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Posts from the ‘Professional Practice’ Category

Young Architects Forum: 2017 Kickoff

Monday, February 13, 2017
Free and open to all Young Architects (licensed under 10 years)
Please RSVP to

Have you been licensed in the past ten years? Are you getting more responsibilities within your firm? Who is your peer group that you share best practices and knowledge with? If you don’t have one, or want another one, come have a beer or glass of wine (and other refreshments) with other Bay Area Young Architects.

We’ll set up an agenda of topics for the next few months based on what YOUR priorities are.

ARE Trivia Lunch: 2/23/17

Thursday, February 23, 2017
Location: Dahlin Group, 5865 Owens Dr., Pleasanton, CA 94588
Free for AIA Members and employees of Chapter-member firms
$5 non-members, includes lunch

Please register by 2/21/2017 by clicking here.

Come have lunch with us and have some architectural trivia fun! We’re focusing on the “4.0 Big 3” exams of PPP, SP&D and CD&S–Programming, Planning & Practice, Site Planning & Design, and Construction Documents & Services. Pass these three in the 4.0 format and then transfer to 5.0 to take only two more exams!

All done with these exams? Even the most seasoned veteran can test their knowledge of this trivia. Which team will win?

All are welcome!

Small Firm Forum 2016 Luncheon

Thursday, December 1, 2016
$15 first registrant / $7.50 guests
Please click here to register by 5pm, Monday, November 28, 2016


Bring a friend (preferably an architect or related professional) for half-price and come enjoy our Middle Eastern Holiday Feast!  Show off your favorite project for a chance to win our annual Builder’s Booksource Gift Certificate.  Submit no more than two slides to when you register and be prepared to share why it’s a small-firm project.   And have fun sharing your Lego (and team) skills for special holiday treats.

But, wait, there’s still more:

A special door prize will be awarded to the lunch participant who provides next year’s most popular brown-bag topic.

Share the season by registering here!

Insurance & Contracts

a professional practice forum

Thursday, February 18, 2016
Free and all are welcome–bring your lunch!

1.5 CES LUs

Join the Professional Practice Forum in a roundtable discussion on Insurance and Contracts, with a focus on contract language to look out for. We’ll discuss the options of having good contracts in place, clauses and language that are uninsurable, and the differences between owner-generated contracts and AIA contracts. Attorney Liam Malone of Collins, Collins, Muir & Stewart and insurance broker Ted Kiyama, Allied Member, of Dealey Renton will be on-hand to answer questions and lead the discussion.

Learning Objectives:

By the end of this program attendees will:

  1. Be able to state at least one difference between owner-generated and AIA contracts.
  2. Be able to explain common issues that can render a contract uninsurable.
  3. Be able to give at least two examples of contract language that may be problematic.
  4. Be able to describe new trends in contracts for 2016.


Backups & Disaster Recovery for Architects

Wednesday, February 10, 2016
Noon – 1:30 PM

Free and open to all!
Lunch provided by ArcSource; please RSVP by 3pm Tuesday, February 9.

1.5 CES LUs

Did you know that 70% of small firms that experience a major data loss go out of business within a year? Attend this seminar, and you will learn: strategies to backup every type of data, key ingredients for every disaster recovery plan, how to evaluate online backup services, and more. Attendees will also receive a free ArcSource Disaster Recovery Plan Template to help you start or update a disaster recovery plan for your business.

Presenter Dave Monk, Allied Member will share the secrets to backups & disaster recovery based on over 18 years of experience as an IT expert to Bay Area architects and other professional services firms through his company ArcSource. ArcSource provides rock solid backups and disaster recovery plans designed specifically for AEC firms.

About the Presenter:

Dave Monk, Allied Member is the founder and CEO of ArcSource, a premier provider of IT consulting & support services to businesses in the Bay Area. As the Principal Consultant, he combines his passions for technology and helping businesses. Dave Monk holds Master of Architecture and Master of Science in Structural Engineering degrees from UC Berkeley. Prior to starting ArcSource, he worked at Turnbull Griffin Haesloop Architects as an architectural designer focused on design development, project management, construction administration, and, of course, maintaining the firm’s growing computer network.

Dave is an expert in technology planning, server operating systems, application software, software as a service, computer hardware, network design, problem solving, and training. His background in business, computer networks, architecture, and engineering gives him unique insight on the latest IT issues, needs, and trends in small to medium sized businesses.


Learning Objectives:

  1. Identify the common causes of data loss.
  2. Learn strategies to backup every type of data from mobile devices to workstations.
  3. Review online backup services.
  4. Discover the latest in backup hardware/software technologies.

Business Development & Marketing

a professional practice forum

Thursday, January 21, 2016
Free and open to all; bring your lunch!

1.5 CES LUs

Marketing and business development are vital to firms that offer professional services. Why do these sometimes seem like the last thing small-to-midsized firms address? Join us on January 21st for a knowledge-sharing roundtable discussion. Let’s talk basics, what the hurdles are and how to clear them, and why just having a web page isn’t the solution.


Learning Objectives:

  1. Attendees will be able to state how marketing and business development differ.
  2. Attendees will learn the key elements of the A/E marketing practices such as research, planning, client development, proposals and qualifications, promotional activity and client relationships.
  3. Attendees will identify three ways to market their firms and services and the benefits of each.
  4. Attendees will learn how to manage customer and prospect relationships effectively.

IT Best Practices for the AEC Sector

an online webinar presented by Z Networks

Wednesday, February 3, 2016
Location: From the comfort of your own office

Free and open to all. Click here to RSVP.


IT Best Practices for the AEC Sector is a one-hour web presentation from IT experts on how AEC firms of all sizes are able to increase benefits from technology while decreasing vulnerabilities. The webinar begins with a few quick computer productivity tips from the “Top 10 Underutilized Computer Productivity Tips” list.  Next is an overview discussion of technology trends in the AEC industry paired with advice on how to consider adoption of new technology (BIM vs. CAD, cloud computing vs. on premise, Mac vs. PC, software licensing, VOIP). From there, a deeper dive is taken into information security best practices, and actionable security recommendations are made for both individuals and firms.

The presentation concludes with a Q&A session in which attendees are able to pick the brain of an experienced IT professional from the AEC sector.

About the Presenters:

Randy Ervig is the Head of Technology at Z Networks and has nearly a decade of experience in the tech
support and IT consulting field. With over a third of Z Networks’ clients coming from the AEC sector, Ervig works with his team members and clients on a daily basis addressing the unique technology needs of this industry. His experience ranges from frontline computer support to high-level strategy, giving Randy the ability to understand and help clients understand the full IT picture.

Sean Jones, Allied Member is the Sales and Marketing Manager at Z Networks and he has worked in IT and cloud technologies since 2006. With a focus on sales and new technology implementation, Sean understands the risks and rewards associated with new technology. He helps clients to see new technology adoption as an ongoing process as opposed to a one-time event and always recommends starting with the question, “why should we change in the first place?”

Learning Objectives:

After completing this program, attendees will…

1. Discover at least one new computer productivity tip from the “Top 10 Underutilized Computer Productivity Tips” list which includes keyboard and mouse shortcuts and email efficiency tips.

2. Have a surface level understanding of several important technology trends in the AEC sector and will be provided with resources to further explore these trends.

3. Learn a basic framework for evaluating, testing and implementing new technology while limiting risk of system instability, poor user adoption, compromised information security and unnecessary financial outlays.

4. Leave with a baseline understanding of items that need to be addressed to minimize risk of a cyber-attack or malware infection and will be provided with resources regarding the implementation of these items.

AIACC Firm Roundtable

Thursday, November 19, 2015
Firm principals and thought leaders from Bay Area AIA firms are strongly encouraged to attend.

Please RSVP by Wednesday, November 18th to

Just as we anticipated, the climate for architecture firms in the Bay Area is much changed due to the recession. Please join staff from the AIA California Council on Wednesday, November 19th for an afternoon discussion of what firms of all size are facing and how the AIACC might work on your behalf in the coming years.

This is a firm roundtable–attendees will be doing the talking, staff will be listening!

Topics include:

Issues Discussion: Changes to the Profession in a Post-Recession Economy

  • Project Delivery
  • Contracts
  • Technology
  • Barriers to Profitability
  • Client Education
  • Other issues?

 Firm Benefits

  • What’s available/what’s needed from the AIA in California?


Dealing with Difficult Clients

a Professional Practice Forum

Thursday, November 19
Free and open to all; bring a lunch!

1.5 CES LUs

Sometimes a dream project can turn into a nightmare simply because of the client. Clients can be over-demanding, verbally caustic, and even intrude into an architect’s personal life. At the November Professional Practice Forum we’ll discuss how to handle difficult clients (or their staff), what constitutes onerous contracts that could lead a firm into a dispute down the line, and when to just say “NO.”

Learning Objectives

At the end of this discussion, attendees will:

  1. Be able to identify two ways to mitigate miscommunications with clients
  2. Be able to state two ways to express to a client their demands are not realistic
  3. Be able to explain two ways a contract could lead to a dispute
  4. Be able to identify red-flags during client interviews that should be considered before accepting a project.

Three Strategies to Win More Projects

Wednesday, November 11, 2015
Noon- 1:30pm
Free, Please bring a lunch!
Please RSVP for room setup

1.5 CES LUs

When it comes to marketing your services, are you winging it? In today’s competitive marketplace, good intentions are not enough. In order to get significant growth, you need a strategy. Joe Diliberto will provide a framework and a system to help unleash your potential in order to accelerate your business growth. Join us on Wednesday, November 11th from Noon-1:30pm to discuss new approaches to the following issues:

  • Getting in front of enough new opportunities on a regular basis
  • Ability to qualify or disqualify opportunities quickly & effectively
  • Knowing how to differentiate your product or service and yourself
  • How to sell professional services as a trusted adviser


About the Presenter:

Joe Dilberto is a nationally recognized speaker. His background includes executive level positions in sales and marketing with Fortune 100 and start-up companies. An expert in his field, Joe is a Principal at Sandler Training. The Sandler System has been recognized by Entrepreneur Magazine as the #1 Sales Management Training Program for the past five consecutive years.



Learning Objectives:

Participants will learn:

1)      Business development skills to help qualify or disqualify opportunities more effectively to minimize time chasing project with a low probability of winning

2)      Consultative approach to selling professional services so that they can shift from a passive to a more active role without looking like they are in “selling” mode

3)      A process to identify and quantify pain points to help focus on the clients issues that matter the most to them and to help you differentiate your services

4)      How to make “go/no-go” decisions effectively.