Upskilling and Upgrading: How can Architects and Designers enhance their knowledge?

To make a mark and carve out a niche for yourself, you need to bring something fresh and different to the table.

Fri Mar 3, 2023

With a considerable surge in innovation and development, there is a need of keeping oneself updated with the changing trends. This stands true for every profession, architecture, and design are one of them.

Now, what does being updated actually mean? Well, to match pace with the newfangled innovations of the modern world, you need to be acquainted with certain skills. This is where upskilling comes into play.

Needless to say, to make a mark and carve out a niche for yourself, you need to bring something fresh and different to the table. Upskilling helps in facilitating this process. It helps you understand your skills and talents in a better way, leading to organic growth and enhanced learning.

To make this more coherent and pragmatic for architects and designers, we have curated a list of tips that can help you ace your upskilling game. Here are 10 ways to upskill yourself in today’s time.

10 Ways how architects and designers can enhance their knowledge and skills

1. Recognize your Goals

To get onto the journey of learning new things and upskilling yourself, the first and foremost step is recognizing your goals. This means you should be acquainted with what you intend to achieve so as to formulate the steps that will take you toward that goal. 
Identifying your purpose leads to clear decision-making, thereby, making the learning process more holistic and fruitful. Therefore, if you want to upskill yourself, make sure that you have an idea of what you are looking forward to learning. 

2. Articulate a Plan

Now that you are well-versed in your aim or your goal, the next step is to articulate a plan. Evaluate your shortcomings and then formulate a plan to bridge your knowledge gaps.
With a strategic plan coming into being, it becomes easier to move further with the upskilling process. For example, if you want to learn new software, see where you are lacking and work on those specific areas.

3. Look for a Good Mentor

Image source: Forbes

The essentiality of this step cannot be emphasised enough. A good mentor keeps you well-versed in the know-how of the fraternity. Moreover, he or she can also keep you updated with what’s required to create a difference in the field.
Thus, to brush up your skills in the right manner, learning from a good mentor can prove to be of great help. So, to get to this step, building connections within the industry and seeking their advice can be insightful.

4. Gain Work Experience

While this could be a bit tricky initially, the benefits of gaining work experience are diverse. Being a part of the fraternity as a working professional facilitates exposure to the holistic aspects.

Besides this, you get to interact with others working in the same industry and share experiences. Thus, for starters, you can gain work experience by taking up internships or training sessions.

5. Enhance your Soft Skills

Not just for architecture and design, enhancing your soft skills is integral for every profession. Soft skills include interpersonal skills such as communication skills, critical thinking, time management, leadership qualities, and more. Soft skills help you interact and communicate efficiently. Also, you learn to manage your work impeccably. Thus, enhancing your soft skills is also a great option when it comes to upskilling.

6. Keep an eye on the current trends

With the industry being inundated with innovative, new-age solutions every now and then, the market trends keep changing. Thus, keeping an eye on the current trends can help you get well-versed with the demands of the fraternity and the associated solutions. 

From building technologies to intriguing materials, you can look for trends in every field. So, be mindful of the trends pertaining to your field of interest, since they can help you upskill to a great extent.

7. Learn new softwares

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Image source: Fluidity Master Class, Mariana Cabagueira, Futurly

When it comes to the architecture and design industry, learning new softwares is an essential part of upskilling. Fields like computational designing and fluid modelling are brimming with exemplary opportunities. To get ahead in such fields, you need to be acquainted with contemporary softwares such as Maya, Houdini, Blender, and a lot more. Therefore, upskilling in terms of learning new softwares is an amazing way to go about it.

8. Enroll for Insightful Courses

From learning modern softwares to taking your soft skills a notch higher, enrolling in courses and workshops can be insightful. Such courses help you learn from experts in the field, thus, helping you brush up your skills with guidance from the best minds. Platforms like Futurly provide a series of workshops regarding multiple facets of the architecture and design industry. So, you can opt for the ones that resonate with you and enroll yourself right away.

9. Explore New Ideas

Experimentation and exploration are two great ways of learning. Therefore, they make for important steps in the journey of upskilling too. If you want to know more about a specific niche, delving into new ideas and conceptualisations can take you toward your goal. 
Moreover, experimentation is also an effective way of overcoming creative blocks. Keep exploring new ideas to come across concepts that resonate with novelty and become a stepping stone in your upskilling journey.

10. Prioritise your Area of Focus

Even though you might want to learn everything at once, focusing on a particular subject is essential to prevent yourself from getting distracted. Evaluate your interests, and carve out a niche for yourself accordingly. 
To move further, focus on this particular niche, and enhance your skills regarding it. For example, you can niche down to fluid modelling and then upskill yourself by learning the associated softwares, enrolling in expert workshops, and more.  

Upskilling is the need of the hour…..

Now that you are well aware of the importance of upskilling, what’s more important is adopting the right way to do so. Follow these steps, identify your goals, and seek expert advice. Moreover, try to build connections in the fraternity to gain new insights. 
To enroll in expert workshops, you can delve into courses through platforms such as Futurly. They help you learn from the best minds in the fraternity, thus making the journey of upskilling quite easy. With all this in place, you are all set for a seamless upskilling experience. 
To know more,

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1. What are some advanced softwares that architects should be acquainted with?

Maya, Houdini, Blender, and Rhino are some advanced softwares that architects should be acquainted with. 

2. Is it important to have an area of focus to upskill oneself? 
Yes, having an area of focus helps in streamlining the process of upskilling, thereby, making the process seamless and easier. 

3. What are some current trends in architecture? 
Fluid modelling, computational design, and invisible architecture are some rising trends in the architecture and design fraternity. 

4. Where can I learn new architectural softwares? 
Platforms like Futurly come up with insightful workshops to help you learn new architectural softwares. 

5. Is it necessary to have a mentor to upskill? 
A good mentor keeps you well-versed in the know-how of the fraternity. Moreover, he or she can also keep you updated with what’s required to create a difference in the field. Thus, it is necessary to have a mentor to upskill.

Ar. Saili Sawantt_Architectural Journalist

Saili Sawantt
An Architect + Writer, Saili has worked as an Architectural writer & brand storyteller where she has collaborated with firms, studios, organizations, luxury brands, events & educational institutions to communicate in the real estate & travel industry. Her recent initiatives include curating an online workshop on communication and networking within the AEC industry. She is a commentator on the design industry’s upkeep through her social handles while also being an avid reader and traveler.