My boss wants us to keep up with the "cutting edge" of residential
his point is that we (the intern architects) should attend every home show,
parade of homes, AutoCAD club meeting, you get my drift.
He thinks we should do all of this on our own time and money.
Now, since we never get to design a project here, only draft, I think this
be treated as OJT....what about you?
I'm in a pissy mood today and want to know if my head is on straight or
Well...there are a couple of ways of looking at this. The first one, is
that if I'm going to be an architect (and I'm making an assumption from your
post here) I would want to learn all I can. Therefore, I'd be doing those
things on my own time anyway. In fact, that is exactly what I did...
The other way is that you think your boss should pay for it because you
think its to his benefit (see gruhn's post). It might very well be to his
benefit to have you better "trained." So... if you don't like it, don't do
it. If he doesn't like your attitude he may fire you. He may give you more
crap work. Hey may be looking and thinking you're a slacker because you do
none of these things and have no self motivation. You're just a "drafter,"
Sure...it can be treated as such.
No...you're head is screwed up. First, the guy doesn't owe you anything
except for what you've agreed to do. Second, if you don't like it, get
another job...or better yet, do what it takes to be your own boss. It's up
to you... but then again, you're just a drafter.
FWLIW - heck, I'm just a layman and a renter, but I enjoy going to those
things, and catching the "what's new" segments on tv, and so on, just
because some of the stuff is really neat. I also really like getting
brochures, cutting out pics, and getting all sorts of references - my new
computer will be here in a couple days, and I'll be able to use all the
clippings and brocuyres as reference material for modeling - and, as of
yet, I don't even get paid to do this modeling; I do it because I love it,
and am excited about it, and want to continue improving as long as I can -
age is no barrier to enthusiasm and the enjoyment of discovery ;) .
But even when working for pay, one *still* has to continue being a life-
long learner, otherwise one becomes "Windows3.1 in the XP era". When a
company decides to lay people off, the first ones to go are the people who
haven't learned much of anything new since they were hired (and tend to be
the clock-watchers). So, if nothing else, life-long learning is a survival
strategy. It's also a health strategy - it's been shown that people who
are constantly learning new things as they age (as opposed to sitting
aorund being bored) are significantly less likely to suffer from things
like Alzheimer's and depression, and their accompanying health problems.
Also, if attendance at admission-fee-required events is required by one's
job, wouldn't the associated costs be tax-deductable...? Personally, I'd
love to be able to attend such things and take a deduction for it <g!>
I dunno about AutoCAD clubs, tho'; it'd depend upon the members and the
degree to which actual teaching/learning and info-sharing does or doesn't
occur. There are also forums (?fora?) on-line for pretty much
anything/everything, so those are often interesting and very useful. The
folks in forums tend to be helpful, from what I've seen.
That's a good point, Gruhn.
Grumblers/complainers in *any* field of endeavor end up "shooting
themselves in the foot" so to speak.
And the boss' request might also be a test. Maybe he is actually trying to
weed out those who lack enthusiasm - that's a scenario I've certainly seen
more than once. Maybe he's trying to "separate the men from the boys" as
the old saw goes - separate the architect-drafters from the Architects.
I'd think this woule be especially true in a field where mentoring is an
important part of learning and career development. At the least, Mentoring
takes time and energy, and it'd make sense for a potential Mentor to drop
little "tests" on people to see who would benefit most from the process. I
know I would - it's not even a question of ability as much as one of
application. Someone with innate ability, who doesn't exercise and use and
develop it, is not as good a candidate as is someone who might not have
that same level of innate ability but who does have a real love of the
field, and has enthusiasm for learning and applying as much as possible.
"One never knows, do one...?"
Again, tho' I'd suggest that the OP check into the possibility of taking
tax deductions for Continuing Education. I don't know the rules but the
info *is* out there.
The AIA requires it.
<insert standard weeks long AIA argument here.>
Just last night my roomie said to me "Why didn't you do it such and such a
way?" And I said "Because I don't think they had that on 3.1." Lucky for me
I was relating a story from 1994 not yesterday.> I dunno about AutoCAD
clubs, tho'; it'd depend upon the members and the
The club around here meets at like 11am on Wednesday. Sorry, gotta work.
I'll bite..........the AIA is a useless P.C. organization that does little
for its members.....they promote membership in their organization as some
sort of extra credential, when the only credential is paying there
There "learning credtis" are little more than a scam to create a cottage
industry of classes to earn those units.
I've sat through a few learning credit presentations and learned a lot
of new stuff. I didn't earn credits, but I'm sure the AIA sets some
standards for what to teach. Otherwise I would probably be sitting
through a "my product is better than their product" type presentation.
At the end they of course had their product to push, but before all that
they went through the basics (more than basics really, more like the
general understanding of that part of the building envelope). I'm not
saying it can't be done without the AIA, and I'm not even sure if they
DO set the standards, so take that as you will.
You miss the point...
I don't think anyone thinks that not learning new stuff isn't important.
But has architecture become "better" since mandatory CE classes? Look
around you. I would think not. Requiring the classes does little, except
create the cottage industry to create the classes.
But it's not all bad...the guys who come around and do them usually bring
lunch...and we'll take that "free" lunch.
Yeah I understood your point, my point was if they have a set of
standards to follow, that makes the presentations that much better,
maybe there is something to it. As far as I know, its not so much of an
industry, as it is a way to promote your product (at least for the free
lunch presentations). As for architecutre becoming better because of
it, no it probably hasn't, but there are several factors to account for
I don't disagree with you, I just think there might be some good to it.
Like I said, it might not even be because of AIA.
Not the point, but nevertheless:
I don't know about the AIA, but re: classes, when I was a member of the ASM
(Amer. Soc. of Microbiologists), they also had classes one had to take, and
others that were "strongly suggested". The idea was to keep people current
with new technologies and refresh knowledge of techniques that one might
only use rarely. Same was true when I worked for the agency - I had to
take a number of classes a year in everything from languages to new
technologies to job-specific tidbits to just about whatever popped up that
might have been potentially useful - pretty much soup to nuts. So what's
your point in that regard? Yes, it creates a "cottage industry", and yes,
it *can* be taken to extremes, but in what way is it overall a terrible
thing? If one person has a skill that others need or want to learn, what's
wrong with getting paid to teach what one has spent time acquiring? I
don't see that as a bad thing, so you'll have to enlighten me as to why it
OTOH, if something works, it doesn't make sense to ditch it *only* because
it's old. Old can be used in new ways. Just look at stone <g>!
Seriously, tho', IMO being a Professional isn't a matter of career area,
it's part of who one is. Always learning, expanding one's knowledge, also
always striving to improve one's craft, one's capabilities. but also
keeping an element of fun, because if you aren't enjoying what you do, it's
merely a job like any other job.
Yeah, that time slot makes no sense to me.
Sounds more like a coffee klatcsch.
Well, yes and no. As I mentioned, sometimes one has to figure out where
one;s energies would be best spent. And in a way, people often (and IMO
continually) "test" one another, although I'm sure there is a gentler, more
"touchyfeelie" psychological euphamism for it.
yeah, what a sorry post.
I really do try to keep up, the cost of sitter and entrance fees was
getting me down last week. Hence the stupid post.
I am actually a very hard working individual with lots of responsibility and
I am generally very appreciated by my employer.
I also usually work in access of 60 hours a week. That is a lot of time
for a salaried employee (with a young son) I guess I just thought it would
be a nice perk,
and still do, but after some rest this weekend and all of your helpful
judgments, I also see that I am being totally unreasonable.
For those how suggest I leave my job.....
There are LOTS of aspects of my job that I do like. MY boss happens to be
very protective about
design and only HE is allowed to do so. I know someday I will have to go
elsewhere to finish my IDP
but that is not now. My son is not healthy and I cannot risk losing my
Some of you think I should "get out or quit complaining" but I thinks it's
ok to complain occasionally.
In the end My boss has agreed to let me go during my lunch hour, extending
it as necessary, and take home more
work over the weekend. This is a great compromise, and I can work at home
while my son does homework
over the weekend, and not have to pay a sitter.
I know I should not care what any of you think, but I find it painful that
many of you took time out to spit on a
lowly draftsman. I do not have the experience yet to go out on my own. I am
responsible for much
more that drafting in my office, and have been defined as "invaluable" by my
boss, who depends on me a lot.
I'm just not allowed to present designs. Neither are the 5 draftsman who I
anyway, thanks for straightening my head. It really was just a suck ass day.
You sort of opened yourself up again in your response. If you are
invaluable to your employer, then you're not getting paid enough. He sees
you as a cash cow...you work hard for not enough pay and he likes that.
Have some backbone. Sit down with him and say "Look, you've told me I'm an
important part of this firm. I appreciate that. I'm happy you're happy
with my work. But I've got some concerns. First, I'm working towards
licensure. I can't do that without a broad range of experience. I need to
have opportunities to get this experience here, or eventually, I'll have to
go elsewhere to get it. Second, I'm salaried and working 60+ hours a week.
When I was hired, I took the job for X/year, which works out to Y/hour for
40 hours. Now, I'm working 60 hours and making Z/hour. Z/hour isn't
enough. I really need to be closer to Y/hour." IF you're worth what you
seem to think your boss thinks you're worth, then you'll have a productive
Example: I knew an architect who had stayed at the same firm and same job
from the day he graduated from school. The IDP and NCARB licensing wasn't a
big deal then, so getting is license wasn't tough. But he never went to his
bosses and asked for different tasks, more money or anything. He sat in his
cubicle and designed hospital labs (just the rooms), school labs (just the
rooms) and was board to death and underpaid. His wife whined about the
terrible life of an architect and how you'll never have any money. It was
his own darn fault....
How do I know this? Because I'm working for myself making a decent living
doing interesting stuff, including having time to waste on Usenet. It's
your life. You control it. If you don't, don't complain.
I think it was they complaining that got to most of us...because most of us
here are the type that have taken control of our lives.
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