For many architects, owning their own firm is the dream which drives their career. In a field such as architecture, the idea of having the freedom to seek out the projects you most want to do and the creative freedom to make the final decision on a design sounds like the ideal way to work. And yet, ask any successful firm founder and they'll probably tell you that owning your own architecture business doesn't live up to such a romantic notion, and takes a lot of hard (non-design) work to be successful. In the recession of recent years, many found this out the hard way, becoming self-employed out of necessity and having to get creative about how exactly they make their money.
We want to hear from ArchDaily readers about the pros and cons of starting your own architecture firm versus working for an existing firm. Is the burden of running a business a good trade-off for creative freedom? How hard is it to win work without a strong portfolio of built projects supporting you - and is there a good way to deal with this? Have you got any advice about how to start your own firm - or perhaps about how to find a position in an existing company that obviates the need to go it alone? Let us know in the comments below.