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Richard Rogers - Creativity and Business SuccessRichard Rogers - Creativity and Business Success


Richard Rogers (1933- )


English architect (pictured right).


Famous for designing...

Pompidou Centre in Paris (1977).

Lloyd’s insurance building in London (1986).

Millennium Dome in London, now the O2 Arena (2000).

3 World Trade Centre, the replacement for New York’s World Trade Centre (to be completed 2018).

 Richard Rogers - Creativity and Business Success

Why is he so creative and successful?


1. Radical change

He is known for his radical designs.

For example, his Pompidou Centre in Paris (pictured right) has often been described as

 “the building that turned architecture upside down”.

He believes that “architecture is a living thing” that:

  • must constantly change, whilst
  • remaining true to the principles of great architecture – see point 2.

He thinks that critics of modern architecture (like Prince Charles) are wrong.

Rogers points out that the great English architect and designer of London’s St. Paul’s Cathedral, Christopher Wren (pictured right below), was considered modern during his lifetime.

“Architecture is measured against the past, you build in the future and you try to imagine the future”, he says.Richard Rogers - Creativity and Business Success


2. Corporate culture

His business is based upon an architect's responsibility towards:

“contributing to the welfare of mankind, the society in which we practise and the team with whom we work” - see point 3.


3. Social responsibility


  • is a keen supporter of low cost housing to solve Britain’s housing crisis.
  • thinks that buildings should be environmentally friendly.
  • supports a carbon tax to encourage public transport and renewable energy.

“We have a responsibility to society”, he says.

 Richard Rogers - Creativity and Business Success

4. Support and teamwork

He has great support from

  • his family (wife, Ruthie, and five children) - pictured right with Ruthie (courtesy of Rex Features).
  • the other architects in his business.

He treats his employees as a family through:


a) involvement

Every Monday morning he meets with his architects to discuss current projects.


b) rewards for results

Employees have a share of the profits.


c) fairness

The highest paid architect can only be paid 8 to 9 times more than the lowest paid.


d) social events

(including Friday night drinks).


5. Passion and lifelong learning

Rogers loves learning and:

  • constantly comes up with new ideas.
  • believes that nothing is impossible (as his parents taught him).   Richard Rogers - Creativity and Business Success
  • is passionate about architecture (he was inspired by his architecture degree at Yale in 1962) -

Rogers is pictured right at Yale with another great English architect, Norman Foster, on the left (courtesy of Rogers Stirk Harbour and Partners).


6. Determination

He has had to overcome:

  • dyslexia (which made his school education very difficult).
  • business problems (he thought he might have to give up architecture three times).
  • family difficulties (the break up of his first marriage and the death of his son).


Key quote on architecture

Architecture is measured against the past, you build in the future and you try to imagine the future.


Key quote on corporate social responsibility

We have a responsibility to society.


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