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News — 1204

Endangered ideas

1204 Category_Archives Chad Clinehens featured Leadership marketing Sales ZG Team

Endangered ideas

When your marketing people are not empowered to make big decisions, their great concepts often get parked in committees, where they die. Marketing is where the creativity is, right? Not always. Too many marketing departments in AEC firms are understaffed and underfunded. As a result, they are overloaded and only able to focus on the most urgent needs. This is the enemy of creativity. Too many firms with limited resources are stuck in an endless cycle of responding to RFQs and RFPs. These departments are often staffed with creative people who bring unique skills to the firm, and who could...

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Social mediocrity

1204 Category_Articles Chrstina Zweig Niehues featured social media

Social mediocrity

You might think a Facebook post about a stolen office stapler is cute, or that an Instagram photo of donuts in the breakroom is quaint. Think again. In my last article, we covered some tips for using social media in the AEC industry. Here’s an expansion on that with some humorous examples of what not to do. I’m not making these examples up. Every single one of these is something I’ve personally seen an A/E firm do. So please, don’t do any of the following: Self-promote all the time. “What?” you might say. “Isn’t that what marketing is about? I...

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Innovation in the AEC

1204 Category_Articles Category_Software + Tech Category_UAV + Surveying featured Innovation Jay Thornton Software + Tech SPAR 3D Expo Technology UAV + Surveying

Innovation in the AEC

If it flies, floats, or cruises the corridors of your local warehouse, you can get it in an autonomous variety – and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. I’m a pretty tech savvy guy but I’ll admit, I was way out of my league at the SPAR 3D Expo in Houston. In their own words, SPAR 3D has been the premier international event for the application of 3-D technology in our industry for close to two decades. Here are a few pieces of functional tech that caught my eye: 3-D Capture. Initially I assumed this meant imaging, but I...

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Dealing with eroding profitability

1204 A to Zweig Accounting Category_Articles eroding profitability featured Mark Zweig Morale reporting

Dealing with eroding profitability

Eroding profitability. Never good. Never fun. The result is less and less money to go around. I’m not going to talk about the obvious things such as labor costs that are too high, overly lavish offices, or too-generous comp-time policies. Those are the easy things to spot and I sure hope you don’t need our help with them (though we would be glad to do so if you need it!). That said, there are other factors to consider, including, but not limited to: Staff morale. Take a good look in the mirror. Are you doing anything to demotivate your staff?...

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Conference call: Doug McKeown

1204 accounts receivable Benefits Billing Board of Directors Category_Archives Doug McKeown Environmental + Sustainable Design featured Growth IT Liisa Andreassen M&A marketing Ownership Transition Proposals Recruiting Retention Woodard & Curran

Conference call: Doug McKeown

CEO of Woodard & Curran (Hot Firm #80 for 2016), a 1,000-person integrated engineering, science, and operations firm based in Portland, Maine. By Liisa Andreassen Correspondent “Live by the contract; never lose sight of it,” McKeown says. A conversation with Doug McKeown. The Zweig Letter: What’s your philosophy on fee/billing and accounts receivable? How do you collect fees from a difficult client? Doug McKeown: We haven’t had many issues in this department. Client selection helps. It also doesn’t hurt that 25 percent of our revenue is from long-term contracts in operations and management. We’ve also been doing more design-build work...

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