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BUSINESS NEWS CONSTRUCTION TO BEGIN ON NEW OSU ACADEMIC FACILITY AT THE CENTER FOR HEALTH SCIENCES Dewberry , a privately held professional services firm, announced that the new North Academic Building at Oklahoma State University’s Center for Health Sciences campus is now under construction and is expected to open in Fall 2022. Dewberry completed initial programming and conceptual design for the new North Academic Building and the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in 2018. By relocating and upgrading services from multiple buildings currently in the center of campus, this new building is the first phase of a master plan focused on health and advancement in research and education. Once complete, the ME office will be one of just a few nationally that is directly and physically connected with an academic health center.

The design of the ME autopsy laboratory is unique to Oklahoma, and has raised the bar internationally for safety, workflow efficiency, and evidence preservation. When completed, this office will be among the most technologically advanced in the world specific to advanced postmortem diagnostic imaging. This new building will also house the Center for Rural Health, Center for Health Systems Innovation, and dedicated anatomy and neuro-anatomy laboratories. Additional amenities will include classroom, conference, study, and administration areas. The firm’s designs incorporate a similar material palette in the interior and exterior as the A.R. and Marylouise Tandy Medical Academic Building, completed in 2017, and expand the aesthetic connecting the new and older parts of the campus.

“As OSU continues to provide top-tier education and training for students across a variety of subjects, the Center for Health Sciences has an opportunity to set the university apart as a nationally ranked health care training institution,” says Dewberry Principal and Project Manager Bruce Henley, AIA. Dewberry is a leading, market-facing firm with a proven history of providing professional services to a wide variety of public- and private-sector clients. Recognized for combining unsurpassed commitment to client service with deep subject matter expertise, Dewberry is dedicated to solving clients’ most complex challenges and transforming their communities. Established in 1956, Dewberry is headquartered in Fairfax, Virginia, with more than 50 locations and more than 2,000 professionals nationwide.

MARK ZWEIG, from page 9

6) Backlog. The bigger the backlog under contract, the more certain the future revenue stream is. That increases value. 7) Lack of client concentration risk. Firms that have too many of their eggs in one basket – meaning too much of their business coming from a single client – will not get the same value as an equivalent company whose business is spread out over a whole lot of clients. Not saying the firm needs to be in a zillion markets – just that spreading risk out over a lot of clients increases value. 8) Management depth. Everyone in the firm needs to know who their second in command is and who will take over for them if they leave or get sick. Having those “number twos” in place, and then having number twos for number twos will undoubtedly increase the value of the business because it will be more likely able to weather any turnover-related problems. 9) High quality staff. The better your people are – and we all know what that means – the higher your value will be compared to other similar firms. Recruitment and training, like marketing, are what I like to call “off balance sheet investments” that can yield huge dividends. 10) Clean books – preferably audited. Comprehensive and accurate financials again reduce the risk of the business and anything that accomplishes that goal will increase the value of the business. And even if it saves you on taxes, get all of your personal vacation homes and other luxuries that don’t do anything for the company off the books. 11) Codified processes for everything. I’m talking about good recruiting processes, RFP response systems, PM systems, good document storage systems, a well-developed intranet, and a decentralized and up-to-date CRM (client relationship management) system are all critical to building value in your business. These things take time and money to develop and are critical to your ability to scale your business as it grows. So how are you faring on these 11 points? Are you doing what you need to be doing to build your value? And if not, why not? MARK ZWEIG is Zweig Group’s chairman and founder. Contact him at

have witnessed not only the conscious decision to make a firm more valuable, but the outcomes of most all of those efforts over that time. And I have seen many firm owners build incredible wealth in their ownership stakes that they may not have originally thought possible. What a learning process this has been! So how can you really build value in your business – value that far exceeds what you can extract from your company each year? Here are my observations: 1) Develop and share a plan for growth. It starts right here. If top management doesn’t publicly state they want to grow and have a plan for it and they won’t lay out specific goals and share them with everyone, good luck making it happen. 2) High revenue growth rate. Your growth trajectory has more impact on your value than any multiple of EBIT no matter what anyone tells you. High growth rate – especially if the firm has good cash flow and any profits – is the best recipe for value creation. 3) High productivity/high margins. Any firm in this business with better than normal labor multipliers and higher than normal staff productivity (utilization) will have higher value than those whose key performance metrics look like the bulk of other firms in this business. Those high multipliers indicate that the marketplace values what they do. And those high productivity numbers show that the culture is healthy. 4) Be willing to reinvest in the firm. That means retaining some earnings versus paying it all out through bonus to minimize tax obligations. And it also means investing in things such as IT, recruiting, training, and marketing, so the firm can support and manage its growth. 5) Brand name/top of the market position. Any business that is in the top five firms for what it does in a particular market will be more valuable than the other firms. Having a brand that is recognized and highly thought of is one of the key elements of value creation in this industry.

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