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Don’t act Solo

Every time i get to know someone that quit the 9 to 5 secure job, working for somebody else inside an Architecture firm decided to start completely solo. Like a lone ranger path. Some due to their adult responsibilities can’t just quit and start living from Air. Even if the Bank account does have a strong health, here are the main reasons why it’s not OK to start completely alone and solo.

I understand, sometimes stress caused by busy offices, schedule pressure, deadlines don’t stop, gets to a point where we prefer to walk away from that scene and make a full and fresh restart, somewhere else, with someone else.  When I say act solo, I mean, almost retire from the day to day network and create a some sort of bubble. If you want to start your business alone or prefer to add a partner or more, that’s up to you, but bellow I will describe why it’s not healthy to create your business foundations completely apart from your contacts.

By the time you decide to walk away from your job as employee and start your own path, the time will not stop unfortunately. It’s scary but lately the concept of time it’s like a never-ending clock. Things move very fast, they change very fast, still while you’re implementing your office many aspects may change in the speed of light. I’ve been there, so I know how it is to idealize and mature an idea, suddenly when you launch your office, website, concept etc etc, the all market had made a pivot change. BOOM! There you go… you launch something a little bit aside from the current reality, that can translate into less opportunity.

“Networking is more about farming than it is about hunting.
It’s about cultivating relationships.”

Dr. Ivan Misner

Why it’s so important to walk side by side with your network while starting your own Architecture office? Well, let’s say, you’re still on the run, in terms of market needs, you’re still there and that makes a lot of difference. So why?
If you decide to pause and simply vanish, or just leaving an email to your contacts announcing you’re out to open and start your own adventure, the result is, some may come after you, some don’t, others simply they don’t want any kind of misunderstandings between your boss and they decide to not work for both of you, picking someone else. Many times we get to the braking point where we don’t get anymore and decide to slam the door!
Be intelligent, slam the door to say; “enough is enough”, if possible search for a part-time in another firm, while you’re adjusting the initial phase.

Markets, trends, clients, everything nowadays seems to speed five times their regular pace, everything is so fragile in terms of time perception, that seems there’s no time! Time concept is something that’s being constantly suffering major changes and impacts. We live in a era that lives in full speed…things are consumed like there’s no tomorrow and clients needs are in big part a reflection of those time changes.

When you’re inside the full circle, network, opportunities or whatever you want to call, it’s easier to jump in, when you decide to exclude from that circle and by the time you want to re-enter, there’s no guarantees that circle will be there for you, since some needs and trends already shifted and somehow feels like you’re not dancing the same rhythm. Will feel like you abandoned a train while it was moving, and it gets difficult for you to get in again.
It’s wise to work partial time in another firm, just to control your contacts, keep feeding your network and who knows get your first client from a developer who found you a nice person and professional.

“Networking is an investment in your business. It takes time and when done correctly can yield great results for years to come.”

Diane Helbig

The major risk to act solo, I mean to stop, walk away and prepare the comeback, it’s that the comeback may not be as you imagined or prepared your office for.  We perfectly know, when we walk away from a situation, tomorrow or by the end of day, ten more people will strive to get your place. Applies the same rule here, it’s your last week on your boss office, you decide to welcome your contacts and invite them to try out a new project with you. In that time gap, you’re resting, adjusting and preparing, a lot of things can go on.

I don’t want to sound negative, or someone not supportive when a fellow Architect decides to make his own path, the catch here is, I’ve been in that situation, place and I know exactly what it costs to get in again the “active circuit”.
Better to found a part-time job somewhere else, that way you keep feeding the sphere, you don’t loose track of your network and you can dedicate the rest of hours to build your business.

In the end it’s a smart choice, you can have a monthly income to help you with your domestic expenses and can build your business without that aspect hunting you.
It’s like you never exit from the active circuit anyway.

image credits © garetsworkshop Envato Elements

Networking to get clients

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Hello i'm a Lisbon based Architect, interested in creative content, currently dedicated to build up my Architecture Studio.

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