An Ideal Collaboration

I was honored when Phillip James Dodd (an author and expert on classical architecture and interiors) asked me to write a chapter for his new book on the subject of collaboration. He also invited 16 other architects, designers, landscape architects, vendors and artisans to contribute their views as well. It is clear that teamwork and partnership are pivotal to successfully launching any new product, building a house or developing a new way of thinking. At Waterworks, we work in cross-functional teams where the expertise of our partners, from creative design and financial planning to sourcing and purchasing, is critical to the success of a project.

In his book, An Ideal Collaboration, Dodd explores the idea of team building. This is essential even within individual creation, where a designer may be unwilling to relinquish sole authorship for fear his voice or ideas will become diluted. However, that approach can foster a combative and competitive relationship on a project rather than a collaborative one; the finished product will ultimately show tension without a unified voice.

Each essay discusses the design process — including collaborating with the client, understanding the holistic quality of design and construction, learning to share ideas in a succession of moves that neither the architect or client could have predicted, and finalizing a project where evidence of countless meetings, dozens of drawings and months of construction all come together to form a complete whole.

In the chapter Vision, Voice and Viability, I wrote about my 38-year collaboration with my husband, and now my son as well as countless colleagues, to shape an industry and create a sustainable business. For me and all of us at Waterworks, we have realized that we need to keep an open mind, take unimaginable risks, sweat the details and be unafraid to recalibrate until we get it right. For us, that is the ultimate form of collaboration. It allows us to realize new opportunities, drive our brand and exceed our clients’ expectations.

 

The Art of Classical Details 11

AN IDEAL COLLABORATION by Phillip James Dodd

Images Publishing

Published in Australia 2015

 

 

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