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ManateE-zine ForEmployeesbyEmployees

August 2011

Bowling for United Way!

By Mary Pendleton-Brown, Community Services

On Saturday, July 23, County employees along with members of the public met at AMF Bowling Lanes for some friendly games of bowling that brought in over $3,000 to the United Way. We had 23 teams participate, most of which were formed from County departments. County teams consisted of 7 teams from the Sheriff’s Office, Community Services, Fleet Services, County Commissioners and Administration, Human Resources, Natural Resources, Public Works, Financial Management, Neighborhood Services, 2nd Place Winners - Team Utilities Utilities, and the Clerk of Court’s office. We also had public teams consisting of a team of Brenda Rogers’ family members, two teams from Last Call Sports Bar, Publix Supermarket, and a team from the AMF center. Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 10141 kicked off the tournament with the presentation of colors and Ashley Bassett (daughter of Julie Bassett, Human Resources) sang the National Anthem. For many it was the first time they had bowled in years and for others like Team County Administrator Commissioner Whitmore, it was their Team Human Resources first time bowling ever. Regardless of experience or level of play, everyone enjoyed the event through friendly competition, socializing with coworkers, friends and family in a different setting, and the fact of knowing we were there sharing an effort to support local agencies that helps our community. We raised a total of $2,169 from the basket raffles and our profit after bowling fees was $1,523.75 for a grand total of $3,692.75 donated to the United Way of Manatee County.

Bowling Tournament Results: 1st Place & $350 Prize Team AMF, comprised of AMF bowlers and an AMF employee, took first place. The team only kept their entry fee of $150 and they donated $200 back to United Way. Congrats to Michelle Ramos, Tammy Hughes, Gilbert Garcia, Ronnie Hayes and Wayne Kamarski who

Bowling Tournament Basket Winners Backyard Barbecue #1 Alissa Powers Bite on the Town #2 Sandy Tudor Tradewinds Getaway #3 Jane Souders Italian #4 Paula Ridgewell On The Go #5 Phyllis Strong Baseball VIP #6 Kathy Morgan Bamboo Palms Vacation #7 Jeanne Watkins Car Care #8 Diana Vennera Fore You #9 Dave & Holly Ahl Toolbox Touchdown #10 Hal Bon Appetit #11 Lee Roy Santos Wine & Cheese #12 Melody Vilt Beach Blast #13 Barbara Tyler Gone Fishing #14 Bonnie Sietman

knocked down 2,568 pins total. 2nd Place $250 Prize Team Utilities Department won second place. Congrats to Kelly Jordan, Jacob Sargent, Mike Mathews, Chris Hughes and Nick Wagner who knocked down 2,466 pins total. 3rd Place & $150 Prize Team Publix held third place honors. Congrats to Donny Freeman, Tim Shiero, Anthony Beck, Ryan Kennedy and Harold Thorpe who knocked down 2,412 pins total. High Men’s Scratch Game Harold Thorpe (268) High Women’s Scratch Game Vickey Harvey (179) We had a good turnout this year and I think next year will be even better. The support we received from our leadership was outstanding but even more so was the support and enthusiasm we received and experienced from all county departments and our citizens who were able to participate.

Employee Health Benefits Another successful KYN Event hosted at Water Treatment Plant This was a breakfast and the goal was for everyone to consume four servings of fruits/veggies (two of each). They had a smoothie bar and many had recipes. They had to display nutrition information and recipes for each item. Way to go Water Treatment Plant!

Know Your Numbers Program – Winding Down!

Only a few programs are left in August to earn KYN Know Your Numbers points. Many KYN participants are asking how many programs are left, and how to submit their points. Below are the answers to those questions: 1. How many more quizzes? There will be 2-3 bonus quizzes available in August. 2. What programs will be offered in August? The following programs (except the quizzes) have already been offered this year at various times and dates and are intended only for those individuals that have not yet had the opportunity to participate in them. Thursday, August 11, 18, 25, “Keeping the Pressure Down”, 4 session course, 2-4 p.m., x3230, 20pts Tuesday, August 16th, “Cooking with Herbs”, 10 a.m. to noon, 722-4524, 15pts August 1st – 30th, Final Quizzes will be available on the website and August Calendar, 5pts/quiz. Refer to the August Calendar at www. for program details 3. When do I turn in my Passport, Post Survey and KYN Worksheet so I can earn Health Bucks for Plan Year 2012? You will need to turn in your Passport, Post Survey, and KYN Worksheet to a YourChoice Advocate before Sept. 15, 2011. Interoffice, drop off, or mail to Employee Health Benefits, 600 301 Blvd, Suite 144, Bradenton, FL 34205 – ATTN KYN. 4. Do I enter the KYN Health Bucks I earned on the online QE Form?


Yes. You should complete your Online QE Form “Other Health Bucks Earned” section. Enter the Health Bucks $ amount, not the points earned. If you already completed and submitted the QE Form and did not enter the KYN Health Bucks or entered the wrong amount, you do not need to go back in to the QE Form. EHB will review and verify the KYN entries when processing the QE Forms and make any needed corrections. See Question of the Week 4 for more details. Over 1,000 members registered for this program. Great job, everyone! On behalf of all the Center for Health & Lifestyle Management Advocates, we would like to thank you for participating in this year’s Know Your Numbers Campaign – you made this program a great success.

ground due to a large truck hauling trusses completely breaking a concrete strain pole in two. 4. Where are you from? Pinellas Park, Florida 5. What are your hobbies? Hunting 6. If you were stranded on an island and could have 3 items, what would they be and why? Food, water and Bible 7. What did you want to be when you were a kid? Cowboy 8. Do you have any pets? Yes, lots-- from kittens to cows and a lot in between. 9. Did you attend college? Where? Yes, Santa Fe Community College

The Library Working For You By Ava Ehde, Neighborhood Services

Employee of the Month - August 2011

Billy Mason, Public Works

1. What does your job entail? Why is it important? I maintain some 200 traffic signals, over 2,000 street lights and approximately 150 school flashers to help keep the citizens and commuters of Manatee County safe to the best of my ability. 2. What is the most interesting part of your job? Being able to see the new innovations in the industry.


3. What is the strangest thing that has happened on the job? We had a entire traffic signal hit the

Your library system is a valued community information center which offers not only impressive research resources and services, but also a professional staff dedicated to providing excellent customer service. We are constantly seeking new opportunities to partner and collaborate with other community groups, such as: historical organizations, museums, businesses, literacy and arts councils, schools and other government agencies. Today we are actively pursuing grant opportunities, developing new collections, re-creating our local history collection, and focusing on serving innovative technology needs. We’re creating collections of downloadable audiobooks, satellite locations such

as the “Nook” and exploring new off-site collections. We’re pursuing grants to purchase portable technology to help the public to fill out social service and job applications at community locations. We’re also offering excellent summer programs for both children and teens systemwide.

how to save money while meeting the evolving needs of our patrons. We continue to study new technology and maintain a balance of the traditional library patron needs. We encourage all to visit one of our six library locations or to browse our online catalog services located at, Neighborhood Services Department, Library Services Division.

Our recently approved five year plan was written after comprehensive research including over 1,300 community surveys, focus groups at each location, and a town hall meeting. The final document will be remitted for our State Aid to Libraries grant, which will provide the base of our book budget. In addition, we will be reviewing the plan annually and requesting community input to keep the document fresh and abreast of new technology needs.

Part 2- Are You Being Micromanaged? Oh Dear!

On the horizon, Rocky Bluff branch will be moving out of the current storefront location into a dedicated Countyowned building. The former Roaring 20s Pizza and Pipes will be renovated and re-opened this fall. This new location will have some unique features such as a coffee bar, newly dedicated young adult and children space, increased WIFI hot spots, a Friends of the Library used book store and the first library system self check-out system.

It is not only nagging, it comes in the way of your professional growth and development. The fact that you don’t feel like coming to work every single day because you know that it’s going to be the same story all over again is stating the obvious, but there are deeper ramifications of this phenomenon.

Also in the works is a renovation project for the Island branch library which will celebrate a 30th anniversary next year. On the list: a new ceiling, updated lighting, improved electrical outlets, ADA water fountains and circulation desk, an increased number of data lines and various abatements.


These improvements have come at a time when budgets are tight but the library system has taken time to carefully evaluate

HR Corner Dealing with Micromanagement

We know how painful it can be to have someone breathing down your neck all the time. I remember a time when one of my pathologically micromanaging managers asked about the status of something before he sent out a mail telling me what has to be done in the first place. Needless to say, he wasn’t my manager for long.

You’re constantly under stress. You are unconsciously wishing that your manager is on leave that day. You want to break free. You want to move jobs. You may end up making wrong career choices under duress. There are certain things that you CAN try. Read on to learn about how to tackle the problem.

Simplest things Arrive 10 minutes early before your boss and leave 10 minutes late, take a shorter lunch break if possible. Produce quality work. Check with her and update her about work before she has a chance to check on you, preferably once in the morning, afternoon and once before you leave. You might ask why do you have to do all this when the problem is with the supervisor’s attitude, but hey… who’s feeling the heat? Escalating the problem might also seem like a simple step if you really think the pressure is too much to take. Think of all the possible repercussions first. Do you have sufficient facts to back your case? Dissociate Understand that micromanagers are generally type A people with high expectations. More often than not they don’t do it because they like to trouble you, but rather because they are compelled to. They have problems with delegating tasks without retaining control, because they feel like their job will be axed for any failure. They may fear losing their job -- or worse -- taking the company down. Avoid taking it personally. Think that you’re trying to help someone who needs help. Stay aware, informed. Learn their tendencies. Ask them all the details required to perform a particular job or task up front before starting on it. Predict things that make them micromanage you and counter them before they get a chance. In order to do this you need to maintain a weekly journal highlighting the reason they tend to bother you with the most. Based on that information, build your manager’s confidence by giving them a dose of the updates they are usually looking for themselves. This way they will see in you an employee who knows exactly what he is doing and he will begin to leave you to your work.


Help your boss Don’t retaliate too hard and too fast. Help your boss change one micromanagement habit at a time. If you wish to communicate your unease, do not do so without highlighting your own strengths and accomplishments. It is very

easy for a micromanager to jump from one task to another without realizing how much effort you have put in, therefore make sure you both agree that you have done well. Anticipate potential problems and find solutions before they become a problem for him. Ask your boss what is missing or what would they like to see happen on the work front. Break the task down into smaller tasks A combined activity that the micromanager and the micromanaged can do is to devise a communication plan wherein the task is divided into smaller sub-tasks and the time lines for each sub-task are shared on their calendars. This way the micromanager will think twice before barging in on the employee and the employee can set his own pace at the beginning of the task. Offer feedback If you’re brave enough and think they’re open to it, let them know how they’re affecting you with micromanagement, and offer specific examples. “When you asked me three times for the status on that report, I felt like you didn’t trust me to get it finished, and as a result, I wasn’t super motivated to complete it.” This isn’t a conversation for 4:30 p.m. on a Friday. Schedule time with the manager, let them know up front that you want to discuss the style and details of your working relationship, and that your goal is to help make it better. Turn it to them When you illustrate that feedback, ask them “How can I make you feel better informed about my projects or progress so that you can focus on the things you need to get done?” Acknowledging that they have other responsibilities that might need their attention can help them realize they’re messing too much in the dirty details.

Pick your battles Not everything is worth arguing over. If you create a war over everything that irritates you, you won’t get anyone’s attention when you really do speak up about something important. Reward good behavior When micromanagers let you work on your own, thank them for it. “Thanks for trusting me to put together the plan for the campaign. It was great to have the time and space to get it done on time, so here it is.” Subtly reinforce the behavior you do want by being available, positive and accommodating when you’re given some breathing room. And when you get some slack, deliver. Don’t hang yourself with the rope, or you’ll never win their trust again. Look in the mirror Is it just you being treated this way, or is there a consistent pattern with this person across your whole team? We’re not always blameless, so it’s important to consider what role you might be playing in your manager’s behavior. Are you contributing to it with a lack of communication, attitude, work ethic, or otherwise? Being honest with yourself can help you get some clarity around a solution.

The Breaking Point There is such a thing as the time when you have to walk away. If you’ve tried some constructive, objective methods for dealing, and you aren’t getting anywhere, it might be time to seek greener pastures. When do you know it’s time? If your personal life suffers, be it your sleep habits, eating habits, or relationships with spouses or children. If you’re withdrawing from friends, avoiding social situations, or finding yourself feeling depressed, you’ve got to pay attention to how your work environment affects those things.


If you’ve lost all passion and motivation for the work itself, and simply can’t face going

to work in the morning, you have to listen to why that is. If your manager is playing a large part in that equation, you need to take action to either work on the situation, or get out of it. If you ask yourself “is this fixable?” and the answer is no, it’s time to start laying out a plan for what’s next. And remember this: you are not a powerless victim, here. You are not imprisoned in your job, and you have the ability to rely on your own actions to get out of it. The question is what you’re willing to do now to change your situation for the long term, because ultimately, you aren’t going to change the people around you. You’ve got the tools, and you deserve to work in an environment that’s healthy, supportive and conducive to doing great work. Take charge of your universe, take a deep breath and grab hold of the opportunity to improve your professional situation. Good luck!

Nationwide Focus on Saving Water and Money By Jack Tichenor, Manatee County Agriculture & Extension Service

Smart Irrigation highlights simple practices and innovative technologies to:

• Make maintaining green spaces easy and convenient; • Minimize over watering while keeping lawns, gardens and landscapes beautiful and healthy; • Save money on utility bills; • Help protect community water supplies for today and the future.

Shrub bed - Water separately

For more information about how the Manatee County Agriculture and Extension Service can help Manatee homeowners, businesses and property managers, visit us online or call (941)722-4524 or visit the office at 1303 17th Street W., Palmetto, FL 34221.

Property owners and managers typically over water, unintentionally wasting money every time they take out the hose or turn on the sprinklers. The University of Florida/Manatee County Extension Service Water Conservation Program (Extension Service) promotes smart water-saving practices year-round and offers these suggestions: • Plant and maintain low water use landscapes that will thrive in our climate and conditions. Using a technique called hydrozoning, plants can also be grouped into low, medium or high water needs and irrigated accordingly to save water and improve plant health.

Power Speakers of MCG congrats to our toastmasters!

• Incorporate non-irrigated hardscapes and mulched areas such as patios, service areas and pathways into the landscape.

• Check irrigation controllers for the correct date, time and for compliance with the current watering restrictions. • Make conventional irrigation controllers smarter by installing water-saving technology:


• Learn how to apply the above practices and more at free classes and from educational

• Use low volume micro-irrigation to precisely apply very small amounts of water to gardens, trees and shrubs in mulched beds, minimizing evaporation and waste.

• Periodically inspect irrigation system in operation for over spray onto streets, drives, buildings, etc., for leaks, dry areas and broken sprinklers, and for overgrown grass, shrubs and limbs that block spray patterns.

Rain sensor shut-off switch

to schedule this free, personalized irrigation system evaluation. • Make use of Manatee County Utilities Dept. rebates for qualifying customers for making recommended water-saving improvements.

Being a member of Toastmasters is more than just showing up at meetings and giving a speech now and then. You’re part of a fun, supportive group of co-workers with common goals of self-development. And it’s not all about public speaking, either. Toastmasters is a place where you can hone your leadership and communication skills simultaneously, while joining a worldwide network of members who are doing the same thing you’re doing, one week at a time.

-rain sensor shut off switches prevent watering after an adequate rain; -soil moisture sensor control devices prevent irrigation when soil moisture is adequate; -real-time weather-based irrigation controls automatically adjust for weather and seasonal changes.

This past year we had several of Power Speakers of MCG Toastmasters reach their goals of Competent Communicator (CC), Competent Leadership (CL), Advanced Communicator Bronze (ACB) and Advanced Leadership Bronze (ALB). There are different leadership projects and speeches a member must complete before receiving an award.

• Audit irrigation systems to make sure water is being used effectively and make necessary adjustments. Contact the Extension Service

Competent Communicator (CC) When you finish all of the projects in the Competent Communicator Manual, you are

eligible for the Competent Communicator (CC) award. Competent Leader (CL) When you complete the Competent Leader manual, you are eligible for Competent Leader (CL) recognition.

Toastmasters Events

All meetings are on Fridays from 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

August 12 Public Works

1022 26th St. E. Bradenton August 19 County Admin Bldg Osprey Room August 25 Bake Sale in the Lobby 8 a.m. - 10 a.m. August 26 County Admin Bldg Osprey Room September 2 Public Works

1022 26th St. E. Bradenton Learn about Toastmasters by visiting us on the




Toastmasters may achieve the Advanced Communicator Bronze (ACB) once they have: -Achieved Competent Communicator award (or achieved Competent Toastmaster award) -Completed two Advanced Communication Series

Advanced Leadership Bronze (ALB) To be eligible for this award, a member must have: • Achieved new Competent Leader award • Achieved Competent Communicator award (or Competent Toastmaster award) • Served at least six months as a club officer (president, vice president education, vice president membership, vice president public relations, secretary, treasurer or sergeant at arms) and participated in the preparation of a Club Success Plan while serving in this office • While serving in the above office, participated in a district-sponsored club officer training program • Conducted any two presentations from The Successful Club Series and/or The Leadership Excellence Series The Toastmasters who achieved awards within the past year include: Sage Kamiya, Public Works- Competent Communicator Rossina Leider, Building & Development Services- Advanced Leader Bronze, Competent Leadership Jerson Lopez, Competent Communicator Mary Moeller, Competent Leader, Mentor Desoto Club and Appreciation Mentor Tropicana Stephanie Moreland, Building & Development Services - Advanced Communicator

Bronze Simone Peterson, Neighborhood ServicesAdvanced Communicator Bronze, Advanced Leader Bronze, Competent Leader Kelli Polanski, Natural Resources- Competent Communicator, Competent Leader Phyllis Strong, Building & Development Services - Competent Communicator Sharon Tarman, Building & Development Services - Advanced Communicator Bronze, Competent Leader Olga Wolanin, Utilities - Advanced Communicator Bronze, Competent Leader Renee Isom, Public Safety - Competent Communicator, Competent Leader Congrats and we look forward to next year’s achievements.

Kudos Corner

To view the kudos information, click on the link which will take you to the PDF file on the iNet. July 2011 Building & Development Services Sandy Tudor, Floodplain Investigator John Parks, Development Review Tech Community Services Gladys Rumph, Client Services Coordinator Neighborhood Services Ericka Dow, Librarian I Erin Cartwright, Librarian I Kevin Beach, Librarian III Marion Hayes, Librarian III Ava Ehde, Library Services Manager Judy Mullen, Library II Stacy Reyer, Librarian I Linda Sell, Librarian III Inez Tamanaha, Island Branch Manager Flo Ellis, Library Aide Public Works Brian Martineau, Senior Engineering Specialist Lana Gostkowski, Field Operations Chief John Muscato, Maintenance Superintendent David Haile, Maintenance Superintendent Public Safety Dave Hubbard, Radio Communications Manager George Morgan, Radio Tech Timothy Raines, Charge Paramedic Marlin Yoder, EMT

Calendar of Events Click here to view the Parks & Recreation Department Programs & Activities

Florida Women in Government Professional Development, Community Service & Empowerment. FWG Upcoming Events Regular Meeting Wed. Aug. 10 12 p.m. - 1 p.m. Guest Speaker: Nicole Rhody, Mote Marine Manatee Room Downtown Admin. Bldg.

Rising Stars Events Social Event Friday, August 12 5 p.m. - 8 p.m. Tour of Marine Rescue Facility & All You Can Eat Fish & Chips $9.99/person Rising Stars on the iNet

Florida Women in Government (FWG), Inc. is a non-profit, self-sustaining organization dedicated to the professional and educational development of individuals employed in the government sector. FWG, Inc. is not political and holds no political ideologies or agendas. FWG, Inc. was organized in 1964 at the request of city managers in the state of Florida who desired a professional development program for their female employees. Fifty charter members formed the organization originally known as Florida Association for Governmental Secretaries. Continuous growth, resulting in a more diverse membership, warranted a name change to reflect the challenges and growth of women in the governmental workplace. In 1983, the Association became known as Florida Women in Government and was incorporated in 1988. Current members are from all levels and areas of government. The organization is open to any government employee in the state of Florida. The membership of FWG, Inc. is composed of employees, officials and supporters spanning a range of professions including city/county commissioners, secretaries, budget officers, office managers, tax collectors and many others. FWG, Inc. consists of three chapters within four districts that hold regular meetings in their respective cities/counties through out Florida. For members interested in community service, FWG, Inc. supports domestic shelters. Members donate time, goods and money to these shelters across the state. “Empowerment Through Education”


FWG, Inc., annual statewide educational conference is held and thousands of dollars

of scholarships are awarded to members and/or their immediate families. The annual conference provides several days of educational sessions providing a great professional development opportunity, as well as a chance to network with colleagues from across the state. The organization also sponsors local chapters to assist in furthering its objectives. If you would like to join FWG or just find out more information about the organization, we hold meetings on the 2nd Wednesday of every month from 12 p.m. - 1 p.m. or contact the President of the Greater Manatee Chapter of FWG, Lynn Pierce.

Rising Stars Events Update By Nick Azzara, County Administrator’s Office

An exciting few months lie ahead for the Manatee County Rising Stars. Tomorrow (Aug. 12) we’ll have a social event at the Café on the Beach. The plan is to meet at COB at 4:30 p.m., then catch an Anna Maria Trolley down to the new Marine Rescue Facility on Bradenton Beach. We’ll take a quick tour of the new building, then hop on a northbound Trolley back to the Café for dinner and beverages. On Friday, Sept. 23 we’re planning a 2:30 p.m. business meeting and tour of the Palmetto Library. The Events Committee thought this would be a good opportunity to tour another County facility, as well as to see the resources available Manatee County residents and employees as well. Once the weather cools off a bit in October we’re going to take a kayak tour around Robinson Preserve. We’re planning to meet at Robinson at 1 p.m. on Oct. 23. More information will be available at the next Rising Stars business meeting. We don’t have a date picked out for our November meeting yet, but we’re planning on taking a tour of the Judicial Center downtown. The building – Manatee County’s tallest – was completed in 2008. At 268,000 square feet, the structure holds 19 courtrooms and five hearing rooms, all essential improvements over the old courthouse.

Meanwhile, committees continue to work toward their goals. In coming months, there should be some exciting developments, particularly from the Mentoring committee which is hard at work developing a countywide mentoring program with real promise. These events come on the heels of several other successful business and social meetings. In June, a group of nearly 40 Stars and their families showed up to the AMI Bowling Lanes off Cortez Road. (Please don’t ask to see my embarrassing scorecard.) Almost as many Stars showed up to our July business meeting to tour the County’s Emergency Operations Center and Public Safety Building.

Final Word “A difficult situation like this presents our organization with a unique opportunity to shine.” Our friends at the United Way recently made that alarming announcement that Manatee Community Food Bank supply is nearly depleted. The struggling economy has resulted in fewer donations but an even greater need for the Food Bank’s valuable service. The Bank experiences extra challenges during the summer months when children of low-income families don’t have the breakfast and lunch provided during the school year. Organizations around Manatee County are being asked to donate non-perishable food items and money to purchase food. A difficult situation like this presents our organization with a unique opportunity to shine.


At the end of July I gave the direction to proceed with a friendly competition to collect as much food for the Food Bank at several County facilities around the area. If your facility does not have a collection barrel, take food to the nearest building that has one. Or, if you think your building has enough willing donors to fill a barrel, call food bank director Cindy Sloan at 747-FOOD (3663) to request a barrel.

We’re not keeping score, so there’s no real winner in the competition but I hope you’ll find it gratifying to give what you can. If you live near or work in any of the locations listed on the iNet, please consider giving dropping off canned goods and other non-perishable items in the barrels provided. The Food Bank will collect the barrels as they’re filled throughout August. If you choose not to give at work, please consider doing so at another location. Non-perishable food and monetary donations can be delivered to the Food Bank at 811 23rd Ave. E. in Bradenton. Publix has food barrels in each of its local stores for collecting donated food as it is purchased. Monetary donations go a long way, as well. A simple $1 contribution enables the Food Bank to purchase 6 lbs. of food for needy families. My hope is, by the end of August Manatee County Government will have collected enough food and donations to stock the Food Bank for many weeks. Please join me in supporting this important cause.

ManateE-zine August 2011  

For many it was the first time they had bowled in years and for others like Commissioner Whitmore, it was their first time bowling ever. Reg...

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