1 answer

What are some characteristics (that most people don't know) that you must have in order to become a successful architect?

Asked Santa Barbara, California

1 answer

Nija’s Answer

Updated New York, New York

Hi Pedro,

  1. I hope all is well! Great question that you asked as a way of getting a jump start to learning the characteristics for being an architect. The website, http://architectureschools.com/resources/top-10-qualities-of-a-great-architect provides the 10 essential qualities needee to become an Architect.

The website states that you need the following listed below:

1. Has Good Communication Skills: A great architect has excellent written and verbal communication skills and can hold effective discussions with clients and builders to ensure each party has sufficiently communicated their wants and needs for the project at hand.

2. Employs Excellent Listening Skills: An architect must have superb listening skills in order to fully grasp what it is the client is after, as well as to effectively understand the needs of builders and other parties involved in executing an architect's design.

3. Shows Strong Drawing/Sketching Skills: A great architect must have high quality drawing and sketching skills, either via computer program or by hand.

4. Has an Excellent Sense of Design:Great architects have an eye for good design and can translate ideas onto paper to show clients and builders.

5. Possesses Solid Technical Abilities:Great architects are able to successfully integrate mechanical, electrical, and structural elements into their designs as well as account for the unique requirements of particular building materials.

6. Is Able to Problem Solve: A great architect must have sharp problem solving skills. They need to be able to identify problems as soon as they arise (or before they arise) and develop rapid solutions to address them.

7. Has a Good Sense of Business:Architects should be keenly aware of the business side of the design world in order to develop practical design solutions.

8. Believes in Collaboration: Architects must be able to work in a team environment – many designs are the work of more than one architect. The entire design-build process, as well, is a collaboration between architects, engineers, designers, and builders.

9. Can Visualize a Project: A great architect has a good sense of vision. They are able to visualize the end results through all steps of the designing and building processes.

10. Has a Passion for His/Her Work: The most accomplished architects are the ones who work in the field because they love it. Passionate architects tend to have a tremendous drive and work ethic, as well.

11. Competitive – of course they are competitive as well. This is important to be able to stay in the game. Architecture is a very competitive field. This is not for those with weak heart and character.

Another website, https://www.constructingarchitect.com/11-personality-traits-of-a-great-architect/ talks about the 11 personality traits of being an architect listed below:

1. Adaptability

Architects need to be first and foremost flexible. The process is harsh and unforgiving. The demands may seem clear at first, the change will often come, though. And that is the moment when we have to be as flexible as the world around us. Ideas come and go and we have to let them if they do not serve its purpose anymore. And then come up with something else again. That is what the project needs and we should give it to it and do not get stuck on the way.

2.Passion

We would not do it if we did not love it, right? The long hours, the stress, the uncertainty. That is the toll for being an architect. But we would not change it for anything else if we were given the chance to. And this eagerness and enthusiasm can carry us from the first sketch to a building from wood, concrete, glass and steel. And it is the same passion that does not allow us to produce mediocrity. It is our fuel to be better by each step.

3. Creativity

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Many people do not consider themselves creative, I bet I would prove them wrong. Creativity comes in many colours and shapes. For architects, it does not mean to create the most interesting shape that has never been seen. No. The true creativity lies in the subtle and careful listening and meeting your clients’ needs. The needs of all the clients. Not just the one paying for the building, but for those who will use it, whether just from time to time or on daily basis. Creativity is just another word for finding solutions to a problem. And when we talk about a problem.

4.Problem-solving

Also known as creativity. And now I have two-for-one on my list. What a creative way to make the list appear longer. When we talk about problem-solving, I need to also mention its twin, that is problem-finding. Because as I always say, problem found is a problem half solved. And sometimes it can be hard to spot a problem. It is crucial to find problems, preferably as early in the process as possible in order to make the change as inexpensive as possible. If problems arise later, it can be much harder and much more expensive to solve them.

5.Teamwork

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The days of lonely genius are gone. And that is a good thing. In order to produce the best, it is great when we can get input from as many different people as possible. Young and old, men and women, nationals and internationals, you name it. Everyone has its own view and can represent a part of our society. And when you combine that data, the result will respect and honour your effort. That is when the best architecture comes to life.

6.Organization

Architects tend to be disorganised. It is probably partly due to the uncertainty of the process. But in order to be successful in the real world, we have to learn to manage. Manage other people, and before that manage ourselves. Get a notebook or an app and keep track of your task. Learn to be organised person, it is a great habit to start to cultivate early in life.

7. Confidence

Nobody is perfect, but we all strive to. Sooner or later you will face a serious decision, and someone has to make them. The fact is, not many people want to take the decision, because, in the end, they will be the one to blame. Someone has to do it, though, so why not you. Take the responsibility on your shoulders.

8. Persistence

Sometimes it is needed to break through that wall. And the only thing that will help might be the dedication to overcome that obstacle. No matter how hard the challenge is, only by trying you can do it. And you will learn this skill very early. Only by trying over and over again, you will eventually become good enough to face the task you aim to beat.

9. Humbleness

Not everything can be solved by running towards the wall, though. Something can, something cannot. Often it is required to be humble and listen more than talk or analyse rather than make bold decisions. And it is always hard to distinguish the two, I know. Listen and learn, from others, from the client, from the site, materials, surroundings, other architects. Learn to know when to use which part of your personality to get the result.

10. Capability

As the penultimate on my list lies capability. Under that word, there is hidden all the technical knowledge you obtain during your life and the ability to use it in the real world, on real projects. It is not enough to dream of castles in the clouds, you have to have someone to build them in the end.

11. Boldness

I have chosen this word because I do not see that many examples of it at the moment, but I would love to. Many people around are stuck in their comfortable bubble for the whole life and they rarely wander outside of it. And that applies to architects as well. If they would be a bit more daring, I believe the world would be a much more interesting place to be. So how about to change this ourselves, shall we?

This information was from the following websites:

1)https://www.constructingarchitect.com/11-personality-traits-of-a-great-architect/

2)http://architectureschools.com/resources/top-10-qualities-of-a-great-architect

I hope all of this information is helpful to you.

Nija recommends the following next steps:

  • Continue to do your research!
  • Arrange informational interviews were you have the opportunity to meet with different Architects and learn about what it takes to be in field of Architecture.