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Lawn Sprinkler Installation, Service and Maintenance

Ryan Jardine Named “40 Under 40” Award Winner by Omaha’s “Midlands Business Journal”

Editor’s Note: This is one of a series of profiles featuring Omaha’s Midlands Business Journal 40 Under 40 award winners — entrepreneurs, business owners, managers and professional men and women under 40 years of age. The 2012 awards were co-sponsored by Lockton Cos. and Northwest Bank.

ryanRyan Jardine, the founder, owner and president of Quality Irrigation, learned two important lessons early. He learned how to prioritize tasks carefully and use his time productively.
But it wasn’t always that easy for Jardine.
“I experienced a setback when I failed my final year of college,” he said. “I skipped a couple finals because my job was taking so much of my time. I learned to stay focused on my prioritized goals and to make sure I was not spreading myself too thin.”
He later graduated with a degree in business management from UNO, starting his business in 2003.
Jardine makes a list of the top five things he wants to get done every day, trying to complete the top goal on the list first.
“It’s very easy to be busy, but very hard to be busy doing just the thing that will make the best use of your time and help you achieve your goals,” he said. “Admittedly, sometimes you have to fill in with an easy task just to relieve the pressure and feel like you’re accomplishing something.”
Quality Irrigation designs, installs and services sprinkler systems for residential and commercial customers.
He said one of his proudest moments came when the Greater Omaha Chamber named his company “Small Business of the Year” in 2012.
“The people and programs offered by the chamber have been inspirational and useful to me,” he said.
Active in the chamber, he is a member of its executive dialogue group, the membership committee, and the small business council.
“Larry Gomez (of the chamber) was awesome,” Jardine said. “He helped me in so many ways.”
Jardine decided he wanted to run his own business when, as a youngster he “hung around” his grandparents fire sprinkler business, where his father and uncle also worked.
“The idea of being able to do what I want to do when I want to do it was motivating,” he said. “Of course, in reality, you work more rather than less when you own a business. But you’re always chasing that rainbow and that’s what keeps you on task.”
He said the challenges of his business include “too much work and not enough dedicated and committed people to keep up with the demand, being as efficient and effective as we can in everything we do, and constantly looking for new and better ways to do accomplish tasks.”
Employers should “treat their employees like volunteers, because, despite the fact that they are compensated, they choose to work for you,” he said.
One trend in the irrigation business is an increasing concern with both the cost of water and the need to conserve “that precious resource,” Jardine said. “I’ve noticed that during the recession, people have learned to spend money more wisely — to be concerned about what may seem a small amount. If a client can save $50 a month by using more efficient irrigation systems, he is now more likely to see that the savings will multiply over time.”
Jardine has read more than 150 books on various aspects of business management and motivation since he graduated from college.
“I wasn’t much of a reader while in school,” he said. “A friend and mentor, Aaron Adams, steered me in the direction of reading books. I learned that everything you need is out there, you just have to go out and find it.”
The hard part is applying what you learn to your daily life, he said.
In addition to running his business, he is an active member in many civic associations and has participated in numerous business leadership programs, including Dale Carnegie training, the Emyth Mastery program and Gallup’s Entrepreneur Acceleration System, from which he graduated.
Jardine and his wife, Amber, recently celebrated their second anniversary. In addition to spending time with his wife, he enjoys fishing, especially competitive bass fishing.

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