We are excited to announce the acquisition of Vision Engineering & Planning, a transportation planning and engineering DBE firm with offices in Columbia, MD and Atlanta, GA.
Ethics are an important topic for all of us, and when issues arise, it’s a serious matter. If I were to have an ethical violation in one state, all the other states where I’m licensed would be notified, and there might be penalties to face in both locations. Because ethics can pose such serious issues that we all need to be reminded about, over the past few months, I’ve done eight presentations on the topic to various groups.
I have personally been interested in the topic for a long time, and I learned a lot about character and ethics from my grandmother. In my very first engineering job, I worked for a company where there were ethical issues, and I chose to leave that firm because of the things I was seeing. Things were much different when I came to Sain Associates, and before becoming President and CEO, I served as our Corporate Ethics Officer. I still fill that role today.
I try my best to keep up with the laws and code of ethics for each of the 21 states where I’m licensed as a professional engineer (P.E.) and for our professional organizations, such as the Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE). Each of these states and organizations has their own code of ethics. The rules can change and are often updated, so it’s important to revisit them regularly.
In every profession, not just engineering, there are many ethical issues that can come up when doing business. Here are some of the more common situations we’ve seen in recent years.
So as Sain’s Corporate Ethics Officer, what have I learned when it comes to handling ethical practice issues? I definitely have some advice.
When you boil it all down, we want to run our business the right way and in an ethical manner. Most people do. Forengineers, this means that our primary obligation is the public health, safety and welfare. That obligation must come first in every decision we make. The client’s interests and the profession’s interests come next. The last priority is our own personal interests.
Here’s one of my favorite ethics quotes and one that my grandmother taught me well: “The man of integrity walks securely, but he who walks crooked paths will be found out.” Proverbs 10:9
Sain Associates, Inc., is headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama, with offices in 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.