Loading Events

« Back to Class Schedule

  • This event has passed.
Register Now

Small Business Best Practices for Tree Care Companies

March 30 @ 9:00 am - 3:30 pm
Instructor: Scott Clifton CEUs: 6.0 AM / 6.0 B-M

This workshop provides resources, expert advice, and reflective stories to strengthen your own tree care company and business acumen. Instructor Scott Clifton will share his tree care industry tool box of business tips with you. Join Scott and fellow small business owners for this day of learning and sharing best business practices for tree care companies.

You will learn how to set up your small business, the details, insurance, and choose carefully your business advisers (taxes, accountant, and partners). Scott will spend some time discussing licensing, what type of insurance you need and how much you should carry, workers compensation insurance, how to keep track of your payables and receivables, accountants, bonding, whether or not you need a good lawyer (good idea).

This workshop will address the tough issues of employee safety, disciplinary policy, financial management and business ethics. Scott will share how he solicits and communicates with clients. Scott recommends developing relationships with colleagues and mentors (other business owners) to help with difficult business decisions. Whether you are new to managing a tree care business or experienced and want to see how another business owner operates, this workshop will be of value to you.

Workshop Agenda

  • 9:00-9:30am - Introductions, Scott business story (The story of how a ground worker turned business owner). With 23 years of professional experience spanning from 1994 to 2018.
  • 9:30-10:15am - Setting up your small business from getting your UBI # to acquiring the required insurance, bonding and what type of contractor’s license is needed. Finding accountant solutions that work for tree care providers. How to avoid easy accounting mistakes. Tracking taxes and being prepared for the cost of taxes and workers compensation insurance. Provide resources and other workshops for setting up a business.
  • 10:15-10:45am - Employees, hiring practices, benefits, building the team, drivers and DOT. Learning how to be a leader and not a boss. How hire with success. Putting the right benefits in place to attract top talent. Building a culture of expectations and accountability. How to track and comply with DOT regulations.
  • 10:45-11:15pm - Company safety manual, training programs, maintaining credentials, disciplinary policy, drug testing. How to build a company safety manual and employee hand book. Building an in house training program or purchasing outside training. Keeping up with credential and the importance of keeping them current. Team building exercises. How to put a fair but firm disciplinary program together. How positive re-enforcement breeds success. Drug testing, how, when and why….
  • 11:15-12:00pm – Financial management BMPS, Quick books. Being prepared for tax bills before they are due. What accounting programs are out there, and which ones are easiest to use, and the cost associated with them. Finding the hidden cost of running a tree care company.
  • 12:00-12:30 – Lunch break
  • 12:30-1:00 – Report writing and client communications. How to write correct and accurate reports. This includes how to handle a workers comp claim the rite way from start to end. How to effectively communicate with your clients and track those communications.
  • 1:00-2:00pm – How to solicit business from the internet to cold calling. Tricks and tips to winning your bids. How to create long lasting business partnerships. Avoiding creating a # out of your customers. How to use the internet to solicit business. Introducing your company to potential customers. Advertising for success. Cold call exercise’s. The more you do it the more success you will have.
  • 2:00-3:00pm - Ethics and Business ISA code of ethics. Keeping your integrity while making money. How to tell a client no. ISA Code of ethics. Understanding you are running a business and not a charity. Leading by example.
  • 3:00-3:30pm – Questions and open forum for discussing small business best practices


Scott Clifton began his professional Arborist career in Phoenix, AZ trimming trees and palms at various properties such as The Ritz Carlton, The Princess Resort, The Biltmore Hotel and various Del Web properties. He then went to work for Arizona’s largest power company, providing power line clearance in the Prescott and surrounding areas, where he honed his skills for working in extremely hazardous and difficult situations. He continued his education and became an I.S.A. Certified Arborist and a former ANSI z133.1 Safety Standards board member to help regulate and govern rules and regulations in the tree care industry. He has mastered the art of managing tree care accounts at large, complex projects as well as many hi-profile properties in the Portland, Oregon area such as the Nike Headquarters, Intel, and Coca Cola for the past five years with a national landscape and tree care company. Scott’s experience, leadership qualities and commitment to education and training supports his past success and provides a solid foundation for TreeWise, LLC. he has been running for the last 5 years.

Professional Credentials and Training

  • Recipient of the ISA 2013 Tree Worker of the Year Award
  • International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) Certified Arborist
  • ISA Certified Arborist Utility Specialist
  • ISA Certified Tree Worker Aerial Lift Specialist
  • ISA Tree Risk Assessment Qualification
  • Grad. American Society of Consulting Arborists Academy
  • ArborMaster Training: Precision Felling and Chainsaw Safety & Maintenance, Climbing Skills, Rigging and Climbing Methods.

Refund & Cancellation Policy

  • Cancellations made at least 10 days prior to the event will be refunded at 100%.
  • Cancellations made within 5-9 days of the event will be refunded at 75%.
  • Cancellations made within 1-4 days of the event will be refunded at 50%.
  • Refunds will not be made available for no-shows.

Allied Professionals are members of allied organizations. See our list of qualifying organizations.


Shoreline Conference Center
18560 1st Ave NE
Shoreline, WA 98155 United States
+ Google Map