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Level Design Podcast

Level Design Podcast

By Scott Zurn
A podcast for Architects and Engineers.

Join Scott Zurn, Professional Engineer with over 3 decades of experience and Founder of Level Design Partners, in exploring the in’s and outs of the design industry, bringing new thinking to outdated systems, and restoring value and honor to the unique people who choose to be designers, engineers, and architects.

We’ll be discussing how Architects and Engineers can thrive in this industry by creating more freedom, flexibility, and financial security as a design professional, regardless of their current situation.
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Bridge Engineering & Infrastructure Challenges with Ben Kenney, P.E. Owner of Engineering Operations
617,000 bridges across the United States. Currently, 42% of all bridges are at least 50 years old, and 46,154, or 7.5% of the nation's bridges, are considered structurally deficient, meaning they are in “poor” condition. Ben Kenney, P.E. owner of Engineering Operations joins Scott and Murray to discuss some fascinating topics Corporate barriers Bridge Inspection Price of a bridge Some serious mistakes we’re making with bridges and other infrastructure Infrastructure challenges we currently face Potential solutions A diving story that will make you claustrophobic And much more https://engineeringoperationsco.com/ https://engineeringoperationsco.com/about/benjamin-kenney/ Source: https://infrastructurereportcard.org/cat-item/bridges/ Sign up for our exclusive email newsletter to stay up to date on new episodes and opportunities. leveldesignpartners.com/podcast/
47:56
August 26, 2021
Wait, but why? (flipping the business model on its head)
Join Scott Zurn and Murray McBride as they discuss: Update on LDPI Flipping the business model on its head Outsourcing and the race to the bottom Entrepreneurship Personal growth and success Collaboration Peace of mind $2 Trillion infrastructure bill What’s right for our community? The zero-emission marketing lie And much more... Sign up for our exclusive email newsletter to stay up to date on new episodes and opportunities. leveldesignpartners.com/podcast/
01:12:59
August 12, 2021
Long-term care of our built environment (most important + least celebrated)
In this episode, Scott & Murray discuss: Environmental consciousness Half of our environment impact is just “building stuff” Let’s take a conscious look at what we’re doing Is money always the driver for the design community Free, independent & flexible thinking Picking up where we left off in the early 1500s Climate change Greed and power, taking the land vs existing with the land Sign up for our exclusive email newsletter to stay up to date on new episodes and opportunities. leveldesignpartners.com/podcast/
52:22
April 15, 2021
Are Architects & Engineers going extinct?
Can we maintain our human conveniences and have less adverse impact on our planet? Are Architects & Engineers going extinct? What do we need to revive in our industry? Join Scott Zurn and Murray McBride as they discuss In this episode, they discuss: The human convenience Cost of infrastructure Communication challenges today Why we need more Architects & Engineers. How we can improve the way we pay for and build our infrastructure Getting involved locally How Engineering, Architecture, and construction relates to your tax dollar 57% of our Engineering community quits, why and how to change that The one activity in our infrastructure that produces 7% of carbon emissions into our atmosphere What the hell happened in Texas Sign up for our exclusive email newsletter to stay up to date on new episodes and opportunities. leveldesignpartners.com/podcast/
51:11
April 8, 2021
Brilliant Infrastructure of the Indigenous people
Sixty million Indigenous People lived throughout the Americas before European expansion. In a short amount of time, 90% of those people were lost to European disease and violence. An estimated loss of 55 million people; a 10% reduction of the world's population at that time. What happened to the infrastructure of each of these ancient people and what can we learn from it? Join Scott Zurn and Murray McBride as they discuss what went wrong when the Europeans settled the Americas. Instead of learning from the Indigenous People and their way of sustainable living, old European ideas were brought here and repeated the same mistakes. Also, enjoy a new segment where Scott and Murray discuss current events, like the Texas storms that left dozens dead and millions without power over several days. In this episode, they discuss: an LDPI update Continued: The history of infrastructure the importance of the A&E community's knowledge and our planet’s future the struggle between political forces and the public interest on infrastructure Sign up for our exclusive email newsletter to stay up to date on new episodes and opportunities. leveldesignpartners.com/podcast/
40:28
April 1, 2021
Our current infrastructure was shaped by deer
There is an impact to our world for every human convenience. Those conveniences are built around our infrastructure, but it’s not in the public’s consciousness. Why should we care? Because infrastructure is the most important thing in our world. Our economy, quality of life, and the future of humanity and our planet is intricately tied to infrastructure. Join Scott Zurn and Murray McBride as they discuss how we arrived at our current infrastructure and why throwing it away for a new one will be devastating for our planet. They discuss: Who planned our first roads Think of our world:  We must be respectful of the fact that this planet has a finite amount of energy we can use and how we manage our infrastructure knowing that Is there an alternative or a better way moving forward Sign up for our exclusive email newsletter to stay up to date on new episodes and opportunities. leveldesignpartners.com/podcast/
42:12
March 26, 2021
Empowering A&E Women with LDPI Owners Anya Zurn & Karen Ashworth (Women’s History month)
Engineers are traditionally men. Why? 30% of women who have left the engineering profession cite organizational climate as the reason. Only 30% of women who earn bachelor’s degrees in engineering are still working in engineering 20 years later. Source We need to empower A&E women if we want to build a thriving industry and future. We must evolve our organizational climate. To celebrate Women’s History Month, we’ve brought on two amazing women, Anya Zurn & Karen Ashworth, co-owners of Level Design Partners. Our motto: LDPI is freedom of independence; power of organization. We give our independent design professionals the business education and support to overcome their fear of leaving a traditional firm behind. Join Scott Zurn and guests Karen Ashworth and Anya Zurn as they discuss why every design professional is welcomed and can thrive in LDPI's unique business model They discuss… ✅ Their business backgrounds ✅ The gig economy ✅ LDPI’s culture of communication with clients and how it’s leading a front-line change to help the environment through the A&E industry ✅ The need for mentorship for design professionals ✅ How A&E women can thrive in LDPI’s model Sign up for our exclusive email newsletter to stay up to date on new episodes and opportunities. leveldesignpartners.com/podcast/
54:25
March 12, 2021
Engineers are fleeing the industry at record numbers
Engineers are fleeing the industry at record numbers, unhappy with the status quo...so what? Why should we, and everyone else care? The bulk of human convenience relies on the intellect of the A&E community. But there’s a gap. A gap between the unique genius that goes into our infrastructure by A&E professionals, and the general public. In this fascinating episode, join hosts Scott Zurn and Murray McBride as they discuss why this is happening and what we’re doing about it. They discuss... ✅ how design professionals can thrive outside of the traditional corporate model ✅ character qualities needed to succeed as an entrepreneurial A&E professional ✅ the three founding articles of LDPI as a for-benefit company ✅ environmental impacts of our throw-away culture ✅ how we can create prosperity for design professionals, the industry, and the world. Sign up for our exclusive email newsletter to stay up to date on new episodes and opportunities. leveldesignpartners.com/podcast/
48:30
March 7, 2021
How you can keep a bigger piece of the pie
With a combined 70 years of design experience under their belts, Scott and Murray discuss a few common paths that design professionals have today and the future of our industry. In this fascinating episode, they cover… Environmental changes & our responsibility What's currently available as far as design career paths today The business model we’re building with Level Design Partners Entrepreneurship The voids that often come with independence Mentorship (we need mentors in our industry) Why many design professionals struggle to retire Creating your own destiny leveldesignpartners.com
27:24
February 12, 2021
We’ve gotten lazy. What we can do moving forward.
Most of our modern human conveniences are designed and produced by a community of brilliant but unseen professionals, and the public doesn’t know it. Why? Join Scott Zurn and co-host Murray McBride as they discuss their professional backgrounds and why communication and trust are imperative to understanding our failing infrastructures, and how the A&E community can lead the way in solving our global issue. We welcome the new year with a new, revamped and reborn, Level Design Podcast. We’ve got a lot in store for the year including special guests, a new co-host, top-notch podcasting equipment, and a team to help us get this message to as many design professionals as possible. In this episode: We introduce Murray, our new co-host We discuss the state of Engineers and Architects We discuss the state of infrastructure and the public We talk about the best path forward as a country and as a design pro We talk about what’s changed since COVID-19 We cover taking risks and making mistakes in our field We talk about why many are losing motivation to go into Architecture or Engineering
42:02
February 1, 2021
The Future of Employment
I believe we are in an employee and employer revolution. I think we are in a place where there’s disillusionment from both parties about the other. Disjointed expectations between the two. The last time this happened at the scale was after the depression. So what's the solution to this problem? Let's explore. Episode Schedule: Every other Monday Get Involved: Go to leveldesignpartners.com Sign up to our newsletter and get information not found anywhere else. Respond to the welcome email with any insights regarding your unique perspective in the industry. What is working, not working, what you like, disklike, any ideas for improvement. Every episode we will be sharing these insight with our listeners (anonymously unless requested otherwise). Scott Zurn's LinkedIn
10:54
May 13, 2019
Organizational Change - Restoring Purpose
Innovative business structures are emerging. B-Corporation (For-Benefit) that are legally required to make business decisions based on profit, people, and the planet. In today's episode we explore how these new models can impact you and the old models are outdated and broken. It's time for a change. We are shifting our thinking so that Architects and Engineers can thrive in this industry. ✅ The pros and cons of the current business model within most A&E firms. ✅ How For-Benefit Corporations are changing the industry and the world. ✅ How the For-Benefit business structure allows you to thrive. Episode Schedule: ~Every other Monday Get Involved: Go to leveldesignpartners.com Sign up to our newsletter and get information not found anywhere else. Respond to the welcome email with any insights regarding your unique perspective in the industry. What is working, not working, what you like, dislike, any ideas for improvement. Every episode we will be sharing these insight with our listeners (anonymously unless requested otherwise). Scott Zurn's LinkedIn
14:53
March 6, 2019
Modernizing our industry for the benefit of the Design Professional
The modernization of the business of A&E is going to happen, and needs to happen. In fact, it is happening as we speak. In this episode we look at technology and new business structures that are changing the way we work, collaborate, market, buy, sell and live. We are shifting our thinking so that Architects and Engineers and thrive in this industry. We take a look at exponential change in other industries that quickly put behemoth companies out of business in a matter of years. Why couldn't they pivot? Why didn't they embrace technological evolution?   Episode Schedule: Every other Monday Get Involved: Go to leveldesignpartners.com Sign up to our newsletter and get information not found anywhere else. Respond to the welcome email with any insights regarding your unique perspective in the industry. What is working, not working, what you like, dislike, any ideas for improvement. Every episode we will be sharing these insight with our listeners (anonymously unless requested otherwise). Scott Zurn's LinkedIn
16:34
February 4, 2019
The Industry Isn’t Going to Increase Your Fair Market Value
How much of your Fair Market Value are you keeping? Based on conversations with architects and engineers across the country of all different disciplines and ages, we have a pretty good guess. We've looked at the past 40 years to project the next 40 within the design industry. In this episode Scott discusses the past, present, and future of your fair market value. How can we keep more of it? If you feel like you're not keeping much of your Fair Market Value, be sure to listen to this episode in its entirety. Episode Schedule: Every other Monday Get Involved: Go to leveldesignpartners.com Sign up to our newsletter and get information not found anywhere else. Respond to the welcome email with any insights regarding your unique perspective in the industry. What is working, not working, what you like, dislike, any ideas for improvement. Every episode we will be sharing these insight with our listeners (anonymously unless requested otherwise). Scott Zurn's LinkedIn
15:02
January 24, 2019
A&E: Are You A Commodity
In our conversations with architects and engineers across the country of all different disciplines and ages, we have started to hear a common theme. The business of A&E has diverged from the practice of A&E. Is today's episode, Scott explores the history of our industry, how we got here and what the future holds. If you are an A&E professional feeling more like a commodity than a valued design professional, be sure to listen to this episode in its entirety. Episode Schedule: Every other Monday Get Involved: Go to leveldesignpartners.com Sign up to our newsletter and get information not found anywhere else. Respond to the welcome email with any insights regarding your unique perspective in the industry. What is working, not working, what you like, disklike, any ideas for improvement. Every episode we will be sharing these insight with our listeners (anonymously unless requested otherwise). Scott Zurn's LinkedIn
11:31
January 21, 2019