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Designers don’t pursue a career in architecture only for the money. Instead, they remain engaged through three main motivators: achieving small wins, leading projects, and taking part in meaningful work. Each motivator requires effective management, benefits organizations, and applies to any industry.

Small wins are like a boulder slowly rolling downhill, signaling progress and building momentum. They successfully motivate continued effort and interest. In architecture, small wins can take many forms, from discovering that a particular siding material is available in the color blue, to receiving stakeholder buy-off on a design direction. They allow the designer to move forward and take the next steps in the project. This forward movement is critical. In The Power of Small Wins, authors Amabile and Kramer discuss the progress principle.


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Framing, an invaluable tool in my experience as an architectural designer, is essential to both effective design and leadership.

Designing a building is like solving a complex puzzle comprised of client needs, budgetary constraints, building codes, zoning ordinances, and aesthetic preferences to realize a physical, build-able structure. It requires the ability to evaluate design iterations through each constraint’s lens. This practice is called framing. The use of framing creates a broader understanding of design possibilities and needs to inform design and strategy.

The use of framing creates a broader understanding of design possibilities and needs to inform design and strategy.

Whether designing a product or a service, framing plays an important role in the problem solving process. It expands the designer’s vision and helps outline a menu of options. In Unveiling the Magic of Design: The Role of Synthesis, Jon Kolko discusses framing around building software that includes three frames: Ease of Use, Power, and Pleasure. By acknowledging these frames and by looking at the design tasks from each of these lenses, designers yield a deeper understanding of which problems they should solve and how to optimize the design. Framing encourages designers and leaders to analyze various criteria and be intentional about which ones they would like to address. …

About

Jaclyn Dab

Ever-curious Problem-solver // Strategist // Designer // MBA Candidate — Passionate about the intersection between needs and solutions. Seeking opportunities.

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