I haven’t done quite as much design biz talk on this blog as of late, as I feel like most of my readers want design information and sweet design eye candy more than anything else. :-)
However, every once in a while, I like to relay some business talk for my fellow designers out there. And, frankly, because I like to sort out my own thoughts about design here on DESIGNED.
I use this blog as if it’s my own personal journal. Most of my content here is inspired by things that happen in my everyday work.
Want to install some beams or coffers in your interior? Sure, why not. Read this first, because I wrote it when working on a project with just this issue.
Want to go gray in your house when it’s all done in beige? Read this. It was written while working on several homes facing this situation.
Want to use white marble but you’re worried about the upkeep? Read this. I shared one of the best alternatives I’ve found. And I’ve used it on several of my projects.
So, you see, I’m kind of a talker. I like to work things out by either writing or talking things out.
In order to work things out in my head, I have to run my thoughts about them by someone else. Things go much faster for me when I do, because they allow me to envision ideas much more clearly. Sure, sometimes they’re bad ideas; and sometimes the conversations are a total waste of time. But I have to do it. I have to go through the process or else I won’t reach a conclusion. I’ll just never get to an end result unless I process my thoughts in this way. I’m sure there’s some identifiable personality type out there that I completely exemplify, but I haven’t the time to figure what type, exactly, that may be. I’m kinda too old for that.
My girls here at the studio understand my “quirk”. I talk when I work. Constantly. Poor Jitka, who sits behind me, hears me most often. I ramble out loud during the day, not really directing anything specific at her or anyone else — I just talk. It happens so often that she’s learned to tune me out — well, for the most part, because, occasionally, she’ll still turn around and ask… “You’re not talking to me, right?”
It’s a real joke around here. And, well, I’m not going to change, so they have to live with it. (Mind you, they don’t complain. At least, not to me. :-)
Then there are the times when I need feedback. I need to have a response. I need a nod, an “um-hum”, a “yeah”,
Fortunately, they seem to sense when I need a response — and it’s provided, freely. :-)
So when I get new ideas about business, and I’m thinking beyond my studio and even beyond interior design, it’s been hard to find a sounding board. I’ve kind of gotten to a point where I actually stagnated because of that exact reason. Everything I had once dreamed of doing was sort of still in the clouds because I haven’t been able to sound them out, to work through them with my usual tried and true method of hashing them out verbally or in writing with anyone. I’ve been so busy that I haven’t had time to develop them and, honestly, it’s hard to find people around me who are interested in the business of design.
Recently though, I’ve found podcasts. (As I mentioned in this post.)
And, frankly, I feel like I’ve found a whole new group of people and new ideas to respond to. Thanks to my discovery, I’ve had more “aha” moments listening to this podcast than ever before. Thinking about the business of design and where to take it has suddenly become more exciting, more inspiring, more open to opportunity than I thought possible. And there's one thing I know for sure…
In order for this industry to grow and move forward, with the designers who support it being able to profit again, it needs to explore all kinds of new options that aren’t currently being explored.
As designers, we need to rethink ourselves and how we provide service. We need to look beyond the world of interior design to other industries and business models to gain insight and inspiration for how we can evolve.
If you are an interior designer who has been struggling with the drastic changes our industry now faces, stay tuned. I have some ideas I want to talk about.