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BUSINESS NEWS TWO CORE EMPLOYEES ACCEPTED TO ZWEIG GROUP’S 2021 ELEVATEHERTM COHORT Heather Calvert, COO and Kaley Konecny, SHRM-CP, HR manager of CORE Consultants, Inc. have been accepted as members of Zweig Group’s 2021 ElevateHer cohort – a special task force comprised of individuals with a commitment to promote diversity as a means to combat recruiting and retention challenges in the AEC industry. CORE is proud to support Zweig Group’s mission to elevate the industry, and is pleased to have two members of the CORE team join this groundbreaking initiative in 2021. “Despite this program only being in its second year and many new challenges relating to the pandemic, we still saw significant growth and interest in this program. I’m excited to see how this year’s class can build on the momentum from last year and also bring fresh perspectives and creativity,” said Jamie Claire Kiser, Zweig Group managing principal and program founder.

Lack of diversity and inclusion are a big problem in the AEC industry, and CORE is passionate about addressing the issue head-on. The firm’s president and CEO, Blake Calvert was a member of the inaugural ElevateHER cohort in 2020 and found great value in the initiative. “A huge component of our work at CORE is the overall problem solving and collaboration of people,” said Calvert. “Diversity helps us to collaborate, see the bigger picture, and provide the best service that we can for our clients.” In addition to ElevateHer, CORE supports STEMBlazers, Curls on the Block, Women in Energy, and the Society of Women Engineers. Together with these groups, the firm is working to shift the culture and embrace diversity in the AEC industry. CORE Consultants, Inc. is a professional services firm based in Englewood, Colorado offering civil engineering, natural resources, land surveying, and development services. The

team specializes in land development, energy, and public infrastructure projects. founded in 2014, CORE has created a unique culture that empowers our people to thrive at home, at work, and in their community. Their focus on balance has resulted in happy employees, happy clients, and successful communities. ElevateHer is a movement and a commitment to Zweig Group’s mission to Elevate the Industry. ElevateHer is about the future of the AEC industry and Zweig Group’s commitment to embrace, promote, and ensuring equal opportunities for everyone in the AEC industry regardless of gender, race, age, sexual orientation, or ethnicity. Zweig Group serves as an advisor and hub of information and resources to leading this movement – a movement that brings us together to promote, advance, and elevate the industry.

ROGER MARQUIS, from page 11

or something of relevance, value, and/or benefit to the prospect. For example, you can forward an article you believe the prospect would find of interest. You can invite the prospect to an event your company is hosting which is relevant to their line of business. You can send the prospect a new research study you found that discusses the market in which the prospect’s company operates. It could be almost anything, but the focus must be on the prospect and his/her needs, wants, expectations, interests, etc., not yours. The third issue, detailed notes, can help with keeping track of the timing and frequency of the messages you send out and the actual connections you make, as well as with the subject or content of the messages themselves. You can also keep track of personal information that you learn about a prospect, like an anniversary or birthday, so an appropriate message can be sent accordingly. What really helps in this area is a customer relationship management (CRM) application, or some sort of database, of which there are many on the market. As I practice business development, I try to keep these best practice points in mind and, like an athlete, I’ve developed a certain muscle memory around follow through and follow up. Hardly a meeting, phone call, email, referral, etc., goes by without me making a concerted effort to follow up. With the information provided here, I hope you can recognize the importance and impact follow through and follow up can have on your business development game. ROGER MARQUIS has practiced business development in the AEC and design industries for the past 10 years. Prior to this, he managed business development and marketing at his own company, where he manufactured, marketed, and sold nautically-styled travel accessory bags. Roger is active in his local CoreNet and SMPS chapters. Connect with him on LinkedIn.

with a potential prospect, as well as a direct competitor. During the conversation, you learn about the prospect’s line of business and realize she would be a good person to know for potential future projects, so you exchange contact information with her. After the event, a couple of days pass, then a week, then a month, and you never contact the prospect again until it’s time to send holiday cards in December. But, what if the competitor you met at the event emailed or phoned the prospect every four to six weeks throughout the remainder of the year? When it comes time for the prospect to send out a request for proposal in say, September, to whom do you believe the prospect would be more inclined to send the request for proposal: you or your competitor? Yes, I’d say the competitor, too. If it all sounds so simple, why do so many business developers fail when it comes to follow up? As someone who has practiced business development for several years, I believe it’s a matter of three main issues: 1) Not having a follow through or follow up routine or schedule 2) Not knowing what to write or say in a follow through or follow up contact 3) Not keeping detailed notes Regarding a routine or schedule, there’s no fixed rule here, so you really need to take your cues from the prospect and/or previous experience. For one prospect it might make sense to follow up within two to three days after the initial contact, for another it might be closer to two to three weeks, and for yet another they might be the one to tell you when to follow up. Regardless, it’s safe to say that some follow up over time is always going to be better than none at all. With respect to knowing what to write in a follow through or follow up email, or say on the phone or in person, the most important item here is to offer information

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