Department Store Buyer Becomes Interior Designer

A man contacted me about promoting his commercial interior design firm that he was starting. At that time he was working as a department store buyer where he was very bored in his job. He was interested in making a career change to interior designing. He had no formal training but had educated himself in interior design and had worked on some very small showroom and office design projects in an assisting role.

After meeting with him and learning his goals, I did some research into office and showroom designs, and the correlations between new designs and increased business. I discovered that office interior designing was a lot more plentiful but more competitive. The larger design firms concentrated on the office designing market. I decide for my client that it would be best if he would concentrate his efforts on the showroom design market which was less competitive and easier to break into.

I helped my client create a web site that would express his unique approach to designing showrooms. The web site allowed clients to request information on the different types and styles of showroom designs that my client has to offer. There would be articles and links to articles that would be of interest and help prospective clients with what type of showroom design would be best for their business. The web site would provide examples of other projects that were successfully done.

I wrote articles on the positive correlation between new designs and increased business and distributed them on the internet were clients would be looking for information. I included links in the articles back to my client’s web site. I created a newsletter for my client that contained helpful information to prospects by explaining several different ways of how new showroom designs can increase business. The newsletter contained links to my clients’ web site as well as links to articles and sources of information that would be of assistance to any potential prospects.

I created a print ad for the New York Real Estate Journal and wrote an article under my clients’ by-lines that appeared with the ad. After the article and ad appeared, I ordered reprints, wrote a solicitation letter, and bought a list of approximately 500 real estate lawyers (new showroom tenants typically have their lawyers negotiate their leases). The solicitation letters gave my clients web site address and where to find his newsletter. The solicitation letters were mailed with a bulk mail permit from a local post office. They were also sent via email.

A few weeks later after sending out the solicitation letter and reprints, a lawyer who represented a men’s suit designer company responded to our ads. I prepared for my client a four color brochure, a PowerPoint presentation, and a script to follow during his presentation. My client was up against 3 other firms competing for the contract. My client was rewarded the contract. The contract was for 1.5 million for a showroom on a very fashionable Manhattan street.

Five months after getting the contract to design this showroom my client completed the project. The showroom turned out to be a huge success for the men’s suit designer company. The company even recommended my client to an accessory manufacture and design company that the suit company was doing business with.

With the permission of the men’s suit designer company I arranged for several stories about their work to be published. I made changes on their web site to include the success that my client had with the suit design company’s show room design. I also included it in the next company newsletter that was going to be published. I repeated the process with the mailing list both of them (conventional mail and e-mail) promoting the success of my clients work. As a result, my client got three additional clothing design companies each of whom required large showrooms and offices

The success of the first contract allowed my client to break into a new market segment which is designing offices, which is the largest and most profitable in the interior design business. Here is where my client decided to expand his business; and in order to do this he must hire others who have the skills to execute the appropriate tasks at hand.

Interior Design Opportunities – From Your Favorite TV Show to a Career

Today’s cable programming is filled with shows that teach viewers how to revamp, redesign and remodel their home and work spaces. Popular TV shows like Trading Spaces, Design on a Dime and Flip That House have turned many regular viewers into aspiring interior designers. These entertaining and inspiring shows have made a name in many households, bringing out a creative flare in people who never knew they had one.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Interior Designer employment is expected to grow 19% between 2006 and 2016. This estimate is faster than the average expected for all occupations during that same time period. Job opportunities in both established design firms and for self employed interior designers should grow. The BLS states that “post-secondary education, especially a bachelor’s degree, is recommended for entry-level positions in interior design.” Many people who are interested in interior design may not realize that there are schools that provide online interior design degrees that fit the needs of busy, working adults.

It may seem far-fetched to start a career because you love a certain television show. But this is a trend that is happening more and more in the design field. And, because of the people who love to watch the shows and want to redesign their homes, but can’t do the work themselves, there is the potential for even more work for interior designers. This creative profession takes both an artistic sense and a keen way with people. These traits may come naturally to some people, but business practices and technical knowledge of programs like Auto CAD are skills that should be learned in school.

According to the American Society of Interior Designers, at least 50% of practicing designers in the U.S. have completed two or more years of college or vocational training. Earning a degree in interior design is a great way to gain the technical skills needed to succeed in this demanding and competitive career field and gain an edge over the competition that do not hold interior design degrees. There are several interior design programs throughout the country that offer training to suit the needs of the profession. There are even some schools that offer interior design degree programs online, which are great for working adults who want a career change or want to move up in their existing careers.

Interior design is certainly a career option that is getting a lot of attention due to the popularity of design shows on television. However, it isn’t the only option for a creative, rewarding career in design. Graphic design, animation, game design and web design are just a few of the other exciting career options in this field. People who find themselves drawn to interior design should also read about the career options in other design fields. No matter what design career is most appealing, earning a design degree is a smart way to gain the necessary training and credentials for success.

Key Steps For Finding The Perfect Interior Designer

Making the decision to hire an interior designer can sometimes be a costly affair. That’s why it makes sense to take every precaution you can in selecting the right person. Below we’re going to cover some important action points to make this whole process easier.

These are the essential basics for finding top quality interior designers to work for you:

First of all, get clear on what you want. Before contacting anyone it’s a good idea to fully consider the work you want done. You want to get a very clear idea about the exact space you want designed and the kind of specific expertise required to get it done. At this stage you don’t have to have a full technicolor picture in your mind of the exact look – that’s largely the interior designer’s purpose. Just a broad notion of what you need will do, and the kind of budget you have available for it.

Afterward, you want to pile up the magazines, trawl through websites, and amass as many interior designers onto a list as you can. And remember to ask friends, family members, and neighbours for names too.

After you’ve collated this list, it’s time to whittle it down a bit. Go onto the internet and spend some time on each designer’s website (if they have one). Start to get a feel for the kind of work they do and where their expertise lies. And think how these tie in to your own project. Work on boiling down your list to about five interior designers who seem like the closest match.

A web site can only tell you so much. So the next key step is to call your number one choice and organize to meet them in person. Aim to do this at their office, and away from the space you want worked on. At this point you’re just looking to focus more on them than the exact details of your project.

This first meeting is the time to get references from them, ask to see examples of the projects they have worked on, and ask any burning questions you have on your mind. And only once this stage of the interview is over do you really want to start discussing your project and your budget for getting it done. Use this time to figure out if the two of you will get along as well.

If the first meeting went well, then great. You might be ready to have them view the space you want designed. If not, move on to the next on your list until you find one you like. Then invite them over to see the area for themselves.

The final stage here is to have this interior designer actually come to view the space you’d like them to work on. Again, make sure they’ve listened to your needs correctly, and have a very firm understanding of the budget you’ve set aside for the project. Assuming all is well, confirm a time for them start and let the work commence.

In essence, the most important points to consider when hiring interior designers are both skill sets and finding someone you can get along with. And of course, their fees will play their part as well, but don’t make this the only deciding factor.