You want to build a building. Perhaps it’s a house; maybe it’s a school, office, or restaurant. It’s a big investment and you can’t afford to get it wrong. More importantly, you want to get it really right. You want your friends, colleagues, and family to say, “Wow, this is awesome!” And . . . you want value for your money.
How are you going to pull it off?
We’ve got some thoughts about that:
We’ve crafted an approach to designing and building that cure the ills that have plagued so many building projects for so many years. The ills that we speak of are:
· Blown budgets
· Blown schedules
· Architect-contractor disputes
· Disappointing design
· Not showing up when things go wrong
Two things have allowed us to do this: Leadership and full Project Integration.
Leadership is paramount to the success of any project, particularly when dozens of people and large sums of money are involved. This entails providing a clear and worthy vision and laying out the path to achieve it. This begins with design, and is carried though all phases of design and construction. In our business, leadership is 99% carrot and 1% stick.
We know how to provide the carrots that get people to do their best work. When we have to, we also know how to wield the stick. Because we generally employ the finest people and subcontractors in the business, the stick seldom has to come out.
Tradespeople are generally enthusiastic to work on our projects because the designs are interesting and the drawings are clear. We work with some of the best tradespeople in the business, and usually find them to be smart, motivated, and up for a challenge. We don’t show up telling them how to do their jobs, but rather ask their opinion on how to accomplish challenging design objectives . We find that they’re usually happy to give it, and honored to be consulted. Happy, honored, and smart people tend to do excellent work.
Our subcontractors (tradespeople) – carpenters, masons, roofers, etc. are key to our success. We consider them partners and treat them well. In return, they treat us (and our clients) well. They show up on schedule, solve problems, execute with precision, charge a fair price, and fix it when something goes wrong. They do all of this with a smile on their face. What they receive for all of their hard work is appreciation, payment without delay, and loyalty. It’s a win-win all the way around!
The Integration of Architecture and Building
Because we are both architects and builders, we don’t have the perennial problem of architect/builder animosity. The conflict built into the divided system tends to pit the two against each other trapping the owner in the middle.Since we’re both, and since we engrain the ideal of mutual respect, there’s no conflict. When a problem (or what we prefer to call a “situation”) arises, we huddle together and solve it without finger pointing, delay, or expense to the owner. Precious resources are thereby spent on the project, not on resolving conflicts.