NSPE Gateway to Industry January 2009
In This Issue of PEI e-News...

Get 10% off your 2009 PEI Sustaining Sponsor Listing

Dear Engineer Executive: 

As the chair of the Professional Engineers in Industry Practice Division of the National Society of Professional Engineers, I would like to offer you an opportunity to support fellow engineers in industry by becoming a PEI Sustaining Sponsor.  As a PEI Sustaining Sponsor for 2009, your company will help PEI create educational and professional resources for engineers and will also be entitled to the following promotional privileges:

  • Company listing: Your company will be included in a searchable directory that includes a complete description of your company and link to your website.  NSPE’s Web site receives more than 75,000 user sessions per month.  All PEI Sustaining Sponsors are listed at: www.nspe.org/InterestGroups/PEI/Supporters/sustaining_sponsors.html

  • Valuable Discounts: 25% discount on ads in PE magazine, NSPE Update, NSPE Web banners, and job board postings.

  • Recognition: Listing in an issue of NSPE’s PE magazine (circulation is over 50,000) and in PEI E-News, a monthly electronic newsletter sent to more than 5,500 PEI members.

Your options to participate include the following: (*Price reflects 10% discount for payments received by 3/1/09):

SILVER  $135* (regularly  $150) Company Listing. Includes company listing and link to company web site. NSPE’s Web site receives more than 75,000 user sessions per month. ($500 value)

GOLD  $225* (regularly $250)—Includes “Silver” package plus company logo advertisement in PEI E-News, a monthly newsletter delivered to more than 5,500 PEI members by email. ($1,000 value)

PLATINUM $270* (regularly $300)—Includes “Gold” package plus company logo advertisement in PE magazine, NSPE’s premier magazine with a circulation over 50,000. ($1,550 value)

Please visit the PEI Sustaining Sponsor Web page to download a contribution form and/or to see a list of current sponsors. We appreciate your support and hope you will take advantage of this opportunity to help your business endeavors and fellow engineers in industry.  


John Wall, P.E.
2008-2009 PEI Chairman

2009 New Product Award Entries Due February 15th


Don't miss an opportunity to get national visibility for your product by entering the 26th Annual PEI New Product Award competition. The competition recognizes any process, machine, or material developed in the U.S. that improves the public’s standard of living.

Winning products will be honored with the PEI New Product Award crystal and are entitled to use the coveted PEI New Product Award logo. Winners will also be recognized in a “Winner's Circle” ad in PE magazine, through NSPE's Web site and print communications, and through significant media coverage.
All 2009 PEI New Product Award entrants will have the opportunity to showcase their product during the NSPE Annual Conference in July. Winners will receive two complimentary tickets to the PEI New Product Award presentation. Submit your entry by February 15, 2009! For an application and list of past NPA winners, visit the
PEI New Product Award Web page. [ return to top ]

PEI Executive Board Member Receives Top Honor

Stephen A. Hutti, P.E., manager of Navy Ground Support  Equipment Programs for Boeing Ground Support Systems, the Boeing Co., was recently named the 2009 Missouri Society of Professional Engineers St. Louis Chapter Engineer of the Year. Hutti currently serves on the NSPE/PEI Executive Board as the 2008-09 North Central Regional Vice Chair.

Hutti attended the University of Louisville where he earned his bachelor's and master's degrees in electrical engineering. During his studies, Hutti worked at Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp. designing process control systems for their Louisville, Kentucky and Macon, Georgia operations. He joined the Boeing Co. (McDonnell Douglas Astronautics Co.) immediately after graduation. Hutti has held various engineering design, development, and leadership positions within Boeing during his 30-plus years with the company. Those assignments included positions on the Air Launched Cruise Missile, Medium Range Air to Surface Missile, Tomahawk Cruise Missile, Advanced Cruise Missile, F-18 Advanced Maintenance Integrated Diagnostics; and F-15 Computerized Fault Reporting System. In 1997, Hutti became the engineering department head for Avionics Support Equipment/Trainers and Supportability Engineering with over 250 engineers under his leadership. In August 1999, Hutti was selected as the program manager for the Weapons Support Systems responsible for support programs for various missile and weapons programs in St. Charles, Missouri. In January 2005, Hutti was assigned to his current position. 

Hutti has been recognized for his many achievements over the years. In 2004, he and his engineering team won the Boeing ATLAS Achievement Team Award for the development of a patented process for rejuvenating vidicon tubes extending the service life of the GBU-15 USAF weapon system. Hutti was named the Outstanding Professional Engineer in Industry by the St. Louis Chapter in May 1996. He is a licensed Professional Engineer in Missouri and past president of the St. Louis Chapter. Hutti is currently the Boeing Focal for NSPE, the North Central Region Vice-Chair for NSPE’s Professional Engineers in Industry, and the St. Louis Chapter representative for the MSPE PEI committee. He has served on the National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA) Systems Engineering Committee and Integrated Diagnostics Subcommittee. Hutti is currently Vice President of the NDIA’s St. Louis Chapter and member of IEEE.

PEI Congratulates Stephen Hutti on his award! [ return to top ]

Thriving in an Economic Meltdown

By Wayne Kurzen. 

The current economic conditions have brought a whole new level of “stress” to today’s entrepreneur. Business as usual will probably not work. The following is a list of considerations for surviving and even thriving in a recessionary economy.

1. Cut “Financial Drag." Methodically cut unnecessary expenses.

  • Cut your overhead. Now is a time to look at every item on your profit & loss statement and ask the hard question–"can we cut this without hurting our top line?" During good times, we get pretty sloppy with our expenses. Involve your team in this line-by-line discussion. Some companies assign every line item to an individual on the team. But don’t cut marketing (see below).
  • You cannot manage what you do not measure. If your financials—your profit and loss, balance sheet, and cash flow statements—are not current, accurate and relevant, now is the time to get your books in order.
  • Review your financials often. Review your financials at least once per month, and cash flow statement weekly.

2. Get rid of your “C” players. Top performing companies always have an “A” team. In fact, if you carry “C” players on your team, it is unlikely that you will ever rise to the top. The motto in hiring and firing should be “slow to hire and quick to fire.” However, much of the time business owners do the opposite! If you have been hanging on to your marginal performers, now is the time to free them. The question to ask yourself is this: “Would I enthusiastically hire this person today?” If you cannot answer "yes," you probably do not have an “A” player. There are “A” players available because many have been let go or fear their company won’t be around in the future…they are ready to move. Now is the time to create your “A” team. Leading employee productivity companies, like the Container Store, believe that one “A” player is worth three “C” players. The Container Store pays more per hour than the competition, but their overall payroll expense is less.

3. Expand your Business. Acquire your competitors or expand your product or service. Perhaps you need to expand your reach or change your target customer. If you have been involved in residential construction, you may want to expand your target reach into commercial or add more to your service department...one person’s nightmare is another person’s once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

Be on the lookout for struggling businesses that compliment your business…there are some great bargains! And you may not need cash or a loan to get them. NOTE: Buying a distressed business is just like buying distressed property: you can often find a great deal that is a win-win. Perhaps you offer to take over a struggling business and pay nothing but to offer the owner a job. You get a customer list, their equipment, possible licensing, and someone to run that part of the business for you. The seller escapes struggling and possible bankruptcy. It is a win-win.

Look at not only acquiring competitors, but also look at expanding your product line. For example, if you are an electrical contractor, look at adding other complimentary produces like low-voltage or security systems to your total product offering. Also consider acquiring minority-owned businesses, thus increasing your opportunity to bid on government contracts.

4. Expand your “Sandbox”. Consider increasing the size of your geographic boundaries. This may involve going somewhere where your product is still in demand. For example, if you are a contractor in Florida, you may have to go to another state for awhile.

5. Increase Quality of Workmanship. Avoid the temptation to cut quality. As you compete for business with less business available, the last thing you want to cut is quality. Think value, value, value.

6. Measure Employee Productivity. Know your revenue/profit per employee. It is a proven fact, people perform at a higher level when they know their performance is being measured. Establish a “key performance indicator” for every employee. Measure revenue/profit per employee is one of the easiest metrics to monitor. Consider putting Global Positioning System (GPS) in your vehicles. GPS has become a relatively inexpensive tool, and it has proven to increases productivity—both from a scheduling and individual performance standpoint.

7. Know Your "Uncommon Offering." During economic downturns, price does become a bigger factor. But still, do your best to compete on "value," not price. The mastermind behind the initial Southwest Airlines marketing, Bob Bloom, defines “uncommon offering” as the “what” you offer. It represents both the tangible benefit of your product or service and the emotional experience you will deliver to your customer. What is it like doing business with you that makes you better than your competition? Are you more reliable, flexible, responsive, and cutting-edge?

8. Don’t Cut Marketing. Expand it! Six studies conducted by the research firm of Meldrum & Fewsmith showed conclusively that advertising aggressively during recessions not only increases sales but increases profits. This fact has held true for all post-World War II recessions studied by the American Business Press. Marketing does not have to be expensive. Some of the best marketing is free marketing! You will get more business from referrals, publications, and other unconventional methods with a system and a very low budget. It’s also very important during this time to keep a balanced marketing portfolio. Don’t invest in just one or two strategies.

9. Get on the Phone. Get personally involved in calling all of your current customers. Let them know that you are not only still in business, but that you are aggressively seeking their business. Best-selling author and top business guru Tom Peters says, “Work the damn phones...Keep working the damn phones...Show up…Keep showing up.” There is less business out there, so go after it. Build and reinforce your relationships. Talk about your “uncommon offering.” The squeaky wheel gets the oil.

10. Share the Pain. Involve your team, set the example. If everyone needs to take a temporary cut in pay, take one yourself. But do not keep “C” players on the payroll. Remember, you are running a business, not a rehab center.

11. Work on Yourself. Best-selling author, John Maxwell says a business will never outgrow the owner. Educate yourself…learn, learn, learn. It’s not the one who works the hardest, but the one who works the smartest that ultimately wins. Do what you need to do to “get the edge” in your industry.

12. Hire a Coach. Nearly all of the most successful people in any area have a coach or coaches. Whether it is Tiger Woods or a time-proven and experienced CEO, coaching improves performance by providing insights and ideas, serving as a sounding board, helping define goals with clarity, and providing accountability to execute proven ideas.

Wayne Kurzen is a Platinum Master Business Coach with ActionCOACH. He has been selected among 1,000 worldwide Action Coaches as North America Coach of the Year (in his category). He is also one of 70 Gazelles Growth Coaches worldwide, qualified to teach the “best practices ” of the leading mid-sized business in the world. He is an affiliate member of IEC and specializes in helping owners of electrical contractors grow profits and have more personal away from the business.

Wayne Kurzen will be presenting "Thriving in the Economic Meltdown" on January 29, 2009 from 12:30-1:30 Eastern.  To register for this web event, please visit the NSPE Education Web page.
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Nominate Fellow Engineers for NSPE Awards

NSPE offers several awards that have upcomming deadlines in 2009. Below are just a few of the award programs NSPE will be conducting this year.

To see the complete list of NSPE awards, please visit the NSPE Awards Web page

NSPE Award (Deadline: January 31)
The NSPE Award is the highest award given to an individual by the Society. It is presented to an engineer who has made outstanding contributions to the engineering profession, the public welfare, and/or humankind.
Nominations should be made in consideration of the high caliber of some of the previous recipients: President Herbert Hoover, Dr. David B. Steinman (founder of NSPE), former Puerto Rico Governor Luis A. Ferre, former NSPE Executive Director Paul H. Robbins, and R. Bruce Taylor, P.E.

PEI Distinguished Service Award (Deadline: January 31)
The PEI Distinguished Service Award is presented to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution of national scope to advance the causes of the individual engineer in industry or Professional Engineers in Industry (PEI). The award winner will receive an engraved plaque and up to $500 toward travel expenses to accept the award at the 2009 NSPE Annual Conference in St. Louis in July.  Also included are two complimentary tickets to the NSPE awards ceremony held during the conference.

of the Year Award (Deadline: March 31)
The Mentor of the Year Award is given each year to the one member of NSPE who best exemplifies the ideal image of a mentor. The award may be given to an individual who has established a record of consistent outreach toward individuals in the engineering field, including engineering professionals and students, over a number of years. This award can also be received by an individual who has contributed to the support or development of mentoring programs within their company or in the engineering community. The ideal candidate should have a record of achievement in offering guidance to and fostering development among engineering professionals.

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Contact the 2008-09 PEI Executive Board Officers

John Wall, P.E., F.NSPE

Immediate Past Chairman
Andy Russo, P.E., F.NSPE

Second Past Chairman
Kevin Cooper, P.E.

Richard Buchanan, P.E., F.NSPE

Jonn Nebbe, P.E.

Northeastern Region
Cullen Flanders, P.E.

Southeastern Region
Jorge Pardo, P.E.

Central Region
Michael J. Vinarcik, P.E.

North Central Region
Stephen Hutti, P.E. 

Southwestern Region
James Mathis, P.E. 

Western and Pacific Region
Curtis Beck, P.E.

YEAC Chair
Richard Willoughby, P.E. 

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Is your company interested in reaching more than 5,000 engineers? If so, contact PEI Manager Erin Garcia to learn about sponsoring the next edition of PEI e-News.



Malisko Engineering specializes in optimized manufacturing automation.  Our industry focus is Brewing, Life Sciences, Food & Beverage, Consumer Products.


The Boyce Consultancy Group, LLC. is a premier group in the field of Turbomachinery Design, and Forensic Analysis. Courses for engineers are held during the year in the US and the UK for Advanced Gas Turbines, Planned Optimization of Combined Cycle Power Plants Operation and Centrifugal Compressors for refineries, off-shore platforms and pipeline applications.  Dr. Boyce has authored text books in these three areas.  Course schedules are posted on our website.

BIG M Constructors, Inc.
General design-construct company-civil, structural, mechanical, piping, electrical, instrumentation, fabrication, erection, plant startups.

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