Eric Wood is our featured associate this month. [...]
When we joined Sain Associates many years ago, we saw an opportunity to make some changes to the company culture when it came to partnering with other firms in the industry.
The culture had been more about self-sustainability on all projects, but we both felt very strongly about changing that. We were interested in not only working with engineers inside the company but partnering with other firms and consultants even if we might sometimes compete with them.
When we implemented this philosophy, we started to see many benefits. We give other firms work that is outside of our expertise and they also give us work that’s outside of theirs. Simply stated, we work together and help each other to achieve mutual success.
It works well especially when it comes to transportation projects. We have specialties in land surveying and traffic engineering services which very few other firms have. Because of that, we are able to provide traffic engineering consulting and land surveying to our competitors. Examples of areas where we don’t specialize are geotechnical engineering and bridge design. So we might hire a competitor to help us with those parts of a project.
We always try to partner with other firms that share the same values that we have, and we want to build trust with them. We are open and honest about the fact that we’re not looking to steal clients or employees. We’ve never done that and don’t plan to.
We’ve really tried to change the perception that other firms in your industry are competitors. We see them as partners and want them to be successful. We want our industry to be successful. The collaboration is all about sharing ideas about work and how we run our businesses. It’s about how we can all be better and be successful. It’s a different way of looking at things, but we think the benefit to those involved is huge.
To our knowledge, there aren’t many other firms out there operating with this philosophy. It makes Sain Associates unique, and we hope we’ve built a reputation in the industry that allows people to trust us and see us as a valuable partner. Over the years we have definitely seen that as we help others, they in turn help us as well.
Sain Associates, Inc., is headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama, with offices in Cullman, Alabama, Pulaski, Tennessee and Mandeville, Louisiana. Sain is a site engineering, traffic/transportation engineering and planning and land surveying firm with experience in more than thirty states.