Architects get their formal education; they acquire some experience through the Intern Development Program (IDP), and they also get state licenses before they can render work. But, apart from that, they will also have to learn the business side of things as well.
When I started my own architecture company, I didn’t really know what to do. That is because I didn’t learn the principles while I was still getting my college education.
What I was taught were the things that a typical architect student must know. Things like Geometry, advanced algebra, other mathematical concepts, technical drawing, and so much more are taught; but never some business perspectives.
Today, I am going to give business tips for aspiring architects so that in the event that you’re done doing the above-mentioned things, you can start thinking about creating your own firm.
Never Work for Free
One of the things that architects must acquire would be some work experience. Whenever you got some from the Intern Development Program (IDP) or other related platforms, then that means that you have rendered some time doing the real thing.
That being said, a typical college education would give you at least 5 years to learn every concept that you need to know. On top of that, you are going to get some licenses in addition to your work experience as well.
Where am I going with this? This just means that being an architect is not easy, which is why I urge you to not work for free.
There was a time where a former client of mine messaged me to provide “free” consultation services. It was not free, mind you, but because I worked for them before and because we have established a pretty good working relationship, I just scribbled some tips on a piece of napkin and gave it to them.
I also want to add to never undermine your experience, even though you just got it from an internship program. Being an architect is not easy so you want to get paid handsomely.
Make Yourself Competitive
There are so many architecture firms out there, but how can you differentiate one from the other? Well, you can most certainly look at their portfolio and their expertise as well. Some firms specialize in a number of fields and there are also those that would become a jack of all trades.
To make yourself more competitive than your peers, it is important that you know how to use advanced technologies in your industry.
For example, knowledge of creating 3D modeling and design mockups will really help you excel in your craft- far better than your colleagues.
Although you work in a highly-competitive environment, I encourage you to work smart- not hard. The reason is manifold. First, most architects have families and if you sink a lot more time than you should, that may result in burnout and you will not be your usual creative self.
Second, although there is always the element of being pressed for time, working smart by setting and tackling priorities in order of importance is so much better.