The key to providing a good yard waste collection service is connecting with your customers and ensuring their needs are met, McBride’s Yard Waste Co-owner Jonathan McBride said.
“I think in any business that deals with service — customer service is important,” McBride said. “For us, it’s really important, because the service in itself is pretty simple. People like to work with companies that do a good job taking care of their people.”
The Laramie City Council contracted McBride to start collecting curbside yard waste after determining the green waste bins were an unsustainable portion of the city’s green waste program.
While registration for McBride’s Yard Waste began in mid-summer, McBride said his company was slated to start the service Tuesday.
“We set an Aug. 1 deadline to receive free pickup for the rest of the year, but we decided to go ahead and open it up,” he said. “That’s a no-commitment free trial through November.”
Starting in 2018, the voluntary service could cost participating residents $69 annually.
“Because we partnered with the city, the cost per season is one of the most competitive for curbside service you’ll find in the region,” McBride said.
Although the service is new to Laramie, McBride said he and his business partner, Jene Russel, are not.
“We both went to (the University of Wyoming), and it’s a joy for us to have a reason to come back and help out the community,” he said. “We’re excited to be providing a service in Laramie.”
After attending UW, the duo found themselves looking for a spot to deposit grass clippings in Sidney, Nebraska.
“Jene had moved to Nebraska to be a principal, but he had mowed lawns for 10 years before that,” McBride said. “He mentioned the city didn’t have any kind of service, and the residents had to haul all their own yard waste to the landfill.”
Putting their heads together, they created a business plan and pitched it to the city.
“They didn’t have any plans to do anything about it,” he said. “So yeah, it just kind of took off.”
While the first year kicked off without a hitch, Cabela’s, a major employer of Sidney residents, was bought out by Bass Pro Shops during the second year.
“Then, the (Cabela’s) layoffs started happening, and we started losing customers,” McBride said.
Without a customer base, they decided…