At Design + Construction Concepts, everyone on the staff (with the exception of the administrative people) is a full-time architect. That alone distinguishes Michael Menn (right) and Andrew Poticha’s (left) company. But setting them even farther apart from your typical design/build remodeling firm is the fact that they do more than just build their own designs.

The Northbrook, Ill.–based company works in three ways. First, it operates as a typical design/build firm, using subcontractors to execute all of its work with an average job size of $250,000. Second, it builds projects for other architects and designers. Finally, it provides architecture services for outside clients.

Growth in the company comes primarily from increasing job size. “We don’t want to be a supercompany,” Menn says. “We want to round out at nine employees.”

Even though almost all their work is provided by word of mouth, Menn and Poticha spend at least 2 percent on marketing. “The economy is going to change,” Menn says. “I know we’re riding on this crest. People who don’t have strong marketing campaigns will fall by the wayside.”