Monday, September 24, 2012

Tips & Tricks: Preventative Carpet Care

The key to effective, cost-efficient floor care is preventative maintenance. City Wide recommends a long-term care plan for all the floors in your facility. Keep in mind that natural and specialty floors may require more specialized care.

Here are some quick tips on how to get the most life out of your carpeting.
Vacuum regularly: Frequent vacuuming essential to keeping carpet protected, but also to reducing the dirt level in your building. Vacuum frequently, and vacuum high-traffic areas daily.
Matting: Most dirt is brought into buildings on our feet. Entryway matting captures dirt as it is walked in. Put mats at every entryway, and vacuum them frequently if not daily.
Shampooing: Did you know that dirt particles left deep into carpeting can significantly reduce carpet life? Periodic shampooing lifts dirt particles that vacuums can’t reach. To maximize the life of your carpets, have carpeted areas shampooed every 3-6 months.
Remember, daily vacuuming is essential to extending carpet life, and commercial matting programs are an inexpensive way to extend carpet life and keep dirt out of your buildings!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Tips & Tricks: Back To School Disinfecting

Back to school season has us thinking about cold and flu, and how to keep our families and coworkers safe from the spread of germs. In this month’s Tips and Tricks, Abby Nicholl will show you a few simple steps you can take to make sure your building remains a healthful work environment.

The key to controlling the spread of the germs in the workplace is to disinfect high-touch areas around the facility as a part of your regular cleaning process. These “hot spots” include light switches, door handles, telephones, railings and fixtures we touch repeatedly throughout the day.
Simply cleaning a surface with standard cleaning chemicals removes dirt, but not germs. Following up with a disinfectant that is the right strength and formula for the surface with kill germs that linger after a conventional clean.
Contact City Wide for more information about incorporating hot-spot disinfection into your regular cleaning plan.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Tips & Tricks: Indoor Air Quality Issues

Air quality issues have a visible impact on office productivity, but can be hard to identify. In this month’s Tips and Tricks, Abby Nicholl talks about some of the indicators of poor Indoor Air Quality (IAQ), and gives you some simple steps you can take to preserve the air quality in your building.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Week In Review: June 25th - 29th

Kelly Mansfield - Business Development:
If someone were to ask me what today's date is, I would probably guess some day back in April. I cannot believe that we're almost at the end of June already! This summer is just flying by... Mostly in part to how busy we are here at City Wide.

In the past few weeks, we've had a few changes around here, being awarded a handful of new accounts, and most importantly gaining a new employee: Tyler Olson, our newest Sales Associate. You can read about him here. Tyler has been with City Wide less than a month, but we all can tell that he has made a big impact already. In these past two weeks I've gotten to spend some time outside of the office with him while manning two golf events that City Wide has sponsored. And just last night, Greg and I joined Tyler and his wife Jennae for dinner. It has been nice to get to know him (and his wife too) better over these past few weeks. We are all very excited to see him succeed at his sales goals and to see how his positivity and perseverance affects all of us at City Wide as well!

On a personal level, I am gearing up for the 4th of July next week. Greg and I are planning to visit my family in Kansas. Although we're not excited for the hot and humid 100+ temperatures that come with my home state, we are looking forward to visiting with my family.
Of course I cannot sign off this week's blog post without poking some fun at Mitch and Jarrad :-) Earlier this week, we posted this month's Tips & Trick's video (seen here) all about carpet stains and spots. Yesterday while I was working away at my desk, I overheard Mitch muttering and griping to himself in the FSM office. Turns out... Jarrad left a cup of old coffee on his desk and Mitch accidentally spilled it all over their office carpet.
Not sure if Jarrad or Mitch should be blamed... But still ironic and funny at the same time :-) We all make mistakes, whether you're a part of a maintenance and cleaning company or not!


Mitch Brunette - Facility Service Manager:
Vacation always takes a toll on the work life before you head out of town... And of course when you return as well! For whatever reason, my time off has seemed to surround late April, late May, my wedding anniversary in June, and now here we are at Independence Day and I have some time off once again! It is fun to get out and enjoy your vacation and then share those experiences with my clients, but it can take a toll on the work week (preparing to leave and then getting caught up). Fortunately I have a great support staff here in the office that has helped ease my administrative burden when I returned from my last vacation last week-- an anniversary trip to the Gun Flint Trail!

A huge thank you to Kelly and Brian for getting some serious administrative headaches off of my plate and of course I always thank my Night Manager, Eric for his intense hard work while I am out.

As always, when you think spring projects are coming to a close, you realize that there are several sites that have a different fiscal year than others-- and then I'm busy once again! Throughout June, we strip and waxed for one site, dry cleaned a unique rug and tile at another site, and have had several apartment turn-cleans here in the busy rental season. Here is a photo from the rug cleaning:

Construction clean-up is another busy services for us right now too. We are happy to pick up any post construction clean-ups, wax work, concrete sealing, and more! We recently have partnered with a new build out company and hope to continue nurturing that relationship going forward with other sites.

This weekend we have a few birthday celebrations scheduled, but look forward to going to Chicago next week to pick up a new vehicle. Have a great weekend and Independence Day everyone!

~Your City Wide Team

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Tips & Tricks: Treating Carpet Stains and Spots

In this installment of Tips and Tricks, Abby Nicholl will demonstrate the correct way to treat a spill on carpeting, and a secret you can use to make sure it stays clean.

Don’t let a spill sit on carpet, or it will set.Remove any food or surface debris from the spot, then blot with paper towels or white cotton cloth to absorb the spill. Don’t scrub, as the aggressive scrubbing action can damage carpet and soft flooring.

Take extra care with natural materials.Before you select a cleaning method, make sure you know what you’re dealing with. If you use detergent or cleanser, test it in an unobtrusive spot first. And make sure to rinse the area thoroughly – cleaning solution left behind can become sticky and attract MORE dirt to the stain!

City Wide offers many services that can help keep your floors looking their best. Ask City Wide about spot cleaning, quarterly strip-and-wax on hard surface floors, or deep cleaning carpets in high traffic areas.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Meet Tyler, Our Newest Sales Associate

My name is Tyler Olson and I am the Sales Associate at City Wide of Minnesota. I grew up in the north metro, but currently live in South Minneapolis near Lake Nokomis with my wife Jennae and our two crazy dogs, Tucker and Khloe.

In my free time, I am an avid cyclist and I also enjoy cross-country skiing, wake boarding, snowboarding, fishing, and basically any outdoor activity.

I graduated from Concordia Academy in 2004 and went on to school at North Dakota State University in Fargo, North Dakota. After I graduated from NDSU with a degree in Exercise Science, I took a position working with Life Time Fitness. I worked at three different clubs (Chanhassen, Maple Grove, and White Bear Lake) moving my way up the ranks into a management position. During the five years that I was with LTF, I intermittently did work for Now Bikes and Fitness in St. Paul selling bicycles.

I found City Wide through my good friend and FSM for City Wide, Mitch Brunette. It is my job at City Wide to go out and form new customer relationships. I find businesses that are looking for help in their maintenance departments and show them how we can save them time and stress. One of the parts of the job that I enjoy the most is being able to visit a vast variety of business types and see how they do business. I love interacting with new people and being the first face of City Wide when going into any business.

Customer service philosophy:
I strive to deliver the best sales experience for the customer, creating a seamless transition into being a customer with City Wide. I and the rest of my City Wide co-workers want to save our customers time, stress, and potentially money. I believe this all starts at the front line… Sales.

Employees and vendors:
I love to be part of this hard working team of employees. Everyone here moves toward the same goals and loves what they do. As a newer member of the team I can’t wait to see where this company goes!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Tips & Tricks: Receiving the Best Clean

With new advances in mopping, vacuuming and dusting your building can be healthier without a higher cost. Microfiber mopping and dusting in addition to backpack vacuums are changing the game.

It’s not important to know the details (leave that up to your maintenance crew) but realizing that these advancements exist can set you up to know what to look for when evaluating your next janitorial company.

Friday, May 18, 2012

City Wide Tips & Tricks: Parking Lot Maintenance

We all know how frustrating it is driving through a poorly maintained parking lot. Don’t make your clients do the same. Proper sweeping, striping and sealing will keep your clients coming back.  Ongoing and preventative maintenance positively impact your patrons’ mood and your bottom line.

This month we have a few pointers for your parking lot. Clients will avoid your parking lot if they feel like they need a new alignment every time they visit. Watch this month’s video and you’ll find out
  • why potholes and cracks occur
  • what should be done to prevent them
  • how to make your parking lot look more professional with 3 easy steps

Stretch your dollars by maintaining your asphalt and develop a plan for all three approaches. Contact City Wide for help in creating a parking lot plan that fits your needs and budgets in addition to learning more about how City Wide can help with more than 20 different maintenance services for your facility.

~Your City Wide Team

Friday, May 4, 2012

Week In Review: April 30th - May 4th

Tyler DuBord - Facility Service Manager:

It’s been an extremely busy April and early May for floor work in the north. There has been a bit of a learning curve for a couple projects and we have learned a few things that will improve future projects. We now know look out for door jams, transition strips, and using flat mops for applying wax. No matter the outcome, we will always ensure the end product is perfect and that the customer is happy prior to invoicing. That is our promise.

We recently started cleaning a new account in beautiful downtown Stillwater which began without a hitch. For this particular customer we began service by providing an acid grout cleaning in a very high profile area of their store leaving clean, even grout lines. We also performed a detail cleaning from top to bottom prior to this store’s grand opening. Overall the store was in excellent shape for their opening day.

Last week I returned from an excellent 8 day trip to Cozumel, Mexico where good times were had by all. We enjoyed activities such as golfing, deep sea fishing, scuba diving, and taking scooter trips around the island. Each year we uncover a new activity or place to eat that always leaves us coming back year after year. I highly recommend Cozumel as a vacation destination if you’re looking for that slightly quieter, tranquil place in the Caribbean.


Kelly Mansfield - Business Development:

Another busy week here at City Wide! We came back from our annual convention down in Kansas City on Monday full of new ideas, inspiration, and a little bit of exhaustion too ;-) It was nice to catch up with other owners throughout the states and I got to see my family as well.

There were several meetings and segments that led to a lot of take-aways. We learned about a new Culture Index test that aids in hiring the right people, new marketing techniques, and the exciting changes with our technology. Big thanks to City Wide Corporate for putting on another great convention. It was a great time!
Me with Katy from City Wide of Indianapolis

I spent this week just getting back into the swing of things. After being gone for over a week, it is always nice to get back to the office and work hard. We have a few new starts scheduled for next week-- we're exited to get them rollin'!

Have a great weekend!

~Your City Wide Team

Friday, April 20, 2012

Week in Review: April 16th - 20th

Mitch Brunette - Facility Service Manager:

Everything in last week’s blog basically came true! April continues to be incredibly busy, and I am on pace to have completed the 3rd most amount of work in one month in my nearly 4 year tenure here at City Wide! It’s fun and exhausting at the same time and I look forward to getting through it all. I’m excited to have great looking facilities ready to be maintained here throughout spring before preparing for Winter (sorry for mentioning winter).

Wax work continues to get wrapped up here at our group clients with various follow ups required for areas inaccessible or needing a little extra attention.  Carpet trucks are everywhere cleaning traffic areas, offices and viper tool cleaning tile and grout making huge improvements.  Viper tool cleaning is rapidly becoming my favorite service to sell as we have recently gotten a new chemical in our arsenal and it is making a dramatic impact on our before and after work.  Here are some pictures!

May is getting booked up here already as we are in the final couple weeks of April and more customers are accepting that spring is truly here and projects need to be completed.  We have a job going every week in May already for carpet, tile, wax, and or window washing to keep us busy again through May.  Unless something changes in the next week or the first part of May then April looks like it will be the winner as far as busiest month of the first half of the year!

This weekend and its plans have been a rollercoaster in the Brunette household.  My sister-in-law and her husband from Chicago were supposed to be coming up here to the family farm to help with chores and spend time with the family.  After they backed out we went back and forth on whether we would go or not, and finally have decided we are indeed going to help clean tractors, wax tractors, take tires on and off tractors, and I’m sure do something else with tractors! Should be a fun Saturday/Sunday of work, followed by some evening golf if we get lucky enough to play the old “Wells 9” in the middle of the small town.  Excited to get some fresh air-- hopefully the weather permits this weekend.  Last but definitely not least, I am anxiously awaiting and counting down the days to the NFL draft! Ready to see the Vikes secure a 10 year left tackle and hopefully pick up the Notre Dame safety in the 2nd round and snag a receiver in the 3rd.  Who knows? These things change all the time and let’s face it—we’re talking about Minnesota sports, they’re as volatile as it gets!

~Your City Wide Team

Friday, April 13, 2012

Week in Review: April 9th - 13th

Kelly Mansfield - Business Development:
Another busy week! I've been busy getting back into the swing of things this week. Last week Greg and I were off on vacation, down at Table Rock Lake in the Lake of the Osark's area. It was a gorgeous week-- lots of sunshine, blue skies, and some fishing too.

This week I've been busy putting together a lot of extra service proposals for our current clients-- a lot of window washing and lawn maintenance. It is that time of the year, afterall! We've also been busy with a few changes here at the office, as well as getting ready for this year's annual conference down in Kansas City!


Mitch Brunette - Facility Service Manager:
My apologies for being blog absent for a while now but here are some updates on the South Metro over the last few weeks.

We have been incredibly busy with an early spring putting us to work on carpets, windows, floor wax and other spring cleanups in April instead of May!  One client had a small window of time for us to complete carpet cleaning, viper tool cleaning bathrooms, strip and wax, and wash their windows all in an afternoon/evening.  We had a few groups of labor working with each other to stay out of each other’s way and accomplish the work.  It went quite well and it was nice to knock that all out in one night!

April is always a big month for us in the ways of a few jobs for a large group of medical clinics we oversee.  They have us handle their strip and wax, carpet cleaning, viper tool grout cleaning and chair upholstery cleaning all throughout the month of April.  It’s a great program they do two times a year to keep their site sanitized, looking presentable, and preserving the life of their floors throughout the property.

It’s only the 13th of April but it feels like the 2nd week of May in the ways of projects.  We haven’t completed them all yet but getting them all scheduled and lined up takes a lot of time with each various labor group we use and assigning myself or a night manger to be a part of the project to make sure it all goes well and smooth.  We really appreciate these opportunities to pair up with a site manager and take the issue off their plate of getting the work done with one vendor/manager instead of 4-6 different companies to complete these spring tasks.

Looking forward to May and the window washing work that comes with it as well.  It’s nice to wait for the April showers (where have they been up until today?) to get out of the way for fresh clean windows to look through in May.  I believe I have between 15-30 jobs to schedule in May and June for window washing.  Some do both interior and exterior cleaning, others just do inside.  We have a group of customers that have us clean the partition glass in their cubicals as part of the spring service as well to get things looking really good.

Life outside of work has been great.  We have been all in on the boxing program at Minnesota Top Team since the office took a trial run at it in January and February.  I have had a ton of fun working out there 4 times a week doing boxing class and core circuit training and they even asked me to write a guest blog post for them.

Aside from the fitness aspect of life I am getting ready to work on my two boat projects that I have, one easier than the other.  I have about a week of vacation time that I plan to use in early May and head to northern and southern Minnesota.  North for fun, south for chores with the in-laws as a favor and hopefully squeeze in some golf on the weekends. Looking forward to the Twins finding some ways to pitch their games better and get bats going! Counting down days to the NFL draft… it’s an interesting spring, looking forward to the rest of 2012!!

~Your City Wide Team

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Green Cleaning is Here To Stay

With the recent release of the upgraded Dr. Seuss classic, “The Lorax,” green has become more than just a cleaning trend. It’s become what is expected in many facets of our lives.
Green, sustainable cleaning is no exception to this new phenomenon .While just a few years back “green” was often synonymous with “expensive,” that is far from the truth today.

In a article 10 predictions for “green” in 2012 were made. Number 5 addressed commercial clean directly:
Green is a given. Facility managers/cleaning professionals will select green cleaning products first and conventional cleaning products only if green ones are not available.
As green chemicals become more common place and technologies become more advanced, sustainable cleaning options will become a more prevalent and a better financial option for many facilities.

Make sure you know what your options are to be ready when the green movement comes your way. For those of you who have not experienced a building that utilizes a green program – you’ll be amazed. There is a reason this “trend” is truly here to stay.

~Your City Wide Team

Friday, March 30, 2012

Week in Review: March 26th - 30th

Greg Mansfield - President:
Another week down for the City Wide team. It has been a busy one! I also cannot believe that April is just days away-- what a quick March we've had!

We've been busy with focusing on Spring Cleaning for our current clients and prospective customers. We've been bidding a lot of parking lot maintenance proposals as well as scheduling floor care and window washing for established clients. It sure is nice to see our clients' facilities get all cleaned up in time for spring!

I've also been busy with gearing up an RFP process for a large clinic group. We're excited to be a part of the candidates and to show the company what City Wide can do for them!

Additionally, sales have been going well. We have partnered up with our colleagues in Boston as a way to mentor each other in sales. We are excited to see how we can help improve revenue each month in the form of encouragement and brainstorming.

I've been excited all week long about getting my boat out on the water for the first time this Saturday. It will be so nice to do some fishing on the boat after it being stored up all winter long-- wish me luck! :-)


Tyler DuBord - Facility Service Manager:
It’s been a pretty busy week up in the north. It began with the training of several crew members for a large customer in the northwest metro. It went pretty smoothly and everyone is set up ready to work! We are also officially ready to begin cleaning another location for this customer near their main facility. Though the scope of work is similar, the need for manpower is much smaller than the main site. I am sure this account will pose some challenges but we’re always ready to go up in the north with anything that comes our way.

This week marked a significant milestone for my night manager Steve. Steve has been with City Wide now for 1 year and has done a fantastic job. He excels in establishing excellent relationships with our service providers and setting them on the right path for success. Steve is 100% dedicated to following all City Wide policies and procedures and is willing to put in the time and effort to make sure every night in the north metro goes smoothly. Thanks Steve for an excellent 1st year, keep up the great work!

I’m gearing up for Cozumel here in a couple weeks. I thought there would be no reason to leave with the excellent weather we’ve had here in Minnesota the past few weeks although this past week the temps have dipped down a bit. I’ve come to realize there is nothing that could ever change my mind about leaving for sunny Mexico. I’m ready for some scuba diving, fishing and just laying out in the sun!  

~Your City Wide Team

Monday, March 19, 2012

City Wide Tips & Tricks: Spring Cleaning

Spring is a great time to dust away the cobwebs of the colder months and prepare for all that the warmer weather has to offer. While there are many services that can help get your building ready there are two that can have a dramatic impact on your facility: window washing and HVAC maintenance.

Window Washing

Over time pollutants build up on your window such as pollen, acid rain, over spray from paint and caulking as well as oxidation and hard minerals. In order to prevent these from setting into the tiny grooves of your windows its important to give them a regularly scheduled, thorough cleaning. City Wide recommends a minimum of 2 deep cleans per year. This preventative maintenance can help save money in the long run and keep a consistent shine.


In some ways cleaning out your ducts is one of the most important things you can do. It delivers the air that your building occupants breathe. So making sure you clean out all of the buildup that happens as your air vents sit unused over winter is crucial to clean air.

~Your City Wide Team

Friday, March 9, 2012

Week in Review: March 5th - 9th

Mitch Brunette - Facility Service Manager:

The south metro has been a little quieter this week!  We have been setting up for some upcoming jobs that will require some time and energy but the results will be worth the time.

In the last week we started up a new location which was an extension of a current client. At first we had a few hiccups getting started, but it is up and running well at this point. The customer is getting a lot of good feedback from their staff about how much cleaner the building has been since we began and we love hearing that!

We have recently paired up with an LED company as an additional resource for retrofitting buildings outside of the standard T8 and T5 retrofits of the past.  We have a few upcoming meetings scheduled with current clients. I’m excited to present this info and see if we can’t help them go green and save a ton of green while they are at it!

This weekend I look forward to the ridiculously warm March temperatures. I intend to hit my circuit training class and get out for an outdoor run getting muddy and wet running the trails of Lebanon Hills in Eagan.  Have a great weekend all!

~Your City Wide Team

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Green Home Cleaning Tips

Cleaning your home doesn’t have to involve using harsh chemicals and come at the price of toxic air. Learn some basic ways to keep your house clean and its occupants healthy.

Click on the below image to read more!

~Your City Wide Team

Friday, February 3, 2012

Week in Review: January 30th - February 3rd

Mitch Brunette – Facility Service Manager:
Time seems to evaporate this week as we get busier and busier! Month end and the first of the month always come with their extra paperwork, tasks, and follow-ups, but it is now behind us! I’m looking forward to a good February with new goals set to achieve and to hopefully gain some new business within this month.

This last week we have worked on a handful of turn-cleans for our apartment customers and were able to turn those out on-time with minimal interference which always helps make the cleaners job a bit easier!  I am getting some new dispensers for paper towels and soap at one of our apartment complexes as well.  We were able to save the customer about $1 per case on their products which isn't much, but most importantly we can finally make their rest rooms uniform for paper and soap which always looks nice. They had several different outdated, half-working dispensers that we are replacing with wave motion dispensers. The outdated bag in box soap will be replaced with a refillable bulk, pourable foam soap. This update is appreciated by both the customer and the cleaners. City Wide will oversee the ordering process so they always have what they need, the customer gets a better price, and a better look!

We did some strip and wax work in one of our metal recycling plants this last week as well and what a difference it made! The best part was when I showed up for my visit to inspect the floors and a person that normally works out in the back shop says to me with a huge smile "WE GOT OUR FLOORS WAXED!" I was able to respond with a bit of humor and said "No kidding? Looks real good... I'm actually the one who got that work done for you!" She laughed and I was able to introduce myself and found out she worked in a part of the facility that we don't clean so she had never seen me around to know what part I play in the facility :-)

Looking forward to watching the Super Bowl this weekend with a bunch of friends at our place. It’s a win-win situation for me. On one hand, I hope the Giants win because they had a hard year and have played so well in the playoffs (not to mention taking down the pack!). On the other hand, as much as I dislike the Patriots as a whole, I do appreciate seeing excellence at work and Tom Brady getting another ring is always entertaining to see one guy have such a large accomplishment. Either way, it’s going to be a fantastic game!

I’m taking my wife out for her first trip ever on the ice for some winter fishing-- it should be quite interesting. I really, really hope we catch some fish so she can enjoy herself and hopefully I can get her out for more of it in the future! Have a great weekend everyone!

Brian Mansfield – Business Operations Analyst:
Another hectic week is almost over.  I feel like we say that a lot but it really seems to be true!  The week started off with a visit from Stuart, our Regional Sales Manager for City Wide.  We got to spend some quality time discussing our sales and marketing efforts here in the Twin Cities and how we can continue to get the word out about what sets City Wide apart from other commercial cleaning and building maintenance companies.  The conversations were very productive and we’re excited to try some new ideas.

I also got to spend some time out at one of our accounts in the west metro with Jarrad, our FSM for that territory.  Jarrad has been spending extra time working with the crew to really fine tune the process in that facility and I was excited to get to be an extra pair of hands to help him out.  I’ve said before that I’m very impressed with the dedication and professionalism of our FSM’s and that fact continues to be reinforced when I see how hard they work to satisfy our clients.

Speaking of our talented FSM’s, congratulations to Mitch who won the nationwide City Wide FSM contest for 2011!  This is the second time Mitch has won this award in the last three years.  On top of that, Tyler, our FSM for the north metro, also finished in the top 5 in the contest.  Congratulations to both of you and thanks for all of your hard work!

We’ve managed to work in some fun this week too which started Sunday evening at the Timberwolves/Lakers game with Greg, Stuart, Kelly, and myself. We came up a little short at the end but it was an exciting game and the first event I’ve ever been to at the Target Center.

Monday night a group of us from City Wide participated in a circuit training workout at Minnesota Top Team, a boxing and martial arts training facility in Eagan.  It was the first time we tried anything like that and we had a blast!  Thanks to Jennie, Jeremy and Alex for being so welcoming and providing us with an exciting and challenging workout!  Check them out at:

We also were able to enjoy a Minnesota Wild hockey game with two of our clients as well.
Although the Wild did not pull out a win, we still had a great time. Kelly and our clients even had the chance to pose with Nordi, the Minnesota Wild's mascot ;-)

I'm headed back to Kansas City this afternoon after a productive visit to Minnesota. Looking forward to being back home and to watch the Super Bowl as well!

~Your City Wide Team

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

What is Sick Building Syndrome?

Sick Building Syndrome is a term those in the industry use for buildings that seem to cause acute health or comfort effects that correlate with time spend in the building but with no specific illness or cause identified.
A 1984 World Health Organization Committee report suggested that up to 30 percent of new and remodeled buildings worldwide may be the subject of excessive complaints related to indoor air quality.
There are a variety of possible causes of this health problem:
  • Inadequate ventilation
  • Chemical contaminants from indoor sources
  • Chemical contaminants from outdoor sources
  • Biological Contaminants
While Sick Building Syndrome can cause problems with productivity and the general health of your building inhabitants it is not a problem that is always easy to identify. But in order to keep your facility as clean and healthy as possible make sure you consider taking these steps:

Pollutant source removal or modification when sources are known. This could include replacing filters on a routine basis, replacement of waterstained ceiling tiles and properly ventilating the building with the use of paint, pesticides and other solvents.

Increasing ventilation rates. Make sure that your HVAC systems meet at least the minimum ventilation standards for local building codes.

Education and communication. Work with your management and employees to understand the signs and risks of SBS to work to effectively prevent and fix any problems that may arise.

Adopting a green cleaning program can have a large impact on the health of your building by addressing the indoor contaminants and proper ventilation. Find out more about City Wide’s Performance Plus program to assess whether teaming with City Wide can be a benefit to your employees and facility.

For more information and to review the original source for the information in this post visit the EPA site on Indoor Air Facts.

~Your City Wide Team

Monday, January 30, 2012

Tips & Tricks: Removing Permanant Marker from White Boards

In celebration of 2012, we are bringing back our very first Tips & Tricks video. We’ll be showing you how to remove permanent marker from your whiteboard.

Even if we don’t like to admit it, we’ve probably all been a defender of this crime. It may have meant needing to buy a new whiteboard in the past, but City Wide is here to share a quick and easy solution. So sit back, relax and enjoy a little retro Tips & Tricks.

~Your City Wide Team

Friday, January 27, 2012

Week In Review: January 22nd - 27th

Greg Mansfield - President:
This has been on crazy week for us all here at City Wide! It seems like after all of the holiday “hubbub” everyone is getting settled back into work. Our Business Development Specialist, Diane, has had a fantastic month and has sure kept me busy with meetings with potential clients! I am very excited about the opportunities on our horizon. January has been a great start to the year!

Earlier this week I got back from Kansas City where I was taking part in our regional meetings. They went very well and I am always impressed with the level of talent that resides in the City Wide family.

I’ve also been filling my extra time with listening to some really interesting Podcasts on iTunes. If you go onto iTunes and search for “manager tools” in the iTunes Store, literarily hundreds of informative podcasts are available, and they’re free too! You can also download an App for these podcasts as well.

Onto everyone’s favorite topic… Weather. After Monday’s snow accumulation, it seems like winter has returned to us. Though some days it does seem very spring-like with hardly any snow on the ground. I heard on the news that Minnesotans are referring to this season as “Marchuary” ;-)

I’m looking forward to next week—Stuart, our corporate sales support from Kansas City will be in town. Amid a lot of work, brainstorming, and building survey appointments, we will be sneaking in a bit of fun. We’re going to the Timberwolves/Lakers game this Sunday. Can’t wait!

Have a great weekend, all!


Mitch Brunette - Facility Service Manager:
Things sped up here in the last week and are beginning to taper off here as the month comes closer to a close!  This week we came up with a big game plan to make a big impact on a difficult building that needed some extra TLC from the crew and our management.  Its been fun to think through different ways we can make a positive change in the way we do things at the property and look forward to seeing those plans pan out in the future.  Some more detail is being done, extra management visits during the day, and more evening oversight as well to help make a long lasting impact.

Extra projects were light again this week but we did do a strip and wax at an electronics assembly factory that we clean.  They have several equipment changes with a new expansion that they took on for a large project and we were able to clean up the areas and blend wax where machines previously were, and strip and wax a new tile area that was installed last week.  It looks great, he customer is happy, and their operation is up and running on time.

This month was a big win for the “Viper Tool” category of our sales, we were able to lock in a group location that we oversee to get all 4 of their sites done in February along with cleaning approximately 175 of their chairs throughout the facilities.  Fortunately this will be an annual project to keep their site looking nice, and something we can count on for February when the dead of winter is typically a little slower aside from snow removal.  We also look forward to locking in 11 medical clinics we oversee for one client with Viper tool as well.  Each April and October we do their wax work and carpet cleaning and now we can add Viper tooling of all of their rest rooms and entryway tiles to the program in April.  In clinics its very important to have this done for the tile to not only appear uniform in the grout but to be sanitized as well.

Looking forward to the weekend, the wife and I are going to catch a movie on Friday night and have some friends coming over Saturday night that we haven’t seen in a few months.  Saturday morning I’m trying to talk my old roommate into coming out onto the ice and seeing what ice fishing is all about, you’d never know he’s a born and raised Minnesotan who spent his summers in Detroit Lakes with his lack of love for fishing!  I look forward to converting him over.


~Your City Wide Team

Friday, January 20, 2012

Week in Review: January 16th - 20th

Mitch Brunette - Facility Service Manager:
Another great week here in the south metro! I have had a busy week getting lots of inspections done and fortunately haven’t had to dart back and forth across town very much! Thursday and Friday will prove to be busy with a couple of our larger properties being due for a thorough inspection, but I look forward to it. I really enjoy weeks where I am able to stick to my route and be able to get to several more customers since I don’t get pulled to head across town to handle something.

It’s been a good beginning to 2012 in the ways of our new sales cold call program. Unfortunately I have not set an appointment this month but I am on target with our weekly and monthly goal of activities which feels great when it has been a struggle at times in the past. Overall it’s becoming a fun part of the job as it gets easier and you feel much more comfortable knocking on that unknown door and asking for simple information.

In the ways of extra projects, I have not had much going on this week! I have bid several projects including a viper tool cleaning job that lead to 3 more of their properties likely getting done here in the next month or so as well! I spent some time bidding some of our newer customers as well for carpet cleaning, window washing, floor wax, and machine scrubbing where appropriate getting ready to help customers budget and plan for spring projects that should be done. I look forward to seeing that pay off and have already gotten a couple positive verbal “yes” responses to the projects and I have filed those away for mid-late April to follow up on and schedule.

The weather has been one heck of a rollercoaster but fortunately it has stayed cold enough, long enough, to create some thick ice on a couple lakes in town that I have been able to get out and do some ice fishing on with my new equipment. It’s been a lot of fun getting out on my own and with friends where in the past I had to tag along with others who had equipment. I was able to get out snowboarding last weekend as well courtesy of Buck Hill and their snow making machines. They have quite a snowboard park setup already considering we have less than 6” of total snowfall for the year! This weekend I look forward to my wife’s safe return from a trip to Canada for work-- we are heading out for a bowling night out with a bunch of our friends Saturday night which should be fun. Have a great weekend everyone, and Go Giants and Ravens!!

~Your City Wide Team

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

City Wide Tips & Tricks: Combating the Flu

The flu is no fun, but after being surrounded by so many people during the holiday its not out of the question to come back to work with a weak immune system. Understanding the steps you can take in order to stay healthy can have a positive impact on you and your office.

Take these 3 easy steps to stay flu free:
1) Get a flu shot.
2) Prevent the spread of germs.
3) Stay home if possible to rest and recover.

~Your City Wide Team

Friday, January 13, 2012

Week in Review: January 9th - 13th

Tyler DuBord - Facility Service Manager:
It’s been a good week up in the north metro. I walked several buildings that we’ve took on over the past month or two and each building is looking excellent with very happy customers. I was also able to visit a long standing customer to verify that a new “evening porter” is performing very well. I hope to stay on a great roll in my buildings and continue to have satisfied customers. It’s been a very quiet week with no complaints and few requests. Thanks to the teammates and partners who have made this possible. Great work!

Still working on getting some snow?! We finally hit some cold temperatures to freeze up the lakes even more but without the snow, my snowmobile is useless! My fingers are crossed for some powder to fall soon! Take care until next week!


Mitch Brunette - Facility Service Manager:
What an entertaining week here in the South getting back out to see everyone after Holiday vacation and new contracts starting! I was in touch with a lot of customers during break for minor needs like holiday party cleanups and special cleans for RVP’s site visits, but hadn’t been in buildings as much over vacation. It was nice to get back out and catch up with everyone and find that my buildings were still in great shape. Big thanks to our cleaners for sticking to the daily schedules and following up on any hot button items! Also a thanks to my night manager Eric, who put in a huge effort and great service while I was gone!

This week has been busy but quite fun. We wrapped up a challenging painting job for one of our clients in downtown St Paul.  Up on the 7th floor, none of the walls matched after several different paint scheme’s had been attempted--  some areas were even simply painted around file cabinets, leaving a big brown square with off-white surrounding it! We brought on a new group of painters that are friends of my family and they really went above and beyond. The task was particularly challenging because we were painting over wallpaper. It was quite challenging because the wallpaper was incredibly absorbent and although it had already been painting 1 or 2 other times it still soaked the paint right up! The walls required extra passes with the roller to get solid even coats on the wall. Thanks to a power roller that feeds paint right to the roller through a high pressure hose we were able to makeup this extra labor time. One wall we actually painted was over 80 feet long, 8 feet high, the first coat went on in 10 minutes! I have painted my own house several times and wish I had this time saver :-) The project turned out great, and the customer was incredibly pleased with the work.

I am working on an energy savings project that I have been working on for two years. Due to changes in ownership, our client hasn’t been able to pull the trigger yet although they want to! This week I am bringing out a new electrician to take a look at the work, assess the cost, and look at the new rebate programs associated with the retrofit. I have my fingers crossed as it is a large project, and my contact at the property is on board with the program, we just need a few minutes in front of the board to show them how quickly they will earn their money back and how that cash flow could be reinvested down the road for them!

This weekend I look forward to seeing my sister and her husband fly in from Phoenix with our two little nephews Lucas (2 ½) and Isaac  (4 months old)! This will be my first time meeting Mr. Isaac in person aside from using our good friend Skype, which helps me keep in touch. We are doing family Christmas on Saturday and unfortunately my wife has to fly to Canada all week while they are here. Not sure what all we are going to do but I sure look forward to playing with these two while they are in town and send them back to warm and sunny Phoenix safe and sound the following weekend.

Winter is back everyone, dress warm!


Jarrad Nicolite - Facility Service Manager:
This week has been relatively quiet, which is nice for once in a while! Earlier this week we finished a construction clean-up downtown Minneapolis and soon we will also be doing Ultrasonic blind cleaning for the same customer. Ultrasonic blind cleaning is a really inexpensive way to renew the look of your old dusty, dirty blinds. The cleaning process is done with sound wave technology in a soapy bath of specially formulated cleaning solution. Pretty cool!

I also have an appointment to meet with one of my current customers to look at their demonstration room and provide a bid to replace the carpet and base board at their facility-- hopefully we will be able to help them out!

This weekend should be pretty relaxing because Lana and I have nothing planed or anything that has to be done. I have to admit, having no commitments once in a while is really nice!


Brian Mansfield - Business Operations Analyst:

The new year is upon us and from the looks of it outside we may finally see some winter weather!  The last two months have been fairly hectic for me.  Continuing my training, visiting many of the buildings we service, traveling and the holidays have all kept me busy.  I’ve had a blast learning on the fly and really appreciate the time everyone has spent with me showing me the ropes.  I’ve also had the pleasure of meeting many of our customers face to face.  Since I occasionally correspond with them via email or over the phone it is great to establish that relationship and have a face to go with a name. 

This week has flown by as well.  I completed a project to update and distribute some safety training to our operations personnel that we review annually, continued to learn new administrative office tasks that I will be responsible for and spent a day on Mille Lacs lake for a strategic planning meeting.  The meeting portion of the outing went a lot better than the fishing portion though as we only managed to catch a couple of average sized walleye and a handful of small perch.  Even so, it was great to get out from behind a desk and spend some time in the great outdoors!

I want to congratulate Mitch, our Facility Service Manager for the South Metro, for signing up his first new account last week.  All three of our FSM’s have been stopping into businesses in their territories to spread the word about City Wide and Mitch is the first to sign up a new account based on one of those visits.  I’m excited to see his hard work pay off but I’m equally excited for that new customer.  I know that we can save them time and effort by managing the day to day cleaning of their facility as well as being the one point of contact they will need for 20+ other services. 

On the home front I’ve been trying to get outside to enjoy the warm weather we had early in the week.  I’ve also enjoyed watching the Wild finally get a hard fought win Tuesday night.  Hopefully it’s a sign that they have gotten things turned around.  Outside of that I’ve enjoyed getting to spend time with Greg, Kelly and my dad.  This weekend should be fairly relaxed as I’m planning on just spending some quality time at home with my wife, Lisa.  I hope everyone has a great weekend!


~Your City Wide Team