Episode 1

As ISG’s Professional Development Manager, part of my job is to understand the tasks of my fellow employee-owners, like taking a pen apart to inspect how each piece works. However, some jobs are much different than others, which I soon understood after shadowing members of our land survey team. For our talented surveyors, the ‘office’ is the varying terrain of a jobsite, software includes a sledgehammer and stakes, and emails are questions from contractors and clients. I quickly learned that being in the field is far different, and in many ways more satisfying, than sitting in an office.

Seeking to learn more about ISG land surveying at ISG, I set out to shadow Cody Meyer on an up-and-coming housing development in Dundas, Minnesota. Before I tell you about this story, there are a few things you must know about Cody that make him the perfect fit for his position: he has a passion for accurate land surveying, carries supreme knowledge of ISG’s extremely accurate survey technology, isn’t afraid to get his hands dirty, and practically skated over the terrain like Wayne Gretzky on ice.

When we arrived at the jobsite, our mission was to stake out the area by hammering elevation hubs into the ground. These hubs were planted with sub centimeter accuracy at .02 of a foot, thanks to ISG’s survey equipment, followed by the expertise and constant problem solving of our land survey team to ensure its exactness. Despite all of this fancy equipment that simplifies the life of a land surveyor, my only technology that day was a hammer. Willing to learn by volunteering, I fought through my constant hand cramps and hammered away, with Cody acting as my mentor – who, as a seasoned veteran, knows the endurance needed for this job.

In fact, one moment in particular truly shows the agility required by this team. While descending a steep embankment, which most of our surveyors would float down with ease, I took a much quicker approach to my descent…landing flat on my chin at the bottom. After gathering my thoughts, I opened my eyes to see Cody rushing over to make sure I wasn’t injured. Slowly getting up without a scratch (but covered in dirt), we both erupted in laughter. This showed me how hearty our land surveying team is.

While this may sound like back-breaking work, I left my first day of shadowing the team feeling satisfied. With a bit of a tan from being out in the sun all day, hands sore from hammering hubs, and covered in dirt from my tumble, I began to understand what drives the ISG land surveyors – they know their work is meaningful. They enjoy aiding contractors and clients alike, in an outdoor environment performing satisfying work. And we must keep in mind that this was only my first day. I have more stories to share about my adventures with ISG’s land survey team, be sure to look out for the next one – coming soon.

Meet Craig Kneeland