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mal-practice

the architecture of constructing a practice

  • unemployment numbers, part deux....

      so, just to muddy the waters of the study put out by georgetown university yesterday, this evening the wall street journal's reports on the Department of Labor's annual average unemployment figures, released today as part of the overall jobs report (positive news on the whole. still...


  • the cold cruel numbers for upcoming graduates...

    so, the above graph is taken from an article by the washington post, on projected unemployment rates for upcoming 2012 graduates in various professions. you can read the whole article (as short as it is) here.   i'm not sure what's more depressing on a 20 degree morning in atlanta - the fact...


  • networking really is working...

    “Networking”, as the OED may tell us, is “a supportive system of sharing information and services among individuals and groups having a common interest:” Simple enough, right? Except… what kind of system? Who are the individuals and groups? And most...


  • random thoughts of bumblebee's flowing through the air...

    i've been out meeting people a lot these past couple of weeks - some who i'd rather not see again but a ton of inspiring and interesting people from all walks of life.    one of the best was ben chesnut, an industrial designer who's gone on to work in (what else) software development...


  • an interview with jimmy the banker....

    (image from 'it's a wonderful life' - of course you all know that. i don't have anything to do with the copyrights on the movie though.)   One of the main attractions for starting this blog was the excuse to reach out to interesting people and get their perspective. And one of the first...


  • those numbers just don't lie...

      i'm working on a couple features for the blog, but in the meantime some data from the feds this morning. all emphasis is mine....   "Construction spending rose 0.8 percent in October to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $798.5 billion, the Commerce Department said. While an...


  • some changing employment demographics....

    without question, the last 3-4 years have been ruthlessly unkind to many recent graduates and interns in traditional practice. my own alma mater, for which i'm on an alumni advisory board, was tracking about a 15% employment rate for one of the recent graduating classes (now, to be fair, this was...


  • just a little motivation....

        with two major proposals wrapping up today, this cartoon has never felt more right...   back to the regular programming this weekend. 


  • you hire people, not firms...

    while i'm waiting for my network to reboot (and in the midst of proposal hell), it makes some sense to talk about why the best, most savvy clients (ones we'd all kill to work with) generally make their decisions:   it's the people, not the firms.   and it's pretty obvious, but...


  • ultraviolet (light my way)....

      it seems like this week will be a string of never-ending proposals, but since the show must go on....   i found the coincidence today of the 20th anniversary "re-release" of u2's achtung baby (containing its idiosyncratic delight that is 'ultraviolet') with this story in...


  • deciding on a corporate structure...

      in the last post, we took a quick (very quick) look at the various corporate structures that are available under the us tax code. if you missed it, here's a shortcut.    so, to guide you through our own process, let me give you some of the particulars - there were going to be...


  • a quick primer on what type of corporate structure to have...

    so, one of the questions asked recently was about which type of legal structure someone starting a firm may want to use. to put in the usual disclaimer - i'm neither a lawyer nor a tax expert so you'll need to take anything i saw with a mountain of salt - i'll just offer some thoughts we went...


  • clarity out of the fog....

    whether you love, hate or are indifferent to frank o. gehry's work, if you've ever really studied his career path, it's clear that he, almost alone among his brethren, figured out how to create a business model that supported the kind of ambition his work aspires to.   which is a fancy way...


  • why hiring full time can really bite....

    jammed up with proposals, but this very timely article in the times caught my eye because i genuinely believe it's a major reason people are scared to hire full time right now (forget the threat of future regulations - pure bunk and posturing). consider their example case: "Here is how the math...


  • preparing for launch....

    back to our regularly scheduled programming...   one of the topics that frequents the dicussion forums, as well as numerous websites, books, and other media, is 'what do i need to do when starting a firm'? the short answer is: a lot. or a little. because, like most of life, it all really...


  • 'your reply is requested'...

    just a quick update today - i penned a lengthy reply to sherin wing's feature on the macro relationships between the economy and employment that, taken together, form another kind of discussion about what kinds of trends are driving the opportunities we'll see in the coming years. needless to...


  • looking in the mirror to see the way forward...

    one of the most essential aspects when starting a firm (or even while growing and evolving a firm) is to personally develop an ability to look in the mirror and be truly comfortable with how well you understand the person looking back. without some ability for self-introspection and the...


  • one last thought on steve....

    it seems like the eulogy count for steve jobs is approaching the numbers of people who own an apple device (i've got 2 sitting 8 inches to the right). and the commencement speech he gave to stanford university, back in 2005, is seeing record numbers of hits (and worth seeing if you haven't yet)...


  • california learning....

      i was put onto this book today - it's on order but it looks like it could be interesting, especially considering the author (jenn kennedy) is a photographer and journalist more than an architect. the roster of firms that are interviewed - all in southern california - is pretty...


  • aia billings index - let's look behind the methodology...

    Tagged aia, billings, index, survey

    quick break from the start up train - the aia's architectural billings index (abi) is one of the more important benchmarks and 'canaries' that measures the overall health of the profession. if you want some more background reading on how the readings are measured, you can read this description on...


  • some light reading....

    in our start up vein, looking at the macro level, there's been a more pronounced uptick in companies that are re-thinking how they get off the ground. 'bootstrapping', 'lean', 'leveraged' - the words all change, but a majority of the principles stay the same. what's interesting to me isn't the...


  • start me up...

    To kick things off, I want to focus on start ups for the first few weeks of the blog. Partly because of circumstance - the current economic climate in Europe and the US has forced many architects and designers to become entrepreneurs whether they were ready or willing to be. Partly because it's a...


  • good morning...

    starting a blog is part masochism and part regimented meditation. great blogs have a kind of implicit compact - if the content's good, there's an obligation to participate in the conversation.   having no idea how the former will be received, the latter's the only hope i'm bringing with me...


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About this Blog

Central to the blog is a long running interest in how we construct practices that enable and promote the kind of work we are all most interested in. From how firms are run, structured, and constructed, the main focus will be on exploring, expanding and demystifying how firms operate. I’ll be interviewing different practices – from startups to nationally recognized firms, bringing to print at least one a month. Our focus will be connecting Archinect readers with the business of practice.

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