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Principal, Studio Practice Leader
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Our client is a top Global Architecture + Interior Design Firm, creating built environments with the power to transform individuals and enhance communities for more than 75 years. A progressive leader in corporate social responsibility, this multi-disciplinary practice is recognized internationally as a champion of innovative sustainable design + research; believing that the best design solutions come from diverse design teams. Their award-winning work spans market sectors including Science + Technology, Higher Education, Healthcare, Corporate + Commercial, Civic + Cultural, Workplace, Hospitality, Transportation, Sports + Recreation, Urban Design and Landscape Architecture. Given the firm’s continued growth and success, they are seeking a talented Principal, Studio Practice Leader to join a highly collaborative and dynamic Philadelphia team. The ideal individual is a licensed architect with 15+ years of combined experience in practice, studio and project leadership for Higher Education, Healthcare, and/or Science + Technology market sectors.

In collaboration with studio, office, and firmwide leadership, the Principal, Studio Practice Leader will strategically direct the work the firm is performing on behalf of their clients. This entrepreneurial leader will be a day-to-day client contact and work in concert with a Design leader and/or Project Manager depending upon the scale and scope of each project. They are responsible for developing a strategic business plan in collaboration with the team and Regional Practice Leader. The plan should align with the practice vision, regional goals, and the studio business plan, with a focus on client engagement, project performance, and talent development. The dimensions of project success include holistic design and technical excellence, engagement of the appropriate firmwide or local expertise, client and team satisfaction, and financial performance.

  • Extensive and independent contact with Clients and consultants. 
  • Interact and negotiate with Client project representatives.
  • Direct and/or participate in client meetings, presentations, and site visits as appropriate. 
  • Represents the firm externally in the industry and broader business and client community as required.  
  • Possesses advanced knowledge in core discipline with ability to provide high level expert guidance and directional leadership to teams. Leads, inspires, mentors, develops, and partners with team members to achieve project success.  
  • In collaboration with the Design Principal, Project Manager, and technical leadership, the Principal, Studio Practice Leader is responsible for developing and delivering on the project strategy, integrating the principles of research, living design and JEDI (Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion) into projects, to ensure the overall success of the project, including client and team satisfaction and overall financial performance. 
  • Partners with studio and/or firmwide practice leaders to integrate the services of other disciplines into projects.  
  • Participates in the successful development of new and existing business, builds trusted client and partner relationships, crafting pursuit and relationship management strategies in partnership with marketing, studio leadership, related practice areas and disciplines, and others and in alignment with the firm’s goals and values.  
  • Strategically directs, and in some cases crafts the project work plan including selecting, bidding negotiating, and contracting sub-consultants in alignment with the client’s project goals.  
  • Plays a leadership role in all project phases guiding the team in partnership with the Design Principal, technical leader, Project Manager and regenerative design leadership. 
  • Monitors the financial performance of the project for successful compliance with the approved work plan, often in concert with the Project Manager. 
  • Oversees the prompt invoicing of our professional services fees including sub-consultants in partnership with the Operations Director and local Finance team.  
  • Proactively manages additional scope and fee, building trust with the client throughout the project process.
  • In partnership with other project and studio leaders, celebrates the success of individuals, teams, and project outcomes. 
  • Monitors overall project progress including insuring effective internal and external team communication through the appropriate cadence of team meetings and written communication.  
  • Meets regularly with Operations Director and Project Manager(s)to review and determine projects schedules, financials, staffing requirements, consultants, resources and issues of importance to the project success. 
  • Meets with Operations Director to review project financial metrics, including establishing the budget and profit goals, client and sub-consultant contracts, accounts receivable and payable. 
  • Ensures projects are on time, on budget and of exceptional quality. 
  • Meets with key leaders and marketing team to support marketing and sales efforts. 
  • Ensure effective communication and coordination on assigned projects between all disciplines and parties.  
  • Resolves disputes and conflicts related to assigned projects and Clients.  
  • Accountable for the quality of service and profitability on assigned projects.  
Growth Strategist. Provide expert guidance to client engagement leaders and practitioners to ensure the firm is pursuing work and delivering projects that align with the business goals and aspirations of the studio and the practice. Consider and build opportunities with other practice areas.
Community Builder. Facilitate regular communication and interactions with client engagement leaders and practitioners in the studio to support team building, share best practices, and address challenges related to client engagement, project performance, and talent development.
Talent Developer. Ensure the projects within the studio are supported by a diverse network of talent. Work with the Managing Director, Regional Practice Leader,and Talent Managers to develop succession plans for current leaders (including the Principal, Studio Practice Leader) and create a healthy pipeline of talent at all levels.
Thought Leader. Share insights related to trends, challenges, and opportunities facing our clients and the broader industry to bolster the firm’s reputation as industry experts. Seek out cross-practice ideas to keep the firm at the vanguard of innovation. Collaborate with the studio Marketing Leader to ensure insights, exemplar projects, and individual thought leaders are promoted on appropriate social media channels.
Champion for Design Excellence. Partner with the Design Director to foster a culture of Living Design excellence and innovation to ensure design is valued and integrated into all aspects of our projects and thought leadership.

  • 15+ years of combined experience in practice, studio and project leadership for Science + Technology, Higher Education, and/or Healthcare market sectors.
  • Strong commitment to design excellence, innovation, high quality design and personalized client services including relationship management, problem-solving, decision making, and collaboration.
  • Ability to influence clients, business partners, and project teams in a professional and compelling way 
  • Considerable knowledge and experience in the Philadelphia Metropolitan Area leading and managing successful projects, client relationships and teams at various scales
  • Professional Degree in Architecture
  • Architectural license 
  • Excellent communicator, with intellectual curiosity and strategic thinking
  • Proficiency in Deltek/Vision 
  • Knowledge of Microsoft Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint 
*Equal Employment Opportunity Statement
Our client has established and adopted an Equal Employment Opportunity Employment policy (“EEO”), which is part of the Company’s Human Resources Policy. The purpose of this EEO policy is to ensure that all employment decisions are made on a non-discriminatory basis, and without regard to sex, race, color, age, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, gender reassignment, citizenship, pregnancy or maternity, veteran status, or any other status protected by applicable national, federal, state, or local law. In some cases, local laws and regulations may provide greater protections than those outlined here and employees will be covered by the laws of their local jurisdiction.

Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination Provision
Our client will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor’s legal duty to furnish information.