My Story, Part Four: Things I've Learned in Business

Photo Credit: Danielle Poff Photography

It's Wednesday, which means I'm here to share some more of My Story with you. I started by sharing how I was when I was little, how I decided to study interior design in college, how I chose my college, how I started my blog and what awesome experiences having a blog has afforded me. Today I'm excited to share a few things I learned when I first started my interior design business.

1. Website Design. Being a blogger, I know how sensitive I am to good (or bad) design and layouts. If something isn't aesthetically pleasing, chances are, I'm not going to stick around for long or come back. I knew when coming out of the gates with a new interior design business, I needed to come out strong and with an awesome website. I hired Ashley & Malone to create a pretty website that really suited me. A website legitimizes your business, so I suggest spending the necessary money to make it great!

2. Confidence. Knowing in your head and heart that you can make your business work is really important. Something a teacher told me in school stuck with me as I was starting my business. She said, "call yourself an interior designer. That's what you are! You aren't a person who 'dabbles in design' or is 'trying out design' for fun. Go in with confidence, because that gives people confidence in you!"  Wow! What powerful words to a new business owner.

When people would ask what I was going to do with my degree, I was guilty of answering "I'm going to try to start my own business" or "I'm going to help people decorate". NO! By telling people "I am an interior designer and I'm starting my own business after I graduate", people were more confident in my ability.

3. Ask for Help. As a new business owner, I approached designers who I had worked for to ask questions about things I wasn't sure on. Thankfully, I had very kind mentors. I have asked my dad for help with taxes (holy cow-- that's a whole other subject!!) and asked for assistance from many others along the way. It's always best to ask and do something right, than to not ask and make mistakes. That brings me to my next point.

4. Accept that You're Going to Make Mistakes. It's just going to happen. Approach situations with grace and humility. Learn from your mistakes and put systems in place so they don't happen again! I remember once a few months into my business, I forgot to charge a client tax on their thousand dollar order. Guess who paid their tax for them?! Yes, that'd be me ;) Never again!

5. Align Yourself with Trusted, Talented People. Collaborating on projects and posts with awesome people and bloggers, knowing you can trust your website developer and everyone else you work with, and gathering a team of people (for me that'd be painters, contractors, upholsterers, woodworkers, tile-layers, etc.) I feel are talented and have integrity is key. I have a friend in the industry who I regularly chat with about our upcoming projects and ventures, just to bounce ideas off one another. This has been huge for my business!

6. Continue Blogging and Growing Your Online Presence. I get half of my business from people who have heard about me through my blog, Facebook or Instagram. By blogging often and putting quality posts on Facebook, Instagram and other social media, I am increasing my chances of being seen. I try my best to be personable and friendly on social media, engaging with my sweet friends and readers. This increases brand intimacy! 

Those were some of the most important things I've learned as I started my business, all the way until now; two years into my business. I'm still learning something with each new client! In a field like this, you just never stop learning. 

 Catch up on the series here:
Part One: Floor Plans & High School Papers
Part Two: College & Starting My Blog

Part Three: Opportunities Through Blogging 

Happy Wednesday!



  1. I love the confidence part, that's something I'm going to have to keep in mind.

  2. Great tips for me to consider as I'm working on my business. Thanks for sharing your story! :)

  3. Loved this and some great advice thanks for sharing Michaela!!

    Your posts have been so wonderful lately

    Lauren Baxter | LB Designs

  4. Those tips of owning a business are awesome. Thanks Michela! My fiance wants to own a business and these tips will help him. Another tip is to own a business you would love doing. If you don't love it, you would be successful in it. And you never stop learning new things regardless if you own a business or not.

    Jane Osborne @ Customer Finder Marketing


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