Five Myths about starting an architecturAL FIRM

Having doubts, confusions and anxiety before starting a new business is very natural.

But do you let these fears overtake your decision to start on your own?

I have observed 5 of the most common myths among young entrepreneur architects and would like to share it with you. Identifying these myths and overcoming them before starting your practice is crucial.  



Myth 1: Architects from only rich and elite class can be successful in the practice:


Long time ago, the architecture was considered a profession of the elite and most successful architects would be seen moving around with rich friends for their projects. But time has changed, practice today is like a swimming in an ocean. You can go as far as your strength and passion allows you.


Myth 2: Out of 100 start-up firms only 70 survives over the period and very little reaches the heights:


True as well as False, many people join the bandwagon even if they don’t know how to play their pipe or without adequate rehearsal. There is no place for unfit pipers in the band. If you use good business planning and understand the importance of management, you are more likely to create a stable and strong business.


Myth 3: I have enough money and courage, so I don’t need to bother about business planning:


Money can finance the firm but cannot drive the firm. It is a known fact that well equipped soldier can fight better. Detail understanding and analysis carried out in earlier stages, will save you from unforeseen hurdles and anxiety.


Myth 4: I will be successful in a short time as I am a good designer and a good communicator:


Successful business runs on at least four wheels, i.e. technical, entrepreneurial, managerial and emotional skills. Don’t be overconfident about one of your skills. Learning to balance these four aspects will decide the rate of success in your firm.


Myth 5: I have prepared my business plan and I have appointed top marketing agency, so success is bound to come:


Marketing tool is to create awareness about your firm. And business plan is your alert program which guides your actions and needs continuous evaluation. These are effective tools for achieving success. It’s like you can take the horse to water, but you can’t make him drink. Ultimately the performance and dedication of your team will be responsible for your success.


My experience as an entrepreneur and the lessons that I gathered from last 40 years in architectural business, tell me that:

  • Start-up firms take longer time to establish than estimated.

  • People are slower in trusting and appreciating your work/ideas than you think. Be patient.

  • You can participate in the battle by being soldier, captain, major or a general. It’s up to you to put the hard work and choose your position.

  • Entrepreneurship is an art of acquiring capital and providing leadership for creating, nurturing and growing your ideas.

  • For startup firms, marketing is getting first few jobs! Word of mouth is most economical and quickest. Today’s time you can spread the word quickly by blogging, micro-blogging, social networking, etc. Use the technology at its best.


Next >> Who is your client? Learn about different client types and what choices as a start-up architectural firm do you have for choosing your clients. 


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