July 18, 2014

The BOLD Summit

Although I’d generally refer to myself as a “decorator,” I think of myself first and foremost as an entrepreneur.  Design is the field I’ve chosen to work in (because I fell in love with it shortly after graduating from college) but there’s no doubt in my mind that if I wasn’t working on homes, I’d be involved in some sort of business of my own in another creative field.  Every couple of months I come up with random concepts for other companies I’d start up if I had a clone and/or lots and lots of money.   (One in particular that I can’t shake and am dying to do one day!!) A fun Saturday morning or Friday night for me often consists of working through a random business concept with my husband, visualizing how it would be branded, how we’d get it going, logistics, who our audience would be, and how much capital we’d need (always the kicker 😉

 

{textiles… one aspect of our business}

In our design business, I weirdly enjoy coming up with processes and ways of doing things and implementing them. I started the business years ago with no business processes in place.  I understood the creative/client part of the process but didn’t have a concept of how to efficiently and smoothly take a process from start to finish behind the scenes.  Every time I would come up with a way of doing things, it became the standard.  When I hired my first employee (Meghan Short, also my first intern five years ago) I had to start writing down and refining our processes.  Having to explain my processes to someone else and write them down for her to learn, aided in making them better.  We changed things and every time we came to a snafu of any sort, we learned and we changed our processes to better account for issues like those.  (we still do that…  it seems in this business that no matter how many bases you think you’d cover you’re always learning ways to avoid mistakes in the future.)

About a year and a half ago, in January when I made it my resolution to make our company run more smoothly,  I did an internet search for interior design business blogs.   I came across Julia Molloy’s blog (a design luxury branding consultant)  and spent hours on it, reading through old posts, taking notes and setting goals for our business.   I went in that first Monday after reading it and we had a team meeting and we made plans for refining & improving everything we did- from our meetings to our paperwork to our attitudes.   I wrote a blog post about Julia’s blog and she contacted me…  we ended up working together, and  Julia’s advice has been invaluable.  I felt like I knew her form our video calls, but she recently came to visit our studio for a two-day intensive “Molloy Makeover” and we had so much fun!!  (loved her btw.)  Our main goal in Julia’s trip was to help define team member roles further (which is incredibly efficient when it comes to being productive and making sure we’re all doing our jobs) … discussing our goals and plans for growth, and having Julia assess what everything we’ve been putting “out there” (including signage, websites, client meetings etc.) has been saying about our company and our brand.  She’s incredibly quick and her advice is always straight-forward, logical and concrete.  We’ve already implemented some of her suggestions and we’ve all become more efficient.  

 


{In the studio with Julia for our 2-day intensive}

So… The BOLD Summit.  The BOLD Summit (formerly the BOD – Business of Design- Conference) stands for The Business of Luxury Design and Julia recently took it over and amped it up a bit.  It’s a 2-day intensive conference for interior designers looking to make their businesses better through better use of time, better branding/PR, being published, learning about wealth management.  There will be some sure-to-be-amazing presenters there including designers  Maria Buatta and Vicente Wolf (who often shares great business advice on his blog) along with luxury branding experts, magazine editors, an award-winning writer-producer, and businesses & wealth experts and of course, Julia herself.  I’m incredibly honored to be included and will be speaking in a panel about how writing a blog has been instrumental to my business. (wish me luck!!) 

 


{Julia}

It’s in Las Vegas on Thursday, August 28th and Friday August 29th at the Wynn Hotel.  If you’re a serious designer looking to learn, to be re-energized & inspired and to meet new people  in the industry , I highly recommend checking it out here.  This is going to be way more than a feel-good “let’s make friends” little conference… I have no doubt you’d leave with concrete goals and action steps to improve your business and achieve your goals.  

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