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Today Ted speaks with Jaque Bethke of Bethke Design in Scottsdale, AZ. She brings to her work lessons learned as a student at the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture, as well as from her background in engineering. Jaque jump-started her career right out of design school with a leadership role at Wynn Las Vegas.

Believing that “design should express people better than they can express themselves,” Jaque built her brand on the strength of her character, personality, love of the trades, and out-of-the-box creativity.

Listen in as Jaque how she developed a love for design, architecture, and engineering from an early age, as well as her determination to become a role model for women in the industry or who have a desire to enter the industry.

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Jaque Bethke & Ted Bainbridge

She reflects on her long and varied career path that saw her pushed to the limits of her imagination at Wynn all the way to running a firm that was featured on the cover of Architectural Digest not once, twice, but three times.

Finally, Jaque explains how she is able to soldier on in spite of the countless risks she has taken throughout her career, why she believes that “failing is awesome”, and her belief that a successful designer has to be so sure of their capabilities that they are willing to walk away from their own company if it comes down to it.

Topics Discussed

  • [02:05] Jaque on the amazing house she recently gave us a tour of
  • [05:26] How Jaque got connected with Stephanie Fox of Platinum Homes
  • [11:35] Serving as a role model for women in the trades
  • [17:03] Changing the story you tell yourself to overcome self-imposed barriers
  • [23:32] Jaque’s first big break working at Wynn Las Vegas
  • [33:31] The importance of being challenged to think bigger and differently at work
  • [38:17] Starting her own firm and being featured on the cover of Architectural Digest thrice
  • [41:47] How Jaque interacts with her high-profile clients throughout the process
  • [45:29] Asking questions relentlessly in order to be able to design for longevity
  • [49:24] Why contemporary architecture will not stand the test of time
  • [58:13] Starting a furniture line for existing clients
  • [1:02:45] Why Jaque is willing to risk failure in achieving big goals
  • [1:04:17] Jaque on how anyone can live the American Dream
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Jaque Bethke DesignScottsdale, AZ

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Key Quotes from Episode

  • So much of what we do in design is driven by human design—by nurturing characteristics.
  • Failure is not something that should define you as a person. Failure should motivate you to do better. […] Failing is awesome, because what you take away from it is a lesson. You can use that lesson to empower yourself to help somebody else.
  • People are afraid to challenge, but the best work comes from challenge.
  • If you involve the children in the process of their home—where they’re going to live, how they’re going to live, what’s going into the areas that they use—they will take more ownership of it and they will help to care for it.
  • You are the architect of your journey in life. There are consequences that come with the choices that you make, but you can’t be afraid of them.

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