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INTRO Young architect with a small architecture firm.

Discussion in 'Forum Introductions (Who are you!?)' started by ngmm87, Oct 11, 2018.

  1. ngmm87
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    ngmm87 Contributor

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    Hi, my name is Nelson. I'm an architect in the low 30s. I have a small architecture and interior design firm the Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. I started this company 5 years ago in Santo Domingo, along with my wife, then girlfriend. She is an architect too. We started the firm in a tiny studio at her parent's house. Then, after one year, we leased a small 9 sqm office and incorporated a third partner and our first employee. In those first 3 years, we focused on renovating old hotel spaces, like restaurants, rooms, bars and spas. But in the year 2014 we got the opportunity to design the interior spaces of our first hotel, located in Montego Bay, Jamaica. I traveled constantly to Jamaica, for 3 years until the project was finished, and my wife and the other partner at the firm, handled the other minor projects in Punta Cana. At the end of the year 2015, we got a contract to design the interior spaces of a new hotel in Punta Cana. Our first new hotel. It was a landmark for us. We felt the pressure that came along with a project of this magnitude, but at the same time, we knew that we had an opportunity that few people have. Right now, and 3 years later, we are finishing the construction of the project and we are very glad with the results, and the client is very pleased with the design we developed for his hotel.

    Right now, I'm interested in growing the company's clientele and also, automatizing the majority of the design and execution process. I know that in this field is not possible to automatize every process, because designing and supervising is something that computers still cannot do, but if I can improve my response time, quality and practicality of the majority of the process, I think the clients will come by word of mouth.

    Also, I would like to use my company as a VC generator for my other ideas. We would like to launch a furniture line, design and build houses for the poor, improve peoples lives with apps and services that our country currently is lacking of.
     
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  2. ColbyG
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    ColbyG Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    Very nice work mate. Welcome.
     
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  3. Get Right
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    Get Right Platinum Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass

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    Welcome fellow Architect!

    One of the core components of CENTS is Time. Figure out that component and you are well on your way. I found it difficult to escape so I pivoted to a slightly different field.
     
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  4. ngmm87
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    ngmm87 Contributor

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    Hi Get Right! Thanks for the quick response. May I ask at which field did you change?
     
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  5. ZCP
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    ZCP Legendary Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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    The firm can help fuel other fastlane ventures. @Get Right has already escaped.
    I am working on it with my engineering firm.

    Processes, procedures, automation is the name of the game. Try to make it where it is process, NOT person, dependent. Try to set it up to run without you. Then you will be able to pull money out AND have a sellable asset that is not dependent on you.

    Then pitch US architects near the end of their career. They might buy your firm outright.
     
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  6. ngmm87
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    ngmm87 Contributor

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    Thanks for the advice! I'm in the process of just doing that. Automating the process I can right now, but at the same time, thinking about new ideas that relate with the architecture field, that I can convert to an escalable business.
     
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  7. MJ DeMarco
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    MJ DeMarco Raving Lunatic Staff Member Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

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    Great to have ya my friend! Sounds like you are growing, congrats.
     
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  8. George Appiah
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    George Appiah Bronze Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED Speedway Pass

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    Great introduction! Welcome to the community.

    A mentor of mines likes to say... "automation is anything I don't touch and don't have to worry about."

    Worth keeping in mind as you seek to automate and systematize your operations.

    Very smart of you to be looking for opportunities in related industries you know very well, instead of jumping into a completely foreign industry like food supplements and what not.

    Good luck and Godspeed in your Fastlane business pursuits.
     
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  9. ngmm87
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    ngmm87 Contributor

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    Thanks MJ! Your book has changed my perspective of life. Even though I have my company, I was behaving like an employee, not as an entrepreneur. But, since I heard your book (audible's version is the best) I am focused on getting my economic and time freedom before I get to my 40s. Again, thanks a lot. I'm also loving this forum! I think is one of a kind!
     
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  10. ngmm87
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    Thanks a lot George! I will keep everyone posted about my progress, because I know there are lots of architects struggling in the profession, because it is to time demanding and for an architect to reach a reasonable economic return, it has to get some white hairs and spend a few decades working full time.
     
  11. lowtek
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    lowtek Platinum Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass Summit Attendee

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    Welcome aboard, thanks for sharing the story.

    Working with your wife... that's tricky business. You're a courageous man for sure.
     
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  12. Get Right
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    Get Right Platinum Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass

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    Check out the threads in my signature below. Feel free to ask any questions and good luck!
     
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  13. ngmm87
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    ngmm87 Contributor

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    I'm not going to tell you is easy business, we have learned, through trial and error, how to separate personal insight from profesional insight. Some times we get carried away, but then we end un laughing at certain situations that happened at work, that are obliviously silly when you get out of it.
     
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  14. AllenCrawley
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    AllenCrawley Legendary Contributor Staff Member Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR Summit Attendee

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    @Get Right - I was about to tag you in this thread but you beat to it!

    @ngmm87 Welcome to the forum. So glad to have you here!
     
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  15. ngmm87
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    ngmm87 Contributor

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    Thanks @AllenCrawley ! And thanks for the REPs! I've been reading @Get Right posts and they are pure gold! This is my first FORUM experience in many years and I from what I've seen, I think this community is one of the best!
     
  16. Andy Black
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    Andy Black Any colour, as long as it's red. Staff Member Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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    If you can do this, then you can do anything. Well done.
     
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  17. ilrein
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    ilrein Silver Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass

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    Greetings @ngmm87!

    Welcome to one of the finest cultures ever cultivated online. You'll be hard pressed to find 20 year-olds with art degrees becrying about the evils of Capitalism here. Just a group of some of the hardest working, self-motivated people, each molding destiny by the palm of their own hands.

    Now, I must ask you -- as an experienced architect -- do you utilize any software that helps you handle contract administration? In the West here, Prime Consultant(s) handle the design, and then pass the implementation to General Contractor(s). As the GC works, they almost always require Change Orders, Request for Additional Information, etc...

    Both parties log this process with outdated, ugly, and expensive software.
    Is this a familiar pain point for you? Asking for a friend ;)
     
  18. ngmm87
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    Hi @ilrein ! Around here in the Caribbean, in my knowledge, we do not use those kinds of software. In Latin america we build really fast and the interior design is done almost as the construction is undergoing, because the clients think that the job is only applying nice things into the space that don't requiere previous planning alongside the main architect and the main architectural project. I've seen the kind of software that you mention, but in our case it is to time costly, although it prevents further errors along the construction process.
     
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