Insight Blog

Construction & Engineering: Seller Doers Still in High Demand

Over the past few years, contractors and engineering firms have been greatly challenged with market conditions. Forced to evaluate all aspects of their operations, most firms have streamlined their processes - and employees, causing them to seek professionals who can handle dual roles. Termed seller-doers, these professionals who have broad skill sets, who can perform business development as well as understand the technical issues of a project continue to be in high demand.

Seller-doers are individuals who take a diligent approach to systems and processes and who add immediate value with their diverse skills from strong sales and business judgement to technological and operational capabilities. With these characteristics, it's no wonder why many firms in the A/E/C industry seek them to create a "one-contact" process for acquiring and delivering projects.

Some of the traits of these professionals are:

  • Entrepreneurial mindset.

  • Strong business and sales acumen.

  • "Tapped" into the marketplace by networking with existing and prospective customers.

  • Excellent communication skills to work effectively with board members and / or "C" level suite executives with their own company and their customer organization.

  • Solid understanding of projects and the various operational challenges and constructability issues.

The benefits of having a seller-doer are:

  • They provide an organization the ability to have one executive handle two capacities at once. Even though they demand higher compensation for their role, it is still less expensive than hiring two individuals at a lower level in most cases.

  • Due to their contacts, they may learn of project opportunities before plans are made public.

  • Organizations that can offer the "single contact" concept to their prospective clients will be more attractive than a firm who cannot.

  • A professional with the ability to sell a project as well as discuss its constructability and engineering issues creates much added value to the customer, developing a tighter relationship.

Knowing the value that they can bring to a proactive organization in this market, many talented professionals with diverse skill sets who are capable of performing a seller-doer role are willing to consider opportunities outside of their firms. Even with current A/E/C market conditions, these individuals are highly marketable and valuable to firms that are progressive and that are ready to strengthen their internal talent.

Other current high demand skill sets within construction and engineering that are worthy of mention include:

  • Strong knowledge and contacts within institutional sector, specifically healthcare and higher education.

  • Experience within and understanding of mission critical projects and commissioning.

Specifically within engineering:

  • Knowledge of Building Information Modeling (BIM)

  • Knowledge of Integrated Project Delivery