In the process of constructing new buildings or any infrastructure for that matter, there are many steps and precautions to account for. The relationship and communication between designers, developers, contractors, and especially architects is an important one. A typical timeline of establishing structures, whether it be commercial, private, or municipal, starts with an architectural team. Providing the entire scope of the project which the rest of the team then refers back to, and results in the most important aspect; how the finished product impacts any end user.
In the business world, there are many forms of power, and we are not talking about electricity. When a worker displays their knowledge and superior craftsmanship towards their job, this is defined as expert power. Many experts argue that this form of authority in their field, can be obtained through seniority and the intellect they have obtained over time. As the economist, and Nobel Prize winner Daniel Kahneman states, these experts possess a certain intuition that has been the result of countless hours of practice and toiling at their craft. Just as a chess master is able to walk past a game and intrinsically know the strongest move without deeply analyzing the board, so can a worker display expert power in any given project. To the consumer, anyone who displays this trait is the most reliable connection for great work and establishes a sense of trust in the respective organization.
Sure, anyone can say they edited a photo, cleaned their teeth, or designed a building. But why would we trust such important aspects of our lives to someone who isn’t familiar with the industry? Our wedding photos, dental health, and most importantly, multi-million dollar design projects made to serve thousands daily shouldn’t be taken lightly.
Many argue there is no need to hire an architect. Attempting to defend their stance as it being an unnecessary expense, stating that they could in fact design infrastructure on their own. To us, this is a bias that needs to be resolved.
Architects are inherently made from expert power. Years of schooling, trials, failures, and success, create a certain design genius that has fabricated the most well-known and astounding buildings to this day. Skipping out on this step means missing out on major essentials that the average developer may not be aware of. This includes timelessness, environmental impact, building engineering, material supply, cohesion with building environment, and much more. Most times hiring an architect can save you money in the long run due to the fact that their designs are made to last decades, and also to leave a legacy for future projects.
To answer the question first stated, we cannot discard architecture just to reduce the bottom line. Without this vital step in the design process, a whole element of perfection is lost which cannot be replaced with money or time. The expertise and your decision to work with architects will be one of the most important stepping stones for any project. It is a vital part of the planning and execution of any design.