How To Get Hired And Keep Up a Reputation in Architecture

The Midnight Charette is an explicit podcast about design, architecture, and the everyday. Hosted by architectural designers David Lee and Marina Bourderonnet, it features a variety of creative professionals in unscripted and long-format conversations that allow for thoughtful takes and more personal discussions. Honesty and humor are used to cover a wide array of subjects: some episodes provide useful tips for designers, while others are project reviews, interviews, or simply explorations of everyday life and design. The Midnight Charette is available for free on iTunes, YouTube, Spotify, and all other podcast directories.

On this episode of The Midnight Charette podcast, hosts David Lee and Marina Bourderonnet discuss six career questions regarding office and employee reputation in Architecture from the Archinect forum thread, The Issue of Reputation in Architecture. If you have any questions or advice about portfolios or any other design-related topics, leave a voicemail at The Midnight Charette hotline: 213-222-6950.


(03:17) Question 1: Does it look better in your résumé to have worked in a large corporate firm or one that does more interesting work?

  • (08:03) Design skillsets and others that firms look for in a new hire.
  • (14:18) Working at large and small offices 

(18:36) Question 2: Does the size of the firm matter when it comes to reputation in this industry? Is bigger better most of the time? Or is the quality of work more important?

  • (20:36) The reputation of an office amongst the general public
  • (22:08) The reputation of an office amongst employees and peers

(27:54) Question 3: Are there large firms with a bad reputation? Does the quality of their work impact their reputation? How are firms who do bad work able to get clients?

  • (30:41) Iconic architecture versus buildings
  • (32:21) How clients view the quality of architecture
  • (35:38) How successful Architects get work, regardless of the quality of their work
  • (39:37) Why dismissing the work of corporate offices as bad design is not always right

(46:43) Question 4: After working at a more commercially-minded firm, how hard is it to move to a more design-focused firm?

  • (50:53) Winning an interview even if your work experience is not in line with the design style of the office you are applying to

(53:49) Question 5: In terms of early career progression, what is the critical moment when you need to switch jobs? How are you perceived if you work in one office for a long time versus working at many offices for shorter periods?

  • (55:42) Why most employees leave their current office too late
  • (57:56) The two most important questions to ask yourself before leaving an office
  • (01:04:28) Another tip for knowing when it’s time to leave a job and what it’s like when you do
  • (01:07:19) The pros and cons of working at offices for long and short periods
  • (01:14:21) Pros and cons of big and small offices

(01:18:23) Question 6a: Is it better to diversify your experience by working in different architecture office types?

(01:22:15) Question 6b: Is it better to diversify your experience by working in different sectors, outside of architecture?

This podcast episode is available on The Midnight Charette's website, YouTube, iTunes, Spotify, and all other podcast apps.

About this author
Cite: The Second Studio Podcast. "How To Get Hired And Keep Up a Reputation in Architecture" 15 May 2019. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

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