Operations

Bouncing Back

Recently, I was interviewed for Columns, the magazine of the Dallas Chapter of the AIA. One of the themes running through the interview was resilience, particularly for design firms.  It got me thinking about what…

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Nickels and Dimes

“Nickels are precious, Mike.” I almost laughed in his face. This was one of the nuggets of wisdom I received from one of my mentors, long ago.  He always insisted that we hold tightly to every nickel and…



Take A Load Off

Ever have that feeling that you brought too much stuff, and now you’re stuck with it? Last week, we likened Overhead to a heavy load that a firm must carry alongside direct salary costs. Baggage,…



What’s Cooking?

Someone at the bakery had been cooking more than pastries. The deeper they looked, the bigger the theft appeared to be. I know, I know—it’s not going to happen to your firm.  Your firm is…


It’s Elementary

This month of March is that unpredictable, yet hopeful time between winter and spring.  A time for students to take a break before continuing on with their school year.  For gardeners, a time of preparation. A kind…


A Culture of Profitability

Over the years, I’ve presented a number of workshops on financial management for design firms, and I have often sensed a skepticism in my audiences about making a design firm consistently profitable. I think there may be a prevalent mindset that the…