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The Role of a Business Coach in Transforming Your Interior Design Business

business coach for interior designer interior design business coach interior design coaching marketing for interior design marketing for interior designers Apr 12, 2024
The Role of a Business Coach in Transforming Your Business

As a kid, you might have strived to impress your coach on a student soccer or basketball team. And nowadays, you may have even worked with a life coach at some point. But the idea of hiring a business coach for your interior design business might sound odd.


Lots of designers think they know exactly what they need to do. The only thing left is for them to actually take those actions. However, every business is different, and sometimes, it just takes a fresh perspective to revitalize things.


If you’re not convinced just yet, here’s how to find the right business coach for interior designers just like you, as well as what a good coach can do for your career.

 


Understand the Role

Before you decide whether a business coach is right for you, make sure you understand what exactly a business coach does. While the role might sound similar to that of a mentor or consultant, it’s not the same.


The differences can be broken down as follows:

  • A mentor is someone who shares their business experience and knowledge with you; they typically aren’t paid
  • A consultant is someone you hire to help your business achieve a particular goal or overcome a challenge
  • A coach is someone who takes a holistic approach to help you and your business achieve your full potential

 

In other words, a coach is who you hire when you want someone to both offer you personalized guidance and hold you accountable.

 


Know When It’s Time to Hire a Coach

If you’ve never hired a business coach before, it can be hard to tell when the best time to do so is.


Whether you’ve just started building a business or have been in the game for years, these are some signs that it might be a good idea to start working with a coach:

  • You’ve hit a revenue plateau
  • Your business (or even just parts of it) has started to feel overwhelming
  • Your business has grown so quickly that it’s hard to keep up with
  • You’re having trouble gaining visibility

 

As the above shows, you don’t only need to turn to a business coach when your business is struggling. While they may be helpful in such scenarios, they can also offer help with managing the psychological challenges you deal with as a business owner.


For example, it’s easy to start feeling overwhelmed when you’re juggling multiple clients. But a business coach for interior designers may be able to help you develop and use stress-managing strategies.

 


Start Setting Your Goals

What are your business goals? When asked that question, many business owners list broad, general goals. They want to boost revenue, increase visibility, expand, and so on.


There’s nothing inherently wrong with these goals, but as you may already know, it’s generally a good idea to break larger goals into smaller benchmarks. And an interior design business coach can help you set the right goals for success: those that are challenging but achievable. They also can help you set smaller goals along the way, which are great for measuring your progress and staying motivated.

Remember, if you set a goal that isn’t ambitious enough, your business might not reach its full potential. But if your goals are too ambitious, it’s easy to become discouraged and stop trying altogether.

 

 

Strategize for Success

On its own, “business strategy” is an incredibly vague term. Thankfully, the right business coach will be able to help you define your business strategy, typically working with you to choose one or two areas to focus on first.


These are some of the tools and strategies your coach may help with:

 

Market Research

Before helping you craft a marketing plan, your business coach may help you research your competition. You can learn a lot from your competitors. Just by looking at their marketing strategies, discovering their target audiences, and identifying market trends, you can gather insights that will help you develop your own business.


Financial Strategy

For many independent designers, handling the money management side of things can be hard. Someone experienced in interior design coaching can help you create a budget, make financial projections, manage your cash flow, and develop a tax strategy.


Building a Client Base

Your success and stability as an interior designer hinges on your ability to consistently draw in customers. However, especially for the up-and-coming designer, establishing a client base can be hard. The good news is that the right business coach will help you expand your reach to reliably attract new clients.


Developing a Marketing Plan

Marketing is critical if you want to grow your business. But many newer designers aren’t too familiar with marketing strategies, and they don’t exactly have a large advertising budget, either. Your coach can help you harness the power of SEO, social media marketing, and even paid advertising to help you build an audience without spending more than you can afford.


Taking Next Steps

If you’ve been fortunate enough to see your business grow relatively quickly, you know that kind of growth comes with its own set of challenges. And a great business coach can help you handle them. For example, if it’s time for you to hire your first employee, your coach might be able to help you make the right hire.

 


Start Your Journey of Transformation

The goal of a business coach isn’t just to help you make a few minor tweaks to your business. It’s to help you transform your business entirely. You must remember that transformation takes time and effort and that you can’t expect your business to suddenly change.


Imagine that you’re an interior designer working in a densely populated area. Many homeowners in the city seek out interior design services, but you notice that most of them end up choosing your competition. You ask your coach to take a look at your business.


A good coach will know that, in order to help your business achieve its true potential, they need to focus on multiple areas. Thus, after looking closely at your whole process, they come up with the following observations:

  • In your initial client consultations, you don’t discuss your strategies or plans in detail, making your clients think you don’t know how to design their space
  • The most successful designers in the city have a particular angle or something that sets them apart, but you lack that
  • Many competitors entice new clients with discounts, but you don’t

 

Once you gather this feedback, you and your coach can spring into action. In your client consults, you could start taking a closer look at their spaces and suggesting particular visions you have for the finished product. Consider teaming up with local artisans to include handmade, high-end pieces in your designs. You could also offer a 10% discount for new customers to give your business even more of a competitive edge.


Of course, the changes you implement won’t always fix everything all at once, but that’s alright. You and your coach can regroup, reassess, and then decide on what new tactic to take next.

 


Choose the Right Coach

An interior design business coach can be a great addition to your business, provided you choose the right one. You may have specific characteristics you’re looking for in a coach, but these general guidelines can help you conduct a proper search:

  • Talk to the coach about their business philosophy to see if it aligns with yours
  • Check out their experience (particularly if they have experience coaching interior designers)
  • Read reviews and talk to past clients if possible
  • Ask about their pricing and what a typical coaching schedule looks like
  • Check to see if they have credentials (part of a coaching association, publication in respected journalism, etc.)

 

Ultimately, working with a business coach is a partnership, and that makes the process of choosing the right one important. Don’t rush it!

 


Ready to Find an Interior Design Business Coach?

When you work with an industry-specific business coach, you’ll get specialized advice meant to help you overcome some of the challenges interior designers often face.


If you’re having trouble generating a consistent income, gaining visibility, attracting the right kind of clients, or just managing a business, Behind the Design can help. Jackie Green, interior designer and founder of Behind the Design, is now offering individual and group business coaching to help designers take their businesses to the next level.


If you’re considering interior design coaching, get in touch today to schedule your free 30-minute strategy call!

 

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