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News — 1186

Yours or theirs?

1186 Bernie Siben Category_Archives Client featured project ownership

In the A/E industry, it’s easy for PMs and firms to claim ownership of projects, but the only owners are the clients, and they always make the final call. Over the last four decades, I have worked with a lot of A/E firms that really believed that any project on which they worked was their project. The project manager believed it was his or her project. The project engineer thought it was his or her project. Everyone wanted to claim ownership. Actually, the project was always the owner’s project. The owner determines what the project is. The owner determines what...

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A worthwhile self-appraisal

1186 Best Firm Category_Articles featured HELIX Leader Liisa Andreassen Michael Schwerin

HELIX CEO Michael Schwerin headed into the New Year with double-digit profits and a strong book-to-bill ratio. By Liisa Andreassen Correspondent In 2001, Michael Schwerin started as an assistant environmental planning group manager with HELIX (#4 Best Firm Environmental for 2016) a 120-person firm based in La Mesa, California. Over time, his management responsibilities increased, and he went from assistant group manager to group manager to vice president. In 2008, the firm’s founder and first generation CEO retired. By that point, an internal ownership transition via an employee stock ownership plan was in place and he was selected from a...

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Get personal

1186 Category_Archives Environmental + Sustainable Design featured Johnston Training Group Project Managers Scott Johnston team interviews

There are four ways AEC project managers can shine in team interviews. Try them all and win more work. Juggler. Cat herder. Diplomat. They go by many names, but project managers have one of the toughest jobs in the AEC industry. On top of that, the selection panel members tell us the PM is the most important person in the interview, making the pressure even greater. “The PM must be a powerful, confident leader without coming across as arrogant or domineering. The selection panel will rarely select a PM who appears passive – they want someone who will direct the...

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The HR algorithm

1186 Category_Articles featured Innovation podcast programming Randy Wilburn Recruiting Technology

The HR algorithm

Taking a cue from Spotify, the recruiting industry is poised to create tailored playlists of design professionals looking for the ideal job. I love listening to music. I think I have a fairly diverse palate. I like jazz – Coltrane, Monk, and Davis. I like old school hip-hop – Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul, and Run D.M.C. I’m a huge fan of the Police and ‘80s bands like Dexys Midnight Runners, Devo, B-52’s, and the Talking Heads. I love Jamiroquai and the Brand New Heavies. And, I can even hang with opera – think Turandot and Maria Callas. It...

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Some things I’m thinking about right now

1186 A to Zweig advice Category_Articles communication employees featured Mark Zweig proposal successor

At nearly 59, I don’t sleep so well. My mind doesn’t shut off. So much to think about. Here’s some of what is keeping me awake right now: You have to get the right people in the right roles. This may create some stress or ruffle some feathers – especially if you end up with older people reporting to younger people. But you have to do it. And always try to promote from within whenever possible! Go outside every time you need a manager and you will kill morale. If you want a truly sustainable organization that provides real opportunities...

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