Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Welcome, Michelle Jackson!

Tyler Olson: Senior Sales Executive

I’m very excited to introduce and welcome Michelle Jackson to our Sales Team!  Michelle has been with us for a little over a month now and she brings an amazing amount of energy to the sales team.

Leading up to her position at City Wide, Michelle has had a successful career in sales.  We are sure that she will continue that trend with our team and are thrilled for her to be a part of it.  Michelle will be handling the East Metro territory and she has been working hard in her first few weeks to grow our relationships on that side of town.

We recently had a chance to meet Michelle’s husband and son at the City Wide BBQ and look forward to getting to know her more.  Welcome to the team, Michelle!

Monday, August 14, 2017

City Wide 4th Annual BBQ

Maghan Aschoff: Facility Services Manager

Our 4th annual City Wide BBQ was a hit!  Mitch hosted the event at his house, which was filled with family, food and fun. The BBQ was top notch!  -Apparently while we were all sleeping at 4am, Mitch was preparing the meat to be smoked all day long, it was delicious!  Mitch's wife, Liz, prepared homemade mac n' cheese, smoked deviled eggs, coleslaw, several amazing desserts, and much more!

One of the many things I love about City Wide is how family-oriented the company is.  The event had our Admin team, Night Managers, Sales team, and FSM's attend, in addition to their growing families - lots of kids!

After we all stuffed ourselves with the amazing food, the evening moved to the adults playing some basketball and Kubb.  Once all the kids warmed up, we all played a few games of PIG and ended our night with a game of Four Square.  Our City Wide family is pretty competitive and so were all of our kids, it was a blast! My kids had so much fun and wished we lived closer to everyone, so we could do this every weekend. :)  What a fun night!



 






 
 
 
 

Friday, July 28, 2017

Tampa Bay Visitor

Mitch Brunette: Director of Operations

This week we had the pleasure of hosting Eric Pinkerton from the City Wide of Tampa Bay office, whom came to visit us.  We get a couple visitors a year, but I was really looking forward to Eric’s visit as he and I competed head to head in nationwide contests, metrics and overall customer service scores and metrics over the years.  We’ve spoken on the phone and through conference calls and have seen each other briefly at conventions or chairman’s club trips, but this was the first time we spent any extended time one on one, diving into the business together.

We had a really good 2 days together, comparing job notes, best practices, operational processes that work and don’t work, and refining things to ensure we are doing the right things to best serve our clients and help support our team of managers that work in our offices.  Eric has a great mindset toward having a winning team that serves his clients at a very high level, so we click very easily and see things similarly, while finding small differences that allow us each to get a little bit better.  I was very pleased to hear that he spent some time with my managers, asking them some questions while I was out on an appointment.  His feedback was much appreciated, as he was quite impressed by our team’s unity, understanding of the business, and our overall mission to serve clients at a high level.

I’m appreciative of his visit to our market to see how we handle things and I hope to make a visit to his market to do the same in the future. 

Friday, July 21, 2017

Welcome, Daniel Wallace!

Mitch Brunette: Director Of Operations

I’d like to Welcome Daniel Wallace to our team, as our newest Night Manager!   Daniel has been onboard for about a month now and has been working closely with Steve Reid to learn the position, his buildings, and the people handling the work at his sites.  He will soon be covering the South West Metro with Jarrad. 

Daniel came to us with a background working for Target and was looking for a different opportunity to grow his skill set, expand on a developing and growing role, and find a place where he could make an impact.

Daniel moved here from Kansas, and we are excited to get to know him more as he continues to make Minnesota home.  In his free time, he enjoys working out and spending time with friends, family, and his dog.

Friday, June 30, 2017

Welcome, Sean Little!

Mitch Brunette: Director of Operations

I’m very excited to introduce and welcome Sean Little to our Night Management Team!  Sean has been with us for about a month now and he brings an incredibly upbeat, positive, and excited energy to his work each day.

Sean’s positivity came through very strongly from his first phone call to our office and throughout our entire interview process.  We're thrilled to bring him in on our team and glad he chose us!  He comes to us with a few years of retail experience in everything from planograms, truck unloads, customer service, and other front and back end support.  Sean's first few weeks were spent working very closely with Steve, getting the basics of his job understood and well-trained on.  Now he’s working hand in hand with Maghan Aschoff, helping cover the North East Metro.

We can't wait to learn more about Sean and his family, outside of the office.  Welcome aboard Sean! We look forward to having you here for years to come and appreciate the contributions you’ve already made to our team and office!

Friday, June 16, 2017

Father's Day

Ryan Sauser: Facility Services Manager

This weekend marks the 3rd Sunday in June and that means Father’s Day is here!

As some of you may know, I am the proud father of a 7 year old daughter. This Father’s Day will most definitely be spent with my family.   We will probably take out the boat or head over to Valley Fair for the day.   We will be looking forward to spending most of our summer weekend this way, as my daughter is just now tall enough to get on all the rides.

This Father’s Day I urge you to not take family for granted.  We all need to remember that life truly is too short.  Spend time with your loved ones and have a great weekend! 
 
 

 

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Tyler Olson | 5 Year Anniversary

Tyler Olson: Senior Sales Executive

I joined the City Wide team 5 years ago, this month.  My journey began as a Sales Associate.  At the time, I worked directly with Greg Mansfield, whom was executing most of the sales.  There were three FSM's, an office manager (Greg's wife, Kelly), a CFO (Greg's dad, Dick), and a Controller (Greg's brother, Brian).  City Wide Maintenance of Minnesota has grown and changed a lot in the past 5 years of my employment.  During this time, I have had some success in competing locally in Minnesota to help grow the company, as well as competing with my peers in City Wide across the nation.  City Wide Maintenance of Minnesota now has 22 employees and I am leading the Sales Department, which is also growing and turning into a much larger team.  Things have also changed for me on a personal note.  My wife, Jennae, and I now have two gorgeous little girls, which has sure changed the dynamic of work life balance.

I am looking forward to what life with the City Wide family will bring in the coming years!


Greg Mansfield: President

It has been an awesome journey, having Tyler be a part of the City Wide of Minnesota work family!   As Tyler mentioned above, things have change over the past 5 years.  We have more than doubled the size of our business during his tenure and are now in the process of building a world class sales organization together.  I love having someone on the team who is competitive and driven to be the best at what they are doing.  I am consistently impressed that Tyler strives to be great with his family at home, at work, and his endurance athlete career.  Sales is one of the best professions in the world when it is done right, and having someone to pursue that with, like Tyler, has been appreciated.  Here’s to five more years!


Happy 5 Year Anniversary with
City Wide Maintenance of Minnesota, Tyler Olson!
 


 
 


 

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Welcome, Adam Bartusek!

Tyler Olson: Senior Sales Executive

I am very excited to introduce and welcome to our Sales team, Adam Bartusek!  Adam joined us about  two months ago and has been actively learning a new industry, as well as helping the sales team develop CRM and marketing initiatives.  He comes to us after a short stint at Polaris as a contracted employee. Prior to that, Adam was fresh out of college.
I've been able to spend quite a bit of time with Adam, while onboarding him at City Wide.  During this process, I have gotten to know a bit about him personally.  In his free time, Adam loves the outdoors, specifically fishing.  He competes as a bass fisherman in the local MN tournament scene.  He is also part of the Vexilar and Clam pro teams.

We are very excited to have Adam on the team and look forward to getting to know him more as time goes on! 

Friday, May 19, 2017

St Jude's Bass Classic

Joel Willert: Facility Services Manager

With the warmer weather upon us and fishing season officially open, it's that time of year where the weekends consist of tournament bass fishing and spending time on the water. 

I started out my first tournament of the year fishing on the Mississippi River on Pools 4 and 5, for the St Jude's Bass Classic out of Wabasha, MN. This is the third year in a row competing in this tournament and not only do the teams get to spend 2 days on the water competing to catch the largest weight, but they also get to do fundraising to help out the kids and families of the St. Jude's Children's Hospital. Over the last three years that I have been part of this tournament, each year has been a new record setting year for the amount of funds raised for St. Jude's. This year the anglers, which included 72- 2 man teams, raised over $370,000 for St. Jude's.

Back during my first year fishing this tournament, my fishing partner Scott Pellegrin, and I were able to take first place out of approximately 80 teams. Last year was another success, coming in second place, only ounces behind the leaders. This year we got some redemption and once again took first place out of the 72 teams competing in the tournament.  We managed to catch 6 smallmouth bass on day 1 for 24.38lbs, which set the record for the heaviest 1 day bag ever weighed in 19 years.  We also followed that up on day 2 with a limit of fish weighing 20.78lbs.  


Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Mother's Day

Shelly Grohovsky: Bookkeeper

This Sunday is a day that is dedicated to all the moms out there.  It’s Mother’s Day!  As both a daughter and a mom, Mother’s Day not only gives me the opportunity to show my mom how much I love and appreciate her, it also is a day that I feel blessed to have two beautiful little girls of my own.  I like to take this time to remind myself to strive to be the best mom that I can be for my daughters, just like my mom has always been for me.   
Being a mom is a big job.  You’re faced with many challenges, big and small. But, there’s nothing better than hearing your child tell you they love you or seeing them blossom through all the adventures in their lives, right before your eyes.  This Sunday, I hope you can find a way to celebrate your mom or another great mom in your life.
Happy Mother’s Day!



 

Friday, April 21, 2017

Communication Training

Jenny Ewert: Contractor Coordinator

A few weeks ago, Mitch and I attended a seminar focused on communication within a team. The main speaker was Laura Boyd, the founder and CEO of Leadership Delta. To begin, Laura had all of us participate in an exercise that tested our individual perceptions of a story she told. Then, with the people next to us, she had us go through statements about the story and see if our answers changed. From a short exercise, we found that everyone perceives information differently, making it challenging to work as a group at times. 

The next portion of her presentation focused on the definition of perception and the key learnings for understanding perception when working as a team. The main takeaways to remember when working with others is that people don’t see things the same way, different conclusions are drawn, and perceptions other than your own can still be right.

Laura also discussed the importance of face-to-face discussions vs. phone/email/text and the differences between one-way and two-way communication, which involves one of the hardest skills; to be actively listening. Listening is defined as the ability to accurately perceive a message conveyed by another person. To show the group or individual that you are listening, you should become actively involved in the conversation, avoid the temptation to evaluate, search for meaning in their message, and confirm your understandings with them. Those steps allow you to create a safe place for someone to feel comfortable when approaching you about any situation.

Here at City Wide, we utilize every form of communication every day. From internal communication within our own departments, ownership, department to department, and to the people doing the work out in the field.

Overall, being an effective communicator and active listener is crucial when working as a team or group.  Although a lot of the information presented was familiar, these info sessions can provide a great opportunity to look in the mirror and make a focused effort to improve on some key items.

Friday, April 14, 2017

New Jersey Market Visit

Mitch Brunette: Director of Operations


Last week, City Wide of MN welcomed our Business Performance Coach, Meredith Cimeno and City Wide of Northern New Jersey into our office. They came to spend some time with us, comparing best practices and reviewing our operations! It was a great opportunity getting to know Pat and Kara Hunt, as they learned more about our operation, and asked questions that lead to out of the box thinking!

We tend to visit other markets or have other markets visit us a few times a year, allowing us a chance to think differently about how we handle situations and improve our processes for our employees and clients.  One of the foundations of our culture is maintaining Positive Discontent, meaning we are always seeking a better way, always hungry to get better, while improving ourselves individually and professionally.  When we have visitors in town, this is the perfect opportunity!

The other main take-away I find from having visitors or us visiting others’ offices, is that we find ourselves teaching a process or program and realize that maybe we could be doing one piece or part of it more consistently. I’ve always known that when you are teaching something, you’re often reminding yourself of the core of “why” we do something this way or that way.  Best of luck to the Hunts in their business adventures! Now I have one more resource to reach out to for advice or help in the future as well!

Friday, March 24, 2017

Arcade Night

Mitch Brunette: Director of Operations

Who knew how much fun a bunch of grown adults would have playing ski ball, pop a shot, pac man, and motorcycle racing video games!  I suppose deep down I knew it would go well, but this turned out to be quite the hit of an event!  Our FSMs and Night Managers work as closely together as anyone that works such opposite schedules, but once in a while we just have to get together and have some fun!

The Mall of America has a couple of pretty awesome arcades up on the 4th floor, and as much as we would have enjoyed some indoor go carting, time just wasn’t on our side.  We gave the classic arcade a pretty good run for its money, won over 600 tickets, and had some solid competition amongst our teams as we often do.

There were some head to head billiards shooters in Ryan, Tyler, Jarrad, and Steve.  Speaking of Steve, he was the pac man king, not only within our group, but he also got the high score for the machine.  Vang finished strong in a stressful moment of deal or no deal, which came down to accepting 80 tickets and walking away, or hitting “no deal” where we had a 50/50 shot at either 1 ticket or 200 tickets.  Naturally, we all yelled “NO DEAL” and Vang smashed the button...200 tickets later, we were out of credits and went to cash them in for a Magic 8 Ball, a unanimous team decision. 
 
I appreciate this team and their hard work and contributions toward our success.  An evening out celebrating with a light dinner and some old time gaming, was well worth it and a lot of fun!
 



 

Friday, March 17, 2017

City Wide Convention in Las Vegas

Senior Sales Executive: Tyler Olson

A couple weeks ago a few of us from the Minnesota City Wide Maintenance attended the annual franchise convention.  The convention was held in Las Vegas this year.  Overall the experience at convention was a good one, and the trip was eye opening as it was my first time in Las Vegas.

The annual convention is designed around aligning the different City Wide Markets, sharing best practices, networking, and seeing friends from around the country that we don’t see very often.  There were a lot of exciting topics for us; IT Updates that will assist us in servicing out customers better,  and a great keynote speaker were highlights from the convention portion of the trip.

After convention was over, the Minnesota team (Tyler, Mitch, and Greg) along with Tyler and Greg’s wives stayed an extra day to have some fun in Vegas.  We visited a number of casinos such as Planet Hollywood, and The Bellagio during the day, and then had a great dinner at a steakhouse called Prime and saw an incredible Cirque show that night.  We also discovered that we are not a great fit for the Vegas life as I believe we were in bed by 10pm most nights on the trip!


Friday, March 10, 2017

Engagement!

Alex Underwood: Facility Services Manager

Happy (almost) spring, from the Northwest Metro!

Hope everyone enjoyed the unusually warm weather we had recently and that you were able to get a jump start on your spring cleaning.

There is a lot happening in the Northwest Metro.  Many new accounts have started, which is great!  New accounts bring more opportunities for me to help customers improve the appearance and performance of their facilities. 

Personally, it has been a very exciting start to the year, as I asked my girlfriend, Rachel to marry me at the end of January! Lucky for me, she said yes!

For the proposal, I planned a "family" day with our dog, to take a nice walk around Minnehaha Falls.  Little did Rachel know what was actually in store!  She was very surprised when I got down on one knee and a photographer started snapping candid photos of the moment.

I didn't realize how much went into planning a wedding.  We have been very busy touring venues, meeting with photographers, and tasting the catering menus.  We did pick a date and after many tours, a venue as well.  Our wedding is set to take place at a winery & vineyard in Pepin, Wisconsin, on October 6, 2018.  This is a beautiful facility with great atmosphere and some pretty tasty wine.  Deciding on a date and a pace was such a big relief!  Now we can really start making decisions on the other vendors for our wedding. 
 
We are very excited for our big day!


Friday, March 3, 2017

Birkie

Mitch Brunette: Director of Operations

Birkie Fever built up greatly this year, and came to an abrupt halt for only the 2nd time in 45 years!  There are a few places in the Metro Area that make snow, so Cross Country Skiers like myself and Tyler Olson, can ski as soon as the temperatures drop low enough.  Unfortunately, the Birkie trail in Northern Wisconsin, isn’t one of them!  With the unfavorable temperatures, there was no way to put on a race of any significance, and just like that, it was cancelled.

The last two years I’ve completed the 24K Kortie race, while Tyler Olson dominates the 50K.  Finishing in the Elite top 200 each year, a very high level class of athletes, is something in which Tyler can be very proud of.  While I don’t have a race to write about this week, I can write about all that I’ve gained since the last Birkie, 365 days ago. 

Last year I finished the Kortie feeling incredibly strong, well trained, and had cut nearly an hour off my time the year prior!  That was one heck of a sense of accomplishment and I left knowing I could train myself  to do the full 50k next year.  Unfortunately, the lack of snow got in the way of my goal and dream.  That doesn’t change the fact that I trained properly and was 100% ready to finish the race strongly.  In the last 365 days, I’ve raised my minimum training distance thresholds, improved technique, taken on more challenging trails over longer distances, built up my endurance/lung capacity, and most importantly, built up my confidence. 

In the end, I didn’t get to ski a race, but at the peak of my training, I found myself skiing 46K at the same pace or faster than I’d ski the 24k Kortie in the past years.  The way I see it, I get one more year to master technique, toughen up, and ski my way into Wave 1, behind the Elites.  Birkie Fever 2018 is well underway...time to get after it!

Friday, January 13, 2017

Ski Race


Tyler Olson: Senior Sales Executive
 
We have reached the glorious time of year, for those folks who participate in winter sports, here in MN.  For a few of us here at City Wide of Minnesota, the cross country ski season is a big deal. 

The Director of Operations, Mitch, and Senior Sales Executive, Tyler (me) participate heavily in this sport.  The racing season has started recently, and both of us participated in an event on Christmas Eve, up in Maple Grove.  This was Mitch’s first race outside of the Korte Loppet.  As for me, this is a regular event.  I love the adrenaline rush of lining up for a race with a bunch of other crazy people on skinny skis.

The biggest, and final, race of the year is the Birkebeiner.  This is the largest ski race in North America, and boasts over 12,000 participants.  The race travels 50 kilometers from Cable-Hayward through the woods of Northern Wisconsin.  It also pulls people from countries all over the world, with abilities from beginner to top professionals.

This is the event that convinced Mitch to get into skiing.  He ventured up to Northern Wisconsin in 2014, to watch and cheer me on, and he caught the skiing fever.  This year, will be my 6th Brikie, and I have aspirations to finish in the Top 75 skiers.  My best finish, to date, has been 100th overall.  On the other side, this is Mitch’s first year doing the Birkie.  We are both pumped for the festivities and the event in February.

There may be some updates on the season, throughout the winter!

Friday, January 6, 2017

Happy New Year!

Ryan Sauser: Facility Services Manager

Happy New Year from the Southeast Metro!

Well, it’s that time of year again, the time of year usually filled will New Year’s Resolutions that will soon be forgotten by many. 

Many of us do not know the true difference between a resolution and a goal.  A resolution, by definition, is the decision to do or not to do something.  A goal, on the other hand, is measurable and  attainable.  It is very cut and dry whether you have attained the end goal or not.  Determination, grit, and lots of will-power are all vital in achieving a stretch goal. 

I challenge you to develop a goal, not a resolution, and stick to it in 2017!

I, by nature, am a very competitive person.  This year, one of my goals is to obtain the top sales performance within City Wide Maintenance of Minnesota.  Another goal I have set for myself, is to lose an additional 15lbs, on top of the 10 that I have already lost.  These two goals are going to take work and persistence, but with my competitive nature and perhaps a hint of OCD, 2017 is sure to be rewarding year for me!

Life is what we make of it.  Change happens to those whom make it happen, not wish it would happen.  If you want something, you have to go out and get it, as good things don’t happen to those who sit back and wait.

Let’s make 2017 a memorable one!