Morrissey Goodale Presents 'Five Keys to Survival' at BuildBoston

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Morrissey Goodale Principal Mark Goodale spoke to architects at the recent BuildBoston event, focusing on five key elements of smart, short-term thinking in a time of recession.

A large group of wary, yet determined architects gathered at the recent BuildBoston event held at the World Trade Center earlier this month. "My message to architecture firm leaders right now is to survive the storm and carefully diversify for the longer term," says Mark Goodale, principal of Morrissey Goodale LLC, a leading business consulting and research firm that exclusively serves the A/E industry. Goodale says he can tell that architects are growing wary of the recession. "They have real concerns about the future of their profession and believe a lot of talent will flee the industry as a result of the economy," he says. "But I also see a lot of determination. Architects are a passionate group of folks. And the ones who get passionate about their businesses as well as their practice will survive."

Goodale focused on five key elements of smart, short-term thinking, including:

1. Determine what is truly driving the business. Find out what clients need today and what they will need 24 months from now. If you are losing business, are you being replaced by the competition (if so, why), or is there no longer a need for the service?

2. Make the tough decisions now. Cut practice areas that are no longer valued by clients and keep underperforming units that have potential upside on a tight leash. If the resources and expertise your firm had 12 months ago doesn't match what your clients need now, retool.

3. Stay on top of cash. Do weekly cash-flow forecasting and project out four weeks. Also, develop a collections process with teeth-- that means not working without a signed contract.

4. Sustain core strengths. Maintain and build the areas of the firm where you a) can be a service leader, b) have a strong leader already in place, and c) have a passion.

5. Shine. Keep your staff engaged, competent, and busy; connect frequently with the staff and practice open-book management to build trust.

About Morrissey Goodale LLC

Morrissey Goodale LLC is a leading management consulting and research firm serving the Architecture Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry. Headquarters are located at Riverside Center 275 Grove Street, Suite 2-400, Newton MA, 02466. The company can be reached at 508-650-0040 or on the web at http://www.morrisseygoodale.com

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MARIE KELFER
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