October 2015 WIPP National Partner of the Month - Lynlee Altman
Monday, October 5, 2015
WIPP National Partner of the Month – October 2015
LynLee Altman, President and Founder of Pinnacle Construction Development Group, Inc. – Cleveland, OH
We sat down with Lynlee to hear a little more about her company and her relationship with WIPP…
Tell us a little about your company and its mission.
Pinnacle Construction is a general contractor specializing in unique, complex, and safety-critical construction. As a full-service design-build company, Pinnacle delivers one-of-a-kind projects nationwide, including anything from recreating the surface of Mars to blastproof access control points. We have successfully tackled numerous high profile projects that would intimidate most other construction firms. Accelerated timelines, hazardous environments, atypical engineering specifications, environmental sensitivities and historic preservation are all par for the course for Pinnacle, where failure is not an option.
Have you always been an entrepreneur? If not, what, or who, inspired you to take this leap?
Unlike the typical entrepreneur who grew up with a lemonade stand or selling girl scout cookies, I would consider myself to be an accidental entrepreneur. I cut my teeth working for larger businesses and my small business began as more of a night-job. Eventually, it became clear that my night job was really where my passion lied, and I made the decision to devote all of my time to Pinnacle.
What has been your biggest lesson learned in working with the Federal Government?
Teaming with other businesses is the key to growth. I call it Co-op-etition, a combination of cooperating and competition. Rather than viewing other companies as competitors, there is tremendous opportunity in building them up. Pinnacle’s very first client is Pinnacle’s largest subcontractor today. Over the years, we have built trust and a strong history of performance with our teaming partners, and that relationship has enabled us to complete things together that we didn’t have the capabilities to complete alone.
Do you have a contracting success story that you are proud of?
As a firm believer in the capabilities of small business, I am most proud when Pinnacle competes against large businesses and triumphs. The personal attention and true teaming nature that we can give to clients sets us apart from a large business working on hundreds of jobs across the country simultaneously. Our clients understand that they have our full attention, and they are, at that moment, our most important project. The clients and agencies that embrace that differentiating factor, are the people that we enjoy working with the most.
Tell us about your experience as a WIPP Member? What resources/value has WIPP provided that has been helpful to you and your company?
WIPP has been instrumental in introducing me to the right people. In the federal marketplace, there are a select group of individuals who are committed to building small businesses. These amazing people, all of whom are known by WIPP, recognize the importance of small businesses to the health of our country and economic policies, and many of them have dedicated their lives to the cause. These individuals have truly impacted the federal market place, and if you are willing to match their time and efforts, they will help you build a strong business.
Please see Lynlee’s full bio below:
Lynlee Altman, LEED AP | President
Lynlee Altman is the founder and president of Pinnacle Construction Development Group, Inc. While she refers to herself as an “accidental entrepreneur,” her drive, energy, and expertise have served her well.
Under her 15-year leadership, Pinnacle has grown into a company that delivers mission-critical projects to the public sector, competing in a space commonly occupied by large businesses. The niche construction service provider has undertaken projects ranging from hazardous demolition to such highly specialized challenges as recreating the surface of Mars for NASA, anti-terrorism perimeter construction for government institutions and sustainable restoration for the National Park Service.
Prior to founding Pinnacle, Altman was an electrical engineer and marketer at leading corporations such as Keithley Instruments and Philips Healthcare. She successfully managed the development of new projects and product lines, and coordinated engineers and customer activity worldwide.
But small business and entrepreneurship is her passion, and Altman is more than willing to share her know-how. She’s offered tips and strategies for small business engagement, meeting with key executives and politicians, including the President of the United States. “If you’re not at the table, you’re on the menu” serves as her mantra as Altman counsels business owners and pushes them toward success in formal mentorship programs, at lunch-and-learn sessions with emerging entrepreneurs and through various organizations and universities.
As a published author, Altman sticks to the subject she knows best. She’s written a white paper on ensuring jobsite security at construction sites. And she bylined “What Happens When Leaders Get Inspired: How One Woman Leads Her Company to Success,” the cover article for a 2013 issue of Construction Business Owners magazine.
In addition to her advocacy efforts, Altman sits on the board of directors for the National Association of Small Disadvantaged Businesses. She also holds a board position at Entrepreneurs’ Organization, a global network of 10,000 business owners in 35 countries supporting entrepreneurial growth. It was recently revealed that the organization’s Cleveland member companies alone generate more than a billion dollars in annual revenue.
Altman received her bachelor’s degree in Engineering from Johns Hopkins University and earned her MBA from Carnegie Mellon’s Tepper School of Business. Remaining current educationally, she obtained LEED certification from the U.S. Green Building Council in 2009 and is a perpetual student at Case Western Reserve University.
Altman earned the SBA Region V Women in Business Champion of the Year title, was named an Enterprising Woman of the Year by Enterprising Women Magazine and found herself in select company among Crain’s “40 Under 40.”