As a faculty member of Taliesin, Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architect, I’ve been given the opportunity to expand my course offerings at the Taliesin West site to include a course on “Practice Management.” I remember my own practice management course (called “Ethics and Practice” at the time) while attending the College of Architecture at the University of Arizona. The course was taught by Professor Ellery C. Green, who came across as gruff to some, but was actually a very likeable and knowledgeable man.
Surprisingly, I still have my notes from that course, which I took almost 28 years ago (it’s amazing how little my handwriting has changed over that time). There are many things I remember specifically from this course, including my first introduction to what are specifications and how they are organized (i.e. CSI’s MasterFormat), preparing professional correspondence, preparing agreements for professional services based on AIA Documents, and the need to document, document, document.
Although I learned much in my class, after many years of experience there’re some areas that I wished were covered within the course. In an attempt to avoid leaving out essential information for my students, I would like to know what you think architecture students should know about architectural practice management before entering the profession.
If you’re an architect, what was missing from your practice management course that may have left you ill-prepared to enter the architectural profession?
If you’re not an architect, but work with architects, what do you consider is lacking in the preparation of architecture graduates for the profession?