DeWitt & Associates’ employee-owners pay careful attention to the decades-long reputation that has established the company as a trusted advisor in the eyes of its clients, according to president GR Stovall. At DeWitt & Associates, that means being with clients every step of the way; establishing a culture of respect that permeates every level of the company, from field workers to project managers; and recognizing that the clients’ endpoint isn’t a building, but rather what a new building allows them to achieve for their organizations and for the community. “It’s cool to be part of the projects from start to finish,” Stovall says. “It’s very rewarding to walk into a university building or health care facility where we have contributed to a building that allows our clients to serve their clients. Our mission is to serve. Knowing that we were a part of that is a very gratifying feeling.”
Hospitals, schools, retail and municipal projects fill DeWitt & Associates’s book of business and have for decades. And according to Ramsay Manning, vice president of operations, the company is trusted because of the compassion and integrity of each employee. “The integrity of this company and the legacy of this company is not preached,” Manning says. “It’s something that just develops within people. The morals and business ethics that have been steadfast all through DeWitt, that’s the consistency [we’re known for].” That adherence to culture comes from the company’s insistence upon partnering with and working for their clients. That culture of integrity is also evidenced in the long-term employees, some of whom have been with the company for 40 years, who have passed on their historical expertise. Manning himself has been at the company for 22 years, and Stovall returned to DeWitt & Associates as the president after working for the company years ago. “That history was something that spoke to me,” Stone says of his decision to leave his accounting job to work for the company five years ago.
For a lot of companies who have breached the half-century mark, their histories are sprinkled with pivots and rebrands that have kept them afloat. One would especially expect that to be the case for a company operating within the volatile construction and contracting industry. But according to Stovall, the biggest secret to DeWitt & Associates’ success has been consistency and adherence to its mission and culture, strategies that he hopes will take them into the next 60 years. “We have to hold fast to that idea that we’ll still be a trusted advisor,” he says. “I don’t think anything is going to change about quality of work, integrity, service, those boilerplate things. I hope that [in 60 years] we’re that organization our community has always been able to depend on.”