Kingsley + Ginnodo Architects
- SBDC - Small Business Development Center
- August 11, 2015
"The SBDC is a phenomenal resource."
— Keith Ginnodo and Kirsten Kinglsey, Co-Founders
Kingsley + Ginnodo Architects, Arlington Heights, Illinois
Arlington Heights-based architects Keith Ginnodo and Kirsten Kingsley strive to blend function with timeless design.
The husband-and-wife team has 20 years of experience in single-family residences, townhomes, condominiums, commercial buildings, churches and historic preservation. They take a tailored approach to each project and work to create exceptional residential and commercial designs for contemporary lifestyles.
Q: Why did you choose to start your own architecture firm?
A: Seven years ago, the economy was taking a nosedive, and I had lost my job working for a developer. That’s when I decided to start my own firm. We’ve had one bad year since, but the rest have been very good. Our work to this point has been suited to a bad market. Our clients couldn’t sell their homes, but their families were getting bigger. We’ve done a lot of remodeling work, with an occa-sional new house and some commercial work.
Q: To what do you attribute your success?
A: The most important thing to our clients is getting a high-quality design response. Architecture is a complex thing. There’s a problem to solve and a budget to fit, and people have to suffer through the construction process. We pride ourselves on working closely with our clients through the whole process—and all the way to a happy conclusion.
Q: If you had one piece of advice to someone just starting out, what would it be?
A: Don’t give up. Have a vision for where you want to go and understand that there’s a road that has to be traversed to get there. Also, keep your ethical standards high. Don’t compromise your ethics in any way. That way, you’ll be able to sleep at night even when someone challenges you, because you’ll know you’ve never done anything wrong.
Q: Would you recommend small business owners use the services of the SBDC?
A: Yes. Our advisor has been a phenomenal resource. The amount of involvement and effort she has devoted to our firm has made a big difference. She walked us through developing a business plan, and she helped us think through long-range plans. She provided concrete, technical information, as well as a lot of sage advice—and she did it with a great deal of cheerfulness and optimism. Hopefully the SBDC will be an ongoing resource for us.