Talking Architecture with SGA’s Robert Scott

Robert Scott


This month we sat down with Robert Scott, Principal and Vice President of Finance at SGA, and talked about architecture, the outdoors and music. Robert is a CPA, leading the accounting team with over 25 years of public and corporate financial experience.


As an accountant working with architects, your view of what we do is unique. What do you think would be most beneficial for architects to know?

It is not only the architectural side of things but also the business side of things that architects should learn. A lot of times the end game for accountants, lawyers, doctors, engineers, architects, and other service providers is to own your own business, or at a minimum be a part owner in a firm. To do this, it seems important that architects take business classes in college. I believe this would be of great benefit later in their careers. Managers should be assisting the staff in not only architecture, but classes and training to run a business.

How to run a project efficiently and effectively. Know what items are essential to run a successful, profitable project.

Quality, meeting deadlines, completing the project within the budgeted time. Not all projects are fixed fee, but all projects have budgets.

At SGA we are fortunate to work with some of the best-known brands in the world. From your perspective, how does this impact what we do?

I agree we have the best clients in the world for the kind of architecture we practice, which is geared towards high-volume, multi-site building programs. This gives us the ability to work with some of the best people in the field, and the ability to have a huge impact on the construction industry. For example, if there is a sustainable design process of product that we specify for one of our projects and it is successful, it could be implemented in hundreds of more locations. If we provide quality, efficient, timely service, we will probably get more chances at repeat business. In turn, the more we do, the better we will become at delivering the service.

As the retail world is changing, what do you see for the future of retail?

Most people are of the opinion that retail is going online, and to an extent, it is. But in my opinion, there will always be brick and mortar. The stores with a brick and mortar footprint as well as an online ordering option have an advantage because they can provide faster delivery and will ultimately be more successful than online-only establishments. Currently, customers can order from all of their devices and have it sent to them via mail, one-day service, free shipping, etc. However, if the retailers offer pickup in store, their customers can drop by on the way home and have it that evening. A huge win in today’s instant gratification world. Retailers can use stores as distribution centers. They already have the item in the store, now all they have to do it is get it to the customer. The last mile, so to speak.

What is your favorite outdoor activity?

I grew up in a small town where there were lots of things to do outside like hunting, fishing, hiking, camping, etc. I started fishing at a young age and there were ample opportunities to fish within walking or bike riding distance. I have been fortunate enough to live in towns that provide me the opportunity to continue fishing in small farm ponds. Living in the Tulsa area since 1984 has provided me with even more opportunities to fish in our numerous lakes, ponds, and rivers all within driving distance. I also have ponds in my neighborhood. I taught my daughter how to fish when she was growing up, so for a while, I had a built-in partner to take fishing with me.

If you could create the perfect playlist for a road trip, what would it include?

Some people have said that I like both kinds of music….Country AND Western. That is true, but I also like other types of music.

My playlist would include songs from the following artists: Eagles, Hank Williams Jr., Hank Williams, Brad Paisley, Maren Morris, REO Speedwagon, Mercy Me, Steve Miller Band, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Queen, Eric Church, Guns ‘N Roses, and George Strait.