Beyond milestones: Matthew’s life in architecture an ‘extraordinary privilege’

June 14, 2023 | General

Matthew Greene leans into problem solving.

The design architect and Executive General Manager of Paynter Dixon recently notched up 20 years in the company.

Behind the master planning expertise and award-winning design is a life-long ‘student’ who still delights in pencil and paper.

“I wanted to be an architect from about age seven,” concedes Matthew with a smile.

“I remember a drawing competition at my primary school which involved creating a likeness of our new library. I was mortified  by the questionable effort and quality of competition entries, while I had worked at length on a three-point perspective!”

By high school the enterprising teenager had researched which university course to study.

“I was attracted to architecture at University of Technology Sydney because it combined theoretical studies with real-world experience in an architectural office. It was the best mix of learning environments.”

On completion of studies, Matthew worked for an architectural firm where he was first introduced to Paynter Dixon.

“I actually began my professional association with Paynter Dixon 32 years ago, collaborating on project delivery as a subcontractor. From the outset I was impressed by the company’s design and construct model.”

When the opportunity presented itself, Matthew joined the company and hasn’t looked back since.

“We literally sit on the same side of the table as the client from beginning to end, and I find that a really nourishing process. We help solve their problems, and perhaps push their thinking a little.

“At its heart, architecture is a medium for problem solving in a creative way.”

“It’s more than just design in that it requires juggling different balls – cost, timing, authority approvals, compliance and the pathway to completion.”

“Putting these elements together requires a powerful capability, and that’s what Paynter Dixon does exceptionally well.”

Designers work closely with disciplines across the business to achieve the client’s vision.

“For example, when project delivery is facing cost pressures, we sit down with our estimators to find ways of fitting the solutions to budget. To give our clients that sense of control and confidence in the outcome is a wonderful feeling.”

In 2020 Matthew was promoted to Executive General Manager, taking on a position of senior leadership within the company. Title aside, his office door remains steadfastly open.

“I think the sign of good leadership is underpinned by the desire to simply help others.’ I was chuckling to myself the other day about the fact that I’m really an Executive Assistant to all our people.

“Looking back to my childhood, it was something that Mum and Dad instilled into us – the willingness to help others wherever you can.”

“It remains a strong theme in our family.”

As a prominent design architect in the education sector, Matthew is one of only 16 accredited Learning Environment Planners with the Association for Learning Environments based outside north America.

He describes the work as an “extraordinary privilege” to create environments which inspire and lay the foundations for life-long learning.

“What better legacy to leave for our younger generations?”

By his own admission, no two days are identical at Paynter Dixon, but therein lies the attraction.

“I genuinely love my job – and playing my part in what Paynter Dixon does on a daily basis.”