5 Processes That Are Critical for Success

The key to keeping your business running smoothly is having organized and strategic systems and processes in place. They will keep you from making mistakes, from reinventing the wheel for every single project, and will make your clients think you're a design genius (and you ARE!). But, small business owners are notorious for running their companies by the seat of their pants and without a lot of strategy. Here's an eye opener for you: When you do that, you lose money!! So here are the 5 processes that you HAVE to have in place in order to run a successful interior design business!

1. Client Intake

How you start a project with a client is SOOO important to the success of that project! Questionnaires help you get to the heart of what your clients want and ensure that you deliver their dream home. You want to include a lot of in-depth questions that help your clients define what they need in their homes, and it's even better if you can have those questionnaires for each room of the house. Another important process is the way that you welcome your client. You should spell out the design process and timeline for them, introduce your team members, and help them understand how the budgeting process works. The more information you can give your clients, the better they'll feel about working with you!

2. Project Management

Speaking of timelines, they are a VERY important part of a good project management system. Setting effective deadlines - and meeting them - will make you a rock star of an interior designer. But you also need to juggle your trades, the contractor, and other team members. Having regular meetings and keeping each other up to date on changes and corrections is the key to success. I use my Asana Project Management System to follow a proven step-by-step process to track every detail of my interior design projects. 

3. Budgeting

With a strong process to help you with budgeting, you can determine the most accurate project budget and guide your clients with clarity and assurance throughout your projects with worksheets, checklists and budgeting templates. That means your clients and contractors will be happier knowing their budget parameters, and you don’t waste time presenting incorrect specifications. This is one of the hardest things for new designers to do, but it is so important to running a successful business!

4. Communication

I've said it over and over again - communication can make or break your business. You HAVE to have a system for keeping your clients up to date on the project. And you must be able to communicate effectively with the contractor, architect, and subs on a project. Regular systems for emails, phone calls, and meetings help keep everything on track!

5. Project Pipeline

Once you've completed a fabulous and successful project (WOO HOO!!), then what?? Do you have a process for getting new business? For marketing your services?? If not, you're going to be out of business very quickly. I use a project pipeline to know exactly what projects are coming up, their size and scope, and whether I have enough cash flow to realize them. That's how I keep things moving!!

Now here's the key - that's a LOT of processes and systems to keep up with, right?? But I have a secret: My ROI system is designed to do ALLL of that hard work for you!! You can click here to learn more about how easy I've made it for you. And I'm also giving you a FREE Sampler Pack so you can get a taste of how simple and effective my Return on Interiors system is. Download it today to test out the ROI tools!



Check out more design business tips and tricks

Making the Most of Client Touchpoints

How Communication Can Solve Any Project Challenge

Navigating a Client Couple

Ready to Get Some Processes in Place - and Get Back Time to Work on Your Business?

Organize and automate your interior design business by implementing a few business processes. Each process helps designers show up prepared and professional at every step.

Download this FREE GUIDE and start automating your business today!