The Business Side

December 2006

It is always a pleasure to read articles such as the not-so-distant article by Milton Denny, PLS [titled] “Technology Clash.” In the past few years, I have attended several seminars [that] bring pin farms out of the closet. As the articles and seminars that discuss precision and accuracy increase, hopefully more PLSs will put more effort into enlightening the field crews on this topic. This goes hand in hand with the firm directive to first look thoroughly for property monumentation, locate the monumentation, return the information to the office, compute missing corners, return to search for them, and finally, after corner positions have been reestablished upon return to the field, to set the corner to again search with a metal detector, etc. to assure that no corner exists near the location of the new marker to be set. If a corner is found near the marker to be set, it obviously should be located and the information brought back to the office for reconsideration and possible acceptance. Yes, this impacts the budget and bottom line, but we should all know the professional course of action that should be followed when discovering property monumentation.

The irony of this is that while attending a recent Pennsylvania State Land Surveyors Conference, a gentleman at the convention center asked me if I was a surveyor. After replying that I was, he asked, “Why can’t you surveyors ever agree on the same corner?” We need to stop creating these pin farms for many reasons (unless the marker is clearly erroneous), not the least of these being that the public also sees these pin farms and rightfully wonders what the surveyor was thinking.

Tom Farcht Jr., PLS

Technology Benchmark

March 2007

I agree [that] getting to know your clients is the way to ensure business. Build trust, prove to them you are in town for the long haul. One way I found to do that was joining my local Chamber of Commerce and attending the after-hours functions. It didn’t take long and I was sitting on the board, and to date I have been the president of the chamber for four years. Everyone in town now knows me and I have been in business on my own for [more than] 10 years. I also sit on two of the city’s boards and attend every city council meeting. Build the trust and they will come to you.

Stephen M. McMillen, PSM

Best article I [have] ever read in POB. THANK YOU. I need to think about your last sentence a bit before I answer [proposals to lift wages and profits for surveyors]. However, I do know that this article needs to be circulated around the profession again and again until everyone understands it.

Troy T. Tetsuka

GIAA Mailbag Tool Tips

March 2007

The major fallacy with Saarloos’ trigonometric topography technique is that the rod height must remain constant to utilize it. I change the rod height dozens of times during a topographic survey to see over cars, through trees, etc.

David Lindell, LS

The ideas and opinions expressed by our readers do not necessarily reflect those of POB. Send your thoughts to the editor at or mail to: Letters, POB magazine, 2401 W. Big Beaver Rd., Suite 700, Troy, MI 48084.