TZL 1379 (web)



Authentic: Jeff Schumaker President of Fishbeck (Grand Rapids, MI), a firm of engineers, scientists, architects, and constructors in the business of problem solving, inspiring results, and bringing ideas to life.


F ishbeck is made up of a team of experts on core services including engineering, architecture, environmental sciences, construction management, and more. The company’s newest site is in Indianapolis, but they’ve also grown through acquisition, most recently taking over Ohio’s Northwest Consultants, Inc. Revenue in the past decade has grown by nearly 50 percent, according to Schumaker. “Leadership must be authentic. It must come from the heart,” Schumaker says. “Only you can lead like you, and I believe that builds trust and respect with those you work with. I make it a point to be available for everyone, reassuring, honest, encouraging, responsive, and a delegator.” A CONVERSATION WITH JEFF SCHUMAKER. The Zweig Letter: Your website says, “We are architects of the next generation.” Can you illustrate with an example of how this is put into action?

Jeff Schumaker: Every project provides an opportunity to learn. We use these lessons to look toward the future, designing and implementing solutions for the next generation. Our infrastructure team implemented the first diverging diamond interchanges in the state. Our A/E team is working on a leading-edge, higher education facility. Together, we challenge the status quo, generating new ideas that lead to better outcomes for our clients and end users. Our work must also stand the test of time. The facilities and infrastructure we design have lifespans counted not in years, but in decades. Sustainability, inclusivity, and agility are core considerations as we begin designing. All of this starts with our team. We don’t just say “All-in-One” as a marketing tagline. With more than 450 staff specializing in many disciplines, Fishbeck is positioned to develop holistic solutions. In helping our clients respond to COVID-19, we established a multidiscipline team including architects, engineers, and industrial hygienists among others, to create comprehensive solutions, emphasizing long-term


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