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What Does It Mean To
“Expect the Extraordinary?”

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Tim Olson, Policy Analyst
APTIM | Environment & Energy Solutions
Tim Olson is an experienced policy specialist who has spent more than 10 years in entrepreneurial settings convening constructive dialogue on critical energy and environmental issues. He enjoys exploring tough challenges and promising solutions at the intersection of energy policy and markets and environmental protection.


Few industries felt the impact of COVID-19 as keenly as the corporate events sector. Trade shows, conferences, and exhibitions were cancelled overnight. Now, some three years later, in-person events are back. Though perhaps not quite at pre-pandemic levels, attendance is increasing, and calendars are filling back up.

At APTIM, we have long seen great value in choosing to attend certain professional conferences. They provide in-depth industry news, allow us to meet and learn first-hand from government and industry thought leaders, and study what competitor companies are doing. Perhaps most of all, conferences provide APTIM employees with the opportunity to connect face-to-face with potential clients, partners, and talent. Often that involves having to succinctly explain who APTIM is, which can be a challenge given the breadth and depth of our work.

It is not enough to say APTIM is an industry services company. With more than 3,000 employees worldwide, we provide integrated services and solutions to government, commercial, industrial, and energy clients. Understandably, each business line would likely describe who APTIM is slightly differently based on their expertise and role.

At our core, APTIM is a solution provider at the forefront of technological developments. We design with the environment in mind and are invested in the communities we serve. We differentiate ourselves by asking our clients to “expect the extraordinary.” This pithy tagline appears on every page of our website and piece of marketing material. It emphasizes our approach to solving our clients’ most challenging problems and helping propel society forward.

What Does It Mean To “Expect the Extraordinary?”

But what is “the extraordinary?” Of course, our work—not to mention our in-house experts who perform it—is truly extraordinary and speaks for itself. What sets us apart, though, is how we serve our clients.

  • Self-knowledge: We understand our strengths and weaknesses, which allows us to leverage internal and external resources to fully meet our clients’ needs.
  • Observant: We stay aware and informed of the environment and our clients.
  • Communication: We are responsive, timely, and reliable.
  • Action: We are motivated by our clients and their trust in us, so we always seek to add value to our projects.
  • Psychological Comfort: We understand the deep impact our work has on communities, and we honor the emotional needs of our clients.

Yet perhaps one of the best definitions was relayed to me by our Vice President for U.S. Army Programs Prashant Khanna. Drawing on APTIM’s history as a Louisiana-based company, to him “the extraordinary” is APTIM’s “lagniappe.”

Mark Twain writes about the word in a chapter on New Orleans in “Life on the Mississippi.”

We picked up one excellent word—a word worth travelling to New Orleans to get; a nice limber, expressive, handy word—”lagniappe.” They pronounce it lanny-yap. It is Spanish—so they said. We discovered it at the head of a column of odds and ends in the Picayune, the first day; heard twenty people use it the second; inquired what it meant the third; adopted it and got facility in swinging it the fourth. It has a restricted meaning, but I think the people spread it out a little when they choose. It is the equivalent of the thirteenth roll in a “baker’s dozen.” It is something thrown in, gratis, for good measure. The custom originated in the Spanish quarter of the city. When a child or a servant buys something in a shop—or even the mayor or the governor, for aught I know—he finishes the operation by saying—”Give me something for lagniappe.”

APTIM’s lagniappe, which is translated “a little extra” in Cajun French, is our people, culture, and standard of service. When you work with us, you can expect more than the status quo. You can expect … the extraordinary!

APTIM. In Pursuit of Better.

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