Unsupported browser

For a better experience please update your browser to its latest version.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Mastering the art of delegation

  • Comment

Delegation is an element in every type of job, but in architecture it is absolutely essential; without it you would spend a lot of your time with a hod and trowel. However charming you found Ruskin's medieval idyll when you were forced to read about it at college, it is not really how buildings get built.

More familiarly, you must delegate work within the office, because you do not want to spend your time scheduling ironmongery.

Unfortunately, the person best suited to scheduling ironmongery (the most junior) does not want to do it either.

Having no-one to delegate to, they do the year-out equivalent and phone in sick, or delegate upwards, as it is known. So you are left to get it wrong on your own or to get the manufacturer to do it.

This has been going on for generations, and we are close to the stage where an architect who has successfully scheduled door handles will be an object of curiosity, much like the last person to know what to do with railway curves, or the last person to have learned anything useful at the AA.

With delegation goes supervision, ie taking 12 drawings out of the post tray at 5.20pm, checking them and still catching the main collection. To achieve this you need to convince yourself that minor errors on drawings can't do too much harm - the note saying 'All bricks to be Utterly Butterley' (misheard through a hung-over haze), will not inspire the tenderer to approach the non-dairy spread manufacturer for a supply price, for the simple reason that no-one will look at the drawings until two days after they needed to place an order. Checking drawings will, however, put you in the rare, and enviable, position of knowing why everyone is laughing at you on site.

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions.

Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.

Related Jobs

AJ Jobs