The following is an introduction to The Entrepreneur Architect Manifesto.
I am Mark R. LePage and I am an Entrepreneur Architect.
In architecture school, we each had a professor who told us that architecture should be practiced for the art and art alone. “If you want to make money”, they said, “quit now, take a walk across campus and enroll at the business school.”
Some took that advice, left the profession and today are earning a nice comfortable salary in corporate America. Others heeded the warning, believed it and carried on the long-standing tradition of starving artist.
I believe there is another way.
We can be true to our art and still be compensated well for what we do. In fact, we SHOULD be compensated well for what we do. We contribute to our society with passion, skill and intellect. We bring art to this world like no other profession and should be rewarded financially for doing so.
There is a new generation of architects; beacons of light emerging from the defeatist mentality of the last few decades; architects who want to “change the world” AND be profitable doing it.
We are Entrepreneur Architects.
Entrepreneur Architects are pushing the boundaries of traditional practice and taking it to new heights. Others are using technology to offer new or improved services, delivery methods and business models. Many more are supplementing their work as architects with personal passions such as writing, speaking or teaching. Architects, offering products such as equipment, lighting, plumbing, furniture or accessories, have launched successful retail ventures.
The architect is, once again, emerging as leader.
Master Builders (architect led design/build services) are recovering from near extinction and offering services to high-end, as well as mass market clients. Home plans are being designed by architects and offered as an alternative to the mass-produced “builder” market. Advocates for “good design” have built very profitable businesses around evangelism for their cause.
The renewed imperative for “green architecture” is creating an entirely new market ready to be lead by architects. Niche firms specializing in sustainable architecture and prefabricated homes have emerged to serve the new market demands.
Architect Developers have eliminated the client and have designed, funded and built their own projects; discovering a formula for financial success and more control over their art.
Society is looking to architects to solve global problems. We have an opportunity to use our problem-solving skills to alter the future of civilization AND make money doing it.
The world will benefit more as architects begin to think and act as entrepreneurs.
Entrepreneur Architects have a strong belief in the opportunities we pursue and are willing to take substantially high levels of personal, professional and financial risks to pursue that opportunity. With high risk, comes substantial reward for these architects, their employees and for society as a whole.
We are at a crossroad; a transition from the way it was to the way it will be. There is much work to do. The work has already begun.
To be continued…
Please leave a comment and let me know your thoughts. There is much more to come.