Meet LGE’s Studio Director of Architecture, Andy Neilands.
Background and Vision:
Can you share a bit about your background and experience in the architecture industry, and how your past roles have prepared you for this new position?
During the first 5 years of my career, I worked for a sole proprietor and built the foundation for my career, and after my first job, I worked for a company that provided me the opportunity to work on large scale projects. For most of my time in the industry, I have worked on mixed use lifestyle centers, retail, office, and restaurant work. In my past roles, I have had the privilege of working under architects that have provided incredible guidance and tutelage. I believe this has shaped who I am as an architect and mentor, and feel that it will allow me to provide the same resources to others.
What is your vision for the Architect Division at LGE Design Build, and how do you plan to contribute to its growth and success?
I am fortunate enough to come into the company on the upswing of the architectural division. To contribute to the growth and success of the division, it’s important to retain the talented staff we have and then develop that talent. This can be accomplished through culture and mentorship.
How would you describe your leadership style, and how do you plan to foster collaboration and innovation within the Architect Division?
I feel that my leadership styles consist of “Delegative and Coaching”, allowing those around me to flourish through talent and hard work. The leaders within the studio and myself will provide instruction and oversight for those still learning, allowing them to grow and succeed.
In leading a team, what values or principles do you prioritize to create a positive and productive work environment?
I believe that providing respect and transparency in the studio creates a camaraderie among the staff. I also think that if you allow the staff to be part of the decisions within the company, they will take ownership and thrive.
Key Focus Areas:
What specific areas within the architecture field do you believe are crucial for the success of a design and build firm like LGE Design Build?
Collaboration in my opinion is one of the most important qualities we can possess for success in a design / build firm. Being able to work with our partners in the build division will help to have successful projects.
Are there any particular types of projects or design approaches that you are especially passionate about or eager to explore with the team?
I would like to help market and integrate more mixed-use projects within the company. From a design, production, and construction standpoint, these would provide a unique experience for the build and design departments.
How do you envision strengthening client relationships and ensuring that our architectural solutions align with the needs and expectations of our clients?
Providing on time, within budget and quality design projects will strengthen the relationship of a client and keep them coming back. Listening to the needs and wishes of the owner, and providing those expectations usually will align with their vision and ultimately provide a successful project and a happy client.
Where do you foresee client collaboration playing a pivotal role in the success of a project?
Initial concept meetings, budget discussions and then follow up design presentations will play a pivotal role in the success of the project. These concept and budget meetings will allow us to listen to the wants of the client and then we can see these come to life through the presentation process.
What role do you see emerging technologies playing in the future of architectural design, and how do you plan to position the division to embrace these changes?
Artificial Intelligence is the future and I think we’ll see a simulated 3D environment take shape as part of the design process. Currently, we have three-dimensional modeling and rendering software contributing to the success of this process. In the coming years, I believe we’ll see virtual reality goggles and walkthroughs prevalent in our presentations.