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americanlawn
11-10-2010, 04:49 PM
Today I sent 7 applicators to attend a training meeting for our state's Continuing Education Units (CEU) so their licenses would be kept current. They showed up at 1:00 so they would have time to register all applicators. The event was to be held at 1:30.

We worked all morning, and I promised these guys they would be done for the day once the training was over. When they got there, they were told the TIME HAD BEEN CHANGED! Turns out, they held the training at "8:30 in the morning"!

This "event" was sponsored by the IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY/University Extension.

QUESTIONS:
What do we do now?
Why did they not notify us of the change? (we always get the postcards, and there was no "fine print" regarding rescheduling or changing the time)
Is there any responsibility involved?

Bottom line: They showed up 1/2 hour ahead of time. Brought a company check to pay. 3 vehicles drove 25 miles. I promised these guys the rest of the day off. We lost 1/2 day of work (that's a few hundred dollars), so I'm really mad. My wife is SUPER mad!

Here's the ISU Extension office phone number: (515) 957-5760.

website: www.extension.iastate.edu/PME

Here's what their postcard said, "NOTE: THIS IS THE ONLY NOTICE YOU WILL RECEIVE FOR ALL FALL PROGRAMS." :laugh::laugh::laugh:

Wondering where we go from here. :dizzy:

What would YOU do? Send them a bill for salary expense? Request that Iowa State automatically renew these licenses? Tell 'em to get a "real job"? :hammerhead:

rscvp, thanks

lukemelo216
11-10-2010, 05:20 PM
wow man that sucks. Id call them up and sk them what happened. Why no notification. I would probably talk to them to about covering my expensises for the trip when it was useless.

keep us updated

MarcSmith
11-10-2010, 05:52 PM
send em a bill, it will get laughed at and circular filed...

I would call and ask what happened. Do not be angry, do not be confrontational, just ask for an explanation, and ask for what options you have moving forward. Explain what you did and why you are upset. again do it respectfully....

Print out their website right now which shows the class time of 1:30pm... and ask them if they changed the time why they did not update their website such that you could have made different arrangements.

I doubt you'll be reimbursed for your expenses. files this in the category of SHT HAPPENS. I doubt you get a waiver for their CEU's but they may grant you an extension, depends on when their card expire. if their cards expire next month and you waited to the last minute also consider this a learning experience such that take the classes early as possible rather than as late as possible.

The most frustrating aspect is that they seem to schedule the classes when we are busy...rather than dead of winter, when we have more time for CEU's and such...

Good luck, I'm sure it will all work out int he end. yes you'll have the lost production and lost wages and fuel...but its a small price to pay for being a legitimate business.

Think Green
11-10-2010, 06:05 PM
American,
I'd be pissed off too because I have been under certain situations like this for re-certifications.
To answer your question of most importance is this--"The state holds all the cards, especially when it assumes the partnership from the local or state universities. There is no real communication system for these guys. The U of A here doesn't relay messages to well to the State Plant Board organization that is responsible for keeping us informed. That is why we pay these Schmuks high office salaries to keep the boat floating. The communication gaps is unacceptable in my eyes as well. We are privy to several State sites on certification and recertification but there is no real time line and when the time come to light.................the dates change or someone doesn't know a damn thing.
I was told by State license agents a few years ago.........to keep up with my own butt......the state isn't responsible for that.
Either way.........before I go to Hot Springs this January for my continuing educational classes, you better bet that I will be calling several agents beforehand to get the information.

americanlawn
11-10-2010, 06:07 PM
Thanks Luke, I'm thinking about contacting my ISU buds to get their opinion, but I don't think it's their fault cuz it was the ISU "Extension's" fault. There are 99 Iowa county extension offices. Polk County (Des Moines) is by far the largest. What it boils down to is a "satellite download" on a big screen TV to all 99 counties.

Ric, if you're following this post, I'd like to know what you think. I realize that Iowa's license requirements are much lower than the State of Florida, but is this unjust or what?

My guys even changed into clean uniforms and arrived at the extension office 30 minutes early. They also had pens & paper to take notes. They did the best they could, yet we lost money at the same time. No wonder I'm a HAWKEYE fan instead of an ISU cyclown fan.

Kinda wondering who is responsible. Can't figure in any way it's us, cuz we did EVERYTHING right. We were there ----- THEY WERE NOT!

ted putnam
11-10-2010, 07:30 PM
My advice: Listen to your answering machine a little more frequently! Next, Fire the chick in the office. She fell down on the job and that's unacceptable!:laugh: JK
All kidding aside. The responsibility is yours ultimately. Kiss the lost income goodbye. A cost of doing business I suppose. Surely there is another opportunity before cards expire. I know they are limited around here but we still have 4-5 opportunities a year. Call them and explain the dilemma and keep your fingers crossed that they will work with you. About the best you can hope for I suppose.

Ric
11-10-2010, 08:12 PM
Thanks Luke, I'm thinking about contacting my ISU buds to get their opinion, but I don't think it's their fault cuz it was the ISU "Extension's" fault. There are 99 Iowa county extension offices. Polk County (Des Moines) is by far the largest. What it boils down to is a "satellite download" on a big screen TV to all 99 counties.

Ric, if you're following this post, I'd like to know what you think. I realize that Iowa's license requirements are much lower than the State of Florida, but is this unjust or what?

My guys even changed into clean uniforms and arrived at the extension office 30 minutes early. They also had pens & paper to take notes. They did the best they could, yet we lost money at the same time. No wonder I'm a HAWKEYE fan instead of an ISU cyclown fan.

Kinda wondering who is responsible. Can't figure in any way it's us, cuz we did EVERYTHING right. We were there ----- THEY WERE NOT!

Larry

YOU ASK SO DON"T GET MAD IF I GIVE MY HONEST OPINION.


From what I have read in your posts over the last few years, I believe the Duke Brothers might of taught you everything about selling customers at low ball prices and nothing about Pesticides and how to run a business. This really doesn't surprise me that you send your guys a day late and a dollar short. When you work IN your business, you fail to work ON your business. A real Business manager would of been on top of this and would never of let it happen. However if you try and do everything your self, you are not a manager, you are a wage slave of your employee who are making more money than you. They don't have the large investment like you. Pay your self interest on what your business is worth and see if your employees aren't making more salary than you are.

JLC
11-10-2010, 08:27 PM
Was at 1:30 till almost 5:00 where we are at (just a little north of you). It was a pre-recorded deal this year, not live feed like years past. Your extension office must have made an "executive" decision to go earlier. Not sure why though, not what the info on their flyer said. Did you pre-register to save the couple bucks?

RigglePLC
11-10-2010, 09:14 PM
You were treated badly. As a business, I would complain to the Dean of Agriculture or to your congressman. Try to get the whole Extension office transferred to Drake, or Iowa City.

If they will not work with you, you have a valid complaint. I would expect them to send you a video of the presentation, and then they should drive to Des Moines on your schedule to give your guys the test.

mikesturf
11-10-2010, 09:50 PM
When they got there, they were told the TIME HAD BEEN CHANGED! Turns out, they held the training at "8:30 in the morning"!


Were there any students there at the earlier time? If yes, somehow, someone found out about the time change.

JD2320
11-10-2010, 09:56 PM
Walk gently. They have the upper hand. You have a sizeable business. Perhaps they could come to you're offices and give the presentation, and provide the experience as a special one time courtesy.

ted putnam
11-10-2010, 10:07 PM
When they got there, they were told the TIME HAD BEEN CHANGED! Turns out, they held the training at "8:30 in the morning"!


Were there any students there at the earlier time? If yes, somehow, someone found out about the time change.

Excellent point

sdk1959
11-10-2010, 11:35 PM
As long as it doesn't say anywhere "times can be changed without notice" file a claim in small claims court. They don't show up you win by default. Don't rollover for them, fight it. If enough people take it to them they won't pull this crap in the future.

naughty62
11-11-2010, 06:30 AM
Road trip .Coffee,big box of rolls and a case of doorhangers .Do not forget to take your office manager .DID you prepay for the CIC .The schedule can be hard to find online sometimes .That stupid satelite link has gone down on us before .I would go to the ???????? building down there a raise a little hell if you prepaid .

Buck_wheat
11-11-2010, 06:44 AM
Today I sent 7 applicators to attend a training meeting for our state's Continuing Education Units (CEU) so their licenses would be kept current. They showed up at 1:00 so they would have time to register all applicators. The event was to be held at 1:30.

We worked all morning, and I promised these guys they would be done for the day once the training was over. When they got there, they were told the TIME HAD BEEN CHANGED! Turns out, they held the training at "8:30 in the morning"!

This "event" was sponsored by the IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY/University Extension.

QUESTIONS:
What do we do now?
Why did they not notify us of the change? (we always get the postcards, and there was no "fine print" regarding rescheduling or changing the time)
Is there any responsibility involved?

Bottom line: They showed up 1/2 hour ahead of time. Brought a company check to pay. 3 vehicles drove 25 miles. I promised these guys the rest of the day off. We lost 1/2 day of work (that's a few hundred dollars), so I'm really mad. My wife is SUPER mad!

Here's the ISU Extension office phone number: (515) 957-5760.

website: www.extension.iastate.edu/PME

Here's what their postcard said, "NOTE: THIS IS THE ONLY NOTICE YOU WILL RECEIVE FOR ALL FALL PROGRAMS." :laugh::laugh::laugh:

Wondering where we go from here. :dizzy:

What would YOU do? Send them a bill for salary expense? Request that Iowa State automatically renew these licenses? Tell 'em to get a "real job"? :hammerhead:

rscvp, thanks

That's gvt for you... public servants my A$$... completly out of touch with the world and reality and totally apathetic.

You'll have to suck this one up since they don't care about you... just pay your taxes and go away. By the way the clerk that made the change probably makes more than you do, has all the legal holidays off, full health care you pay for, 5 weeks vacation and will retire in 20 years with a full pension.

Ain't gvt. great?

jasontimm
11-11-2010, 07:21 AM
Larry

YOU ASK SO DON"T GET MAD IF I GIVE MY HONEST OPINION.
From what I have read in your posts over the last few years, I believe the Duke Brothers might of taught you everything about selling customers at low ball prices and nothing about Pesticides and how to run a business. This really doesn't surprise me that you send your guys a day late and a dollar short. When you work IN your business, you fail to work ON your business. A real Business manager would of been on top of this and would never of let it happen. However if you try and do everything your self, you are not a manager, you are a wage slave of your employee who are making more money than you. They don't have the large investment like you. Pay your self interest on what your business is worth and see if your employees aren't making more salary than you are.

You made two mistakes Larry:
1. You sent your guys at the wrong time. :nono:
2. You asked the most self absorbed person on lawnsite to give his opinion.

As you know, Govt is a big machine, you can fight it but you wont win, you can complain, but these people are use to complaints, so i dont think it will even phase them.

ted putnam
11-11-2010, 08:36 AM
You made two mistakes Larry:
1. You sent your guys at the wrong time. :nono:
2. You asked the most self absorbed person on lawnsite to give his opinion.

As you know, Govt is a big machine, you can fight it but you wont win, you can complain, but these people are use to complaints, so i dont think it will even phase them.

You hit the nail on the head with that statement.

I also agree that he made a mistake asking Ric his opinion given their history. Ric does make a valid point with the "when you work in your business, you fail to work on your business" statement though.
As a "working manager" in my small but growing business, this is something I notice more and more.

MarcSmith
11-11-2010, 08:56 AM
http://www.extension.iastate.edu/PME/ComAp.html

he sent the guys at the right time look at the above link black and white 11/10/1:30pm

Ornamental and Turfgrass Applicators Categories 2 (Forest Pest), 3O (Ornamental Pest), 3T (Turf Pest), 3OT (Ornamental and Turf Pest), and 10 (Research and Demonstration)This program is 3hrs in length
11/10/10 1:30 PM

so someone screwed up by not updating the website or getting the course change out to the masses... But obviously someone got word somehow since some people were at the 8:30 class so they say...

txgrassguy
11-11-2010, 09:03 AM
Well, I agree with the content of Ric's statement.

As a business owner and manager why did you not simply call the day before to confirm the time/location/content of the training seminar?

The biggest problem you will have when attempting to fight this, especially in court, is your answer to my question.

Schedules change all of the time as a result of all sorts of reasons. You need to learn, especially when managing employees whom you are sponsoring their training, to check and double check seminar or training dates then re-check the day prior to the event. This falls under due diligence and I, for one, refuse to accept what is posted on a web site as confirmed information.

Also, depending upon your relationship with your employees, this may very well be an event which may contribute towards employee dissatisfaction. And it makes you look like you do not have a handle on things.

Ric
11-11-2010, 09:08 AM
You hit the nail on the head with that statement.

I also agree that he made a mistake asking Ric his opinion given their history. Ric does make a valid point with the "when you work in your business, you fail to work on your business" statement though.
As a "working manager" in my small but growing business, this is something I notice more and more.

Ted

Given our History I all most lost my teeth when I read Larry was asking my Opinion. My guess was he feeling so guilty about being stupid he wanted punished. But I only gave my honest and humble opinion.

As a Working Manager in a small but growing business, You should know the value of CONTROLLED GROWTH. In every successful business there actually come a time when Too Much business or growth is not a good thing. I think this thread should be a lesson to all that bigger is not better. The law of Diminishing Returns comes into play here.

americanlawn
11-11-2010, 05:51 PM
Turns out, so many applicators pre-registered for the event that they didn't have enough room for those who "showed up on time without prepaying". All that pre-registered were notified regarding the event change. Those who did not pre-register were simply out of luck and received no notification whatsoever. We were not the only ones who did not pre-register (prepay) and got screwed. Reason we did not prepay is cuz we didn't know if we would be nearly done with production. (we prepaid once before and did not get reimbursed cuz we had to plow snow).

Latest word is ISU Extension will hold another training day on December10 at 8:30 a.m. If they need to hold additional dates, they plan to do so. I will personally stop there on Monday and prepay with a company check, but I will ask for a written guarantee that we will get reimbursed if we plow snow that day. (I know the gal in charge cuz I used to work with her hubby)

Filing small claims? Will never do that cuz the University has done us alot of favors in the past, and they're great guys. It's just "government at work". Just have to chalk it up as a "costly inconvenience".

Thanks for all the "OBJECTIVE" advice, cuz this had never happened before.

Regarding running our business, how would anybody who has never met me or seen us, know what they're talking about? :confused:

Regarding a growing business: Most folks would think that's a good "signal". IMHO

This is Veterans Day, so I'd like to thank ric for his Service to our Country. :usflag: Even though you provided sour notes on this thread while implying I'm a "good for nothing" .... I expected objective opinions.

JLC & naughty62 -- Thanks, and GO HAWKS!

p.s. The Polk County Extension office currently occupies the former Prairie Meadows accounting office. Prairie Meadows is located just across the street, so it's pretty convenient after watching boring videos. :laugh::laugh:

Prairie Meadows is Iowa's only horse race track and the state's largest gambling casino. http://www.prairiemeadows.com Prairie Meadows is also owned by Polk County, IA.

grassman177
11-11-2010, 07:11 PM
well said larry, it has happened here too, but not to us as we prepay and register, but same situation as you unfolded. it happens, but cant say it is good to happen. at least they are going to have more classes and you are not out of luck in that aspect

americanlawn
11-11-2010, 07:36 PM
We trust Iowa State (our land grant University) even though most of us are HAWKEYE fans. :laugh::laugh: I was happy to hear that our extension office cared about us. That was a relief. I figure we lost about $500 in salary expenses, but this happens from time to time. I can roll with that, cuz worse things can happen.





well said larry, it has happened here too, but not to us as we prepay and register, but same situation as you unfolded. it happens, but cant say it is good to happen. at least they are going to have more classes and you are not out of luck in that aspect

cpel2004
11-11-2010, 08:10 PM
It sucks, but its over, consider it a lessoned learned, save your energy and invest it, into your business. Going forward, make it a standard operating procedure to have someone call ahead and confirm all future training appointments. I dont think anything will change on their end. Just my .02.

grassman177
11-11-2010, 09:56 PM
It sucks, but its over, consider it a lessoned learned, save your energy and invest it, into your business. Going forward, make it a standard operating procedure to have someone call ahead and confirm all future training appointments. I dont think anything will change on their end. Just my .02.

that is a very good piece of advice, well done.

Ric
11-11-2010, 11:06 PM
Yo

Tomorrow I will be attending This Free Work Shop on Bed Bugs.

http://lee.ifas.ufl.edu/FCS/FCS_Classes/bedbugs2010.pdf


Please note the 3rd line from the bottom of the page. That is SOP on all Seminar put on by our County extension office. Yes I received notice of this work shop on Oct 22 and Pre Registered that day. I made my work schedule around this seminar so there was no conflict.

Harley-D
11-12-2010, 03:35 PM
LOL...ric pouring salt and lemon in the wound. Hindsight is 20/20 and we all make mistakes. Next time, pre-register. It's easier and doesn't leave open ended opportunities for change. imo. Glad you were able to get another spot opened.

Ric
11-12-2010, 04:07 PM
LOL...ric pouring salt and lemon in the wound. Hindsight is 20/20 and we all make mistakes. Next time, pre-register. It's easier and doesn't leave open ended opportunities for change. imo. Glad you were able to get another spot opened.

Honda D

Thank You I always pre-register. I had a great time at the Work Shop. Like most seminars and work shops, I learned as much talking to other attendees as I did from the instructor.

nik
11-12-2010, 07:21 PM
I'd call that a spendy lesson learned as well. Does your state offer online training? I can get a few hours a year that way and I miss out on a class I can make up some of it online.

Our extensions doesn't seem to have those issues. Classes seldom get moved. And generally that is only when the snow and ice makes it dangerous to get out. They do notify though it never hurts to call before to confirm. The only thing here you got to watch for is to make sure you sign the attendance sheets for your credit hours. You can always check your total online or cal the state to check it for you. If your coming up a bit short and your license is expiring hey will also send you a letter in Oct or so. Most classes are winter/fall so you can pick up what you need. Not signing a sheet and coming up an hour short will get you a sympathetic voice but not a renewed license. Our state only gives credit hours to the courses. The classes are run by who-ever and that's who you need to keep up in., especially when your forking over money to go.

Ric
11-13-2010, 01:03 AM
Turns out, so many applicators pre-registered for the event that they didn't have enough room for those who "showed up on time without prepaying". All that pre-registered were notified regarding the event change. Those who did not pre-register were simply out of luck and received no notification whatsoever. We were not the only ones who did not pre-register (prepay) and got screwed. Reason we did not prepay is cuz we didn't know if we would be nearly done with production. (we prepaid once before and did not get reimbursed cuz we had to plow snow).

Latest word is ISU Extension will hold another training day on December10 at 8:30 a.m. If they need to hold additional dates, they plan to do so. I will personally stop there on Monday and prepay with a company check, but I will ask for a written guarantee that we will get reimbursed if we plow snow that day. (I know the gal in charge cuz I used to work with her hubby)

Filing small claims? Will never do that cuz the University has done us alot of favors in the past, and they're great guys. It's just "government at work". Just have to chalk it up as a "costly inconvenience".

Thanks for all the "OBJECTIVE" advice, cuz this had never happened before.

Regarding running our business, how would anybody who has never met me or seen us, know what they're talking about? :confused:

Regarding a growing business: Most folks would think that's a good "signal". IMHO

This is Veterans Day, so I'd like to thank ric for his Service to our Country. :usflag: Even though you provided sour notes on this thread while implying I'm a "good for nothing" .... I expected objective opinions.

JLC & naughty62 -- Thanks, and GO HAWKS!

p.s. The Polk County Extension office currently occupies the former Prairie Meadows accounting office. Prairie Meadows is located just across the street, so it's pretty convenient after watching boring videos. :laugh::laugh:

Prairie Meadows is Iowa's only horse race track and the state's largest gambling casino. http://www.prairiemeadows.com Prairie Meadows is also owned by Polk County, IA.


Larry

Please except my apology

I just read this Thread

http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?t=333727

From the prices I see you getting in the Mid West, I can understand your problem. You don't have time to stop for lunch let alone a seminar or you can't make over head let alone a profit. I laughed at you TV ad when your guys walked so fast they only sprayed a S on the lawns. Now I understand why you have to play Blow n Go.

ochosdaddy
11-13-2010, 01:53 AM
That's what I figured......those who pre-registered were provided with notice. I can't image going to one of these training seminars blindfolded just assuming you'll get a seat, especially when you send employees on the clock. Even if the time had not changed, you still would have been upset because your guys could not have attended.

Yeah....you didn't pre-register because you weren't sure..... I hate such boring and redundant seminars, but it's what it takes to re-certify. You know this, so why not budget a day for the guys to run off and attend the training PRE-REGISTERED next time around?

americanlawn
11-15-2010, 06:54 PM
Last time we pre-registered, we had a snow storm and had to plow snow. Never got reimbursed because the training event was held as scheduled. I told them we did not contact them the day before cuz the heavy snow was predicted to "miss our area". Since our Extension office does not answer their phone in the "middle of the night", we were unable to contact them early enough to cancel (due to the unpredicted/heavy snow).

It's not in my blood to waste a perfect day with calm winds (inside some office building) when customers wonder why we "weren't there when the weather was perfect". Having applicators "break route" and drive 100 miles to attend a training session will NEVER happen in our operation.

Bottom line: We followed the training event requirements to a T. Members & sponsors who know me, my employees, our equipment, our facilities know what I'm talking about.

If I had to budget for every wrongful event that we encounter would be a nightmare.

I "prepaid" today for December 10. (we just missed a ten inch snow last week). ISU Extension was extremely helpful, and they understood our frustrations. Thanks for the suggestions, cuz I realize all but one member truly means well. :usflag:

That's what I figured......those who pre-registered were provided with notice. I can't image going to one of these training seminars blindfolded just assuming you'll get a seat, especially when you send employees on the clock. Even if the time had not changed, you still would have been upset because your guys could not have attended.

Yeah....you didn't pre-register because you weren't sure..... I hate such boring and redundant seminars, but it's what it takes to re-certify. You know this, so why not budget a day for the guys to run off and attend the training PRE-REGISTERED next time around?