Why did I have to learn marketing?
When I first joined the architectural profession in the 1960s, there were 10,000 architects in this country. A building boom lasting from the postwar years beyond the end of the 20th century triggered demand to educate and train new architects. As of 2018 there were over 115,000 architects in the U.S. alone. The demand for new and renovated buildings rose through various economic cycles.In slack periods, it fell. As in the early 1970s, many of these professionals struggled to stay gainfully employed. Those professionals and firms who could market themselves would prevail, while in slow times increasing numbers would remain underemployed.
Learn Marketing—A Must
I learned this lesson myself when I opened my own firm in 1973. As a matter of survival, I had to learn marketing. On the advice of friends, I read a few books about sales and attended seminars called “How to Find and Win New Business,” by Stuart W. Rose, Ph.D., an architectural and engineering graduate. The heart of his firm’s technology, they taught, lay in “The Mandeville Techniques”—a system and a caring attitude—for building and sustaining relationships. Videos of Dr. Rose’s lectures are still available today through the firm he and Trina Duncan founded, called Professional Development Resources.
Right genes for the job
As the son of an advertising executive and a press agent, I had the right genes. But I still had to learn marketing, as it applied to architecture. The story of my architectural education and professional development unfolds in my new book, Becoming an Architect: My Voyage of Discovery. The narrative builds from early influences. It continues through college and architecture school. I completed my training with self-guided tours to Europe’s architectural and urban heritage sites, illustrated with my on-site sketches.
This book is getting good vibes. Some readers enjoy my humorous take on my many wrong turns, dead-ends and minor triumphs. Others like the tales of the interesting people. Some of them were quite famous. Among them were: author Thornton Wilder, famed architectural history professor Vincent Scully, architect Paul Rudolph, urbanist Shadrach Woods and architect-engineer Joseph Passonneau. I met other great mentors and a few remarkable ordinary citizens along the way. Photos and drawings of my projects help describe my rocky climb to success as an architect.
Keys to success
Moreover, I reveal a number of hard-won secrets that helped me learn marketing. They include lessons learned about marketing and the one essential thing every architect must do to succeed: build relationships. I also discuss several of the common-sense business development techniques I used during a long career. I share what worked, what didn’t and tips for advancement. But these tips aren’t just for architects: they also apply to the life challenges of many other young people trying to mature, launch businesses and professional careers. You can read reviews, learn more about my books, including my biographical memoirs and architectural mysteries, at my Author Page on Amazon or on GoodReads or visit my website at www.authorpetergreen.com .
Till next time, good words to you,