Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Story Of A Landscape: Pervious Pavers Aid Environmentally Sensitive Property

Many landscape clients — and their contractors — have turned to pavers for their good looks and durability without thinking about their versatility as a permeable surface.

Still, when designer Chris Rupp of Virginia Beach, Virginia-based Dominion Pavers was called in on a custom home job here, perviousness was utmost on his mind. Not only did the job call for a long driveway, but because of the property’s location in the Chesapeake Bay Protective Area, runoff had to be controlled to meet Resource Protection Area (RPA) setbacks.

Rupp explains that he frequently works with Sasser Construction LC of Portsmouth, Virginia, on his projects. In this case, because of the location of the land and its proximity to the bay, as well as the RPA setback, the owners were required to give up a certain square footage of impervious material for their project.

Photo: Dominion Pavers

“That’s how we came up with a plan to tie the detached garage, which has some parking areas and a turnaround, along with a front walkway, together,” Rupp says. “There’s quite an elevation change, and because the house is on a little peninsula, we couldn’t have the stormwater running off into the RPA.”

That’s not to say appearance didn’t play its part in the selection of a paver product, however,

“There’s a stone façade on the garage and around the house and the color of that stone was more like a fieldstone,” Rupp says. “That basically drove me to find the product that would marry with the color of that stone.”

He found his answer in various color options within Belgard’s Aqualine line. The 80-millimeter pavers come with interlocking blind spacer bars, a smooth surface with a micro-chamfer and joint openings designed to optimize infiltration.

Photo: Dominion Pavers

Rupp chose to work with Belgard’s Fossil and Ardennes color pavers.

“I blended both those colors together in the driveway field, and then I used the Ardennes color as my border and the banding going across the driveway,” he says. “I used the bands to add architectural interest.”

Before installation, however, the entire 8,200 square feet of driveway was prepared, first with geogrid fabric and then with a course of 57 stone, topped with a number 8 stone.

Photo: Dominion Pavers

“There’s a minimum of six inches of the 57, and there are no fines to clog up the system,” Rupp says. “It’s a very clean filtration system.”

The driveway was not the only paver work Dominion did on the project. The company also installed approximately 1,000 square feet of Techo-Bloc wood grain plank pavers. These come in three sizes and were laid in a random pattern for the pool decking.

Remarkably, because the 8,200 square feet of pervious driveway met the requirement for the RPA, permeability wasn’t a concern with the pool decking, although the fact that it utilizes pavers provides a certain amount of drainage anyway.

Photo: Dominion Pavers

The driveway pavers were also sufficient to allow the owners to install more than 100 feet of liner aggregate concrete drive coming off the road going by the property.

“They met their qualification with the pervious square footage, so they could use that amount of standard concrete,” he says. “It saved their budget a little bit.”

Both the pool deck and the porches offered their own challenges. Rupp says the pool deck had to be expanded after the initial designs were finalized to accommodate a spa, while the porch steps had to be torn out and redone because they initially weren’t installed square by another sub.

Photo: Dominion Pavers

Additionally, much of the work was done during what Rupp characterizes as “miserable” fall weather. However, preparing the site for the driveway and the timing of the work — at the very end of the project — were Dominion’s biggest challenges, he says.

Rupp explains that when the project started, the site was still treed and had no access.

“They came in and cleared the trees away from the area where the driveway was going to be established,” he says. “Then, they came in and put in railroad ties sideways for access because any time it rained the property was impassible.”

Dominion and the landscapers were intended to be the last two companies to have access to the property, and when it came time to install the driveway, the company that had done the clearing was called back to bring in an excavator and remove the railroad ties.

“We then had to remove a lot of soil to get our base material down,” Rupp says. “It was a challenge.”

However, he adds that not all the finish work had been completed, leaving the company to compete with other craftsmen for space to mobilize and park vehicles. Ultimately, Dominion closed the site to anyone not willing to walk into the house with their tools and materials.

“They didn’t like us very much,” Rupp says.

Photo: Dominion Pavers

Even so, he estimates it took a four-to-six-man crew only seven weeks to complete the pool decking, porches and driveway area.

As the designer, Rupp believes he had the easiest part of the job.

“Our crews are super-dedicated,” he says. “They’ve been with us a long time, and we get many accolades on the work ethic of our crews. It’s a testament to their belief that a project is going to be there for a lifetime.”

In this case, not only are the homeowners very excited by the job, but the project was recognized by Hardscape North America for concrete pavers — permeable — residential, and by Belgard University for the outstanding use of materials from the Belgard Environmental Collection.

Rupp himself is especially proud of the driveway. Not only is it durable, he says, but it’s also environmentally sound.

“Driving down the driveway, it’s almost like a ski slope when you head down the hill,” he concludes. “But, there’s going to be virtually no runoff into the RPS, and no erosion running from the road.”

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Thursday, 12 April 2018

What Does Hardscape Mean?

You’re meeting with a new landscaping company and you hear the word hardscape. What does that mean, exactly? And what are the best ways to incorporate it into your own property? The experts at Borst Landscape are here to sort it out for you.

Landscape means things like your lawn, shrubs and plants. Essentially, anything that’s “soft” and living. This is also considered softscape.

On the other hand, hardscape is a term in the landscape design industry that refers to patios, walkways, driveways and retaining walls – features that are built into the landscape using natural materials like field stone, bluestone and manmade materials like bricks and pavers and interlocking concrete walls. So hardscaping is changing or enhancing the flow and function of your property while beautifying it at the same time.

Hardscaping has an architectural quality that requires some thought and planning. On a technical level, drainage will affect your plantings; frost lines need to be considered, etc. While hardscaping also must consider drainage it must also compliment both the exterior and interior of your home. Hardscape must also be designed to consider property grades, how it flows, functions and improves outdoor living.

There should be a certain harmonious quality to hardscaping, subtle things that make the experience fully enjoyable to all the senses.  That requires a landscape design expert who can see the full potential in your unique property. By combining hardscape and landscape elements in smart ways, you’ll create a backyard that’s a luxurious, beautiful extension of your living space.

Borst Landscape has decades of experience in expertly blending both landscape and hardscape elements to make any property a unique and beautiful masterpiece!

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Wednesday, 11 April 2018

Story Of A Landscape: Enormous, Detailed Paver Driveway In Houston

People know everything is always bigger in Texas — even the paver jobs. Just ask Michael Shawn Kelly, owner of Mirror Lake Designs in Spring, Texas.

His 10,000-plus square-foot paver project in Houston is considerably larger than the average family driveway, but then it serves as the entry to a five-family compound. It also offered up six decision-makers, making product selection his greatest challenge with the job.

However, the rewards for his considerable skills include recognition by Hardscape North America for a residential paver project of more than 3,000 square feet.

Photo: Mirror Lake Designs

Kelly didn’t even have to really sell the job. His company has a display in a kiosk area of a Houston mall that includes a fountain, and seating wall, as well as company brochures and a screen on which people can see work Mirror Lake Designs has done, and one of the people involved in the building project saw the display.

“Someone who was going to work on the house suggested they contact us, based on the work they had seen,” Kelly says.

He stresses that this is not your average residential driveway and off-street parking area.

“This is in front of the main house on the property,” Kelly explains. ”With five families there, they entertain quite a bit. People coming over would need a place to be able to park or drop people off. The real key was putting together something that did not look like a driveway. It’s really more of how you build a courtyard that people can drive across or park seven, eight or nine cars on without it looking like a parking lot.”

Photo: Mirror Lake Designs

To answer that question, Kelly decided to maintain a basic circular pattern, but broke down what could have been a vast expanse of pavers by using different paver products, or, as he describes it “keeping it on a personal scale.”

Ultimately, he came up with the idea of having three different rings of products. The outer ring includes notches along the exterior edge large enough to park a vehicle. The middle ring provides a line around the whole area that, he says, if followed, provides plenty of driving space away from those parked, even for very large vehicles.

The innermost circle was chosen partly to go along with the house.

Photo: Mirror Lake Designs

“It complements the geometry of the house, the flavor of the house, and is something that fits the almost Spanish-colonial look of the home,” Kelly says. “They’re a type of Old-World pavers that also has a texture you feel when you drive across the area.”

Other goals with the product selection included picking up the geometry of two stone areas of the large home’s front, as well some very strong archways through the façade. And, the design needed something strong to lead up to the home’s entrances.

“It’s a formal house, so we didn’t want an amoeba out there,” says Kelly. “We wanted to hold the structure, but we didn’t want it to be so formal and rigid that it wasn’t comfortable.”

Photo: Mirror Lake Designs

To further break up the expanse of pavers, Kelly included a green landscape island in the middle of the entryway.

“We had actually designed something much larger than what’s there,” he says. “We had planned to put in a large, multi-trunk oak out there with a little fountain feature, but they didn’t want to hide the house from the street.”

Instead, the island is boulders and grass, along with a mix of Gulf Coast and tropical ornamentals and some blooming Texas Hill Country natives. The area is irrigated, and Kelly says he brought in an irrigation sub for the job.

Photo: Mirror Lake Designs

Ultimately, the project ended up being constructed with two Belgard pavers and one Pavestone product.

“The big field in the center is Belgard’s Old World Pavers, while the outer perimeter is a Mega Lafitt,” says Kelly. “The big ribbon and the expanded entryway is a Pavestone Granette Setts paver.”

He estimates he had 12-15 men working on this portion of the project for the better part of two weeks. And, yes, there was some craftsmanship involved.

“They weren’t working with just one depth,” he explains. “The Granette Setts are a different thickness than the Belgard products, so they had to do a higher base for it.”

Although he’s half-joking, Kelly says part of the reason for getting the project done so quickly had to do with the decision-making process tied to the job.

Photo: Mirror Lake Designs

“Since we were dealing with five families and six decision-makers who all had diverse opinions, it ran about as well as it could have,” he says. “Getting them to agree on something was definitely a challenge, and we didn’t want to choose sides any more than I would with my own family. Once everyone agreed on it, we were intent on getting it in the ground before anyone changed their minds.”

There was some grading involved with the work. Although Kelly says the site is on top of a modest hill, there as enough slant that his crew had to do up to 18 inches of fill on the right side of the property to make sure a driveway going off behind the main home was at a sufficient grade.

“Our big concern was compaction,” he says. “When you’re building it up 18 inches, you don’t want it to sink two inches a year later.”

And, with so much paved space, drainage was also a concern.

“We have drainage everywhere on this,” Kelly says. “We have drains all around the perimeter of the area. The owners actually put in a rainwater capture system, so a lot of the runoff is fed into that, but we also ran drainage off to the side of the property.”

Lighting for this part of the project highlights the plantings, as well as lights for illuminating the walk areas and on the house itself.

Photo: Mirror Lake Designs

However, the entryway was only a small part of the job Kelly and Mirror Lake Designs ended up doing for the clients. One of the company’s specialties is pools, and behind the main house it installed a massive pool area for the family.

“It has a huge grotto with a slide, multiple waterfalls and a separate spa with a creek where the overflow goes into the pool,” Kelly says. “I also designed a cove which is part of the pool that returns heated water, so the adults can be in a warmer area while the kids are swimming in the cold pool. We have pergolas that reach over into the pool where we have a shelf for the kids to play and a shelf for lounge chairs and a splash pad.”

That work took the better part of 15 months and during that time, the company also installed paver walkways for the family’s children to ride their bikes. Kelly explains he entered the entryway in the HNA competition because he wasn’t concerned about having the landscape grow out before photographing it.

Still, Kelly says he’s proud of the front entryway – and its HNA award.

“It’s how we took what could have been a very institutional scale and broke it down into a personal scale,” he concludes. “We kept the idea that this is a residence while taking care of their needs. It’s not overpowering, and that was difficult to do.”

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Thursday, 5 April 2018

I Am A Landscaper: Nicole Hill

Nicole Hill

With March being National Women’s History Month, it seemed fitting that Turf speak to a female leader in the industry. As the branch manager for LandCare’s Orange County division in California, Nicole Hill admits that she wears a lot of hats. She manages quality, the labor force, customer relationships, safety programs, training, fleet management and community outreach — just to name some of her responsibilities. There’s never a dull moment, but that’s exactly what Hill says she loves about it. She says that every day has new challenges as well as new celebrations. Having come to the field through the nursery side of the business, Hill says that being a woman in the industry did not feel that uncommon. But as she has transitioned into more of an operational role, she’s certainly noticed being a minority. Even so, Hill says she has always felt supported and believes more women are becoming interested in management roles, and she’s excited to see that happen. We recently caught up with Hill to find out more.

I love camping and traveling. My family and I spent a year restoring a vintage Airstream camper, and we love taking it out on camping trips. I also love to cook and am constantly looking to try new recipes. My favorite go-to recipes are Italian wedding soup or chicken and dumplings. I also love hosting and cooking the family holiday dinners each year.

I come from a family of farmers and gardeners. Growing up, we always had a huge vegetable garden. When I was in college getting my psychology degree, I began working at a local nursery as a part-time job and fell in love with learning more about horticulture and plant care. Soon after that, I realized my part-time job was becoming a passion and after college I continued to pursue a career in horticulture.

Coming to the green industry through the nursery and floral/plant production side, it was not that unusual to be a woman in the industry. Even when I was working at Disneyland Resorts as the horticulture manager and arborist manager, there were a lot of women in my division. But when I shifted into more of an operations and field management role, I have noticed there were not as many women. I felt lucky to have had the opportunities I was given by many mentors — both male and female — through the years. They encouraged me to develop my leadership skills and gain more operational knowledge.

Hands down, the thing I like most about this profession is the people. I have always appreciated the green industry community and the type of people who choose this line of work.

It may sound boring, but I’m an avid reader. I love any chance I can get to sit down with a good book and a glass of wine. My favorite book genres are science, history and adventure.

I’m following in the family tradition by having a raised bed vegetable garden. I love to play around with it — growing heirloom vegetables.

 

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Six Kitchen Trends to Use in Your Kit Home

Kitome - Trends to Use in Your Kit Home

As they say, the kitchen is the heart of the home. Generally, it’s where family congregate at any hour of the day, whether it’s grabbing a piece of fruit from the fridge, crowding around an island bench to debrief the day or hovering while preparing dinner. The kitchen is really a room to get right. Here are 6 kitchen trends that will not only have your kitchen looking fantastic, but practical too.

1. Trough sink

Big enough to fit catering platters in and functional, trough sinks suit pretty much any and every style of kitchen. The style can complement modern kitchens, bringing a sense of the old in, and they fit right in with rustic style kitchens. Classic kitchens with farmhouse styling also suit trough sinks and the style can easily fit in with industrial kitchens too. Another way to incorporate a trough sink into the kitchen design is to put in a multifunctional trough that can be used for anything from planting herbs, to chilling drinks or even keeping some food cold.

2. Island benches

Do you have a wide, open kitchen area and need something to fill it? Pop in an island bench. It’s a functional space that people can gather around and as well as eating, preparing or serving. It can also be used as a great storage space.

You can also include some amenities that you wouldn’t necessarily have had space for without it. Always wanted to include a wine fridge in your kitchen? Under the island bench is the perfect spot for it.

There are a couple of ways you could use the island bench as well. Either you can leave it completely bare on the top, meaning it can be used as a seating area or for serving, or you can pop some prep appliances on the bench, for example, a prep sink or a stove top. Either way, the island bench is both practical and fashionable – it’s a win/win addition to your kitchen.

3. Innovative shelving solutions

There’s a long list of options when it comes to storing things in the kitchen. While there are some utensils and ingredients you may want to store away, there are ways you can include these elements in your kitchen design.

If you need spices or cooking utensils handy, do you really want to be opening and closing drawers and cupboards every time you use them? Not only will you get some practical storage solutions, but you can utilise some gorgeous containers and utilise the shelving as decorative pieces. Or you could line up your cookbooks so they become part of the décor. Alternatively, if you have some beautiful plates you’d like to show off, shelving can be a great way to do so.

4. Vertical gardens

Bring the outside in with living walls. These can either be a decorative piece, including some greenery in your kitchen design, or they can be practical, with herbs that you can use for cooking. While the location of the living wall will determine which plants you can use, all you need is a blank space, the right materials and you’ve got yourself a vertical garden. You can get some from your local Bunnings, but these are also fairly simple to make if you’re confident. On trend, gorgeous to look at and if it works, a handy cooking ingredient too.

5. Brass and mixed metals

Add visual interest and depth to your kitchen by introducing metallics to your kitchen. Ignore the advice to avoid mixing different types of metals – don’t be afraid to combine silver, brass and iron. Be bold! It creates texture and personality, things a trendy kitchen needs.

A tip though, is to keep the metals on the same visual plane. For example, let’s take lighting, faucets and cabinets. While it would look weird to mix metals on the same visual plane, by all means, use copper in the lights, stainless steel appliances and brass on the cabinets. Another tip, use one finish repetitively and the other as an accent. This will balance them nicely.

6. Get smart with the technology

One trend that won’t be going anywhere fast is the addition of smart technology. A smart kitchen is an excellent kitchen, so when you’re starting from scratch, it’s really an opportunity to ensure your kitchen is in line with the times. This may mean a smart fridge, an oven that tells you when your cake is done or a coffee machine that automatically turns on in the morning. Appliances with touch-screen controls, WIFI capabilities and social media connection are now the norm, so for all the culinary enthusiasts, pop those on your list of must-haves.

The benefits of customising your kitchen

When you’re building your home from scratch, everything about it should be tailored to you, your family and your lifestyle. That definitely includes the kitchen. Everything should reflect the way you’re going to use the kitchen, from the type of appliances through to the layout and functionality. On the topic of functionality, it’s a good tip to zone your kitchen in four categories – prep, cooking, storage and cleaning.

Customising your kitchen also means you can style it to suit your personality. It should also be customised to suit the style of home you’re building. There’s no point having a farmhouse style kitchen in an ultra-modern home. Of course, you also have the opportunity to choose the smaller elements, from cabinet colours through to splashbacks and handles. When it comes to your kitchen, everything about it should reflect you and your circumstances.

Check out our ultimate guide to customising your home. Here you’ll learn all about the different styles of kitchens you can put in your home.

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Tuesday, 3 April 2018

Challenges Collecting Payments After Heavy Snowfall

Heavy Snowfall Not Always a Windfall

Snow and ice management contractors dream of “the big storm.” They often wonder what it’s like to have to deal with an ongoing snowfall. They dream of all the money they will invoice out and how the profits will roll in. Some will give a passing thought to being tired after a few days of pushing the white stuff around a parking lot. In Erie, Pennsylvania, we get more than our fair share of snow as compared to most of the country. At the lakeshore, the average snowfall for a given winter season is just under 110 inches of snow. A few miles south of the airport, by the lakeshore where there is an increase of 900 feet in elevation, snowfall totals often exceed 250 inches, and once every few years it will exceed 350 inches. That is in the same vein as the Tughill Plateau in upstate New York.

This past Christmas Eve the forecast was for some lake-effect snow in the range of 7 inches, so when it began snowing no-one was overly concerned. Of course, we’ve been here before — numerous times. When we awoke on Christmas Day, it wasn’t snowing, so no one gave the snow a second thought. When the snow started up again, there was no concern. I can’t tell you how many Christmas Day storms we’ve seen in Erie during my 45 years living here.

By noon is was snowing hard — very hard. The snow was piling up, but the nice thing about it was that it was Christmas Day. Almost every commercial and retail property in Erie was closed for the holiday. As night began approaching, there was 2 feet of the white stuff on the ground. Not a big deal — we’ve been here before. It’s Erie. We’re accustomed to lake-effect snow. By the 11 p.m. news, things were starting to look a little bleak in the snow department. It was looking like the totals for this storm would approach, and possibly exceed, 3 feet. OK — that’s unusual. Surely it would stop overnight and life would go on.

However, upon awakening on Dec. 26, it became apparent this was going to be unusual. The national news programs were making mention of the 3-foot Christmas Day storm and the fact that some local records were beginning to fall. About lunchtime on Dec. 26 the city of Erie declared a state of emergency as the forecasters were now talking about totals approaching and exceeding 5 feet. All retail stores (including the mall) were closed and closures for Wednesday, Dec. 27, were being announced.

Local reports were telling us of snow totals 10 miles south of Erie being well under a foot of snow. The local radars showed a band of snow running right along the lakeshore. On the 26th, the surrounding suburbs declared a snow emergency, meaning only 4-wheel-drive vehicles or vehicles with chains were allowed on the roads.

The Christmas Day snowfall totaled 34 inches. The Dec. 26 snowfall totaled 26.5 inches. The last two days of December 2017 saw another 17-plus inches of snow hitting Erie. It continued snowing until New Year’s Eve, with 85 inches of snow accumulating for the holiday week and 121 inches of snow recorded for December 2017.

Make no mistake, the local contractors were getting their fill and were working almost nonstop throughout the event(s). However, it was evident that this particular snowfall could not have come at a better time, from a snow management perspective. It began on a holiday that found almost every commercial site closed for the holiday. The city’s declaration essentially forced another day of closures of most of the city. Cars were off the roads and the parking lots empty, allowing full clearing of the lots. I can just imagine plowing that kind of snow with cars stuck in parking lots and/or on the roads. What a nightmare that would have been.

And, for those who think all this was great for the plowers out there — think again. It was a lot of snow, requiring Herculean effort to clear commercial sites. Loaders were stacking and relocating snow for days afterward.

It might seem like a financial godsend to those on the outside, but the truth is that collecting the money come March and/or April will be another nightmare. Property managers and owners will start playing “let’s make a deal” when the invoices come due, complaining about how much money they got billed for the storm. They’ll want contractors to eat large percentages of the outstanding money because budgets were exceeded.

This will put a heck of a damper on the thrill of seeing all that snow and all those records being broken. I used to tell my snow management clients that nobody makes money on snowfalls that exceed a foot at a crack. This Christmas 2017 storm will not be a windfall for the snow contractors — and it could put more than a few out of business.

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Monday, 2 April 2018

Considering Emotional Intelligence When Hiring

The Missing Piece?

Most landscape companies fail to look at a critical piece of the employment puzzle when they’re hiring, and that can lead to poor choices, says Glenn Bertha, success coach and recruiter with LandOpt LLC.

That critical piece is “emotional intelligence,” and while it’s a concept that has been around since the 1990s (author Daniel Goleman penned the book “Emotional Intelligence” in 1995), most people still don’t know what it means. Turf recently spoke with Bertha to find out more about this concept and why landscape companies need to adopt it into their hiring process.

Emotional intelligence, or “EQ,” is defined as the ability to recognize and understand emotions in oneself and others and the ability to use this awareness to manage behavior and relationships. Those factors are incredibly important when it comes to hiring someone to come work for your company. Yet most landscape companies fail to look at any of that. Typically, that’s because they’re caught up on skills or IQ. But Bertha says that’s just touching the surface of what that person is all about and failing to dig deeper could result in a bad hire.

“What people typically look at when recruiting is information such as where the person went to school, what they studied and what kind of knowledge they have,” Bertha explains. “But if you think of it like an iceberg, those things are only the tip. The bigger part of the iceberg is emotional intelligence. Admittedly, that’s harder to bring out. It’s below the surface. But it’s huge and you have to know how to bring that out in people when evaluating them.”

Looking at EQ

In order to be good at recruiting, Bertha says you must “do your homework on emotional intelligence.” You need to understand how to assess an individual for their “EQ not just their IQ,” Bertha adds.

It all boils down to the cost of turnover, he continues, adding that 46 percent of new employees fail within 18 months of being hired.

“It costs a tremendous amount of resources to bring someone onboard, assuming you got the right person to begin with,” he says. “If it doesn’t pan out, that cost just keeps escalating. But the high cost of turnover could be greatly reduced if you look at emotional intelligence as part of your process.”

And Bertha stresses it absolutely must be a process — a well-defined one, at that. He says his company’s hiring process is 11 steps and one of them is focused on emotional intelligence. The goal is to weed out candidates who are likely to fail.

Bertha says it’s important to come up with a process that works for your company. Part of that process should include some sort of personality assessment. He says that his company uses the Activity Vector Analysis, or AVA. But there are certainly others to consider as well. While this should be an important part of the process, Bertha advises not getting too caught up on it. He calls it just “one tool in the tool bag” and an assessment alone should not be a reason to count someone out. That face-to-face time during the interview process is so important, too.

“When you ask the right questions during an interview, it will give you some insight into the candidate’s emotional intelligence,” Bertha says. “One of my favorite interview questions to ask is: ‘Can you teach me something as though I’ve never been exposed to it before?'”

How to send a text, how to refill the water cooler or how to do a puzzle are all examples, but Bertha says it doesn’t matter what it is. The point is that you should pay attention to how they respond as it reveals tremendous insight into their personality. It will tell you whether this person puts thought into what they’re saying or whether they just throw a lot out there.

“The key that you really want to look for is that the person asks empathetic questions to you — or whomever is being taught how to do something,” Bertha explains. “They should be asking, ‘Do you understand?’ or ‘Am I being clear?’ throughout the process. This is a component of a high emotional intelligence quotient.”

Putting a hiring process in place

If you don’t have a hiring process in place, Bertha recommends developing it by taking a hard look at the way you’ve hired in the past. What’s worked — and what hasn’t? When you have hired someone who has failed, where did things go wrong? Why did they fail? As you think about those questions you’ll have a much better grasp on what exactly you’re looking for in a candidate and that should help you develop your hiring process.

While it may sound like a lot of work, it’s not something that can be put off, Bertha adds.

“You can’t afford to not do this,” he urges. “I understand resources are limited — particularly time — but it will cost you significantly more if you choose a bad hire.”

By putting in the time to refine or create your hiring process, these efforts will pay off for you with some very specific rewards, Bertha says. That includes employee loyalty, reduced absenteeism and improving your brand, just to name a few. And these things are “priceless,” he says. For that reason, it’s absolutely worth the investment in developing a hiring process that includes emotional intelligence as a critical factor. Don’t be a company that makes it a missing piece.

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