How does a middle size architectural firm stay in business through thick and this?
The answer is staying open for new clients and project types. You need to be open to seeing the future and responding to the current and future markets. If you have a few clients then keep it going. If you rely on a non-ending flow of new work with many different clients then flexibility is the key. Staff, office space, business practices, insurance all need to be designed for that effort.
I have been asked how I handled the Covid-19 office safety protocol. Seeing the direction of the virus I planned ahead of time to have the ability of all staff working from home. I planned ahead for business loans. I plan ahead on my marketing campaign so more options of clients are out there.
The word is Resilience. My corporate path of planning has always been to keep all options open. Staff must have the ability to move from one type of project to another. This is not easy. Training, ongoing training, office procedures, systems optimization is always going on. That is where the leadership of a company shines.
Canvasing for new opportunities is always ongoing. Being aware of current trends, staffing issues, business issues need to be constantly reviewed, upgraded and tracked. We do our best with a small staff to update these issues.
I have survived 5 recessions and multiple client-based closures or changes of directions. Staying flexible is key. Plan for change. If you love what you do then this is one of the most important issues facing any company.