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ON THE MOVE SARAH SCARBOROUGH NAMED YOUNG ENGINEER OF THE YEAR PES Structural Engineers announced that Sarah Scarborough, P.E., S.E., was selected as the 2020 Young Engineer of the Year by the Structural Engineers Association of Georgia. The Young Engineer of the Year Award is awarded to a practicing structural engineer aged 35 or younger (as of the date of the application deadline) who is recognized by colleagues for his/her outstanding service and commitment to the profession and association, involvement with the mentoring and development of younger members, and technical and ethical competence. David Aucoin, P.E., a principal with PES said, “Sarah’s ability to push things forward has been a critical factor in keeping PES

dynamic in a fast-changing marketplace. She is spearheading our firm’s adoption of lean principles and has been coaching our project teams in the use of lean practices. Additionally, Sarah is involved in many of our most complex projects and remains the first option for many of our young engineers when they have analysis questions.” Scarborough is a graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in civil engineering with a focus in structures. Scarborough joined PES Structural Engineers as an intern while at Georgia Tech and now has more than eight years of experience on projects ranging from hotels and industrial buildings to senior living facilities and high-end automotive dealerships. In addition to serving as a project manager

for the firm, Scarborough acts as the quality assurance manager and assists in overseeing the firm’s continuing education and onboarding programs. She also focuses on the development and implementation of company processes and standards. Scarborough is involved with the Georgia Community of Practice of the Lean Construction Institute and serves as a current board member and past chair of the SEAOG Young Members Group. PES Structural Engineers is a service-oriented firm offering structural design engineering and consulting services since 1988. The firm has a focus on the federal government, education, healthcare, housing, hospitality, industrial, institutional, mixed-use, office, recreation, religious and retail market sectors.


affect our metrics, especially our profit. Before having this knowledge, I found it easy to approve attendance at certain conferences and training seminars or purchasing of equipment, as I was somewhat blind to how these expenses were affecting us. Now, those approvals are much more informed and can be planned with our workload to maximize our performance. Additionally, attending Zweig Group’s Principals Academy was a large part of my learning process. “Ownership transition can be an eight to 10 year process, so start early. Educate yourself and engage with other CEOs on ownership options and issues they have faced with succession planning. Define your goals and keep an open dialogue with your employees.” Once I was officially offered the opportunity to become an owner, the only information that was new to me was the reading of the company’s shareholder agreement and the cost of the shares. In reflection, saying yes to becoming an owner was not as scary of a process as I had originally perceived years prior. JIM’S ADVICE ON OWNERSHIP SUCCESSION: Ownership transition can be an eight to 10 year process, so start early. Educate yourself and engage with other CEOs on ownership options and issues they have faced with succession planning. Define your goals and keep an open dialogue with your employees. Sain Associates has grown from two to five owners and we hope to add more. We continue to educate our leaders and managers on our financial performance and hope we continue to see success for years to come. JIM MEADS, P.E. is president/CEO of Sain Associates. Jim can be contacted via LinkedIn or at ALICIA BAILEY, P.E. is a principal/owner at Sain Associates. She can be reached via LinkedIn or at

managers to our yearly strategic planning session. Through participation, they were exposed to more information which has contributed to their acceptance of the plan. We started quarterly Performance Metric Meetings in which our CFO provides information on select metrics. Seeing regular performance data and having an opportunity to discuss it has increased their understanding of the company’s performance. ❚ ❚ Updated our shareholder agreement and prepared shareholder performance metrics. Clear definitive goals have been set for our potential owners. These written expectations give us a way to gauge their performance as leaders and provide feedback for improvement. ❚ ❚ Engaged our team leaders and senior managers in discussions about their interests to become owners. One-on-one conversations were conducted with each individual, and an outside consultant was engaged to assess the leadership skills of potential owners. This combined information gave our Executive Committee a better understanding of interest and fit for ownership among the candidates. ALICIA BAILEY, P.E., PRINCIPAL/OWNER OF SAIN ASSOCIATES, INC. Ownership transition was a topic at our Strategic Planning session in 2015, and immediately I can recall having feelings of anxiety with questions of who would be our future CEO, how it would affect me, and if I would be asked to be an owner. Under the heading of “Prepare for the Future,” we defined tasks for year one of a multi-year effort to transition ownership and leadership of the firm. Over the next couple of years, I was asked several times about my desire to become a future owner. I typically responded “I do not know” or “I do not know enough to make that decision.” Luckily our Executive Committee spent a lot of time with our team leader group educating us on the process and the details of the firm’s financial metrics. Over the years, I gained an understanding of how my team and the company were operating financially on a monthly, quarterly, and yearly basis. It became very apparent how certain activities

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