New Year’s Resolutions For Your Interior Design Business - By Gail Doby

58.6% of interior design firm owners made less than
$45,000 during 2012, and 6.3% earned $0.

Every year, Design Success University conducts an annual survey of Interior Designer’s fees and salaries during November.  We publish the annual book about the survey in January, and this year we are providing more than statistics, graphs, charts and commentary. 
We added a new element to the survey to determine what the designers did that earned over $150,000 per year, and we have amazing results to share with you.  If you’d like to achieve six-figures in your business, the 2013 Interior Design Fee & Salary Survey is a must-read. 
We created a planning guide complete with checklists and exercises to help you achieve more success and earn more money because the statistic you just read is shocking, and we are determined to do something about it.
Planning and thinking are underutilized skills, in my opinion.  We did not ask the question this year do you have a plan for the next twelve months? But, do you have a plan and budget?
If you don’t have a plan and/or budget (preferably both), then how do you know if you achieved your goals? If you don’t know how to do these two basic business management tasks – especially the budget, don’t you think 2013 is the year to change your results by investing time in planning?  It isn’t as hard as you might think especially because we created inexpensive tools to assist you. 
At the end of each month or year, if you have a plan and you are not on target, you can decide if your strategy is off, or the tactics need to change. If you have a plan, review it frequently, preferably daily.
“What gets measured gets improved.” – Robin S. Sharma
The process of planning is actually more important than the plan itself because it engages you in a deeper way to make daily decisions to keep you focused on your priorities.  It is the small, daily decisions you make and act on that are most important. 
You’ve probably heard about the “latte factor” which says that by purchasing a $5 latte every day, it adds up to $1,825 per year. If you purchase a pastry with that latte, it could be $3,750 per year!
It’s the same with the small decisions. If you spend 10 minutes an hour checking text messages and emails instead of focusing on your marketing …
The Cost of Reading Emails Instead of Marketing Your Business
100 minutes x 5 days per week x 50 weeks per year = 25,000 minutes
25,000 minutes ÷ 60 minutes per hour = 416.7 hours = 52 days per year!
That’s nearly two entire months you’re probably spending on other people’s priorities.
Do you have control over these small decisions?
Yes you do.
What could you accomplish with that time?  Unfortunately, many of us spend our most productive hours doing exactly that – letting others choose for us.
“In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless,
but planning is indispensable. – Dwight D. Eisenhower

Think about your business every day. This is different than thinking while doing.  It is a process of getting quiet and reflecting on what is working and what can and should be improved … what is not working and should be stopped.  It takes courage to change, and yes, it can be uncomfortable until your practice becomes a habit.
When you write down your plans so you can see them, the physical act of doing so subconsciously engages your mind, and this seemingly simple act helps you figure out exactly how to accomplish your goals.  If you don’t take the time to write your goals and plans, they are just dreams.  Please commit to a different result this year by writing your plans and goals and
There are either results or excuses.  The results you are getting right now are directly related to what you have done or not, the decisions you’ve made or not, the skills you have or lack, and your willingness to change.  Take responsibility for your results today.
Just remember that no one is born a business genius, you learn to be one by study, trial and error, and/or coaching.
About Gail Doby, ASID, DSA & IDS – Gail is an author, speaker, interior designer and business coach that loves construction design and remodeling.  She is NCIDQ certified with a degree in Finance & Banking as well as Interior Design.  Gail started her career with a Fortune 500 company in Sales and Marketing and has been involved in the home furnishings industry for 36 years.  Click here to get your copy of the 2013 Interior Design Fee & Salary Survey eBook (Available January 8, 2013 - $179 Value) with compliments of Design Success University.


  1. Interior designing is a crucial activity that requires innovative ideas and creative mind. My personal experience says overdoing might hamper the beauty of the house. So, keep it simple and sober and it will do wonder.


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