Michelle Blevins currently serves as the Editor and Chief for Restoration & Remediation (R&R) which is a leading industry publication for education, ideas and information relevant to professionals in the disaster restoration field. There is a wealth of information within the R&R website that is relevant to facilities, maintenance and risk management professionals such as those who are members of Local Facilities Manager's Connection (LFMC). We contacted Michelle through the world wide web and sat down with her through email to discuss her journey into this industry and the many resources available to the facilities management community through Restoration & Remediation.
LFMC: What was your journey into the restoration industry?
Michelle: My journey is a bit different since I am not actually a contractor. I have a bachelor’s degree in journalism and public relations (and a totally irrelevant minor in French - ha!) from Central Michigan University. The day I graduated, I moved to a small town in Northwest Indiana where I was hired as a reporter/editor/photographer for a small town newspaper - hello gossip and obituaries! From there, I moved into TV and worked my way up, eventually becoming the executive producer at a TV station in Northern Michigan (truly God’s country – it is so beautiful up there!) However, TV was never really my thing. My heart is in writing and storytelling, so that’s when I found and was hired at Restoration & Remediation. I’ve been with the brand about a year and a half and have truly fallen in love with this industry. I’m constantly in awe at the servant’s heart nearly every restorer has. It may sound cliché, but this is truly an industry unlike any other – and those who are in it should be very proud of what they do every day.
LFMC: What features and media options does your organization provide for relevant facilities management content?
Michelle: Restoration & Remediation really has a plethora of content related to restoration, remediation, facilities maintenance, IAQ, and more. We have a monthly print and digital magazine, plus a weekly eNewsletter and other eBlasts, videos, are active on social media, and see 15,000+ visitors to our website each and every month. Please take a moment to follow us on social media and join our ever-growing LinkedIn group! *Extensive R&R social media links at the conclusion of this article.
LFMC: If this is the first that a facilities manager is hearing of your organization, is there a specific resource that you all produce that you would recommend them to start with?
Michelle: I would suggest looking through our case studies. While they aren’t all necessarily specifically related to facilities management, a lot of them are all about problem solving in similar situations a facilities manager might face like standing water, mold, odors, and so on. They might offer a unique way of looking at a problem, and finding a solution.
LFMC: When you interact with facilities managers, what are some key areas that your organization can assist them to increase their library of resources?
Michelle: We are a library of resources! Many of our contributors, especially those you see in our videos, love to hear from R&R readers and are thrilled to answer questions and help in any way they can. If you find an article that seems to answer some questions, but you have more questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to the author. R&R wants to publish articles that help start up meaningful business conversations.
LFMC: Do you have an example of a funny or remarkable story that you recently covered?
Michelle: Oh boy. This is a tough one. Well, unrelated to facilities maintenance, but just a fascinating story, I would love to point you in the direction of a great case study R&R published this year on helping a third generation hoarder clean out his home. http://www.randrmagonline.com/articles/86970-a-tale-of-time-helping-a-third-generation-hoarder
Here’s an article perhaps a little more relatable to facilities maintenance. Have you ever had to get rid of cigarette smoke odor and residue from an office or other space? Here’s what it took to get Former House Speaker John Boehner’s office cleaned (he was a chain smoker): http://www.randrmagonline.com/articles/86804-first-order-of-business-odor-removal
LFMC: Anything else you would like our members to know about yourself, your organization and/or the resources you provide to the FM community?
Michelle: I certainly appreciate the opportunity to share all this information with you! Please, if you ever have questions or are looking for answers on something, don’t hesitate to shoot me an email! While I may not have the answer, I can hopefully get you in touch with someone who does! As Jon [Isaacson] would say, keep fighting the good fight!
Restoration & Remediation resource links:
Website – www.randrmagonline.com
Twitter – https://twitter.com/RnRMag
LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/groups/8137569
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/RandRMag
Youtube – https://www.youtube.com/user/RandRMagazine
Blog – http://www.randrmagonline.com/blogs
Print publication(s) – Subscribe here: https://www.sub-forms.com/dragon/init.do?site=BNP6089_Ronew&pk=W.HOME
Events – While R&R does not have our own trade show or event, we are active sponsors of DKI Insights, the RIA International Restoration & Industry Expo, Contractor Connection, and The Experience.
Education/training – Everything about R&R is about education and training. Here are some specific resources on our website:
Ask the Expert video columns: http://www.randrmagonline.com/videos?bctid=5187609615001#
Coach’s Corner video columns: http://www.randrmagonline.com/topics/3618-coachs-corner
Marketing Minute video columns: http://www.randrmagonline.com/topics/3619-marketing-minute
Ask Annissa video columns: http://www.randrmagonline.com/topics/3313-ask-annissa
On-Demand (and live) webinars: http://www.randrmagonline.com/events/category/2141
Business Management articles: http://www.randrmagonline.com/topics/2670-managing-your-restoration-business
Other – Mobile app! http://www.randrmagonline.com/apps
Jon Isaacson (LFMC) also has articles posted on R&R - http://www.randrmagonline.com/authors/2137-jon-isaacson
LFMC Articles in trade publications
Business Coaching & Consutling