RECENT ARTICLES
  • What Did You Learn This Last Year?

    by Tom Grandy December 2018

    Most of us have heard, "Do you have thirty years' experience or one year of experience repeated thirty times?" The other one we have heard is, "The definition of insanity is 'Doing the same thing over and over again while expecting different results!'" The point is the same in either case. Are we learning and changing?

    As the new year begins soon, it's important to reflect on our victories as well as our failures. What did the company do really well over the past year, and, just as...

  • Disciplining Employees: What to Keep in Mind

    by Erik Taylor December 2018

    One of the most challenging things you take on as a manager is disciplining employees. You have to walk a fine line: If you’re too easy on them, you won’t be taken seriously, and if you come down too hard, you’ll have a lot of turnover.

    Turnover is especially important to consider. It’s a job candidate’s market right now, meaning employees are hard to find in just about any line of work — but for the trades in particular. Given the time and training it takes to get a new person up...

  • Giving Thanks Year-Round Can Help Business

    by AQUA Editors December 2018

    Gratitude should not stop after Thanksgiving is over. In fact, we should be giving thanks all year-round, especially business owners. According to the National Association of Landscape Professionals, showing gratitude can strengthen business relationships, extend goodwill and even re-establish one’s brand.

    Here are ways employers can best say “thank you” to their customers and employees to benefit business.

    THANKING YOUR CUSTOMERS

    Customers, new or old, help to...

  • Courage and Experimentation

    by Eric Herman November 2018

    Juxtaposition, contrast and even contradiction – all are words that describe this impressive design by Bradley Renken, president of Hearthstone Luxury Pools + Outdoors in Marietta, Ga. To that list, Renken also adds...

  • All Precision, No Pretention

    by Barrett Kilmer November 2018

    The following content is supported by one of our advertising partners. To learn more about sponsored content, click here.

    They say everything is bigger in Texas, and that goes double for Dallas. The Big D is the largest city in a state synonymous with size. It’s also home to Pool Environments, an award-winning builder that operates out of an...

  • Elevating Installations

    by Eric Herman November 2018

    Pools and spas that never touch the ground can be both challenging and risky to install. The elevation itself is, of course, a big part of what makes these installs so complex, but there's also the building's structural integrity to consider. Leaks are a major risk factor in such projects — just imagine what could happen if an elevated pool leaked into the floors below.

    Overcoming those obstacles requires working to an elevated standard of construction, as well as possibly turning...

  • Understanding Energy-Efficient Filtration

    by Eric Herman November 2018

    Hydraulic efficiency, variable-speed pump technology in particular, has enabled pool owners to significantly lower power consumption — a boon for consumers, the industry, regulators and lawmakers alike.

    Yet variable-speed pumps are really only part of the story. While the ability to adjust pump speed opens the door to a variety of energy efficiencies in the backyard, there is also the matter of the resistance the system provides — also known as the head loss, measured as total...

  • The Wheels on the Pool Go Round and Round...

    by Abigail Carpenter November 2018

    French artist Benedetto Bufalino is finding new and unique ways to be sustainable by reusing objects in unconventional ways. He has built tennis courts on top of semi trucks, turned phone booths into fish tanks and now, in his latest conversion, transformed an old camper into a mobile swimming pool.

    The project was produced as part of an annual series at Le Confort Moderne in Poitiers, France. As always, Bufalino wanted his audience to re-examine things they might take for granted...

  • Gone Fishing

    by Eric Herman November 2018

    As the economy slowly healed after the Great Recession, the pool and spa industry saw encouraging signs of improvement. Phones were ringing again. Retail stores bustled with business. Consumer confidence was growing stronger and property values were escalating.

    Yet despite these positive signs, for some industry pros it's been difficult to let go of the recession mindset. Out of an abundance of caution, many industry pros are retaining the lean staffing practices of the recession,...

  • The Mod Squad

    by Dana Robinson November 2018

    The well-dressed backyard once consisted of a few plastic lawn chairs, a picnic table and a modest charcoal grill. Today, the Joneses have stepped up their game considerably, as the backyard has gone from a mere patch of grass to a hub of entertaining — a space that plays host to everything from children's birthday bashes to elegant evening dinner parties.

    Today, outdoor kitchens are a big part of that backyard aesthetic. By allowing the homeowner to prepare and serve meals...