Beyond the Build

Green Building

Changing Places, and Expanding.

Like many companies, we have been enjoying this cycle of buoyancy, but remembering the financial crisis. I am not sure anyone that lived through the financial crisis will ever forget.

I was in Nashville this week, visiting with one of our customers, and the topic of the economy took center stage. We discussed when it is too big, how aggressive one should be with expansion right now, and how to shore up for when the cycle turns low.When we first moved to our place in 2008, we were swimming in space. These days it seems every spot is taken by a new desk. After several months of deliberation, we made a decision to expand our office. Our newest “west wing” will sit on our former garden. It may sound trivial and perhaps should not have been a lengthy decision, but we all liked the garden next door. So we moved it.

tableThe new plot is a bit closer to Overton Road. We built a cypress table that sits in the middle, and completed the perimeter with an English Cotswold stone wall.

While we doubled the size of the garden, we are not planning on doubling the size of our revenue. Like our customer in Nashville, I am always thinking and tweaking our game plan, changing with the cycles. Where is the best place to be? What is the sweet spot? How can we always maximize our ROI and at the same time provide for our folks and their families? In my conversations with peer companies over the years, it seems that bigger sometimes does not bear as much fruit. At the end of the day, it’s a complicated set of question and goals.

Should your travels ever take you this way, stop by. We can meet in our new garden “conference room.”

Merrill Stewart Jr.

Merrill Stewart is Founder and CEO of The Stewart/Perry Company, a commercial building contractor based in Birmingham.