Editor Greg Ettling shares his thoughts on drilling- related topics.

On the trade show floor are (l-r) Henry Boyd and Julie Bullock of Boyd Artesian Well Co., Carmel, N.Y., and Stan Griffis of Griffis Drilling Specialists, Alachua, Fla.
Just got back from the National Ground Water Association's annual Ground Water Expo, where the overall mood was one of unwavering confidence and understated enthusiasm. The overwhelming majority of those we spoke with anticipate nothing but good things for 2004. That doesn't mean there aren't challenges - and serious ones at that. But as is to be expected, the people who make up the drilling industry are eager to meet them head-on and work through them for the benefit of all concerned.

You'll get the full report on the show in next month's issue. In the meantime, we'll have a special Web page at www.drilleronline.com featuring a slew of photographs that we took at the expo - see if we caught you in the act.

The Industry's Future

The Illinois Association of Groundwater Professionals (IAGP) has announced the winners of its inaugural scholarship awards. Two young gentlemen have been rewarded for demonstrating academic excellence, active involvement in extracurricular activities and an interest in pursuing careers closely related to the ground water industry. Both winners currently work for water well companies while attending school.

Joseph William Dunn, an engineering student at Sauk Valley Community College, has experience working in the water well industry, which has made him “greatly aware that the industry incorporates many engineering principles.”

Kyle Thomas, also attending Sauk Valley Community College, is a mechanical engineering student. Citing his grandfather as a role model, Thomas' goal is to have a positive impact on the trucking industry.

Congratulations - to both the scholarship winners and the IAGP.

Your services are extremely valuable; don't insult yourself, your customer or your profession by giving them away.

Raise Those Prices

It appears that drilling contractors are taking Wayne Nash's second favorite rant to heart - most plan to raise their prices this year. A full 69 percent of those responding to our Web poll tell us that they will be charging more for their products and services in 2004. Twenty-one percent say that their prices will remain the same and 10 percent plan on a price decrease.

Don't be afraid to charge a fair price. If you don't charge enough, people often will think, “If he has to discount his prices to make the deal, there might be something inferior about his products and services.”

On Perfection

Ernest T. Baker, Jr., a hydrologist/geologist emeritus from Austin, Texas, wrote to express his appreciation for a recent column by our “Smart Business” editor, Jim Olsztynski:

Thanks for your article, “Perfectionism - Is it a Good Thing?” in National Driller (November 2003 issue, page 11). It is the best explanation that I have ever seen on the subject. I was evaluated years ago in Denver during one of our training sessions, and my answers to the questionnaire showed me to be a perfectionist. The causes of perfectionism, as you pointed out, are right on target. I had just not ever seen it in print before. I showed the article to my wife, especially the various negative feelings, thoughts and beliefs that may be associated with perfectionism. Thanks again for an excellent article.

To re-emphasize the article's point - perfectionism is not a helpful or necessary influence in our lives. Besides, when drilling contractors show up at the pearly gates, St. Peter already has a special express lane reserved for them. (And if it happens that you get there before us, and it's not too much trouble, kindly put in a good word for National Driller's slightly-less-than-perfect editors.) ND