It is time to pause and celebrate and reflect. Another year has gone by with continued growth in readership and interaction. The table below shows just how much things have changed in four years.
This is one of the chapters in my e-book, Trello-PM. I want to give you a glimpse at how you might develop a Project Master Template. It is a great Competitive Advantage using a tool like Trello™. See what you think...
My experience is probably a lot like yours - things are never as simple as they seem.
Projects, for instance. It probably took me 15 years to realize that a project wasn't a project most of the time. It was actually two or three projects masquerading as one project. A Hybrid. The difference isn't great, but it is enough that it should be recognized and dealt with.
The Hybrid Project usually complicates code compliance when you are dealing with two Building Groups - or Use Groups in code-speak. Fire separations and mixed use requirements suddenly appear. Another type of Hybrid Project is one that is an addition. That is because you have a part that is 'new' and a part that is remodeling. Specifications and detailing usually get a bit more complicated to address the different parts of a Hybrid Project.
Two or three Building Groups is the typical way that we encountered a Hybrid Project. Some examples:
In my experience Hybrid Projects were much more numerous than straight-up new buildings. But it was ages before we recognized the impact on our architectural fees.
One of the major differences I found between designing projects in school and designing projects in a firm was the need to meet others' expectations. To me school design was like solving a puzzle. Having a solution was what mattered. Not how you got there.
When I was designing 'for real', I was never entirely on my own like in school. Getting all the drawing done in time for final printing was just one objective. The client needed to be kept in the loop. The consulting engineers needed drawing updates in time to complete their work. And they needed them far enough in advance for me to make sure their work was coordinated with everything else. Codes. Budgets. Specs. Having all these other expectations encouraged me to find a process.
That's where Lessons Learned comes in.
Back in the day when I was designing buildings instead of managing projects, I really enjoyed the task of getting light into the building. Most of the time this was just a form of decoration. But when i could make it more integral to the design, that was especially gratifying.
I found a number of ways to make windows more than just a 'punched' opening - although there was plenty of that, too. Here are some examples to show what I mean.
A Survey As A Marketing Tactic
I am a fan of a marketing tactic that you probably could use. Surveys. I have mentioned this before. Here is the link.
There are things that you can learn from a survey that just aren't available as quickly or cheaply. Things that are valuable. Here are some things that you can accomplish with a survey.
I have always been interested in the 'process' of architecture. Early on, any path I took felt like I was getting somewhere, but sometimes I was and sometimes I wan't. Once I was convinced that the solution to a small school admin office was designing the building from the front door inwards. Two days later with nothing to show for my effort except my boss's observation:
"What in the hell are you doing?"
I guess this wasn't a path that produced useful results.
I continued to be on the lookout for "the Way".
Nearly twenty years later I stumbled upon a magazine article describing when types of design decisions should be made in the design process to minimize re-work.
Finally, a clue!
When I published Feecalqs a while back, I failed to place the emphasis on the fact that Feecalqs is four linked electronic spreadsheets. This is important because the effort that it takes to arrive at a realistic fee for any project takes just a few minutes with a digital method of calculating fees. You already know the information that you need to enter, so it takes no time at all.
One of the four spreadsheet that you don't even have to look at is the Fee Tables. There are five tables representing the five Building Groups. These Building Groups arrange the different types of buildings into groups based on the difficulty of designing them. This Building Groups post shows the listing that I assembled from various sources.
Here's what the fee tables look like and how they work...
Construction Administration - DOs and DON'Ts
Hey, I'm Rick Wolnitzek and Architekwiki is my blog for sharing what I've learned practicing architecture for ... a long time. Enjoy!