May 13, 2013
This is part of an ongoing series in which we explore critical issues facing emerging and established architects. Past stories include “Why Architecture Firms Should Use Pinterest” and “15 Tips For Starting A Firm.”
Whether you’re just starting out or have been nurturing your own practice for a few years, you struck out on your own because you wanted to do your own work, not someone else’s. But, if you’ve been following our coverage of Mark Cavagnero’s Growing a Small Firm panel discussions at AIA San Francisco, by now you’ve heard several veteran designers recommend teaming with a larger practice. “Teaming is a good way to expand the breadth of your experience,” says Paulett Taggart, principal of Paulett Taggart Architects, who spoke at the fourth installment of the AIASF series. (In addition to our recaps here, you can find video of past panels at aecKnowledge.)
So how does teaming actually work? And why would a big practice want to take on a young upstart?
When you’re a small firm, the power differential between you and the established players may seem insurmountable. But larger offices can benefit from a collaboration, too. “We’re now seeing a time where a lot of younger firms are teaming with bigger firms,” says Marc L’Italien, design principal at EHDD and another of our panelists. “Sometimes the bigger firms are carrying more of the executive role, and the younger firms are bringing some of the creative energy.” Ahem, that’s you! Read more.