Friday, December 21, 2018

Annual Holiday Party - 2018

Kirsten Lund: Office Manager

The annual holiday party - always my favorite work function. This year was one of my favorites. We decided to switch up the venue and had Vivo host. If you haven’t been, it’s a gem in Apple Valley. They have a gorgeous setting in their back room. It was decorated with holiday warmth. The staff and the food were both amazing. After dinner we were able to enjoy our annual company “toilet awards" which are just awards we give out to each other for fun.

It’s always a great time to get out of the office and see the spouses and significant others. We have had a few new faces this year, so it was a very much welcomed change of scenery. 

Looking forward to the holidays and another great year with City Wide! 

Friday, December 14, 2018

Tyler DeVries - 5 Year Anniversary

Ryan Sauser: Facility Services Manager

December 14th is a very special day this year, as it marks the 5-year anniversary of Tyler Devries as the Contract Compliance Manager for the Southeast Metro. 

When I was hired on as the FSM for Southeast Metro 2 ½ years ago, I was told great things about Tyler and what to expect.  Those words were nothing short of the truth. 
Tyler has been a great asset to City Wide over the years.  He has helped immensely in meeting and exceeding customer expectations, and in his working relationships with the crews in the facilities that we service.  His knowledge of our industry continues to grow and he continues to be a great role model for up and coming Contract Compliance Managers.

Tyler is a huge contributor to this territory and one of the major reasons we won the prestigious FSM/CCM of the year award amongst all other City Wide franchises in the country in 2018.  It will be neck-and-neck in 2019 for that same award once again.

Tyler, we truly appreciate all that you do for the team here at City Wide!

Friday, December 7, 2018

Welcome, Clare Ten Pas!

Alex Underwood: Senior Facility Services Manager

Greeting from the Northwest Metro,

We are excited to announce that we have onboarded a new Facility Services Manager to handle the day to day operations in the territory. 

We would like to welcome Clare Ten Pas to the team and we are happy to have her on board!

Clare comes to us with experience in commercial account management, with a previous career selling and managing accounts in the interior commercial plantscape industry.

She is excited to get up and running and make her impact on the territory, to continue to offer great customer service, problem solving, and crew management for our clients.

Welcome aboard Clare!

Friday, November 30, 2018

Feed My Starving Children

Shelly Grohovsky: Bookkeeper

This week, our team volunteered at Feed My Starving Children.  Founded in 1987, Feed My Starving Children is a non-profit organization that works to provide nutritionally complete meals specifically formulated for malnourished children around the world.  FMSC offers its volunteers a one-of-a-kind experience.  As a team, we hand-packed rice, soy, dried vegetables and a nutritionally complete blend of vitamins and minerals into bags, which we sealed and boxed so they could be shipped out to the neediest children around the world.  Five people in our group volunteered to be runners, which involved keeping each station’s ingredients stocked for packing.  The remainder of us were packers, which involved the actual packing of the food.  Of course, with our competitive nature, we decide to break off into two teams and compete to see who could pack the most boxes of food.  It was a tight running!  Team 1 packed 16 boxes and team 2 packed 15 boxes.  As a whole, with the other groups that volunteered that day, we managed to pack nearly 200 boxes of food in our two-hour packing shift, feeding 107 children for an entire year!  It is truly the most amazing and rewarding feeling to know how much of an impact we made in children’s’ lives in just two hours of our time!  If you’re looking for a great way to give back, I would highly recommend volunteering for FMSC, where you can experience first-hand what it’s like to make a substantial difference in others’ lives!

Monday, November 26, 2018

Happy Thanksgiving!

Maghan Aschoff: Facility Services Manager

I’m originally from Michigan and we haven’t been back there for a couple years, so we decided to travel back for the holiday.

Since both my husband and myself have family in Michigan, we split up our time between several houses. It makes for a busy holiday week with lots of family, food and fun!

Our first Thanksgiving was spent with my in-laws on Monday. It was a quiet evening with lots of food and many, many hours of playing Guitar Hero and Dominos. My kids certainly enjoy being here because they were the only kids in the house, which meant they got some extra special attention from their grandparents.

On Wednesday, we headed over to my mom's house. Both my brothers and their families live in Michigan, so we had all 20 of us for dinner. Thanksgiving day was spent with my mom, both of my brothers, theirs kids and spouses. I also got to meet the newest members of our family, my 11 month  great niece, Ruby (yikes that makes me sound super old!). The day was filled with lots of family. It was loud, chaotic and fun! 

We spent the next two days visiting with my family. My one brother has 6 kids and a house filled with pinball machines, bubble hockey, laser tag, wii, legos, and lots of other games to keep the kiddos busy! 

We had a great visit, however, we were all happy to be home. We spent Sunday decorating the house and getting our tree up. We’re all ready for Christmas!

Friday, November 9, 2018

Welcome, Allison Belisle!

Brian Mansfield: Controller

It is my pleasure to introduce and welcome to our team, Allison Belisle!  Allison joined our team a few weeks ago in the role of Contractor Coordinator.  In this role, Allison will help us find quality service providers to work with to ensure we continue to meet our client’s expectations.

Allison comes to us with a diverse background of support roles that include working with vendors and compliance management.  In her time with us, she has been eager to learn her role and help the team out in any way she can.  Allison has been a positive influence with us and I look forward to seeing what she accomplishes.

Welcome to the team, Allison!

Friday, November 2, 2018

Leadership Meeting

Tyler Olson: Senior Sales Executive

Every year, the executive leadership team meets every 3-4 months to work through any strategic initiatives or non-urgent items, to ensure that all our teams are working toward the same goals.  Normally we would do these meetings in Minnesota or Kansas.  However, we decided to take the meeting somewhere with a little better view this time and headed out to Eagle, Colorado, and brought our spouses along.

My in-laws happen to have a beautiful house that could fit all of us comfortably and were nice enough to let us invade their space for the trip. 

For those of us on the leadership team, most of the time was spent in meetings and doing planning, however, we were able to get out and enjoy the outdoors enough to make the trip worth it.  All the spouses (accept mine, whom stayed home with sick kiddos) were able to get out and enjoy a day at a spa and some local shopping while we worked.  The group took a couple of hikes on the trails together and some of us got out for a couple of outdoor workouts to get the most out of the time we had.

We also enjoyed plenty of good food eating at a number of good restaurants and my favorite brewery, which happens to be located in Eagle.

Looking forward to another possible offsite meeting next year!

Friday, October 26, 2018

Welcome, Katelyn!

Tyler Olson: Senior Sales Executive

Welcome aboard, Katelyn Wilson, to the Sales Team! We have been searching for our replacement for our current Business Development Specialist, Adam, for a while.  We are very excited to welcome her to the team as Adam moves up.  She is excited to join the team as well!

Katelyn is originally from Edina, MN and still lives there today.   She recently graduated from Mankato State with a degree in Communications.  While attending college, she worked as a hair stylist running her own book of business.  We look forward to her bringing new ideas and strategies to the team. 

Welcome, Katelyn, and thank you for choosing City Wide!

Friday, October 12, 2018

Alex's Wedding!

Alex Underwood: Senior Facility Services Manager

Hey Everyone,

Hope fall is treating everyone great and we get this rain to move out so we can enjoy the fall weather we all love.

Speaking of the fall weather, I was fortunate enough to have a nice day last weekend to enjoy the outdoor ceremony for my wedding. It wasn’t the 65 degree sunny day we were hoping for, but the rain passed through on Friday night and we were able to enjoy some great pictures outside as well as a great ceremony.

My wife and I got married down at a vineyard and winery called Villa Bellezza in Pepin, Wisconsin, which is just across Lake Pepin from Redwing and Lake City. This was the perfect place to get married as my wife is a wine enthusiast and the setting in the river bluffs was spectacular!

We had a great group of friends, family, and coworkers that helped us enjoy the day. Even though it wasn’t the warmest day, we were able to enjoy the warmth of cocktail hour, dinner, and dancing after the short outside ceremony.

We were lucky enough to have our dog, Aspen, and my niece as our flower girls, accompanied by my Nephew and wife’s cousins as the ring bearers. The kids really enjoyed being part of the big day and even made it through the ceremony without crying.

Now that the wedding is over, it is back to business as usual and anxiously awaiting our honeymoon in late November, to South Africa. We will be spending 5 days in the southern tip in Cape Town, exploring the mountains and vinyards they are famous for, and even taking a little adventure and going cage diving with the Great White Sharks.

After our time in Cape Town, we will be traveling to the Northeast boarder to South Africa to experience the wildlife at a safari village for the remaining time.

Really looking forward to the trip and leaves us one more thing to look forward to.


Thursday, October 4, 2018

Welcome, Gerardo!

Mitch Brunette: Vice President - Director of Operations

Welcome aboard, Gerardo Lopez, to the Central Metro Territory! We have been on the hunt for a solid Contract Compliance Manager and were very excited when we found Gerardo. He too, was excited to come on board to the City Wide Family.

Gerardo is originally from California, but for some reason he decided to move to the winter wonderland of Minnesota.  He is married and has a couple of boys named Mateo and Santiago, who just started school this year.

Gerardo has experience in our industry, working with crews, floor care technicians, and supervising teams of several individuals achieving results.  Even though he’s a San Jose Sharks fan, we are happy to welcome him to our team!

Welcome, Gerardo, and thank you for choosing City Wide!  

Friday, August 31, 2018

Kirsten Lund | 5-Year Anniversary

Kirsten Lund: Office Manager

I have been with City Wide for five years now and I have no idea where the time has gone. When I was offered the position as a Sales and Operations Assistant, I was elated. The opportunity was just what my family and I needed. After about six months with City Wide, I was promoted to Office Manager. Fearing that I had already maximized my potential, I was treading lightly. Thankfully, what I didn’t realize was how much more City Wide had to offer than just a promotion. Not only have I been able to support our Controller, Brian Mansfield, by easing his day-to-day activities, but he has been there to support me in more ways than I ever would’ve expected a boss could. He has helped me challenge the status quo and learn all about positive discontent and how they are essential for growth. I’ve watched our Operations and Sales team more than double, and witnessed our now VP - Director of Operations, Mitch Brunette grow with the team. Mitch has also been a benefactor in more ways than one. I’ve formed relationships throughout the office that will last a lifetime and have been so fortunate to work with this talented group. Personally, and professionally I can’t even describe how much I have grown in the past five years, but I’m very thankful for everything that the Mansfields have started and allowed me to be associated with.

Brian Mansfield: Controller

Earlier this week Kirsten Lund celebrated her five year work anniversary with us at City Wide Maintenance of Minnesota.  As I was thinking back on Kirsten’s tenure with us it occurred to me that it would be difficult to concisely capture what that experience has been like, but here is my best attempt.
We initially hired Kirsten to be an assistant to both our sales and operations teams and she quickly proved capable of more responsibility and was promoted to her current title of Office Manager.  I intentionally use the word title, and not role, in the previous sentence because over her four plus years as Office Manager her role has continuously changed and been updated as the company has grown.  Kirsten has embraced those changes and new responsibilities and is willing to help out wherever needed. 

I’ve joked in the past that a more fitting title for Kirsten might be Chief Problem Solver because when an employee has a problem or an obstacle that they need help removing, frequently she is the one to help solve their problem.  She genuinely enjoys helping our employees, and freeing them up to spend more of their time helping our clients.  We are fortunate to get to host other business owners from time to time that want to share ideas and benchmark how we operate, and at the conclusion of those visits I regularly receive compliments about Kirsten.  On more than one occasion I’ve been told by other business owners that they want to find their own Kirsten. 

Personally, as I’ve gotten to know Kirsten I’ve admired her wit and sense of humor.  I think those that have spent any time with her know what I’m referring to, but she has the ability to ease the tension and keep the mood light-hearted at times when it’s needed.  At the end of each year we have a tradition of handing out “awards” to some of our employees that mostly just recognize a funny situation from that year and to date Kirsten is the most frequent recipient of any of our employees.

I’m thankful for all of the ways Kirsten has had a positive impact on our company, our team and me personally, and look forward to continuing to see her grow personally and professionally. 


Friday, August 24, 2018

City Wide Boat Cruise

Andrew Mikkola: Facility Services Manager

Last week, the City Wide Maintenance of MN team and their significant others met up for a beautiful night on Lake Minnetonka.   We were also joined by our special guests in town from City Wide Home Office.  The team from Kansas City included President Jeff Oddo, Paul Weybrew, Jeff Hawkins, and Darin Hicks.  The cruise was a great way to bring everyone together for a night of sun and fun! 

The beautiful setting was hard to beat, as we enjoyed the captain's tour of some of the amazing houses that line Lake Minnetonka.  During the tour, we also joined many other boats lined up near shore to see a private concert with some rock legends.  A perfect night on a Minnesota lake!     

As the night wound down, the laughs and stories grew.  It was great for everyone to have a night together to bond. 

Thanks go out to our management team for putting together the event.  Thanks to our visitors from Kansas City for joining us and getting to know us.  Lastly, thanks to all the employees and guests who made it a fun, memorable night.       

Visit From City Wide Franchise Home Office

Mitch Brunette: Vice President - Director of Operations

This last week, we had 4 visitors from the City Wide Franchise Home office in Kansas City in town to visit.  Jeff Oddo (President), Darin Hicks (COO), Paul Weybrew (VP Operations) and Jeff Hawkins (VP Sales) came to town to spend a couple days reviewing our market and comparing best practices with us. We also had some fun on a boat cruise (See Andrew Mikkola’s blog on that).

It’s always fun to have others in town to dig into our business and review what we are doing well, where we can improve, and how we can all support each other as City Wide as a whole continues to grow. 

Greg Mansfield, Brian Mansfield, Tyler Olson and myself, spent a couple days diving into the details of our business and introducing our team whom have ultimately contributed to our growth and success.  Our Franchise visitors were happy to get outside the walls of our conference rooms to meet our team, interact and engage with them and also to learn about what they’re doing to be successful and grow City Wide Maintenance of MN.  We even took them out to see some prospecting and engage with some of our existing clients.

As a ten year veteran of the City Wide System, I’ve seen a lot of transition and evolution in how we operate, and I continue to be proud of our efforts that we dedicate toward improving for our clients, employees, and outside contractors.  Thank you to City Wide Franchise for coming to visit and to review opportunities for growth in the model!

Friday, August 10, 2018

Welcome, Jeff!

Mitch Brunette: Vice President - Director of Operations

We are very excited to welcome Jeff Gilbert to City Wide Maintenance of MN!

Jeff came to City Wide with a lengthy background in the building maintenance industry. Since he has come on board, he has roundly accepted our processes and ways of handling our buildings while, bringing his knowledge and experience in to help make us better. 

We have really appreciated seeing Jeff dive right into our accounts, get to know his crews and buildings very well, and make an impact on our business in his first 90 days or so.

It was tough for us to accept another Chicago Bears fan into our night time crowd (Jeff and Steve Reid will buddy up) but we’ve decided we’ll accept him anyway!

Welcome to the team, Jeff, and thanks for being here!

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

DOO Summit

Alex Underwood: Senior Facility Services Manager

As I have transitioned into my new role as a Senior Facility Services Manager, I have had the opportunity to work with our executive team, along with some top performers from other City Wide Maintenance offices around the country. Together, we continue to make sure our customers are getting the world class experience they deserve and learn what has caused some of the other markets to be successful.
The last week of June I was lucky enough to travel down to Missouri with Mitch, our Vice President-Director of Operations, along with 15 other directors and owners from other markets, to attend a Directors Summit at the Oddo family cabin.
Frank Oddo, the founder of City Wide Maintenance, along with his son Jeff, President of City Wide Maintenance, graciously welcomed the group to their traditional Missouri hunting log and family cabin on a sprawling  piece of property about 90 minutes outside of Kansas City. While onsite, we held a summit with an array of topics and group discussions to get the group engaged to talk about success, failure, and what has led to both outcomes.
This was my first experience meeting most of the group and it was very insightful to say the least. We had two days of group discussion lead by different presenters, followed by group discussion and a Q&A session to really dive into the topics. This was a good opportunity to talk with other market leaders to really figure out what has made everyone so successful within their market and how we plan to continually grow and serve our customers here in Minnesota.
My personal favorite guest speaker was Pat Warren, who is the CEO of the Kansas City Speedway. It was really interesting to listen to someone who comes from a completely different industry and how many of the same principals, values, and philosophies we live by within our office, translate so well across different industries. We talked about customer and client experience and what they do to make sure the fans that visit their facility have the best customer experience of all the Nascar tracks.
Overall, it was a great experience. Mitch and I came home with many new thoughts and ideas of how we can continue to improve the operations within our team.
Mitch Brunette: Vice President - Director of Operations
Mitch here briefly -  aside from having some good take away ideas as Alex mentioned above, my primary hope was that Alex would come home with a network of peers that he can reach out to and bounce ideas off of outside our office as things arise in the coming years.  I’m glad he found that group of peers and look forward to seeing them use their network to personally and professionally develop!

Friday, July 13, 2018

Sales Team Golf Outing

Josh Holdahl: Sales Associate

 A couple weeks back Tyler, Michelle, Adam and myself were lucky enough to clear our calendars and enjoy an afternoon at Inverwood Golf Course, in Inver Grove Heights.  We couldn’t have asked for a better day, no clouds in the sky and the temperature made it seem like we were getting a workout even though we were just riding around in carts.  Although it was very challenging, the course was great. It had some of the most unique holes I’ve played on a golf course and I would love to play this course again.

When Tyler wasn’t hitting his own ball, he was serving as the groups' caddy. If he hadn’t steered me in the right direction on majority of the holes, I probably wouldn’t have had enough golf balls to finish.  Tyler had his driver cooking, he was probably the most consistent and put together a pretty solid round.  He, by far, had the best golf attire of the group and confirmed “Look good, play good.”
This was Michelle’s first time on a golf course and it wasn’t hard to tell how much fun she was having.  After a couple close calls of accidentally almost hitting our boss with golf balls early in the round, she made a few minor tweaks in her swing and was demolishing the ball towards the end of the round.  I think Michelle even bought a few items off amazon while were in the cart together, that was something I’ve never seen on the golf course.  It was awesome!

Adam has earned himself quite the reputation around the City Wide office for his golf game.  After a rough start at the beginning of the round, Adam chipped in on a par 3 that lead to a roar from the gallery.  That momentum lead him to have a very strong back nine holes.  I was very impressed with his wedge game, he had a lot of great shots.

At the end of the day Adam defended his title as top golfer in the City Wide office.  It was a great day, with a great group of people.  Can’t wait for the next outing!

Friday, June 8, 2018

Mitch Brunette | 10-year Anniversary

Greg Mansfield: President

This month, Mitch Brunette celebrated his 10 year work anniversary with City Wide of Minnesota.  Wow, I can’t believe it is already time to take a minute and recognize one of our first employees for 10 years!  I guess time flies when you’re having fun.  During that time, our business has grown significantly from the small startup we were when Mitch joined our team.  It has been a pleasure to see our business grow and to watch Mitch grow professionally with it.  Our company is in the service industry, so we are only as good as the people who represent us and Mitch is one of the best representatives we could ask for.  His enthusiasm and dedication to helping our clients have had a large impact on our growth.   I am looking forward to another 10 years working with Mitch on growing our business and finding new and improved ways to save our clients time and effort in their facilities.  Congrats Mitch!   

Mitch Brunette: Director of Operations

Looking back on 10 years, my biggest take away is that I’ve always had an excellent supporting cast of people in my network to help ensure we were able to be successful. 

Initially, Greg and Dick Mansfield brining me on required a lot of help.  Joe Choplin was taking calls 24/7 for anything I needed (and still does).  As we grew as a market and I continued to work on my personal and professional development, I couldn’t be more thankful for our peers in our Performance Group Cities (Boston, Indy, Cinci, and Tampa), along with Ken Miner, Meredith Cimeno, Tom Stone, and Paul Weybrew.  They are always willing to communicate and share ideas with me.  Over the last 5 years as I’ve transitioned into my role as DOO, I’ve been surrounded by an incredible team of FSMs, CCMs, Operations Manager Steve Reid, Tyler Olson, and our entire Admin Support team that keeps it all together. 

This ten year tenure is a great milestone and it couldn’t be accomplished without help from everyone above. Thanks for your help and efforts!

Friday, May 25, 2018

1st Annual City Wide Olympics

Jenny Schmidt: Contractor Coordinator

We had a full afternoon of fun on Wednesday as The Games of the 1st City Wide Olympiad were held at North River Hills Park in Burnsville. There were 21 individuals competing in 4 events, consisting of Kubb, Cornhole, Bocce Ball, and Pig (the basketball version).  The weather was great, maybe a bit hot for some, but overall it was an enjoyable day for outdoor activities and some team bonding.

We started the afternoon with a tournament of Kubb. If you’ve never heard of or played Kubb before, it is a game that basically involves the throwing of wooden sticks to knock over wooden blocks. Here’s a link to a more in-depth explanation:

The champions of Kubb were, Steve & Mitch! Second place in Kubb were, Shelly, Hutch, & Jenny!

The next tournament played was Cornhole, where Joel and Tyler D. were crowned champions! Tyler O. and Jenny took 2nd!

The last two games played for the day were bocce ball and pig. Joel ended up taking 1st place in both events, while Andrew & Mark took 2nd in bocce ball and Jarrad took 2nd in pig!

To say we are all competitive is an understatement, as there was plenty of banter back and forth all afternoon. Over the last few months, we’ve added quite a few new faces to our City Wide team, so it was a good chance for everyone to interact outside of the office! We hope to make this a yearly tradition and an enjoyable event for everyone to look forward to!



Friday, May 4, 2018

Welcome Andrew/Congratulations Alex!

Alex Underwood: Senior Facility Services Manager

Happy Spring Everybody!

There are some positive changes happening here at City Wide Maintenance of Minnesota, thanks to a great couple of years of growth in our market.

I would like to welcome Andrew Mikkola to the Account Management team, as the newest Facility Services Manager, taking over in the Northwest Metro.

This is particularly exciting for me after spending 3 years building my territory, as Andrew is now taking over and I’m confident he’ll continue to deliver great service and results to our clients!  When Mitch and I met Andrew in the interview process, we quickly realized he’d be a great fit and well represent our office and care for clients.

Andrew comes to City Wide with strong business experience from 6 years of store ownership in the Food Industry. He also has account management and client relationship experience working in the Technology Industry as an Account Manager. 

It has been great getting to know Andrew over the past month. We have spent most our time together, getting him introduced to his clients and their buildings, to ensure the transition is seamless and the only change for our customers is the person managing their account.

Welcome to the team Andrew, thanks for coming on board!

Mitch Brunette: Director of Operations

I’m also very excited to be welcoming Andrew to the team, as we’ve grown to the point where we need additional leadership amongst our Account Management Team.  With that said, we are excited to announce that Alex Underwood has been promoted to Senior FSM!  Alex’s role will be getting Andrew up and running and after that is complete, he'll be helping perform additional support for other FSMs territories, meeting with clients, and helping to ensure we are servicing those territories at a high level.  Alex, thank you for your dedication, efforts and hard work these last few years.  It has really paid off and I’m excited to watch you develop and grow as a leader in our office!

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Welcome, Josh Holdahl!

Tyler Olson: Senior Sales Executive

I would like to take the time to welcome our newest member of the Sales Team, Josh Holdahl!  Josh has been on board for a little over a month and has been working hard to learn all he can about our industry and get to know his territory.  He will focus his efforts in the Western Suburbs of the Twin Cities.

Josh comes to us with a background in sales within the food industry.  He is originally from the North West suburbs and went to school at UND (BOOOOOO), but now is back in the Cities with his girlfriend, Jenna.

The entire Sales Team is very excited to have you here, Josh!  Thanks for joining our team!

Monday, April 23, 2018

Tournament Fishing

Adam Bartusek: Business Development Specialist

Wow! It has been a full year since I started at City Wide. Time sure does fly when you’re having fun and working with an awesome crew. It’s been a privilege to be on this team and I can’t wait to see what the future holds. We have been killing it this year and it’s been a blast to be a part of.

As everyone in the office knows, I’m obsessed with fishing. Luckily, I’m not the only one in the office who fishes a lot: Greg, Jarrad, and Joel also fish an abundant number of tournaments. Being in sales, I feel it’s important to stay involved in competition outside of work. Tyler and I are competitive with each other golfing, and I know he also skis in the winter. My outlet is tournament fishing, and it’s the best adrenaline rush there is.
 Last summer I had a good year and qualified for the Fishers of Men National Championship in Guntersville, Alabama. I was lucky enough to celebrate my one-year anniversary at City Wide by fishing this national tournament down south, and it was AWESOME to get away from winter for a bit. I traveled down to Alabama on April 6th and it was a LONG 15-hour drive, but I couldn’t complain about spending a week in much warmer weather.

Practice was tough for us. Guntersville was a new lake for my partner Aaron and me; but it fished similar to Minnesota waters because of the time of year. We spent a lot of our practice looking for shell beds on inside weed edges, eel grass presence was key. The fish were ready to spawn because of the sudden warm weather. We caught a few good fish in practice but weren’t really sure how it would shake out.

Day 1 we were pleasantly surprised by a 5-fish limit that was almost 15 pounds. Normally, this would be a bad bag on Guntersville but because of how tough it was fishing we were sitting in 42nd out of 162. Day 2 was much more difficult for us, I’m not entirely sure why, but there was not nearly as many fish in our areas and the wind picked up. We were only able to bring in 4 fish for around 8.5 pounds. This slid us down to the middle of the pack and we didn’t make the final day.

It was an awesome time down in Alabama and I feel lucky to work in an office that allows me to pursue these ventures. It certainly felt like a “once in a lifetime” experience, although I hope I qualify for many more. Summer looks as if it is coming soon and I can’t wait to get on the fantastic bodies of water we have around home, and enjoy another fabulous Minnesota summer at City Wide!

Friday, April 13, 2018

Office Construction

Mitch Brunette: Director of Operations

In my nearly ten years of working at City Wide, we’ve experienced tremendous growth and with growth comes change!  When I started in 2008, our office left a lot to be desired but I won’t focus on that, I’ll focus on the one 60” round conference room table and 7 total desks that we had in total (which weren’t all filled).  That space served its purpose and after 5 years or so of being there, Greg and I were on our way home from a fishing trip, when Dick Mansfield sent us a web link to an office that eventually became our current home.  It fit all of our space needs, it was an upgrade in size and quality, and it allowed us to expand into over 20 work spaces as we’ve grown.

The time has come and we’ve once again outgrown our space, so we have purchased the downstairs suite attached to our entryway vestibule. We are well under way with construction! The planning phases were fun, as we explored what we could do with this new space to maximize what we get out of the investment and what best sets us up for the future and long term growth.  We were able to add 4 new work spaces for future hires, we moved the sales team and their 4 desks into a new space downstairs which will now allow them 6 work spaces, and we were able to add 4 private meeting spaces which were desperately needed since we have very little private space in our current setup and layout.

We are very excited for construction to come to an end in the next few weeks.  It has been very noisy and messy, and we’ve lost some parking spaces along the way, but we trust it will all be worth it.  Thanks to everyone on the City Wide team for contributing to our growth and allowing us to expand and plan for the next several years!

Friday, March 23, 2018

Welcome, Hutch!

Mitch Brunette: Director of Operations

I would like to take a moment to welcome our newest Contract Compliance Manager, David Hutchinson! David has been on board for a few weeks now and quickly his first name was forgotten and his beloved nickname “Hutch” became what he was called ever since.  Take a look at the picture of his welcome sign that had to be slightly altered after he got started working for a few days!

Hutch has been very willing to learn, grow, and help out in our buildings on behalf of our customers and ensure that things are being done well.

Hutch has moved around a bit- originally from Portland, spending some time in Texas, and now Minnesota.  He started out near Rochester, but is settling into his new home with his wife in Faribault.

Jarrad, Steve, and I, along with the rest of the team, are happy to have you here Hutch! Thanks for joining the team!

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Brittney's Tampa Visit

Brittney Jackson: Sales Associate

This past week I had the pleasure of flying down to Tampa, Florida, to shadow a successful sales person. It was an honor to meet the City Wide of Tampa team and learn how their process works for the Tampa Bay area! Sara was the individual whom I spent the most amount of time with. I was able to see the majority of how her entire process works and took away a lot from my experience meeting with her.
While I was there, I enjoyed the beautiful Tampa weather – high 70s! It was a bit of an adjustment to come back home to Minneapolis where we just had a snowstorm- but was great to be home! I’m excited to see how I can further implement what I have learned into my own business practices, and I am thankful for the opportunity to further grow myself professionally, by applying what I’ve learned from the Tampa Team!

Friday, March 9, 2018


Tyler Olson: Senior Sales Executive

The last weekend in February was a big weekend for me.  I train and race in cross country skiing, and the culmination of my year is the American Birkibeiner.  This is the largest Nordic ski race in North America, stretching 50 kilometers (31miles) from Cable to Hayward.  It pulls participants from multiple countries and continents, and we all converge on the small town of Hayward, Wisconsin.  Most of the year Hayward sits at a population of ~2,500 people, but the week/weekend of the Birkie, it grows to more than 15,000 people (12,000 racers, and 3000+spectators.)

The most exciting part of my weekend was watching my 3 1/2 year old daughter, Millie, race in her first ski race.  It was a very proud moment as a parent to see her being excited about a sport that I love!

This year was my 6th time competing in the race (should have been the 7th but the race was cancelled due to poor snow conditions in 2017.)  I currently compete in the “Elite Wave” which features the top 200 finishers from the previous year and up to 50 professionals. 

As the race got underway, I found myself at the tail end of the lead pack, which is a good spot for me.  As we started through the very hilly terrain, this lead group split into the top professionals and the rest of us “normal” racers.  Coming out of a feed station at the 6k mark, my pole was stepped on causing it to break, and subsequently resulting in me skiing with one pole for the next 4k until I was able to get a replacement at an aid station.  This caused me to lose about 4-5minutes and multiple places in the race.  The replacement pole worked until I got my backup poles at the halfway mark. 

Once I had the correct pole, the race was back on. I made up quite a bit of ground on a number of skiers and was able to save a top 100 finish.  I ended up 71st out of 3654 racers in my race. 

This is my best finish to date.  With the knowledge that I lost as much time as I did, I am extra motivated to get back at it for Birkie 2019 and see how I can do without a broken pole mishap.

Until next time, Hayward!