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How to Love an Environmental Professional

Entry by JoeDerhake


Maybe my wife should have written this one—or maybe she would have advised young people to not…better to marry a doctor.


More seriously, how do consulting firms love their environmental professionals?   When you run an environmental due diligence firm, you have to be good at it if you want to succeed. 


First of all, employees need respect.   Firms that focus on environmental due diligence have advantage in terms of respecting the environmental professional.   I began my career at a civil engineering firm that was good at Phase I Environmental Site Assessments, but focused more on engineering disciplines.  There was a sense that you need to become a PE to move up in the company.   Also, in my experience, sometimes firms that are good at a great many cool engineering things have a hard time recognizing the Phase I Environmental Site Assessors as equals to the big shot engineers who are doing $100 million federal contracts.  


Secondly, employees need a challenge.  The key is to focus on due diligence and all of the ins-and-outs of a Phase I ESA and the commercial real estate business.   Consulting in commercial real estate transactions provides an endless helping of interesting and nuanced situations.  I find the field interesting because of the intersection of environmental science and business.   Also, environmental due diligence intersects so many other disciplines:  industrial hygiene, environmental compliance, environmental remediation, and building sciences to name a few.  A good Environmental Professional must continue to accrue expertise in the adjacent fields.


Third, most environmental professionals relish a sense of team.   When an employee feels like he is part of a team, he will work hard for the company and his teammates.   The sense of achieving things together is a very rewarding part of work.   Much of the love that the EP feels may come from their peers.   Team building activities create a great sense of culture, accountability… and maybe love.

Happy holidays.  Hopefully your families will heap the love on their environmental professional this year.


Environmental Professional, Environmental Site Assessor, Phase I Environmental Site Assessment, Phase I ESA, environmental due diligence