What You Can't Miss from The Dude's History
Do you remember how you celebrated your 20th birthday?
That memory might be a little fuzzy, but I bet it involved celebrating with friends and family – and thinking about where you’ve been and where you want to go.
Well, we’re doing something pretty similar to celebrate our 20th birthday at Dude Solutions, dubbing it Year of The Dude.
One way we have captured stories from the past 20 years is through our special podcast series:
We started out our next hundred podcasts with a bang, but we also sharing some really interesting stories shared by more than a dozen long-time Dude employees and clients. With that in mind, here are some of our favorite stories from the series.
The Dude’s First Office
Did you know that our first office was actually in co-founder Kent Hudson’s apartment in Cary, NC?
It’s a pretty interesting story that ends with the employees being kicked out.
From Scott Carpenter:
“We had cubes in one bedroom, and then we had the main living room was where our accounting office was. And then we had upstairs loft where the two salespeople sat, but it was a little bit different. And then we did an interview with The News & Observer. And they realized that we were working out of an apartment and they kicked us out.”
What Stood Out:
This was one of the more memorable stories (and pretty funny) because it shows how far we have come from. While we started in an apartment, we now having offices in several cities across the US and Canada and have grown to 620 Dude employees and 12,000+ clients!
As with many software companies, small beginnings are a part of our story.
The Dude Family Song
We are ever amazed by the accomplishments of the people we serve with our software – and client Gary Musial’s (of Lower Merion School District) Dude Family song is no exception.
Throughout the years of working with Dude Solutions, Gary has written and recorded several songs about the experience.
His recent one was featured in Episode 101:
“I was here from the start, The Dude’s in my heart, will be for eternity.
The Dude is always there for me. It is my destiny. I’ll always be part of The Dude, Dude, The Dude, Dude, The Dude Family.”
What Stood Out:
We have some incredible clients! Not only do they do important and underappreciated work to keep us safe and comfortable in the facilities they care for, but they also just have a passion for people and relationships. And I love how that is portrayed in this song.
Technology for Fleets
In the final podcast about looking into the future of operations, we got to capture some thoughts from our clients about what they’re excited about. We also got to talk about what they’re doing now with advances in technology.
TJ Imberger of Spalding County, GA talked about how they use Bluetooth and GPS to make their fleets smarter and more efficient:
“We have our fleet of lawnmowers, those are all Bluetooth capable. And as they roll into our shop areas, they're already communicating with some systems that we have in place. Along with some of our larger equipment for road maintenance, our motor graders and everything are also Bluetooth and GPS capable. So we're excited to look into the possibilities of being able to draw that information in daily and go directly into our PM system, and directly into our work order system at our garage area.”
What Stood Out:
It’s always amazing to hear stories of how technology is growing into daily operations, making things quicker and easier. There’s so much more to come, too, so it’s an exciting time to be in the industry and working with clients who are excited as well.
“Dude’s Been Eating Garlic!”
Might as well end on a funny story – and this one probably had us laughing the most.
Almost since the beginning of the company, we’ve had a mascot, costumer or a “Dude suit” that someone wears to tradeshows and Dude University (our annual conference). While there were a number of great stories around the suit in Episode 100, this garlic-related one definitely stands out.
Here’s long-time employee Carsie Denning with the details:
“When we were first starting out, we went to our first national show, which was the AASA Conference in San Francisco. And we went to a restaurant called The Stinking Rose. And the stinking rose, let's just say their main product is garlic. And they have one thing on their menu called 40-clove chicken. If you've ever worn the Dude suit, you know, it gets hot. And I remember after about two hours, the lady came up and everybody used to love to put their arms around The Dude. He's just a lovable character. And she put their arms around the Dude, she quickly came back and she said, ‘Dude's been eating garlic.’”
What Stood Out:
It was neat to see how much of an impact the Dude costume has had on employees and clients over the years, as well as the stories that people remember about meeting The Dude or wearing the suit. Whether The Dude is giving you a high-five or smelling like garlic, the character is always memorable.
Listen to all three podcast episodes to hear all the stories!