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Grace and Diplomacy are Part of Quality

Entry by JoeDerhake


When doing environmental due diligence in support of an acquisition, we are a small but sometimes very important part of a larger process.  While our fee is modest, we are often supporting a very high dollar transaction.  Occasionally we find ourselves center stage at the negotiating table.  Maybe our Phase I ESA found a REC and we are asked to deliver an opinion that may kill a deal and cost several stakeholders a substantial financial loss.   Sometime we find one of our peers/competitors across the table offering an opinion different than our own. 

Situations like this, where we are put to the test, are when we really earn our money. 


Our clients are generally graceful and diplomatic when negotiating with the other side.  Real estate professionals understand the importance of relationships and future reputation.  I have benefitted from the advice of some of the best in the real estate profession. “Be measured, but firm.” “Be hard on the issues and soft on the people.” “Listen before you talk.”


I think clients respect when two engineers agree on the science, but differ as we get to risk tolerance opinion.  Two environmental professionals pitted against each other can fulfill their respective missions gracefully and diplomatically by keeping the debate in a professional place.  To do this I think you need to allow the other side to have their own opinion and to look for differences in the data analyzed. 


When environmental professionals act as graceful and diplomatic extensions of their clients, they deliver quality environmental consulting service.  


Phase I ESA, Quality Phase I Environmental, environmental risk tolerance, environmental consulting