We measure time by minutes, weeks, months, and fortunately measure them by years. As the earth completes its rotation around the sun we see this as cause to celebrate. I know it seems arbitrary, but let’s go with it.
Many of us in this architecture blogging family own or partially own our own businesses. When in that position, we measure ourselves by the calendar year – thanks in part to our friends at the IRS. Each year gives seemingly objective data to how well we did during that year.
Architecture is about the work to me and the money or business side is only a necessary evil. Also, I did not marry rich. Regardless, I am not one that is particularly interested in economics or money or finance, but I understand in order to maintain a firm with some measure of success, money and economics play into it. I do like to eat…every day.
Over the years I’ve set goals and targets for each month and especially for the year. It is not to achieve a specific salary or financial goal as a mark of success. Perhaps it’s more of a validation that my decision to operate my own firm demonstrates I am capable of doing this. I’ve never been interested in taking on something that I couldn’t do well. As I compare my income to the averages I wouldn’t have much to boast about, but I have been fortunate to take on very interesting projects and I start this year with a full load of work. Plus, I don’t think I could go back to work for someone else.
The year in business is much like a marathon. It is a long and steady pace that requires discipline and it requires checking the splits in terms of time or in our case finances. 2015 met a few financial goals, but a few still remain. I know the targets. Now I have to work on the steps to hit them.
- Hopefully as architects, we are using measuring rods beyond dollar signs. We measure the quality of the work we are able to produce.
- Hopefully we are measuring the impact we are having in our communities.
- Hopefully we are measuring how we are developing as individuals and as firms.
- Hopefully we have adopted new technologies or new knowledge and are growing in ways far more important than size or salaries.
- Hopefully we are thinking about our decisions, thinking about architecture, and just thinking.
It’s a new year; regardless of how the previous one went, we all agree to start over.
Before you go, read the other posts from my friends (scroll below) in this #architalks series…and…
The participants of this ArchiTalks blog post series are asking you to help a friend of ours who is dealing with a family tragedy. Rusty Long is an Architect based out of Portsmouth, Virginia, whose son Matthew is fighting for his life. Here is Matthew’s story, as told by his Dad, Rusty.
“Matthew Long was born May 29th, 2013, happy, and seemingly healthy. Less than two days later his mother and I found ourselves in an neonatal intensive care unit waiting room, listening to a rushed intensive care doctor explain how our son needed immediate dialysis to save his life. The disease, he briefly explained, was one of a group of disorders called Urea Cycle Disorders, which impact the way the body breaks down protein. We later discovered that Matthew’s particular variant is called OTC Deficiency, a particularly severe form of it in fact, which results in a rapid rise of ammonia in the blood, called hyperammonemia, resulting in devastating neurological damage. This form of OTC is so severe, Matthew has virtually no peers who have survived it. Once the immediate crisis was arrested, we came to find out more about the disease and the impact of this initial event.
The disease is inherited, and the damage is permanent. Treatment consists of a combination of medications, low protein medical diet, and ultimately a liver transplant. Matthew was fortunate to experience no additional hyperammonemic events in the following fifteen months of life, and had a liver transplant on August 24th, 2014. The cure for the disease, a transplant, isn’t so much a cure as trading one condition for another. While we will never risk the chance of another ammonia spike, Matthew is on a half a dozen or more medications at any given time to avoid rejection. Despite these challenges, intensive daily therapy for cerebral palsy (a result of the initial damage), limited motor function, and various other challenges along the way, our son is remarkably happy and has changed all our lives for the better. He’s taught us to be stronger than we ever thought possible, to have faith beyond human understanding, and the immeasurable value of life.”The #ArchiTalks community is hoping to raise $5,500 to help Architect Rusty Long and his family reach their financial goal on HelpHopeLive.org. If each reader of this post contributes a small amount, our impact will be massive and we can make a difference for Matthew’s family.
Click here now and donate $2.00. Please. He’s our friend and so is Matthew.
Rusty Long – Rusty Long, Architect (@rustylong)
New Year, New Direction
Matthew Stanfield – FiELD9: architecture (@FiELD9arch)
New Year, New CAD
Marica McKeel – Studio MM (@ArchitectMM)
New Year, New Adventures
Collier Ward – One More Story (@BuildingContent)
New Year, New Business
Brinn Miracle – Architangent (@simplybrinn)
New Year, New Perspective
Emily Grandstaff-Rice – Emily Grandstaff-Rice AIA (@egraia)
The New New
Enoch Sears – Business of Architecture (@businessofarch)
New Year, New Community on Business of Architecture
Bob Borson – Life of An Architect (@bobborson)
Jarod Hall – di’velept (@divelept)
New Year New Reality
Jared W. Smith – Architect OWL (@ArchitectOWL)
New Year, New Reflection
Anthony Richardson – That Architecture Student (@anth_rich)
New Year New Desk
Mark R. LePage – Entrepreneur Architect (@EntreArchitect)
New Year. New Budget.
Lora Teagarden – L² Design, LLC (@L2DesignLLC)
New Year, New Goals
Nicholas Renard – dig Architecture (@dig-arch)
New Year, A New Hope
Jes Stafford – Modus Operandi Design (@modarchitect)
New Year, New Gear
Cindy Black – Rick & Cindy Black Architects (*)
New Year, New Casita
Eric T. Faulkner – Rock Talk (@wishingrockhome)
New Year, New Underwear
Rosa Sheng – Equity by Design (@EquityxDesign)
New Year, New Era
Michele Grace Hottel – Michele Grace Hottel, Architect (@mghottel)
“new year, new _____”
Meghana Joshi – IRA Consultants, LLC (@MeghanaIRA)
New Year, New Plan
Amy Kalar – ArchiMom (@AmyKalar)
New Year, New Adventures
Michael Riscica – Young Architect (@YoungArchitxPDX)
New Year, New Life!
Stephen Ramos – BUILDINGS ARE COOL (@sramos_BAC)
New Year, New Home
brady ernst – Soapbox Architect (@bradyernstAIA)
New Year, New·ly Adult Architect
Brian Paletz – The Emerging Architect (@bpaletz)
A Little Premature
Eric Wittman – intern[life] (@rico_w)
new year, new [engagement]
Sharon George – Architecture By George (@sharonraigeorge)
New Year, New Business
Drew Paul Bell – Drew Paul Bell (@DrewPaulBell)
New Year, New Appreciation
Greg Croft – Sage Leaf Group (@croft_gregory)
New Year, New Goals
Jeffrey A Pelletier – Board & Vellum (@boardandvellum)
New Year New Office
Kyu Young Kim – Palo Alto Design Studio (@sokokyu)
New Year, New Office Space