Editor's Points

It’s January, so like most magazine editors, my topic this month will be on resolutions for the new year. I do, however, realize that most of us won’t a.) make them; or b.) fulfill them.
We all have great intentions to commit to solving problems, attacking challenges and improving ourselves in various ways. But what are the chances that our goals on paper or in mind will pan out? Let’s be realistic.

When I began running (which I rarely do anymore), I vowed to hit the pavement five days a week. In actuality, I made it outside about two days a week. See, I overcommitted right off the bat. And before my son’s arrival into this world last fall, my husband and I had a list of things we wouldn’t allow in our parenting. Well, you can probably imagine that not all of those items were followed. We weren’t realistic.

I have, however, kept up with my yoga practice--at least minimally--mostly because I just plain enjoy it. So when it comes to New Year’s resolutions, we need to be honest in our approaches. Here are some things to keep in mind, with the hope that it makes for easier-to-follow promises.

Be Realistic. Don’t overcommit in terms of time, money, space and other resources. You’ll find yourself disappointed. And don’t make promises that depend wholly on other people--they may not be reliable and you’ll find your goal unfulfilled.

Start Small and Simple. Give yourself a range to work with, whether that be for services, products sold, jobs accepted, promises to employees or employers, etc. Begin to attack that goal from the small end. Think about how your goals could affect others. Don’t plan to build an empire; start with the cavalry.

Go With Your Heart. If anyone has heart, it’s a surveyor. If your heart is in your activity, you can accomplish it. Rarely does anyone accomplish something that he or she is not “into.” Passion drives most people.

Go With Your Gut. Analyze what is most probable to be accepted by your employees, employer, clients, the profession or the public at large. Is your goal even of value? If not, why bother?

Enjoy Yourself. Our greatest accomplishments stem from our desire to do them. If you enjoy doing something, you’re more apt to stick with it--perhaps to the end. If you can find others who share in your enjoyment, all the better! I’ve heard numerous stories from surveyors who have gathered together to find an historic monument for sheer kicks, to solve a puzzle or to help on a survey job.

Whether your resolutions involve you individually, your position as a surveyor or mapper, your company (whether yours or your employer’s), your division or department, or the profession in general, be realistic in setting your goals and setting out to accomplishing them.

And if you’re looking for some things to do this year, check out the list on page 20 as a start; these items (and more) face the surveying and mapping profession today and need passionate, driven, smart individuals to help accomplish them.

The good news for surveyors and mappers is that 2007 looks bright. The majority of surveyors will remain busy, as they were in 2006. Content throughout this issue highlights the many positive opportunities and advancements for the profession, including machine control technology, RTK network expansion, successful trade shows, new products and a new national readjustment of NAD83. There’s much more to come--and you may be a driving force of it…if you're realistic.

Here’s to a great New Year!

To contact the editor, send an E-mail to or mail to 2401 W. Big Beaver Rd., Ste. 700, Troy, MI 48084.

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