15 episodes

BUILD SMART is a narrative podcast that features Patrick MacLeamy, FAIA, architect, and former CEO of global firm HOK. With host Mark R. LePage, AIA, NCARB, MacLeamy shares stories and lessons from his 50-year career, rising from an HOK junior designer to the company CEO, a tenure that parallels HOK’s growth from 150 employees in St. Louis to a staff of more than 1,900 in 27 offices on three continents. MacLeamy highlights innovative solutions and tough decisions that sustained HOK through multiple economic swings, culminating in it becoming one of the world’s Top 10 architecture and engineering firms. HOK was structured for long-term success — BUILD SMART will share these lessons to help architects and creative-services firms build for long-term success as they design a world-class firm.

BUILD SMART with Patrick MacLeamy, FAIA Patrick MacLeamy, FAIA // Gābl Media

    • Arts
    • 5.0 • 9 Ratings

BUILD SMART is a narrative podcast that features Patrick MacLeamy, FAIA, architect, and former CEO of global firm HOK. With host Mark R. LePage, AIA, NCARB, MacLeamy shares stories and lessons from his 50-year career, rising from an HOK junior designer to the company CEO, a tenure that parallels HOK’s growth from 150 employees in St. Louis to a staff of more than 1,900 in 27 offices on three continents. MacLeamy highlights innovative solutions and tough decisions that sustained HOK through multiple economic swings, culminating in it becoming one of the world’s Top 10 architecture and engineering firms. HOK was structured for long-term success — BUILD SMART will share these lessons to help architects and creative-services firms build for long-term success as they design a world-class firm.

    Dreams

    Dreams

    This is it!...the culmination of season one of Build Smart, where Patrick has shared his story and the lessons he has learned over his 50-year career with HOK, from junior designer to CEO! Overcoming financial struggles, HOK has climbed each level of Patrick’s pyramid strategy – strong board of directors, great operations, and true collaboration – now reaching the peak, and the right to dream. In this episode, Patrick highlights some of the dreams that HOK pursued, including sustainability, product design, and the return of HOK's sports architecture. Lastly, Patrick identifies his successor and steps aside for the next generation of HOK leaders to the helm.
    Patrick shares his lessons for listeners to take away from this episode:
    Firms can reinvent themselves with determined leadership,
    Firms earn the right to dream TOGETHER,
    Sustainable design is an example of a dream made real,
    Step down from leadership when your successor is established.
    To read along and see illustrations and personal photos that accompany this series, get Patrick’s book, Designing a World-Class Architecture Firm. You can buy the book at https://my.captivate.fm/gablmedia.com/buildsmartbook/ (gablmedia.com/buildsmartbook/) and find out more information at https://macleamy.com/ (macleamy.com)
    Thank you to our sponsor Twinmotion! Twinmotion is a real-time rendering solution used by architecture, engineering, and construction professionals to create high-quality imagery, client presentations, and interactive experiences that help communicate your BIM data and design ideas, fast. Visit twinmotion.link/buildsmart and try Twinmotion for free.

    • 44 min
    Buying Our Freedom

    Buying Our Freedom

    Under Patrick’s leadership, HOK is the process of turning around the business of the firm. In today’s episode, HOK is now in a position to buy back their freedom. Patrick details the steps he took to finally address each of the three crises that threatened the firms existence.
    Carl Galioto, President of HOK, managing principal of the New York and Philadelphia studios, explains the concept of "shortening your lines" to improve the function of the firm.
    Susan Williams, managing principal of HOK’s Washington, D.C. shares her perspective of Patrick's contributions and how she has continued and built upon his work.
    Patrick shares his lessons for listeners to take away from this episode:
    Cash is King,
    As a strategic resource, and as freedom
    Negotiating tips,
    Negotiate the big picture first, then work out the details,
    Conduct sensitive negotiations on neutral turf
    Find and groom new leaders from inside your firm.
    To read along and see illustrations and personal photos that accompany this series, get Patrick’s book, Designing a World-Class Architecture Firm. You can buy the book at https://my.captivate.fm/gablmedia.com/buildsmartbook/ (gablmedia.com/buildsmartbook/) and find out more information at https://macleamy.com/ (macleamy.com)

    • 40 min
    Reclaiming Company Culture

    Reclaiming Company Culture

    After revitalizing upper management and improving operations, Patrick set his sights on reclaiming the company culture that HOK once had. In this episode, he discusses improving communication, company stock as a unifier, leadership groups, team building experiences, and leadership bonus programs.
    Riccardo Mascia, Managing Principal in HOK’s Chicago studio, shares his perspective of coordinating a seminal company retreat that helped leadership refocus on the soul of HOK.
    Patrick shares his lessons for listeners to take away from this episode:
    Company culture is established by the leaders,
    Company culture must be reinforced every day,
    If culture is lost it can be reestablished with hard work over time.
    To read along and see illustrations and personal photos that accompany this series, get Patrick’s book, Designing a World-Class Architecture Firm. You can buy the book at https://my.captivate.fm/gablmedia.com/buildsmartbook/ (gablmedia.com/buildsmartbook/) and find out more information at https://macleamy.com/ (macleamy.com)

    • 47 min
    The Effort Curve

    The Effort Curve

    In the midst of executing his strategy for recovery, Patrick is summoned away to answer a critical question about the profession, which leads him to a great discovery about how to improve it. In this episode, Patrick explains the origin of and philosophy behind “the Effort Curve,” later known as “the MacLeamy Curve,” which grew to have a significant impact on HOK and the profession at large.
    Patrick shares his lessons for listeners to take away from this episode:
    Shift efforts earlier in time to solve problems early,
    Coordinate early with engineers for best results later,
    Coordinate early with the contractor for best results later,
    Measure twice, cut once.
    To read along and see illustrations and personal photos that accompany this series, get Patrick’s book, Designing a World-Class Architecture Firm. You can buy the book at https://my.captivate.fm/gablmedia.com/buildsmartbook/ (gablmedia.com/buildsmartbook/) and find out more information at https://macleamy.com/ (macleamy.com)

    • 33 min
    Turning Strategy into Reality

    Turning Strategy into Reality

    We are now on the heels of what was probably the pinnacle of danger for HOK as a business. Patrick was able to buy some time to develop a strategy to solve the problem, but quickly found himself thrusted further into the storm… now into the role of CEO! In today’s episode, Patrick, with the full responsibility of leading the firm out of a Triple crisis, has to turn his strategy into reality. Step one was to rejuvenate upper management.
    Riccardo Mascia AIA, OAA, LEED AP BD+C, Managing Principal of HOK’s Chicago studio, details his story of joining HOK and his role as, "the fixer" for Patrick.
    Carl Galioto FAIA, President of HOK, shares how he was recruited to join HOK as the technical leader of the firm, and discusses his perspective on the technical aspect of the architecture profession.
    Patrick shares his lessons for listeners to take away from this episode:
    Share financial reports openly with your board; ask for their help
    Use positive peer pressure to motivate firm leadership
    Don't just talk about problems. Agree on solutions. Then assign to a leader to solve by a deadline
    Replace key leaders if they do not fit your strategy or culture
    When recruiting leaders ask yourself: Can they do the job? Do they have integrity? Will they work well as part of a team?
    To read along and see illustrations and personal photos that accompany this series, get Patrick’s book, Designing a World-Class Architecture Firm. You can buy the book at https://my.captivate.fm/gablmedia.com/buildsmartbook/ (gablmedia.com/buildsmartbook/) and find out more information at https://macleamy.com/ (macleamy.com)

    • 54 min
    Triple Crises

    Triple Crises

    After taking on a firmwide role, Patrick begins to shoulder more and more of the leadership load. In this episode, earlier seeds of trouble have blossomed into a full crisis, in fact, triple crises for HOK…
    Bill Valentine, former President of HOK, and Bob Pratzel, former CFO of HOK, share their perspectives on this period of crisis.
    Patrick shares his lessons for listeners to take away from this episode:
    Approach to manage crises:
    Ask for more time to solve the problem
    Solve one crisis at a time
    Conveying a strategic plan to your firm:
    Don't count on formal strategic plans - no one reads them
    Use simple graphics like a pyramid
    Use few words so people will remember your strategy
    Convey successive goals toward a BIG prize like dreams
    To read along and see illustrations and personal photos that accompany this series, get Patrick’s book, Designing a World-Class Architecture Firm. You can buy the book at https://my.captivate.fm/gablmedia.com/buildsmartbook/ (gablmedia.com/buildsmartbook/) and find out more information at https://macleamy.com/ (macleamy.com)

    • 32 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
9 Ratings

9 Ratings

Kdidixkfkauxkv ,

Fantastic!

A fantastic listen for aspiring firm owners. Filled with colorful stories with many lessons to be learned!

Mayberry Workshop ,

Best.

Patrick is a must listen to if you have aspirations of running your own firm.

AdamLeadership ,

Great stories and insights

I recently interviewed Patrick and can attest to his tremendous wisdom. Listening to the trailer only reinforces the richness of this show. Loved the takeaways even from that short clip.

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