Eric Wood is our featured associate this month. [...]
In recent weeks, we have talked about our new brand words trustworthy and experienced. This week, Becky White and Alicia Bailey will share their thoughts about the word “Forehanded.” As a principal of the firm and a team leader in our transportation division, they each have a unique perspective.
Becky White: “My personality is naturally predisposed to strategic and creative thinking, and I am wired to have a perspective that is future oriented. Thankfully, our firm places high importance on these areas, which I think is so important since the prototypical engineer is very focused on details and analytics. Those are great skills for problem solving, but they need to be balanced with openness to imagining new and different opportunities that are possible but not yet present.
Forehandedness is critical for the way we run our business and for the services we provide to our clients. As a firm, the business reality is that we will not survive long term if we don’t work today to be prepared for the future. Our clients expect that same forward-thinking approach from us as we deliver projects. A great consultant is one that anticipates clients’ needs and prepares proactively to meet them.
When we chose the word forehanded, we considered it to be an action word. It’s not just the aspect of anticipating the future but also of preparing and doing the work necessary to address future concerns before they become a problem. No one has a crystal ball for seeing the future, but just because we can’t always anticipate correctly doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try.”
Alicia Bailey: “When our principals and team leaders had a shaping session to help us come up with our brand words, we settled on proactive but determined that word did not totally embrace what we wanted to say. Further discussion led us to forehanded, which is perfect, because we want to be known for our ability to be visionary and anticipate problems before they occur, as well as be proactive.
We want to look out for our clients’ best interests while also maintaining our responsibility as professional engineers to protect the health and welfare of the public. Consultants are hired for a number of things, including to identify and evaluate our clients’ problems, figure out how to correct the problems and most importantly, keep our clients out of trouble. What I mean by ‘keeping clients out of trouble’ is that we try to see potential issues the client has not, anticipate the cumulative effects of various recommendations, and evaluate the client’s potential risk exposure. We use this forehandedness in nearly every project that we do.”
One of the methods we use to be forehanded is collaboration, which is our fourth and final brand word and the one we’ll discuss next week!