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Abuse in Professional Practice

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OneLostArchitect

Well... I saw the ‘Abuse in Education’ post on the forum and saw some interesting stories. I am curious about abuse in professional practice. What have you endured mentally or in some instances physically? 

 
Jun 25, 19 10:09 pm

1 Featured Comment

All 8 Comments

curtkram

completed a project that would require a 4% fee, but within the constraints of a 1% fee. 

Jun 25, 19 10:47 pm
midlander

if you completed it then you just proved your client right...

curtkram

solving problems before they become problems is cheaper than solving them when it's too late.

midlander

owner got mad at jr staff for being unprepared to review before 6pm, said he's not going to stay late waiting for some idiot drafter who talks more than he draws. kicked the computer over, threw it into a trash bin, walked out of the office on time for his evening appointment.


a few minutes later as things settled the firm's jr partner called the desk phone and informed the jr staff he had been fired and should not return.

Jun 26, 19 1:07 am
SneakyPete

Sounds like the jr staff ended up better off.

midlander

yes. he ended up returning to school and teaching. win-win

GridBubbles

I guess he went into academia after being traumatized by the working profession?

randomised

Didn't get the permanent contract.

Jun 26, 19 3:58 am
Non Sequitur

What’s the criteria to be considered abuse? The current crazy ramblings in the other thread are not of abuse but of a hack blogger’s desperate attempt to push their imaginary assumptions of modern day academia. 



Jun 26, 19 6:29 am
OneLostArchitect

Verbal abuse, physical abuse, sexual abuse, etc.

tduds

Which is a bummer because it takes bandwidth away from conversations of *actual* abuse.

jla-x

This is academia polluting the minds of the youth with all this over sensitive micro aggression bs. I love when dumb shit backfires.

OneLostArchitect

JLA so are you saying that’s kids now I’m architecture school are snowflakes?

jla-x

I’m saying that if you consider a kiss on the cheek sexual assault then every Italian becomes a predator. If asking “where are you from” is a form of racism, then every person awkwardly trying to engage in small talk becomes a racist, and if saying “dude that’s retarded” is considered a hate crime

jla-x

Then everyone born before 1990 is a prolific hate speaker

jla-x

Real abuse exists, but softening people to be hypersensitive to everything is not good for anyone, and just waters down and makes a mockery of real abuse. When I was a kid in the 80s teachers said “sticks and stones...” now they send you to counseling and put you in a safe space. FOH

RickB-Astoria

jla-x has a point about the overly hypersensitive response mechanism to every possible thing that can be interpreted as microaggression where none was intended. The basic extreme degree of response that borderlines crucifixion or other capital punishment for the slightest off color or otherwise not in strict compliance with the current day's trend in social norms which is not the same each day in each place. People need to learn something like forgiveness, compassion, and even love.

tduds

If strawmen were real, then we'd sure have a problem!

tduds

All of those examples can be both harmless and harmful depending on the context. To ignore that is to be willfully dense.

tduds

"Real abuse exists, but softening people to be hypersensitive to everything is not good for anyone, and just waters down and makes a mockery of real abuse" ...cultural norms are constantly in flux. What constitutes "real abuse" in any given decade or century could be wildly different things. It wasn't long ago that it wasn't considered "real abuse" if the women you beat was your wife. 

If you're going to insist on an arbitrary point at which to freeze culture, why the 80's? Why not the 50s? The 1840s? etc.

jla-x

It’s in flux and also overlapping...so people have to deal with those of us raised in other generations or cultures until we die off. Then they can inherit the earth and offend an even softer generation...

tduds

Or you could adapt, like a mature adult. *shrug*

jla-x

Until the year 3000 when we will have all morphed into completely benign androgynous blobs grazing on fields of genetically modified soy.

tduds

You'll be dead in like 30 years chill out.

tduds

What's hilarious to me is that we all (rightly) called moirabroon our in the other thread for extrapolating individual, uncommon experiences to try to paint a false picture of an industry in crisis. And now you're doing the same thing to paint a false picture of her as representative of an entire generation.

jla-x

I’ll live another 50 probably.

Non Sequitur

Tduds, as much as I enjoy this digression off my original comment, Moira’s “thesis” was to equal her understanding of
academia with abuse.

Non Sequitur

Call me skeptical but I’m of the opinion that evidence is important if that term gets used as a label so conveniently to, likely artificially, pump up their position.

nabru

I just think a fair day's work for a fair day's pay, calculated by your local central bank's inflation calculator is the minimal equitable situation for all parties. But maybe I'm just a crazy social democrat? What's the comparative rate for a Part 1/2/3 architect in salary in 2003 to 2019? And what does this mean for real terms salary and project fee income? (Excluding bonuses)

RickB-Astoria

tduds, how can anyone adapt to norms which doesn't really exist. What is normal? Define it. What is not normal? Define it. This has to be world wide not constantly in flux and not different from one place than another. No one sentencers. This requires complete detailed rulesbook level of definition to every social context.

We have a problem when we simply give no one a chance to adapt. We are making assumptions as if there is an issued rule book. Unlike league sports where you might have established rules for what is valid plays and what results in a penalty...... we don't have that in social norms in society. What was socially normal for me in the same community a decade ago might not be socially normal now and sometimes what was socially not normal becomes normal. It is literally as fluid like water. 

We have to remember that sometimes just adapting isn't so simple especially if you have certain core values that comes in conflict with where a particular societies social norms morphs into. We can't just expect people to just throw away their values which is basically throwing away who THEY are to become someone alien to them. It isn't always that simple because often any given society's social norms have morphed drastically that they like night and day.


jla-x

Exactly Rick! Who says society is evolving in a linear way where each generation is more morally righteous. I mean, watch Gran Torino for fucks sake.

jla-x

Non, there are rules to this...abuse is 100% self determined, but only if it conforms with a leftist narrative, otherwise it’s called intolerance.

jla-x

Tduds, this is all part of a larger trend...and the epicenter is academia.

nabru

jla-x surely "100% self determined" abuse is reliant on abusive employers not capitalising on being both commercial and academic practitioners? Otherwise the potential for abuse is increased which we hope is in neither parties interest for the future? Or is this the business model?

Susz

So many fallacy arguments and we are only on the first page of the thread. Slippery slope argument, jla-x: "I’m saying that if you consider a kiss on the cheek sexual assault then every Italian becomes a predator." No. That's not how reality works. As tdud said, context matters. If that that professor/employer forces a student/employee against a wall and forcibly kisses them, then yea, that's sexual assault/harassment.

So much theatrics... it's not as hard to understand as you make it out to be.

Susz

RickB-Astoria you're just as theatrical as jla-x. Social norms are not as hard as you make them out to be. We are social creatures, both literally and evolutionary speaking this is what we do. Calm down, it's more natural to adapt than you think. Stop being so resistant and start being more resilient. The world moves on, so what? Adapt, move on. 


jla-x

You pointed out an obvious situation that would be considered assault. Thanks for proving my point. Real abuse is obvious, flipping out over Joe Biden hugs is dumb. Suing your firm because someone tells a dirty joke, dumb. You don’t get to subjectively move the needle of acceptable and unacceptable behavior. Too bad. It evolves naturally or doesn’t, and in the mean time you just deal with the old timers and assholes without crying over it.

Susz

Skimmed the second bit because it got preachy/generic. "You don’t get to subjectively move the needle of acceptable and unacceptable behavior." That is 100% the call of a victim of abuse. They get to make that call, whether or not it aligns with an outsider perspective of the situation. You should hold up that advice to a mirror: "[I] don’t get to subjectively move the needle of acceptable and unacceptable behavior[for other people]" If someone wants to report a creepy hug from Joe Biden, that's their call. It's not harming you physically/personally most likely, so just take a breather. Anyway. Said what I needed to say, now I'm just getting repetitive.

jla-x

You are abusing me. Prove me wrong.

jla-x

Johnathan Haight pointes out in his great book “The Coddling of the American Mind” that we (academia and life in general) used to use a reasonable person standard to determine what was offensive, now we use a most sensitive person standard. Can’t operate a society like this.

jla-x

We have laws to prosecute abusive behaviors. We have lawsuits. There is recourse where we can hold true abusers accountable. Are the laws too leinient? What is it that you would like to change? How do you implement it?

Susz

"You are abusing me. Prove me wrong." Why should I carry the burden making the argument/case for YOUR opinion? It's your opinion. You back it up.

Susz

"Are the laws too lenient? What is it that you would like to change? How do you implement it?" Great productive question :) Just out of my undergraduate education I learned unpaid interns are not protected in many states against sexual harassment. Unpaid internships are a big enough issue in our profession and add that on top of it. At the time, there had been a female architecture student in New York whose case was dismissed not on the facts of the event but the fact that she was unpaid employee( and therefore not protected by the jurisdiction's human rights law. )*eye roll* These were the most recent articles I could find in a quick search ...thoughts? https://www.propublica.org/article/how-unpaid-interns-arent-protected-against-sexual-harassment  

  https://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/03/business/03intern.html

RickB-Astoria

"RickB-Astoria you're just as theatrical as jla-x. Social norms are not as hard as you make them out to be. We are social creatures, both literally and evolutionary speaking this is what we do. Calm down, it's more natural to adapt than you think. Stop being so resistant and start being more resilient. The world moves on, so what? Adapt, move on. " It isn't so simple for everyone. The less you have any deep adherence to a set of values, the easier it is for you to morph to whatever but at what cost... integrity. Social norms are fluid. What is social norms exactly?

RickB-Astoria

Keep in mind that the difficulty varies with each person. The point is, simply changing your values to whatever the social norm and rules of any society. It is more difficult than what tduds was implying (while it might not be his intent). It can be easy for some individuals who really have no adherence to any sort of values. Some people are more tightly coupled to their core values which was ingrained into their identity of who they are so it becomes a lot more difficult because for them it is asking them to forget and throw away what they so dearly valued and part of WHO they are. Talk about the world war II generation who's culture and values are kind of archaic and old fashion that contemporary generation don't follow. They fought and bled and sweat for those values they adhered to and loved that some portions of our contemporary world despises and don't follow and in those areas, their society's social norms would be in great conflict. What we fail to really understand here is there isn't a singular universal social norm in this country let alone this planet. Some values are widely adopted but they are not always going to be so.

RickB-Astoria

Susie, in a legitimate system of justice, the burden of proof rests with the accuser not the defendant for the defendant is afforded the right to be presumed innocent UNTIL proven guilty by the accuser beyond reasonable doubt. That's the underlying principle of our justice system. Punishing the accused without a fair legitimate system of justice where the accuser must present evidence to support their argument beyond reasonable doubt that the accused committed the offense. That is the system I believe in. Should the accuser be heard, absolutely. Should the accuser be allowed to accuse a person of an offense without supporting their accusation with proof (burden of proof) and cause the person accused to be punished? Personally, I say no as that would mean we are literally throwing away the United States in its entirety and its legal system and returning to a time and place where you can be accused and executed without even a trial. You would just be accused and punished. It would be wrong. Think it out. Conceptually, the point here is we need to be more caring and find ways to work things out..... civil.

I might be theatrical but the point of pointing out some of these logical extremes is to highlight the end points of going down certain paths. Where do we draw the line from going too extreme? 

RickB-Astoria

In my opinion, we should simply get rid of unpaid internships altogether. Especially when it comes to for-profit business organizations including sole proprietorships. Only bona fide non-profits can have unpaid internships... which is called "volunteer". These are the kinds of changes that I would propose which would clean up that mess and punishment would need to be very dire like mandatory dissolution of a business and individuals responsible for such violations would be barred from opening or being in any decision making role in any company for 10 years beyond just a shareholder in a C corporation. In other words, barred from being on the board of shareholders or any operational leadership role. The reason the penalty needs teeth is to be the incentive to not violate or pay very dearly.

randomised

All he did was try to fit in: https://youtu.be/5YnGhW4UEhc

RickB-Astoria

That's interesting but seriously not everyone with difficulty with aligning themselves to whatever is deemed socially normal or whatever the social norm is are psychos as you seem to imply by the URL. Sorry, that's not how things are except in very very few unusual cases. If the social norms aren't at odds with fundamental moral values then maybe it isn't a problem but guess what.... sometimes it is. What is a society? Is there one society or are there many societies? How are social norms established? How do they alter, morph or mutate? What is acceptable? What isn't?

randomised

Nolite te Bastardes Carborundorum, Rick!

Rick, let me make sure I'm following along ... 

  • jla-x accuses susz of abusing him and says that susz should prove him wrong. 
  • susz says the burden of proof lies with the accuser not the defendant. 
  • You swoop in to mansplain to "Susie" about how the burden of proof lies with the accuser, not the defendant. 

Bravo Rick

smh

jla-x

EA, she implied that “abuse” was a subjective thing. I feel abused by the tone, therefore susz is an abuser. Susz then goes on to victim bash me. I’m sooo offended. I’m just playing by the obviously ridiculous rules of Susz...mansplaining means explaining by a man Rick! Men cannot explain things to women anymore, get with the program! Adapt to what they deem correct! We all know that in a gender fluid society we can temporarily turn into a female and explain things and then turn back into a male after...this way it’s considered explaining...these liberal rules are so fun to play with...

jla-x

For shits and giggles Trump should self identify as a female when he wins in 2020 so that he can be first female President!!! Troll hard or go home buddy!

Susz was not victim bashing you, all they did was ask you to explain your opinion, but you have the right to be offended by that I suppose. 

Troll hard or go home buddy! 

Glad you're finally admitting your modus operandi out loud.

RickB-Astoria

Now only if I could just physically metamorph at will.

Susz

Where did I “imply abuse was a subjective thing”? Use direct quotes. I’ll wait. Also waiting on you to back up your own opinion too(not an unreasonable request). Victim bashing? Nah. You’re just unused to someone holding you accountable for your own opinions. Don’t expect further replies from me unless you can back up your accusations. Bye Felicia.

jla-x

“That is 100% the call of a victim of abuse. They get to make that call, whether or not it aligns with an outsider perspective of the situation.” That’s what you wrote...did I misunderstand it?

Susz

I was quoting you. *drops mic*

jla-x

Nah, you are mistaken...

Susz

Nope.

Non Sequitur

Look at you and your fancy pants with your 34% phone battery remaining. What, you think you're better than us?

jla-x

I don’t know what you are talking about. Where tf did I say that? Are you mental?

tduds

tl;dr

randomised

You said the stuff from the screenshot in this same subthread jla-x...

I think Susz in misconstruing jla-x's slippery slope argument as sincere rather than trolling.

Susz

Lamo. some days I cruise at 18%.

Susz

Oh I know he is a Troll, lol, but I had 34% more battery left so I had time. Now at 10%...

jla-x

EA, you call it trolling, I call it teasing out truth...

jla-x

I’m always at like 4% battery getting quick hits of charge here and there like a crack head.

Actually, you called it trolling... 

Troll hard or go home buddy!

I'm at 88% #notsohumblebrag

Non Sequitur

pfff, 100% atm (because phone is plugged into workstation and I'm offloading 3 site visit's worth of pics)

You must think you're pretty special to have the empty storage space on your phone to handle 3 site visit's worth of pics. You must not have a wife that takes your phone to take more videos of your kid because her phone is full. #totallynotspeakingfromexperience

Non Sequitur

My wife has her own phone which I need to empty (and backup) often. #firstworldproblems

That must be where I go wrong. I expect her to backup and empty her phone often. It usually only happens after she first fills up her phone, then fills up my phone, then deletes a few items from her phone to make space for a couple of pics/videos, then does the same to my phone, and finally follows my suggestion to backup her phone. #thisdescriptionhasbeeneditedforcontentandtofitinthetimealotted #youonlythinki'mjoking

Susz

I made my first legitimate mistake at a place I had worked for a year at that point. It was on a new project where I had absentee management at best in terms of instructing me on how to do something completely new to me. I had done well at the office up until then, but honestly I was still new to being a professional, so didn't initiate feedback in the way I do now. Sometimes being new to things, you don't know what you don't know. Thus I didn't know I had missed a step in the project, as it certainly had never been mentioned by him. It would have taken about a weekend to fix but was certainly fixable. The boss found that mistake, came into the room I was working in with a model I was working on and literally threw that model($$) into the wall. I was STILL trying to figure out what was going on when he told me what was wrong and he didn't want me in his sight, so I had to go home for the rest of the week. On my way out I was leaving he vindictively said "I could make you work here for free and suffer to make up for this shit but I'm not going to." Gee thanks pal. Frankly I would have gladly stayed the weekend to repair the damage, but that was never an option. Instead, I used those days to apply for another job and was out of that job about a month or two later...making more money and in a much healthier work environment. I had written an apology email while I was on that break to which that boss did come around to see that more instruction should have taken place....and he appreciated the email.  However, I lost all respect for him and I was done. Don't put up with shitty bosses.

Jun 26, 19 10:27 pm
randomised

Exactly, don’t put up with shitty bosses!

archi_dude

I’d actually say there is some mental abuse in architecture. In construction you get, “how did you fuck this up!?” Give explanation, followed by laughing “alright alright let’s figure out to fix this.” This plays out repeatedly with all trades. The real assholes don’t get to bid next time. In architecture it was “how did you fuck this up!? How are you so stupid? Interns are worthless, your work is worthless, it’s a privilege you are here. Seriously you are an idiot, that’s why you are a CAD monkey.” Even in the nicer firms the designers still have that attitude. 



Jun 27, 19 12:23 pm
randomised

Never experienced anything like that in any of the gazillion architecture offices I’ve seen from the inside or heard from any of my co-workers. Maybe it’s a cultural American class thing or related to the fact we don’t need to sell our kidney or have huge student loans to study in the Netherlands but nobody feels they’re better than anyone just because they’re an architect and also nobody would just put up with that shit...I’d punch the motherfucker (m/f) in the face (kidding wouldn’t hurt a fly obviously am way too chill for that)

randomised

Sorry for the shitty punctuation.

tduds

Might vary from firm to firm or even city to city, but I've also never experienced anything even remotely like that. ...and it's definitely not because I've never fucked something up.

code

like I keep saying: it's like the Marines " WHAT IS YOUR MAJOR MALFUNCTION NUMBNUTS"

Jun 27, 19 1:36 pm
Non Sequitur

no, it is nothing like the marines.

RickB-Astoria

just about the only thing there that's definitively something a marine would say is 'numbnuts'.

Steeplechase

What is your malfunction? You seem proud to be in shitty offices being treated like crap.

RickB-Astoria

Must be addressed to Xenakis.

code

after exactly 10 years, I graduated from "boot camp" Huuu Rahh - now work in an office - years of struggle over - dues paid with heavy interest - lessons learned

code

as long as they don't hire some hotshoe with a lot of heel

Xenakis, based on your usual comments ... you're still in boot camp, still struggling, and passing this off as something normal. We're here to tell you, this is not normal.

code

What do you recommend?

I'd recommend you stop pretending like it is normal or "like the Marines." Until you can manage that, I don't think there is much else I can say that would help.

Steeplechase

Stop being proud of being treated like shit. Stop considering working overtime and weekends to be normal.

code

"Stop considering working overtime and weekends to be normal"

code

Then my job will be outsourced to South America, China, Russia or Mexico - ca't have a lapsed work ethic in a global economy - many at Tesla put in 100 hour weeks, Elon Musk sleeps on the floor

Then I think you should go work for Elon.

chigurh

just wait till the AI drafting robots go live

code

BIM BOTS

Steeplechase

Having actually worked a 100 hour week, there is nothing good or healthy about it. All you’re saying is that you don’t actually provide a worthwhile service.

code

for me anyways, architecture is a 0 sum game

Featured Comment

Once again, we are here telling you that it doesn't need to be.

  • working 100 hour weeks is not normal in architecture
  • sleeping on the floor is not normal in architecture
  • feeling threatened that your job will be outsourced to another country is not normal in architecture.
  • thinking architecture is a zero sum game is not normal.
jla-x

The true question is whether or not architecture environments are conducive to produce quality architecture.  I’d say that creative environments should not operate like military environments.  Creative environments should not make people feel afraid, bored, undervalued, unheard, or underwhelmed.  We shouldn’t be talking about this in terms of abuse or kindness, ultimately it’s about productivity.  



Jun 27, 19 11:39 pm
jla-x

It’s also terrible business to invest years training someone, treat them like crap, so that they leave and go work somewhere else after they begin to create a productive return on the investment.

randomised

Saying it’s all about productivity comes off a bit harsh, but I basically agree with both comments.

Probably a debate in there about whether an architecture office environment should be set up for creativity, productivity, and if it is possible to do both ... and also what counts as a measure for quality architecture.

RickB-Astoria

If you are a business as pretty much ALL architectural offices are then productivity matters in the sense that the work performed leads to the firm getting paid so yes, its a business. It is still an important consideration in any firm. Those who don't consider it will likely fold because they have no clue about running a business of ANY kind other than how to fail at running a business. If you have employees, productivity matters when it measures in deliverable that results in getting paid by clients. Clients aren't going to pay for no results.

jla-x

Creativity and productivity are the same imo. Find novel solutions and implement them effectively. “Quality” is subjective, but I think each firm should have a standard or mission that they strive for. Without that, it’s pretty hard to get staff to find meaning in the work. If you are building a house for a family in need, every nail you whack had a purpose larger than the task at hand. Firms that just exist without any larger than self ethos are kinda poorly managed imo. It doesn’t have to be some hippy dippy shit either, but the firms place in society needs to be defined and honest.

RickB-Astoria

Technically, they are not the same but can work hand in hand to brilliant outcome. I get what you are saying.

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