A design charrette is a short, collaborative meeting during which a member or client can…
In our organization, over the past several months, we’ve been doing a lot of soul-searching. We talk a lot about why we do what we do. Why we design. Why we engineer. Why we build. What we do for our clients that others can’t or don’t. That conversation has expanded to why our clients do what they do. What makes them tick. What drives them to offer the products or services they uniquely provide. What makes them passionate. What sort of environments make them creative or inspired or productive and what sort of spaces they want for their employees.
We have discovered that those answers don’t come as easily as we thought, but we think the answers are still worth seeking. The time we spend getting to know our customers, really getting to know our customers is time spent well. The obvious outcome is we provide better service– a more targeted, custom, spot-on solution to whatever that client needs. Yet an even more rewarding by-product of our efforts is the learning and the friendships we gain. It makes us feel good. It makes us want to do better and better.
Last Friday we went to spend a few minutes with a client. A friend, and longtime comrade. We joined his co-workers in celebrating a milestone– 20 years of providing great service to his customers – along with a well-deserved promotion to Vice President of Construction and Field Operations. We told stories, we laughed, we hugged. It made us think about what we’ve learned from him over the years, the fun we’ve had, and the challenges we’ve overcome. How we’ve leaned on him and how he’s leaned on us. It made us realize how far we’ve come and how many, many people we have to thank for our success.
So today, we congratulate Andy Van Haren, of the Gialamas Company, and thank him for the many easily visible things he has done for us, and even more for making us think about the things that run much deeper. Because that’s how we come to answer why we do what we do.