Almost every job has some level of stress. Work-related stress may take its toll on your team and lead to burnout. By recognizing burnout, creating a supportive, communicative work environment, and allowing the team to find more balance in life, you set the stage for a more productive, resilient team.
Climate change and the resulting severe weather have challenged us to address heat waves, wildfires, flooding, and more frequent and intense storms. One way to help reduce the impacts of these hazards is through nature-based solutions. Here is a quick primer on nature-based solutions, how they help, and some examples of common solutions communities use. 
It’s easy to take for granted the critical role vehicles play in the maintenance department’s workflow. Every workday morning starts with dispatching safe, reliable vehicles so the maintenance team can complete their daily tasks. That is until one of the vehicles breaks down, and everyone’s schedule gets thrown off. Vehicle inspections help prevent that from happening.
You don’t often hear “recreation” and “emergency management” used in the same sentence. It may seem hard to discover a connection between the two things. But when you take a closer look, Parks & Recreation departments can be invaluable resources for the community in the case of a disaster or emergency. A parks department's resources--human and property--can help with emergency management before, during, and after a crisis.
After spending the time and money installing a pickleball court, you will want to protect that investment. Pickleball court maintenance helps to increase the playing area’s lifespan and keep it looking good. Here’s how to maintain a pickleball court.
Pickleball courts are in high demand. After all, pickleball is the fastest-growing sport in many areas throughout the country. Let’s explore the most common pickleball installation options and some pros/cons for each.
Pickleball is America’s fasting growing sport. More and more parks and recreation departments are installing pickleball courts--or getting requests from their community to add some. Wondering where to start? Here is a brief primer on pickleball and pickleball courts.
Over the years, we have heard our fair share of misconceptions and resistance as we helped managers set up their customized CMMS platforms and trained their teams.  After all, starting something new isn't always easy. Here are some common misconceptions about implementing a CMMS that we love helping people understand better.
Does your employee evaluation process feel more like a formality than a valuable use of your time? What if evaluating employee performance was something that could benefit you, your team, and your agency? It's certainly possible...Here's what you need to know about it.
Your team has been doing things one way for as long as anyone can remember. Now the decision to shake things up is met with plenty of mumbled (or not so mumbled) complaints and resistance. Start setting the resisting team members’ minds at ease by addressing resistance in a calm, factual manner. Here is some common resistance associated with implementing a new CMMS.
When chainsaws are maintained and used correctly, they are powerful, useful tools helping with tree care and removal, clearing thick brush, and cutting fallen branches into movable pieces. Conversely, chainsaws could be one of the most dangerous pieces of small equipment your team uses when handled and maintained incorrectly. Here are some things to keep in mind before, during, and after using a chainsaw.
Maintenance managers must possess a particular skill set to ensure their crew gets on the same page and executes the tasks that need completion. What qualities do they possess that help them hire the right candidates, keep a team motivated, and stay on top of the ever-changing needs of a park and recreation department? Here are 4 important leadership skills we’ve noticed in maintenance managers.
After the last mowing, don’t just roll the mowers to the back of the garage and forget about them until spring. The end of the mowing season is a perfect time for inspecting and winterizing commercial lawn mowers. Here are some things to do before the mowers make it into storage for a well-deserved break.
How can your team be more consistent? One way is by creating standard operating procedures.  A standard operating procedure (SOP) is a document that clearly states the steps to do a task. Learn more about these important documents and how to make effective SOPs.
Many park districts, parks & recreation departments, and community organizations streamline their operations, registration, marketing, and maintenance tasks with the help of software. The days of spreadsheets, word processing, and an email account getting the job done have long passed. And for a good reason! Software gets designed to make our lives easier. Let's look at some types of parks and recreation software to improve the efficiency of teams and operations.
Your crew is the heart and muscle of the maintenance department. Your vehicles and heavy equipment are the backbones your crew relies on to get work completed. Having an established system of maintaining and monitoring your fleet requires many moving parts. Here are some steps to help ensure your vehicles are safe, dependable, and ready to respond when needed.
Often, time management problems for the maintenance team reflect underlying issues. When planning, scheduling, and communication get established, time management gradually falls into place. Here are some tips for implementing a planning and scheduling system.
Recreation management software makes it easier to organize everything that's going on in the facility and track data for more efficient programming in the future. But a lot of the facility management software doesn't address a key component of the recreation facility.
As we near the end of summer, we're easing into a critical time for turfgrass. It's an opportunity to provide the conditions to help lawns recover from summer and grow stronger as the cooler weather arrives. Plan these tasks to grow more resilient, durable, and healthy turfgrass.
Do you know one of the best things about paperwork? When you find a way to reduce it.  That's the idea behind standing work orders. Creating standing work orders can save time and administration costs. But there are some things to consider and be aware of before adding them to your workflow.
If your team plans to plant trees and shrubs, following these best practices to protect your investment and help ensure the plantings make it to maturity. Get the tips and best practices for planting and maintaining trees and shrubs. Discover what to do before, during, and after planting.
Even well-constructed trails need routine inspections and maintenance. Resolving any emerging drainage, erosion, and tread issues quickly saves time, money, and resources in the long run. Let’s take a look at some of the more common trail problems. Then we will dive into a few trail maintenance tasks to keep on your team’s radar.  
More maintenance teams are using software to communicate better, work more efficiently, and ensure tasks don't get overlooked. Furthermore, agencies--including those in the parks and recreation sector--use software for easier tracking, documenting, and reporting. The software that's making a big difference in the way crews work is called a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS). Let's look at how a CMMS works, what's needed to implement it, and how this software benefits maintenance crews and agencies.
Summer programming can take a toll on turfgrass. Coupled with drought-like conditions, your turf could be facing some serious damage. Planning how to care for turfgrass before, during, and after a drought creates stronger root systems, more resilient turf, and a better chance grass will fully recover.
As we ease into the summertime, outdoor recreation activities spike. Many programs take place during the day, but more agencies accommodate busy schedules by increasing their after-dark programming.  As a result, agencies need to ensure the areas where programs take place are lit appropriately. This begins with understanding outdoor lighting systems and how to maintain them.
Playgrounds are one of the most popular features of parks and recreation agencies. More children and families will be at the playgrounds as we head into the summer months. Increased usage often means a greater risk of damaged equipment or unsafe conditions. Playground inspections are one of the most effective ways of discovering and addressing safety issues before they become a major problem.
Parks and recreation agencies have the responsibility to protect the safety of those using their parks and facilities. This responsibility includes identifying, addressing, and minimizing risk in areas and programming. Risk occurs when a hazard may cause personal injury, property or environmental damage, economic loss, or death. Hazards are conditions unknown or misunderstood by a visitor that may result in injury.
Our facilities need attention to stay operational. Scheduling inspections and maintenance tasks that detect and address potential problems ensure facilities remain safe, secure, and comfortable for public usage. Building maintenance is an essential part of ownership. When done correctly, it often goes unnoticed. Instead of waiting for something to go wrong, preventative maintenance addresses needs before they affect operations and programming.
At some point, you will find yourself searching for new maintenance equipment. There is a lot of building maintenance equipment out on the market. How will you know what’s best for your facility? It’s easy to get caught up in the moment while searching. The latest technology, newest innovations, or bargain prices may catch your eye. But, of course, you don’t want to buy something that may not be the right fit for your facility.
Our collective impact on the environment is undeniable. It makes sense to find and implement strategies that reduce our footprint on the Earth. After all, we want to be sure future generations get the same--or better--opportunities to enjoy our assets and natural resources. More parks & recreation departments are adopting sustainability plans to ensure better health for the planet and find ways to save energy, work more efficiently, and preserve the land they manage.



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