How Architecture Sells

It’s under every need and behind every want

Fine architecture
Image from Wikimedia commons

Good architecture sells — things, services and experiences.

Selling to the world

An enterprise is a box from which flows the fount of valuables it creates for its customers.

Businesses spew out every object produced in the world: phones, planes, pyjamas, pizzas, pumps, penicillin, paper… They provide every service you need: couriers, catering, cabs, cleaning, caretaking, copywriting, consulting, conveyancing… They also create all the experiences you want: malls, movies, music, marriages, museums, motoring…

The most successful products, services and experiences — think iPhone, Uber, the Notre Dame, the Taj, the Webb space telescope, and the internet — have exceptional architectures in common, which draws your money, mind, eyes, hands and feet.

The better a product fuses function and form, that is to say — the finer its architecture — the more consumers want it, consciously or unconsciously.

Selling within the enterprise

From the other side, into the box of the enterprise, goes everything it needs for its output.

It needs an organisation, systems, and materials. Every one of these has an architecture. Just imagine each, and you’ll see it.

Someone designs them in the enterprise and for suppliers and partners. They are essentially architects. They burnish the form and ingredients and sell them to the business by showing how more money will be made or saved using the materials they recommend. Think about organisation design, parts, logistics, transport, payment, and IT systems. Architects sell new systems and changes by making a case for them.

The more excellent the form and ingredients of the input materials, i.e. their architecture, the more producers will use them.

Round up

So there you have it. Architecture sells for the enterprise and to the enterprise.

It’s not just a part of the solution. It comes into play just as much before the creation as after. And its ability to sell outcomes is its most powerful contribution to the world.

This is not to put down other professions. Project management, testing, HR, finance and more have their place in success. But they don’t conceive new visions the way architecture does. Just think about the pyramids, Chartres Cathedral, Angkor Wat, the Great Wall of China, the Space Shuttle, the Space Station, etc.

The more you bring architecture up the field of play, the more often superior things will be sold and bought.

So let’s do it, my reader. Let’s see the architecture in everything. Let’s see it as essential. Ask for it to be superb. Demand architects, employ and use them for the smallest to the largest needs. The world will be a better place.

No wonder we see a high demand for a profession that enables so much business.

As Yoda would say, “Itself, too, architecture sells.”

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