Gary - how true, how true.
One thing that I learned/heard in a class is that good technician does not necessisarily make a good foreman. I suppose the same theory, a good foreman does not necessarily make a good supervisor or salesperson.
One of the things I've considered is breaking up the task of managing relationships as we grow. Not that the title matters, but calling these "managers" relationship managers (or something akin to that). Their first priority being to satisfy our current customer needs, assuring they are satisfied by scheduling/following up on work that needs to be completed for them. May that be maintenance, fertilizing, enhanements or installation. Not that they would necessarily over see or manage each job, but they would be the customer's advocate within the company. They would take on new sales for their "area" as they come on.
This doesn't mean supervisory job responsibilities, it's probably more sales based than anything else. But the Relationship Managers would be working on customers properties. So they would have to be skilled in a lot of areas. This would take the emphasis off of having to have highly skilled maintenance foreman, which seem to turn over only slightly less frequently than the laborers on the crew. Mowing foreman would not need the same skill set as someone performing enhancements with perennials, annuals, ornamentals, etc. Diagnosis, being one of the more difficult skills to aquire, is helpful at the crew level, but in this scenario, not required.
Lawn Lad, Inc.