North Warwickshire and South Leicestershire College Case Study

Luke Murphy – Level 3 Business

Lifelong entrepreneur Luke started his landscaping business as soon as he left college and is already planning to take on staff to meet demand. He swapped his car for a van and is getting his teeth into commercial and domestic contracts for gardening and landscaping projects across the East Midlands.
Luke, who studied Level 3 Business at the College’s Wigston Campus, felt able to hit the ground running as soon as he qualified because his course helped him to ‘think with a business mind’ and he was familiar with the terminology of commerce.

Money-making schemes had always featured in Luke’s life, from selling sweets bought on the market at school, to upcycling items for onward sale via Ebay. He always had a natural inclination to get into business after completing his education. Luke worked part-time while at college for a company that fulfilled large scale ground maintenance contracts. He enjoyed being outdoors and loved the work so much, he decided to set up his own business having learnt the ropes on the job.

Starting out simply mowing the lawn for a neighbour, Murphy’s Ground Maintenance was born, and Luke has continued to win work in the Narborough and Blaby area. Folding down equipment and transporting it in his VW Polo became impractical so Luke traded it in for a van and rented a lock-up garage to act as a workshop base. Luke has been successful in winning grounds maintenance contracts for industrial estates and now looks after seven in total across Nottingham, Leicester and Northampton. As well as grounds maintenance, Luke also carries out landscaping and garden projects.

Luke said, “I have used Facebook for marketing and won most of my jobs through word of mouth and positive recommendations. I am getting really busy now and plan to take on extra help next summer as I start to expand. I am self-taught with a lot of my skills, and I really benefited from working with my grandad who has skills in plumbing and construction that he was able to pass on.
Luke puts his success down to hard work and is happy to work seven days a week while his business gets off the ground. He added, “The Business course at college helped me massively because when I met my accountant for the first time, I knew what he was talking about. I also learned to adopt a business mindset when approaching projects.”

Luke has plans to diversify in future and sees himself starting multiple businesses in the years ahead so that he can generate different income streams. With his motivation, drive and passion, Luke looks set to succeed and build his business empire on the foundations of his college experiences.