As my drafting business became a modest success, I decided to hire my first employee. This turned out to be my younger brother. He was learning CAD too, and I would have him pick up redlines for me.
One day I passed by the family computer, and to my surprise he wasn’t working on our project like I expected him to be. Now I only paid him for the time he worked, so he had control over his schedule. But I had expected him to be working towards the deadline for delivery of this project! I tracked him down and told him sternly “You’re shirking my responsibilities!” This became a family quote down to this very day.
Another time I was working on a very complicated roof for an expensive home. It had octagonal towers, varied plate heights and other complications. I actually had very little experience with roofs and was really stuck. I didn’t have too many places to turn for help because I didn’t want to tell my client I didn’t know how to do this, and I basically worked by myself. So again, I turned to family for assistance and had my dad look at it with me. Now he also had no experience with roof plans, but he did have geometry experience. So he identified some areas with potential problems and helped me think through the angles mathematically.
Since then, I have gotten quite good at roof plans and have found that many commercially trained architects and designers struggle with roof plans. The residential guys do this all the time. We do commercial and residential work in our office so its something we all have to learn. But what really amazes me is the framers in the field. If you have college educated people struggling to figure this stuff out in the computer, it should be hard right? Framers can not only figure it out but they can have it all built and ready to go in less than a day. I have mad respect for the guys who build what we design.
More to come soon. If you want to get in touch please let me know! Thanks for reading!