This week Sue dials in with William Smart, the founder and creative director of SDS, Smart Design Studio.
7 May, 2020
Having moved the studio of 40 to the new natural light filled premises in Alexandria just prior to COV-ID 19, William also moved his living quarters from one studio to the next. Literally, William is working from home even when in the studio. He has also given the team the opportunity to work from their home or his (the studio).
This open ‘do what feels best for you’ mindset has allowed a fluidity in people in the studio and being given the choice has had a positive impact on their collaboration both with clients and internally with the team.
Already set up in the cloud, SDS moved to their current open working policy with great ease and very few issues. I believe that William’s foresight and trust in the abilities of his people is what made such ease in transition.
SDS have a large array of projects nationally from apartments and the Science Gallery in Melbourne, to boutique residential, all at differing stages from design to construction. Their natural and very open way of working has meant that they have continued their project teams and with great success are carrying out design development and creating magic with very few issues at all.
With this fluidity in mind, Smart Design Studio sees the future as flexible albeit that William also believes that there is a need to congregate. A need to talk to people, to touch things and see work in progress on a daily basis. Whilst some of these things work in the digital world, the creativity one gets from the constant crit of work on a wall can only happen in a collaborative physical space. Whilst the WFH peace and quiet suits for some time, we get lonely. We are human and we thrive on that contact.
What I found most refreshing about our chat was the obvious nature of William’s beliefs. His understanding of the needs of the studio and the people within it. His warm and collaborative approach to his design and process and his genuine belief that the change we will see in the future will be a positive for all involved. How lucky to live and work in such a creative space surrounded by walls that breathe design.
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