You are currently viewing François Baho: Embracing Challenges, Transforming Architecture
François Baho

François Baho: Embracing Challenges, Transforming Architecture

A Visionary Leader Reshaping the Landscape of Architecture and Design!

In a world where limitations are often seen as roadblocks, there are individuals who possess a relentless drive to challenge the status quo and break through barriers. They embody an unwavering determination to push boundaries, refusing to settle for mediocrity and embracing the unknown with open arms. These trailblazers inspire us to think bigger, dream boulder, and step outside our comfort zones.

Step into the world of François Baho, a Lebanese expatriate whose journey has led him to become a driving force behind MZ Architects, a renowned architectural firm based in the UAE. From humble beginnings in Beirut to his current role as Chief Operating Officer, his path has been marked by transformative events and an unwavering determination to push boundaries.

After studying Business Management, Baho pursued a career in lighting design and manufacturing. Through dedication and perseverance, he rose through the ranks, becoming the Commercial Director of the main holding company. This role allowed him to collaborate with architects and designers across multiple countries, expanding his horizons and honing his expertise.

Driven by a desire for growth, Baho made the bold decision to join the oil and gas industry in the UAE. Embracing the challenges of a new country and role, he further fueled his ambition.

In 2018, MZ Architects offered Baho the opportunity to join their esteemed company as Chief Operating Officer. Embracing the challenge, he dedicated countless hours to self-tutoring and skill development.

Today, Baho attributes his success to viewing obstacles as personal challenges and refusing to be hindered by the word “No.” His remarkable achievements reflect perseverance, innovation, and an unwavering commitment to pushing boundaries in the world of architecture.

Let us delve deeper into his inspiring journey!

Please brief us about the featured person’s (s) journey in the industry and how they have contributed to the company’s success.

  • My ultimate target is enhancing operational efficiency. With a keen eye for process optimization and workflow streamlining, I constantly work towards reducing costs, increasing productivity, and implementing efficient systems and technologies that lead to tangible results, such as smoother operations, improved resource allocation, and higher overall efficiency
  • Spreading the Image of MZ Architects In UAE:
    MZ Architects has been active in UAE since 2008 and was and still actively changing the skyline of Abu Dhabi. With a rich portfolio developed for over a decade in Lebanon, GCC, and UAE, it was the time to showcase MZ Architects’ achievements in UAE.

Under MZ Architects’ management guidance, I contributed with the team to nominate and win the first UAE design award, the MECAwarded – a project of the year 2019, for the Al Qana project – a mixed-up development by MZ Architects that was followed by nominations and awards for multiple projects in UAE including:

  1. Middle East Consultants Awards 2020 – Project Of The Year: Yas Creative Hub Phase 1;
  2. Architecture Leaders Awards 2021 – Commercial Project Of The Year: RBW3-C4;
  3. Construction Innovation Award 2021 -Mixed Used Development Of The Year: Yas Creative Hub Phase 1
  4. Design Middle East Award 2021 – Mixed Used Development Of The Year: Yas Creative Hub Phase 1.

Please brief our audience about your company, its USPs, and how it is currently positioned as a prominent name in the market.

Founded by Mr. Marwan Zgheib, MZ Architects is an award-winning architectural and engineering consultancy firm in the Middle East dedicated to providing a wide range of services for the construction industry.

Always at the forefront of innovative architectural design, we at MZ Architects thrive on creating tailor-made designs to meet each of our client’s individual needs because we know that every project is a unique opportunity to achieve excellence.

With this vision in mind, MZ Architects widened its consultancy services scope to include Architectural Design and Development, Structural, Electrical, and Mechanical Design, Construction Management, Tendering & Contracts, and Site Supervision.

In order to sustain outstanding results in all these fields, Mr. Marwan Zgheib put together a team of highly qualified professionals, from Architects to Designers and Engineers, headed by a competent Management Team committed to offering our clients the best possible experience.

Our proven record of exceptional modern contemporary designs covers a wide variety of projects, from residential to commercial, sports, education, religious facilities, and others; we also follow up on our designs with full support to the developers and the construction industry through value engineering and technical consultancy services, up until the completion of each individual project.

How do you identify opportunities for innovation and growth in your industry, and what strategies do you employ to stay ahead of the competition?

In the realm of Architecture, where imagination shapes spaces and creativity thrives, MZ Architects stands out by combining industry knowledge, visionary thinking, and a passion for pushing boundaries. Led by chairman Marwan Zgheib, our unique approach sets us apart from the competition. Understanding our clients’ needs, desires, and challenges is fundamental to our design philosophy. By truly listening to their aspirations, we uncover opportunities to provide innovative solutions that go above and beyond expectations.

Sustainability lies at the core of our design philosophy. We integrate sustainable design principles and technologies, such as energy-efficient systems and green materials, to contribute to a better future and gain a competitive advantage.

Embracing technological advancements is essential in our industry. MZ Architects leverages tools like Building Information Modeling (BIM), virtual reality, augmented reality, and 3D printing. These digital tools allow us to visualize designs, collaborate seamlessly, and improve overall efficiency.

Investing in the professional development of our team members is a priority. By participating in workshops, seminars, and training programs, we encourage and support their pursuit of knowledge and excellence. During the Covid-19 period, I personally enrolled in an online learning program to set an example and motivate my team to do the same.

Crafting a unique brand identity is crucial in a crowded marketplace. MZ Architects differentiates itself by showcasing our strengths, specializations, and innovative design philosophy through our captivating portfolio, engaging social media presence, and compelling marketing materials.

For us, innovation in Architecture goes beyond aesthetics. It involves addressing real-world problems, focusing on sustainability, and enhancing the user experience.

What role does collaboration play in driving innovation and growth within your organization, and how do you foster a culture of collaboration among different teams and departments?

Collaboration plays a crucial role in driving innovation and growth within any organization. It brings together diverse perspectives, knowledge, and expertise from different teams and departments, leading to creative problem-solving, increased efficiency, and the development of new ideas and solutions. Fostering a culture of collaboration can be beneficial, and it can be encouraged within an organization.

Cross-functional teams: We form cross-functional teams consisting of members from different departments to work together on specific projects or initiatives. This structure encourages collaboration and allows team members to leverage their unique skills and perspectives to drive innovation.

Encouraging diversity: MZ Architects values diversity and actively promotes an inclusive environment where everyone’s voice is heard and respected. By fostering diversity, we encourage the exchange of different ideas, perspectives, and approaches, which are key drivers of innovation.

Open communication channels: We provide multiple channels for communication, such as team meetings (in person or virtual), collaboration tools, and digital platforms, to ensure easy and open communication among team members. This enables individuals from different teams and departments to connect, exchange ideas, and collaborate on projects.

MZ Architects’ management fosters a working environment where trust, respect, and psychological safety are prioritized. When employees feel comfortable expressing their ideas and opinions without fear of judgment or retribution, collaboration flourishes.

What would be your advice to budding entrepreneurs who aspire to venture into the same industry?

Joining MZ Architects marked a significant achievement in my career trajectory. Following 15 years of diverse experience spanning various industries and countries, I was introduced to MZ Architects in 2009 while working in the lighting design industry and serving the GCC market. Little did I know at the time that this introduction would pave the way for a remarkable journey that would unfold over the next decade. Recently celebrating my fifth year with the firm, I took a moment to reflect on the incredible path I have traversed. The experience at MZ Architects has not only enriched my professional background but has also granted me invaluable insights into the intricacies of the architectural field. Each day at MZ Architects presents me with new opportunities for growth, expanding my knowledge and fostering a deeper understanding of the industry itself.

To young entrepreneurs embarking on their own ventures, I offer a few words of advice. First, embrace diverse experiences and industries, as they can contribute to a well-rounded skill set. Second, seize every opportunity for growth and learning, as it can lead to remarkable achievements in one’s career.

Please give us a few testimonials of your clients/customers and a list of awards/recognitions that accurately highlight your association’s position in the market.

  • Middle East Consultants Awards 2020 – a project of the year 2019, for Al Qana project – a mixed-up development
  • Middle East Consultants Awards 2020 – Project Of The Year: Yas Creative Hub Phase 1;
  • Architecture Leaders Awards 2021 – Commercial Project Of The Year: RBW3-C4;
  • Construction Innovation Award 2021 -Mixed Used Development Of The Year: Yas Creative Hub Phase 1
  • Design Middle East Award 2021 – Mixed Used Development Of The Year: Yas Creative Hub Phase 1