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home | Top 10 List | Top Ten Reasons Your Firm is Underac . . .

Top Ten Reasons Your Firm is Underachieving -- Part 1

10. Lack of Accountability

Lack of accountability can and does occur at levels of an underachieving company.  Whether it is partner to partner, partner to project manager or project manager to staff -- seldom are people held accountable for missing deadlines, sloppy work or over budget projects.


9. Accepting Mediocrity

If mediocrity is your goal you will probably succeed.  This goes hand in hand with number 10.  Expectations of employee performance are often set far too low -- and employees do their best to barely achieve it. 


8. Lack of Employee Recognition and Employee Rewards

When hard working overachieving employees are not recognized by their supervisors for their hard work it can be demoralizing.  Instead of their performance raising the performance expectations for all employees, it has the opposite effect.  The overachievers become demoralized and they sink to the level of the underachievers.  Public recognition of their hard work and meaningful financial incentives will go a long way in keeping their performance at a high level and inspiring many of the others to do the same.


7. Majoring in Minor Things

Far too many employees fall into the trap of spending too much time in a reactive state of busy work.  They read and respond to unimportant e-mails, returning non-urgent phone calls, attending far too many unproductive meetings, spending time with uninvited drop-in visitors and so on&  This leaves little time to work on the most important items such as producing the work product or closing the deal on a new project



6. Making the Loss-Leader a Way of Life

All too often in my career I have seen severely under-priced projects justified as a loss-leader.  The theory behind the loss-leader is that once the client sees how wonderful we are at producing high quality work and servicing their needs, they will then become a long term client at full pricing.  There are so many things wrong with this theory that one hardly knows where to start (I will go in to more detail in a future article).  The reality is that once you set the price expectation they will expect it all the time.  Another problem is that you won the project on price.  Won't they also be willing to leave you in the future if one of your competitors offers them a lower price?


To be continued...

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