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Insights: Pride Road Architects

February 17, 2024

Charting a Path to Success in Architecture with Lisa Raynes at Pride Road Architects

Lisa Raynes is a visionary in the field of architecture and the Director of Pride Road Architects. She has developed an innovative franchise model that also offers valuable lessons for architects looking to carve their path in this competitive industry. Charting this path to success was by no means easy, however, Lisa’s entrepreneurial spirit and business acumen have led to the success of her practice and team members.

Lisa’s journey is nothing short of inspiring. With a career spanning over two decades, she qualified as an architect about 25 years ago and took the entrepreneurial leap in 2010 by setting up her own practice, Raynes Architecture. But it was seven years ago that she truly disrupted the traditional architectural business model by rebranding as Pride Road and introducing a franchise system designed to empower architects across the country.

Pride Road currently boasts five franchises, each a one-person business led by registered architects, including some members of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA). These franchises span diverse locations such as Bournemouth, New Forest, South Warwickshire, Surrey, South Manchester, and North Cheshire. Operating under the RIBA chartered practice, these franchisees collaborate with subcontractors and suppliers to deliver exceptional service.

Lisa emphasises the importance of marketing in generating work for the franchises. The Pride Road website serves as the cornerstone of its marketing strategy, targeting homeowners with a focus on residential extensions and loft conversions. Through social media, networking meetings, and business cards, they ensure that the Pride Road name is synonymous with quality domestic architecture.

One of the most daunting aspects of running an architectural practice is dealing with planning policies and local authorities. Lisa explained that within the Pride Road franchise, individual architects take charge of the planning process for their projects. The franchise model supports them by providing a systemised process, significantly reducing the administrative load and allowing architects to focus on what they do best – designing.

The franchise model isn’t just about business efficiency; it’s also about fostering a better work-life balance for architects. Lisa’s vision extends beyond profit margins; she aims to instil good practices across the industry, offering a sustainable way forward for architects who wish to own their businesses without sacrificing their personal lives.

The future looks bright for Pride Road, with plans to expand into structural engineering and interior design. Lisa’s ambition reaches international waters, as she’s keen on partnering with like-minded individuals globally, with Australia already on the radar.

We also touched on the challenges young architects face, especially in expensive cities like London. Lisa’s advice was clear: perseverance and dedication are key. She advocates for alternative routes to gain experience without the burden of high living costs, reinforcing that there’s more than one way to build a successful career in architecture.

Lisa’s innovative approach to the architectural business through the Pride Road franchise is a testament to the industry’s evolving landscape and the opportunities that await those willing to think outside the box. For architects out there looking to make their mark, Lisa Raynes’ story is a beacon of possibility, proving that with the right model and support, you can build a practice that thrives both professionally and personally.

Watch the full Podcast here:

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