The world the Architect once knew is shrinking. Many new professions or should I say ‘sub-professions’ are springing up. These are taking a bite from the big cake of architecture. Thus, architects need to reinvent the architectural firm.
It is therefore imperative for young and upcoming architects to device a unique method of staying relevant. especially in today’s ever shrinking world of architecture. This certainly should be at a low cost.
If as a young architect you have set out with the mindset of out staging the big and established firms. You need to prepare for a great battle. So how then can architects reinvent architectural practice today?
There are many reasons for establishing an architectural firm. The primary among them is to receive commissions and successfully execute them.
So when you start with this in mind then you might see clearly where it is you want to go.
This is where a firm is structured to have an office location, architects and support staffs, and projects.
The rest are serious cost for a young or upcoming architect. How then can you re-invent architectural practice?
Some call it partnership other call it outsourcing but what is important is the concept. Remember you have no office to accommodate partners.
You can collaborate with anyone as long as they are important in achieving your overall goals.
As a firm seeking global or national relevance you should know that there are several specialized fields. these includes accounting, law, visualization, IT, etc, you need to them.
In this way you have a great network of expert… imagine you had to hire every one of them.
Information Technology and Latest Software and Hardwares
I wouldn’t need to say much on this because you have already embraced IT. Without IT you wouldn’t be online to read this blog.
The internet is a resource you must use; there are billions of information there waiting for you.
If you still run around always to make presentations or receive briefs and not via email or you design with AutoCAD LT or 2000 and make architectural models with any version of AutoCAD, then I am talking to you.
By the way some of these software have apps for tabs, so presentation are a lot easier today saving thousands in unnecessary printing cost.
The idea of 3D printing is becoming mainstream in architecture today maybe not locally but you will need to embrace that.
Getting your works out there
One of the killers of an architect’s enthusiasm is the limitation on advertisement of architectural services. Though this applies to other professions including medicine and engineering.
In Nigeria this is an area that is fueling the rise of quacks. Quacks obey no law and are under no regulatory body.
Thus, they paste spurious adverts at every corner of the city getting the notice of unsuspecting prospective clients who later get short-changed.
Anyway, this is not meant to discourage young architect but to let them know they still have a fair share of the market. But, you just have to think creatively.
Do you attend professional gatherings and participate in exhibitions (by the way you can organize one for you works). The concept of online exhibitions is an idea you can also look into.
Something you must always keep in mind is creativity and innovation. That should be in all phases of your practice.
In summary if you have a place to sleep you have a place to practice and competitively too.