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That's What I Like
By Mike Dahl, LC/DBM Editor

As I write, the second polar invasion into most of the U.S. is creeping back north of the border, and the high pressure out west finally found a new home, allowing precipitation to tease the thirsty left coast and adjacent mountains. As you read this, unseasonable weather may have returned but here's hoping not.

For my inaugural editorial, I was in a bit of a bind as to what to write about. The above paragraph came to me, I think, because our winter weather has been such a top-story topic, and also because weather is top of mind for me. That is one of the many reasons I enjoy this job -- the importance of weather to the landscape industry lets me research it on my boss's dime.

Before reciting other reasons this job is agreeable, a short introduction is in order. I have been the editor at LC/DBM for 10 months and it has been quite a lively ride. This is a company with a lot of forward momentum serving an industry with the same.

And that industry momentum is another reason for my enthusiasm. Reporting on advancements in areas that the green industry embraces such as sustainability, fuel-efficiency, water and energy conservation and the like is very gratifying.

For instance, in this month's issue is a look at the innovation of fleet management tracking - using GPS technology to provide more efficient routing of vehicles, simplified billing, providing customers with proof of service, eliminating time sheets, alerting companies to vehicle maintenance issues, monitoring driver behavior to improve safety and reduce fuel-wasting habits, even locking down the calling and texting functions of a driver's cell phone when a vehicle is in motion.

LC/DBM cites three case studies of landscape companies that have implemented three different tools, all of which made their operations more efficient and profitable.

I also value the entrepreneur spirit exhibited throughout the industry. My dad was a successful entrepreneur, and this gave me a great appreciation of the courage, commitment, passion and ingenuity that these endeavors take, and the tangible economic impact that they provide.

One of the features this month serves as an example. No Ka Oi Landscape Services started small, and not even as a landscape company, but they grasped opportunities when presented with them, and as the local economy on their home island of Kauai, Hawaii expanded, No Ka Oi grew into a major provider of commercial maintenance and other landscape services.

But whether you own your company or are employed by a firm or organization, the outcome of your hard work visibly benefits us all. With that in mind, the third feature this month details the various elements of a sector of the industry that presents us with beauty outside of our own yards - commercial maintenance. If your company currently provides this service, you might be able to pick up a few tips. If your company does not provide it, this article might help you start.

The most enjoyable part of this job though is relating the stories I hear from all across the U.S. and Canada. So please keep submitting them (you can find out the themes for upcoming issues at and you might be reading your story in these pages someday.

All the best,
Mike Dahl, Editor

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October 17, 2019, 9:19 am PDT

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