12 January 2016
Kate Paterson has recently joined the Urban and Landscape Design (ULD) team in Manchester as Associate Director. Responsible for leading WYG’s regional architectural team, Kate brings with her a strong portfolio of residential, commercial and leisure projects.
We take this opportunity to explore her background; how she got to where she is today with a focus on her passions and the projects she’s most proud of.
"I am passionate about the idea that considered workplace design can generate a massive positive benefit to companies and their bottom line.”
What did you study and what attracted you to study this?
When I left school I studied for a degree and a post graduate diploma in architecture. I had developed an interest in becoming an architect from an early age as I loved drawing and building houses out of Lego (carefully using only the white bricks!)
As my architectural career advanced, I found myself spending less time designing buildings and more time undertaking a management role. To build my management skills I studied towards an MBA (Masters in Business Administration). I was offered a scholarship at the highly ranked Lancaster University School of Management where I later graduated with distinction. I then took up a further scholarship at the University of St Gallen in Switzerland for an international business programme.
What is your specialist area and what attracted you to this field of expertise?
My favourite specialist area focuses on the impact of workplace design on how people work within organisations. I was attracted to this field of expertise as it enabled me to combine both my architectural and business skills. I subsequently wrote a dissertation on the subject. Having visited organisations such as Google, Saatchi and Saatchi and Ove Arup and Partners I analysed how their design and layout impacted on the productivity, creativity, communication techniques and the happiness of their employees.
What are you most passionate about in this field?
I am passionate about the idea that considered workplace design can generate a massive positive benefit to companies: facilitating communication between teams, boosting productivity and improving employee engagement.
Which projects are you most proud of?
As an architect your first projects have the biggest impact on you. The realisation that one of your ideas can become a real space that other people can enjoy for years to come is very special. However, I’m also proud of my business focused projects. For example where my analysis has been able to provide clarity on a complex issue and help generate a solution to it.
How does WYG support you to develop your knowledge and interests?
My role within the ULD team focuses on the growth of the WYG Architecture team in the north of the UK. This is a great opportunity for me to use my commercial skills to raise awareness of the architecture team and their skills within the wider organisation.
Where would you like to see your specialism take you in the future?
I’d like to continue to support the growth of the ULD team within WYG as I believe integrated team working can make a very valuable positive contribution to our clients' projects.
I would also like to use my workplace design skills to help develop the working environment here at WYG. As a design focused business there is an opportunity for our offices to demonstrate that we’re not just a safe pair of hands but also creative minds.
Our team of experts brings together the best creative and strategic thinkers to take projects from inception to completion as innovative, sustainable places at the heart of communities. Find out how we can help with your projects, get in touch today. Email Kate via firstname.lastname@example.org or Tel: 0788 185 3137.