Featured Article

Maintenance Pros: The Unsung Heroes of Wicked Weather

by Marc Moschetto, Chief Marketing Officer, Dude Solutions

Just over one year ago, my family and I relocated from the Boston area to our new home in Holly Springs, North Carolina. Although we miss our hometown terribly, there’s lots to love about our new digs in NC. After all, we have a great new house, I have a 10-minute commute to the office and the chances of my family getting stuck in a blizzard are infinitesimally more remote on this side of the Mason-Dixon line.

As a former lifelong resident of the Bay State, I have lived through my fair share of nasty weather. The Blizzard of ’78 was the benchmark of Mother Nature’s wrath until the winter of 2014 when we hit 110.6 inches of snow – or nine-plus feet for those of you keeping score at home – within a single season, 65 inches of which came in February alone. (This may have had something to do with my wife’s eagerness to relocate a bit further south… but I digress.)

Now, any lifelong New Englander can tell you that the only reason the Bay State is able to endure such punishment is due to the insight, resourcefulness, and dedication of maintenance professionals and the teams they support. Despite the grumblings of children everywhere, the fact that there can be a major snow event on a Sunday and schools are ready to greet students on a Monday is a testament to the efficiency of the maintenance workers and the effectiveness of the action plans they develop and execute.

Just this past weekend, I was once again reminded of the critical role maintenance teams play in keeping our towns, our schools, and our business up and running. Those of us here in North Carolina – as well as East Coast states to our south – had to contend with Hurricane Matthew. As Matthew formed off the African coast and steamed westward across the Atlantic, it steadily picked-up intensity and became a massive Category 5 storm. By the time it made landfall in the continental US and hit North Carolina, it had wound down to a Category 1 but its effects still led to loss of life and property damage even hundreds of miles away from the coast.

There are often tragic stories that result from storms of this magnitude, and fortunately there are also ways to help those who are affected, but there are also stories of selflessness, dedication and sacrifice that very rarely get the attention they deserve. In my town, for example, Matthew came through on Saturday afternoon and into the wee-small hours of Sunday morning. Power was lost, trees were down and roads were flooded… yet Sunday afternoon we were running errands, buying groceries and eating out. It astounds me that earlier in the day, rescue crews were saving people from flood waters. A few hours later, my kids were standing in the Harris Teeter, debating which breakfast cereal to buy.

When everything works smoothly – when stores open, public safety is preserved and property damage is minimized – it’s all too easy to forget that there are teams of dedicated individuals who have likely been working tirelessly to make sure that disruption to our day-to-day lives are kept to an absolute minimum. That’s one of the many reasons why I’m proud to be part of Dude Solutions, an organization where we never forget about the unsung heroes – the operations and maintenance professionals – who keep it all up and running.

If you have stories about maintenance pros who have gone the extra mile to keep things running like clockwork – or if you’re one of those maintenance pros yourself – we want to hear your story and share it with the rest of Dude Nation. Because no matter where in the country you find yourself – from the Snow Belt to the Bible belt and everyplace in between – there’s a whole team of people working behind the scenes. Let’s make sure we give ‘em the credit they deserve.