. Lawns

Ken Hutcheson is President of U.S. Lawns, which was founded in 1986. Mr. Hutcheson joined U.S. Lawns in 1995 and has been instrumental in growing the commercial landscape management franchise organization from a regional 18-franchise network to an industry leader with over 250 commercial landscape management franchises nationwide offering year-round grounds services.

Based in Orlando, Florida, U.S. Lawns is nourished by the values and passion of family-owned and operated franchise businesses and Mr. Hutcheson is a champion of the entrepreneurial spirit and teamwork that defines its culture. He's skilled at developing employees, franchisees and customer bases that are anchored on a strong commitment to long-term, high-value relationships.

Mr. Hutcheson's focus is on the company's Franchise Development and the Support Teams that are central reasons for the company's steady national expansion and consistently high rankings on green industry, snow industry and franchise industry lists, including Entrepreneur Magazine's listing of best franchises in its annual Franchise 500 report, #9 on Lawn & Landscape Magazine's Top 100 list and #8 on Snow Magazine's Top 100 Snow Contractor's list.

Mr. Hutcheson received a bachelor's degree in Agriculture from the University of Florida. In 2005 he was recognized by the International Franchise Association as a Certified Franchise Executive. He has been a licensed Certified Pest Control Operator for over twenty years, and is a board member of several industry related organizations, including Nova Southeastern University's International Institute for Franchise Education. He was presented with the prestigious Lawn & Landscape Leadership Award during the Green Industry Great Escape in Las Vegas in 2013, an award that recognizes outstanding individuals in the green industry.

Mr. Hutcheson led U.S. Lawns through a rebranding process in 2013, refreshing the brand while staying true to its culture. In 2016, the company's 30th anniversary, he was inducted into the U.S. Lawns Hall of Fame at the company's annual conference.

Please visit https://uslawns.com/ for more information.

Mr. Hutcheson can be contacted at 407-246-1630 or khutcheson@uslawns.com

Coming up in September 2019...

Hotel Group Meetings: Uncommon Destinations

The last few years have been good to the Hotel Group Meetings industry and that trend is expected to continue into 2019. Planners are brimming with confidence due to an expanding economy and increased job creation, which typically results in a boost in corporate meetings. Given this promising outlook, planners are trying to outdo themselves to satisfy the high expectations of their clients. One notable trend is to integrate unusual settings into the meeting experience, hosting groups at local zoos, aquariums, museums, event centers, or other outdoor facilities. The goal is to embrace uncommon destinations, rather than a typical hotel conference room, so that meetings can be memorable, unique and stimulating. This is also part of another trend which is to support all things local - from hosting events at landmark city venues; to catering through local restaurants, food trucks and microbreweries; to hosting off-site excursions like agri-tours, athletic events or scenic 5k routes. However, though the setting might be spectacular, there are still some bedrock components that must be provided to ensure a successful meeting. Free, high-speed Wi-Fi is still one of the most requested services. Planners have to make sure that a comprehensive communication infrastructure is in place so clients can easily connect - and stay connected - to the network throughout the entire meeting experience. Also, technology tools can be used to streamline the booking, registration, and check-in process, and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) materials can be utilized to ensure seamless access to conference events. There are also numerous software tools that encourage audience participation, as well as integrating polls, Q&A, surveys and games into speakers' presentations. The September Hotel Business Review will examine issues relevant to group meetings and will report on what some hotels are doing to promote this sector of their operations.