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Up Close with Lori Wittwer: Finding a Career in the Lawn Care Industry and a Workplace that Feels Like Home

Posted by Rob Reindl on Oct 26, 2020 11:24:22 AM

Lori WittwerLori Wittwer never imagined that she’d end up in the lawn care industry. It’s just not something she ever knew much about or imagined being part of. After graduating from high school, the Loveland, Ohio native went to school for cosmetology.

But after a year in a salon, Lori realized she was allergic to some of the products and had to find a new career path. During that time, Lori says she held several different jobs but never found anything she was passionate about.

After getting married and having four kids, Lori spent some time at home raising her babies until they were old enough to be in school full-time. Then, it was back to the drawing board.

Seeing an ad for a job at Oasis Turf & Tree, Lori says she was drawn in by the fact that it was in her hometown of Loveland and that it was a family-owned business. Back then, the company was in its infancy, but Lori says she was inspired by their excitement and commitment to growth. She took a position and hasn’t looked back since.

Since coming to Oasis Turf & Tree, Lori says she found something she was passionate about.

New Beginnings: Starting Fresh after Kids

Lori says that when she applied to work with Oasis Turf & Tree, her kids were all old enough to be in school full-time and she decided she was ready to get back in the workforce. Like many mothers who have been through raising kids at home, she knew she was in for a big change. But on top of that, she was poised to start in a brand-new industry.

It was enough to be nerve-wracking except that Lori says from day one she got the support that she needed to succeed.

“Looking back, I honestly had no idea what lawn care was all about,” Lori recalls. “I was 40 years old and never imagined I would be starting a brand-new career in an industry I knew nothing about. But what was so amazing was the support that I got from day one. Back then there were only a few of us, but Rob made sure that we got all the training we needed.”

Lori earned her lawn care applicator’s license from the Ohio Department of Agriculture so that she could truly “know her stuff” when talking to customers.

“Back then I was still in the midst of raising my kids,” Lori recalls of her early years with the company. “Now, it’s amazing to be here 13 years later and going for a walk with one of my grandbabies and pointing out a weed and telling them exactly what it is. I didn’t even know what the different weeds were or how much science went into lawn care. Now, when customers call in with an issue, I really know what I’m talking about.”

Lori says that she’s been amazed to learn how much goes into lawn care. She says there’s a whole science behind it that she never knew.

“It’s not just grass and weeds—it’s far beyond that,” she adds. “Oasis takes it seriously and makes sure that everyone fully understands the science behind the treatments so we can provide the best service to our customers.”

Team Members Like Family

One of the things that I (Rob Reindl, Oasis Turf & Tree owner) love most about Lori is her positive attitude. When she comes into work, she’s always smiling and ready to start the day. Our team picks up on her energy and she’s a “team favorite,” for that reason—but customers pick up on it too.

People really love Lori.

Lori shares that it’s easy to have that positive attitude because she truly likes coming to work every day.

“I doubt a lot of people look forward to going to work each day, but I do,” she says. “We’re like a family here and it’s so clear that management truly cares about us. They have our best interests at heart. I’ve had a number of different jobs but never in my life have I experienced being treated this well. I truly love it here.”
Lori Wittwer enjoying dinner with her family
As Customer Experience Manager, Lori fields calls from customers, sometimes who have a problem or an issue that needs to be addressed. Lori is truly committed to getting any concerns addressed swiftly.

“I try to be empathetic with every single customer that calls,” she shares. “I think ‘What if this were my own family member? What can I do to make this right for them?’”

Lori says that being successful in customer service means being able to put yourself in other peoples’ shoes and make sure they know that you really care about them.

“It’s easy to see that many times when people call in with a concern it’s more than just their lawn they’re unhappy about,” she says. “They might just be having a bad day or something going on in their life, so being a good listener is really important. Here at Oasis, we really do want to make sure all of our customers are happy. We’re a company that really cares about people.”

A Valued Work/Life Balance, Too

Although Lori says she absolutely loves coming to work every day, her family at home means the world to her. That’s why it was so important to her that she works for a company that values family, too. As someone who was committed to being a stay-at-home mom and is now involved in helping with her two grandchildren, finding a place where she could achieve an optimal work/life balance has always been imperative.

“Oasis knows that family comes first, because it comes first for them, too,” she says. “The hours are good for my family. Homelife is incredibly important to me. In addition to my four children and two grandbabies, I also have four cats and four dogs. It’s a busy household!”

In her free time, Lori also says she enjoys playing volleyball—a long-held passion.Lori Wittwer playing with one of her grandkids

A Home Away from Home

Though she never could have imagined herself winding up here, Lori says she is so incredibly happy that she did. She says that she feels that she’s found a workplace that’s a lot more like a “home.”

“Working for a family-owned company right here in Loveland, where my whole family lives, is really everything I could ask for,” Lori shares. “To have been here since the early years and to have witnessed this amazing company’s growth has been so exciting. I’m really proud to be a part of it.”

Are You Ready for a Lawn Care Career?

Whether you’re someone like Lori who is coming from outside of the industry, or maybe you’ve worked in lawn care before but perhaps haven’t been happy, then you might also have a home here at Oasis Turf & Tree. We are rapidly growing and always looking for new people to add to our team.

“This is a great place to work,” says Lori. “When you come here, you’re treated like family.”

Looking for a lawn care career in Cincinnati, Dayton, OH or Northern Kentucky? Consider joining the Oasis Turf & Tree team and find out more about how you, too, can become part of our family.

Learn About Career Opportunities

Topics: Lawn Care, Careers

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