Wed 21 Dec 2011
On this Holiday Season in 2011 I want to thank our team, clients, and partners for helping us make 2011 a record year at Patti Engineering as we surpassed Six Million Dollars in Sales. From the beginning, Patti Engineering has been built by getting repeat business from a core group of outstanding clients. Our partnerships and expertise with some outstanding products and companies have helped us deliver value to those clients. I feel truly blessed and humbled to be surrounded with such an outstanding team every day. Our team is second to none in their expertise, drive, and focus on solutions to our client’s problems.
In celebrating our accomplishments this past year, I am very proud to reflect back on just two short years ago, when like many companies, 2009 was all about survival. The lessons we learned during the “great recession” were invaluable and have helped to take us where we are today. If you would like, please read on to see five valuable lessons we have learned:
- Focus on what you know best: We have focused on our invaluable partnerships with Siemens and Mitsubishi and for the most part exclusively worked with these two PLC platforms. With non-PLC platforms, we focus on only products we know best such as embedded C, Steeplechase VLC, Iconics, Indusoft, and .NET.
- You must have the right people on the bus and they must be autonomously driven: The sentence above steals from two books that have had a profound influence on our organization. “Good to Great” by Jim Collins looks at organizations that have made the leap to excellence, while “Drive” by Daniel Pink examines how employees of the 21st century are motivated. Autonomy is what a team of highly educated engineers at companies like Patti Engineering desire. They do not want to, nor function best by punching a time clock, having their computers monitored, or having someone constantly looking over their shoulder. Instead they want to focus on what they know best, getting our clients issues solved in the most efficient and effective way possible.
- Find out why your clients work with you: We did a survey of our clients and found the reasons they work with us is: our collective intellect; being a trusted advisor; thoroughly researching solutions; and being responsive. Our collective intellect and expertise with certain products leads our clients to us initially. As a trusted advisor, we will tell a client if a project is not in our wheelhouse and recommend an expert in that area if possible. Thoroughly researching solutions means that the second person in command at Patti Engineering, Dave Foster, reviews all proposals to ensure that we have a thorough understanding of the scope and have well defined our deliverables to our client. Being responsive means that clients can reach us 24/7 when their issues can’t wait until the next day’s business hours.
- You have the right to say no: Not all clients are created equal and we have the right to decide which clients we want to work with. I have talked to many other companies that when given an opportunity to propose a project, will always do so. This is a very dangerous path for an organization. If our expertise is not a fit for the project, or the customer is not a fit for our organization, the project is not worth it at any price. It will end up being a drain on our team and will take away from the projects and clients that we work best with.
- Honest Self Reflection: the most important lesson that we have learned is that we must keep improving every day. On an individual level, we all must look in the mirror and give ourselves an honest critique. We must continue to learn and improve our organization. Once the honest improvement starts at the top, it will filter through to the rest of the team.
Thanks again for letting us share these lessons with you and please feel free to give me feedback or additional lessons that you feel are valuable. Please have a great Holiday Season in 2011. We cannot wait for 2012 to start so that we can strive to make Patti Engineering into the best control systems integration company in the world!