O P I N I O N
Outgoing and incoming
Ownership transition can be an eight to 10 year process, so start early, educate yourself, define your goals, and keep an open dialogue with your employees.
J IM MEADS, P.E., CEO/OWNER OF SAIN ASSOCIATES, INC. I am a third-generation owner and CEO of Sain Associates. Our founder, Charles “Hack” Sain transitioned the company to his son, Randy Sain. In 2010, I became CEO, and we transitioned Randy into his retirement and moved the company forward with two owners. Having the goal of internally transitioning the company and eventually stepping into my retirement, we started identifying yearly tasks, starting at our 2015 Strategic Planning session, to make the next transition happen. We have made quite a bit of progress in the last four and a half years.
❚ ❚ Shared our company financial statement with all our upper-level team leaders. Our team leaders were accustomed to reviewing revenue and backlog information for their respective teams. Providing a full financial statement helped them connect the dots to understand how their performance and expenses affect the company’s bottom line. It has also helped them understand the importance of collaborating and sharing workload to the company’s overall health. ❚ ❚ Increased our project managers’ knowledge of company performance. We invited select project
Having been through two prior successions, we had learned a lot and knew we needed to prepare our company for the next transition. As leader of the company, my desire has always been to teach our upper-level employees to be entrepreneurial and business-minded. To make this happen, my Executive Committee and I implemented the following: ❚ ❚ Educated our upper-level team leaders. This has been an ongoing process. It started with the basics of “What It Means to Be an Owner.” This included open discussions about prior lessons learned, different corporation types, and how the process works to become an owner.
See JIM MEADS & ALICIA BAILEY, page 10
THE ZWEIG LETTER JULY 6, 2020, ISSUE 1351
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