Question Your Biases

Question Your Biases

Last week, the South–and the world, really–lost a great thinker. Harper Lee, author of To Kill a Mockingbird, used storytelling to address the particularly sensitive topic of inequality in a time when discussion was taboo. In the process, she changed the hearts of many. I ran across this video list of inspiring quotes from the [Read More]

On Networking and Karma.

On Networking and Karma.

Networking. At times, it’s the most elusive part of any business and probably the hardest to master effectively. I’ve learned a few things over the years, both from networking the wrong way and also from building some solid relationships. I think my # 1 lesson learned is that networking is highly individual to the person [Read More]

Why Floors Sweat (and Other Unpleasant Moisture Issues)

Why Floors Sweat (and Other Unpleasant Moisture Issues)

I can think of two projects, one in Miami and one on the Gulf Coast, were we found ourselves with unusual quantities of moisture sitting on the slab, within in the top portions. The folks on both of these jobs were not familiar with atmospheric conditions inside buildings and were hell bent that it was moisture coming [Read More]

If Opportunity Doesn’t Knock, Build a Better Door

If Opportunity Doesn’t Knock, Build a Better Door

Milton Berle was on to something when he said those words. In 1984, our very first customer had just raised $30 million dollars through an IPO and we were going to build all their projects in the U.S. I was in my early 30s and life was good. We had enough work to last a [Read More]

No Matter How We Paint the Company…

No Matter How We Paint the Company…

This week I was reminded of something I’ve seen over and over through my years in business. Cost and quality are important, but all things being equal, we will make our “buy” decision by the person with whom we deal, not necessarily the company they work for. Our greatest assets are not in the bank, but our [Read More]

Omit Needless Words

Omit Needless Words

Of all the classroom books I have met, few have had as much everyday impact as Strunk and White’s “The Elements of Style,” a classic handbook on composition published in 1918. The infamous rule #13 stating, “Omit needless words,” is a practice revered by journalists and novelists, as it should be by anyone using the [Read More]

How to Be Successful

How to Be Successful

That’s a lofty title, I know. I’m the first to admit that I don’t know everything, but 31 years in business has taught me a thing or two about working and life. A few thoughts worth sharing: Be productive when the inspiration strikes. I’ve been known to send emails in the middle of the night. I [Read More]

It’s About the Little Things

It’s About the Little Things

We have a project that involves two engineering consultants of the same discipline. One of the engineering firms has an overlay for the larger project, but it was appropriate for us to hire another engineer for our portion. At the start, it seemed it would be a rocky road. I suspect this was because the engineer [Read More]

Manners as a Motivator

Manners as a Motivator

In our industry, I’ve found that many times folks use too much stick and not enough carrot. Let me explain. Because of tight deadlines and performance pressures, resulting in little time, the industry tends to cater to impersonal emails at best, and raised voices at worst. Perhaps we could all practice better manners and carve [Read More]

A Part of Every New Year’s Resolution

A Part of Every New Year’s Resolution

In certain years, both Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron were home run kings who to this day are looked up to as quality players. Other times, they led the league in strike outs. My wish for you, and really all of us, is that 2015 be a year that we allow ourselves to make mistakes [Read More]