I struggled a while with my field (architecture). I wanted to get out of it, tried working at a fashion designer's studio, then another design studio that was multidisciplinary. I fell back in architecture because it was familiar.
I'm detail-oriented, so I'm good at it. I'm very happy to be back in the field because a) my schooling hasn't gone down the tubes and b) I really like the people who are involved in the process.
I'm practically-minded enough to get along with other architects and contractors (though they probably consider me to be a flake). I'm warm, so getting along with decorators is easy (though they probably consider me to be a geek). I enjoy serving clients and being their spokesperson.
I've also managed to survive the humdrum aspects through my serious hobby, photography, which is spontaneous and of the world (S). There is NO chance to be indecisive and spin my head into oblivion because I have to react instantly to whatever is in front of me! Then you go home and sort through your photos and can spin there. I used to sew but deciding what to sew and going into a fabric store can spin my head into infinity. ha. Still does.
Architect1. What's your career now?
For the most part, yes. It was harder when I was just out of school and I'd sit in the office and do a lot of drawing. I nearly quit the field because the long, isolating days at my desk. Depressing!!2. Are you enjoying the daily activities associated with this work?
Now my job is a mix of drawing, phone calls, site visits, etc. I manage my own time according to whatever the job needs, and my time is managed by the deadlines of the project. There's enough loose structure to keep me from feeling confined, and enough sense of urgency to prevent me from procrastinating.
In the long run, yes. You just have to get out from behind the desk and into the field, where you learn how the real stuff is done. Learning from books is fine (and easy for an N) but learning the field is invaluable.3. Do you find this career fulfilling in the long run?
Putting myself into such situations, where you have to think on your feet, is against my nature. Fortunately I work with supportive professionals who don't mind my asking a ton of questions, and I've become good at asking questions.
I'm responsible to make sure our aesthetic needs are met, that the contractor adheres to the schedule, that there are no mistakes. It can be very nerve wracking because of time pressure and the money at stake. I'm not too closely supervised but my boss is just steps away. I also rely on my coworkers quite a bit. Fortunately there is mutual respect among us and no competition.4. How much responsibility do you have? How closely are you supervised?
Having to stand up to contractors and question them is not in my nature. I've had to really push myself in this job. It's been a great learning experience.
Varies. Usually I work alone in my office, but I switch on and off teams often. Overall, you work with the decorator and contractor as a team to get the project done. You learn a ton from others, and every project has its unique challenges, so the team structure is helpful to avoid mistakes. Our projects are small enough (residences) that one person can carry on once construction starts.5. Do you mostly work alone or as part of a team?
Not sure. I have a lot of ex-coworkers/friends who have had trouble recently, but it's been terrible everywhere.6. How do the employment projections for this career compare with other careers?
I went through all that already and am so happy in my current spot. My only fear is that while my current job is great, I wonder how many other places are out there that are similar. There are a lot of nutty places I know of, ha.7. Are you thinking of switching career? Why or why not?
I was really questioning my career before, so I can understand that this would be a popular subject. My recent job issues have to do with working with my ENTP boss and my inherent paranoia about my job performance. Thing is, I would have the paranoia regardless of the job.