Episode 80: Price is Just a Number: Knowing Your Worth is a Belief! with Andrea Liebross
As a certified business and life coach, Andrea Liebross is known for helping high-achieving women make the shift from overwhelm to freedom in both their personal and professional life. She helps women create their own secret sauce for success by combining two ingredients - the right mindset and solid systems. Andrea coaches women who are at all stages of their entrepreneurial journey through her signature programs, Committed to Growth and Runway to Freedom.
In this episode, Andrea and I chat about the three most valuable resources everyone has (and which is the most important), why what you charge your clients is just a number, and the beliefs you need to help create the number you deserve.
Connect with Andrea on Instagram and LinkedIn and visit www.andreaslinks.com, where you can learn more about working with Andrea. There you will also find her Reveal the Root quiz. And don’t forget to listen to the Time to Level Up podcast wherever you get your podcasts.
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Michelle Lynne began her interior design career after spending more than two decades working in Corporate America. She began in the home staging arena and has since built a successful, award-winning, full-service interior design firm, employing talented designers and serving clients across the country.
In the summer of 2018, Michelle began focusing on a big gap she saw missing in the interior design industry: teaching interior designers how to run the business of an interior design business. She now engages in private coaching and leads an in-depth, 12-month group coaching program, both options focus on teaching designers profitable processes, systems, strategies, and mindset needed to run a streamlined, profitable interior design firm.
Her motto is simple: we rise by lifting others.
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Michelle Lynne: Welcome to Designed for the Creative Mind, a podcast for interior designers and creative entrepreneurs to run their business with purpose, efficiency, and passion. Because, while every design is different, the process should remain the same. Prepare yourself for some good conversations with amazing guests, a dash of Jesus and a touch of the woowoo, and probably a swear word or two. If you're ready to stop trading your time for money and enjoy your interior design business, you are in the right place. I'm your host, Michelle Lynne.
Michelle Lynne: Well, hello, everybody. This is Michelle Lynne, and welcome back to the podcast, Designed for the Creative Mind. As you know, this is where I get excited to introduce our guest, and today I want to introduce you to the lovely Andrea Liebross. Let me tell you a little bit about her. So after graduating from Dartmouth College and marrying the guy that literally lived down the hall, she and her husband packed up their 1980s red Cadillac, left the northeast, and eventually made their way to the midwest city known for the Indianapolis 500. Can't you just hear that in the background? Vroom vroom. So over the last few decades, Andrea has started three successful businesses, all while raising two kids now 20 and 17, so she lived through it, and she raised several giant puppies. As a certified business and life coach Andrea is known for helping high-achieving women make the shift from overwhelm to freedom in both their personal and professional life. Her goal is to guide these bold, ambitious women to create their own custom secret sauce for success by combining just two ingredients. First one is the right mindset and solid systems. Andrea believes every problem is solvable, and every dream is possible if you make it all simple, doable, and fun. Yes, even the systems. She coaches women who are at all stages of their entrepreneurial journey, from just starting out to having a team of 100, through her signature program, Committed to Growth and Runway to Freedom. So holy cow, Andrea, that's a heck of a lead in. Thank you for being here.
Andrea Liebross: Thanks for having me.
Michelle Lynne: Yes. And you speak my language when you talk about just keeping it fun.
Andrea Liebross: If it's not fun, then we're not doing it, or our brain's telling us we could be doing something better at that time. Right?
Michelle Lynne: Absolutely. And even though it's work, you know, we're not in the operating room. Nobody's gonna die on our shift.
Andrea Liebross: That's true.
Michelle Lynne: So, keeping it light.
Andrea Liebross: Actually, it's funny you say that. My husband's a physician and I always joke, he's working with the people life and death, and I'm doing other things.
Michelle Lynne: There you go. Yes. And that's what I tell my team at ML Interiors Group is like y'all, you know what? We take our business seriously, but let's not take ourselves that seriously. Let's have some fun, let's do our job, and just transform lives. Which is what you do. I'm so excited to have you here. Thank you for being here. So how did you go down this path? And I love your intro about the red Cadillac and just driving away.
Andrea Liebross: Yes, we'd never left the, we'd never lived anywhere than the Northeast. So it was like a big, that was 1996, so that was a long time ago. But, how did I get where I am today? So formal schooling, my formal schooling, was all really about psychology. I love to study how people think and communicate and had a whole bunch of different jobs. I worked in an advertising agency in Manhattan, like I was like in the Ally McBeal era.
Michelle Lynne: Oh, yes.
Andrea Liebross: Yes, remember that?
Michelle Lynne: I do.
Andrea Liebross: And I have a Masters in speech pathology. And I worked at a hospital for a while. But from 2008 to 2018, I worked for a company who manufactured and sold women's clothing directly to women, directly to the customer. It was not a party method or anything, their business format wasn't parties.
Michelle Lynne: That's where my mind went.
Andrea Liebross: Yep, no, it wasn't that. So it was, have a showroom, where people physically come in, it was like having a mini store. And each season you got a different line of clothes. So basically, you are like a franchise owner in a way, and you only had this line of clothing, and you set appointments, and women came in and I was one of those people originally, but then I took on a more corporate role, where I was recruiting and hiring and training women to do this. So some of them it was a jobby, and a jobby is what I call like it's kind of half a hobby and half a job. You're sort of serious but you're not. And then the others were wanting to make and did make multiple six figures. So it kind of ran the gamut. Like you could do with it what you wanted to do. And after working for them for 10 years, the joke was, if I come up with one more great idea that they don't put into play, these corporate people, I'm out. So eventually I was out. My great ideas, I was frustrated. But I reflected on why did I stay there for that long? And what I realized was that the part I really loved, what was the part I really loved? What was the fun? The part I really loved was helping women who had made the decision, yes, I want to invest in this, got their business going, kind of it was running, but this thing, it kind of didn't become so fun. And it got hard and uncomfortable. And they had to kind of make some tough decisions. And maybe there's a little risk, and they had to tell their family that maybe they wouldn't be home for dinner. And, you know, when they got to that point, coaching them through that, to me, it was actually fun and a challenge. And to see them succeed on the other side of that.
Michelle Lynne: Right. So that's kind of where it was born?
Andrea Liebross: That's where it was born.
Michelle Lynne: Sounds like a natural progression.
Andrea Liebross: It definitely was a natural progression. I had to kind of have a little mental flexibility and see that. A couple people helped me, point that out to me. But that was the natural progression. So now, really what I'm doing is, I am helping a lot of women who have, I'll call it viable or feasible businesses, profitable businesses, kind of turn the corner from a viable to a growth mode, right? So kind of picturing like a line graph, I kind of picture it like, you've plateaued, and you want to take a right turn and go up. Yeah, and that little elbow is where you have to make a lot of tough decisions. So that's kind of my sweet spot right in there.
Michelle Lynne: That's a difficult spot. So it's nice to have somebody in the corner. Especially without the emotional attachment.
Andrea Liebross: Yeah, like you when in boxing matches, they go back to their corner to talk to their coach? Like, that's what you're doing, you're going back to the corner to talk to the coach.
Michelle Lynne: There you go. There's just no spit or sweat, maybe a little bit of sweat. But yeah, that makes perfect sense. That's exciting. So you coach individuals from just starting out to having 100 employees or whatnot. Do you have any particular like industry that you have found that's most comfortable or size of company?
Andrea Liebross: So I coach all industries. I've got people that are, you know, building pools. I've got people that are educators. I've got clients that are accountants and lawyers. I do happen to have several interior designers.
Michelle Lynne: Good, good, good.
Andrea Liebross: Yes. I mean, they're all women-owned businesses. And think I really, if you think about that place where you're going from viable to growth mode, right around there, you've got a handful of employees or at least contractors, you're not probably up to 100, you've got five maybe. You need only three.
Michelle Lynne: Or you need to encourage them what to hire and hire it so you're not the one doing it.
Andrea Liebross: Yes. Or they've hired like the wrong, not necessarily the wrong people or they've held on to the people because they're their neighbor or they're so nice.
Michelle Lynne: Oh, my gosh, I get it.
Andrea Liebross: All that stuff. So that's sort of the sweet spot. And I think at that juncture, when you're there, you've really got to look at things from both the mindset perspective and the systems perspective, which is why I say that's kind of the secret sauce. Like you've gotten through, I can do this. Yeah, I can do this. So you got to up your game a little, kind of uplevel your thinking. Because probably the way you started your systems in the beginning, aren't going to get you to the next place either.
Michelle Lynne: Well, that and it's been my experience that a lot of people don't even have systems because it's all in their head. And they're trying to remember what did they do two projects ago because it worked so well. So the systems are like not even structured.
Andrea Liebross: They're not structured and they're not repeatable.
Michelle Lynne: Right. Right, right, right.
Andrea Liebross: So you have systems for client A, but you can't really repeat that for B. And also, you know, you're still in the mode of thinking that everybody's a special snowflake.
Michelle Lynne: Or that we're the special snowflake.
Andrea Liebross: We're the special snowflake.
Michelle Lynne: It's one or the other.
Andrea Liebross: Yes, that's even more.
Michelle Lynne: Oh, my gosh.
Andrea Liebross: I just had someone, actually this morning, say to me, well, I mean, I'm probably not your ideal client, because I'm X, Y, and Z. I'm like, really? Why do you think that? No, you're totally my ideal client, but she thinks she's a special snowflake in her industry, you know?
Michelle Lynne: Yes, yes, yes. Or that even though the client has fired three interior designers, that I can come in and make it all right. Come on. They're the ones that are broken. Not you, you can't fix everybody.
Andrea Liebross: Correct.
Michelle Lynne: Oh, that's fun. So what would you say is your vision for your clients?
Andrea Liebross: So, my vision, I'm going to kind of paint a picture. Okay, so my vision is most of my clients have kids. So my vision is for that woman to be able to walk down the stairs, from upstairs in her study, and say to her family sitting around the kitchen table, I am going to a conference, maybe it's yours, I am going to a conference in two weeks. I need this to make my business better. I want to do this. This is something that fuels me, that fulfills me. You all are going to survive while I'm gone. Everything's gonna be okay. And when I come back, I'm super excited to put a lot of my learning into place. So really, it's giving them the confidence to take it to the next level, to communicate that they want to do that, not just kind of be like, oh, how's that little business going? No, it's a real thing.
Michelle Lynne: No, yes, yes, yes. Playing small.
Andrea Liebross: Yes. Okay. So it's starting to think big, right? And being bold enough to say, I love what I'm doing. It's great. I mean, I want to keep doing it. I want to grow. And yes, I love my kids. I love my husband, they totally are my, you know, one and only. And I'm going to do this. It's not an either-or kind of situation.
Michelle Lynne: Absolutely. Andrea, with all the people that you've worked with, have you seen a pattern or something? Like, why do women do this? Like, I know, I was guilty of this. I'm thinking, where were you when I was at that juncture when I needed to uplevel and give me a swift kick or whatever. Why do you think women do that to ourselves?
Andrea Liebross: I think it really comes down to worthiness and thinking, are they worthy of the time, energy, money? I say we have three, our three most valuable resources are time, money, and brainpower. So brainpower, thinking, your ability to think.
Michelle Lynne: I love that.
Andrea Liebross: Yeah. So, earlier this week, I did one of my most favorite things with a client, I did a strategy and planning VIP day. And really, what I love doing during these days is we crafted her business plan, a vision and business plan, for the next year. And I put some big numbers up there on the board, on the whiteboard. And she said to me, I don't know how I'm gonna get there. And I said, well, it's math. It's just math. And she kind of has three offerings. And, you know, ten of this client type, three of these, whatever.
Michelle Lynne: Boom, there's the number.
Andrea Liebross: One plus two plus three, boom, there's the number. Oh, she looked at me. And then I said, well, what's getting in your way of getting there? So then we went through this whole discussion of, well, that means that, this doesn't mean to, I'm going to stop for a second, this doesn't mean that to get to that number, you have to hustle and put in more and more and more time. So I always say how are we going to do this by making it simple, doable, and fun and no hustling? Okay. But what she realized was that it was probably going to take a little more brainpower for her to create that money. So you can use your brainpower to create more money and to create more time, and that would mean telling her husband, she's got three kids under the age of six.
Michelle Lynne: Oh, dear lord.
Andrea Liebross: That hey, I might need, you know, some time on Saturday to work through this. And there, bing, bing, bing, like that was, the red light went off. That was the place where she thought okay, am I worthy of spending this time? Oh, and PS go back to your math Andrea, am I worthy of charging this price?
Michelle Lynne: Right. Yeah.
Andrea Liebross: So when I work with someone creating a business plan, and in all the other ways I coach, but that's really comes to light this, what am I worth price tag kind of thing, and what am I worth in terms of time spent on me and this business, and money spent on me in this business? So at the end of the conversation, or at the end of our VIP day I said okay, how can I help you moving forward? And she said, oh my gosh, I think I need help staying accountable and making this happen. So we talked about investing in coaching, for example. Am I really, is this, should I spend money on this? You know, am I worthy of this? But again, like that topic just kept coming back and back and back.
Michelle Lynne: Over and over, yeah. How do you work her through that? Is that something that you, through your coaching like week after week, month after month?
Andrea Liebross: Yes, so I have a system or a way that I really kind of teach people how to work through this process. And it's a journey, right? This isn't like a flip a switch.
Michelle Lynne: Yes. It would be so nice.
Andrea Liebross: I like to say, being a business owner is a journey in personal development disguised as an entrepreneurial adventure.
Michelle Lynne: It's so true. Because all of your insecurities and warts and all the things come out.
Andrea Liebross: Yes. Yeah, it all comes out. So okay, so here's what, let's go for like what you're charging someone, what your fee is. They hire you to come into their house and, you know, whether it's one room or whatever, who cares. Okay, so you get through the whole sales conversation and you say, okay, it's X number of dollars. If you have drama about the fee you're charging, or the price that you're putting out there in the world, really what that drama comes down to is having a conflict of three different beliefs. Okay, although price is a number, it's a tangible thing, you actually have full control over the number, kind of based on some intangible beliefs. And the framework I'm going to share with you can be used for any business. And it can also be used for thinking about how you want to bring someone new onto your team, for explaining to a client how you earn income. But most importantly, I think this is about how it relates to you and your own vision of your own worthiness. So if what you charge, we can think about this as what your price is, but I want you to think about it in three different parts. It's made up of number one, the belief you have in yourself, as the provider of the service, the maturity of you, as the deliverer of the service, most people get that one. The second belief is the belief in the value of your offer. And I want you to kind of think about that as what you're saving that client in terms of time, money, and brainpower.
Michelle Lynne: Absolutely.
Andrea Liebross: How you're saving, helping them conserve resources. And then the third thing is really your belief, and the maturity, the emotional maturity and the financial maturity, of your client or customer. So that's the kicker, that your belief in the emotional maturity and the financial maturity of your client as the customer. So your worthiness, your belief about how much you're worth, is really comprised of your thoughts inside those three beliefs. So if you have drama, over what that price should be, or how to tell a customer that, then really that drama is created because there's conflict between those three beliefs.
Michelle Lynne: One of those three things.
Andrea Liebross: Yeah, yeah. They're at odds with each other.
Michelle Lynne: So do you find that oftentimes our own money stories we assign to our clients, and therefore we don't have confidence in their maturity because we're basing it on our own, maybe lack of maturity?
Andrea Liebross: Yes. A hundred percent. Or, I mean, that's one of my number one, like, how do you get past this? Get out of your client's wallet, is what I say. Or take your money out of your client's wallet. Not their money, but your money, out of their wallet.
Michelle Lynne: Right.
Andrea Liebross: So there's a concept called cognitive dissonance. Okay, so cognitive dissonance, if you're familiar, it really describes kind of that mental discomfort that results from holding two conflicting beliefs. So you think that your services you provide are worth millions, that's like one over here, but then you think oh, yeah, but I'm not sure they'll pay for it. I'm not I mean, I don't know. I know they just went on a cruise around the world and spent $2 million on that. I'm not sure they'll spend $20,000 to redo the living room, right? Like, you're creating all of these stories about your clients, like you're already concocting
Michelle Lynne: You're already arguing your own product, like against it.
Andrea Liebross: You are. Yes.
Michelle Lynne: And you're putting all this energy into your space. And then when they tell you no, it's a self-fulfilling prophecy because you just kind of sabotage yourself by coming up with all the reasons why they shouldn't hire you in your own head.
Andrea Liebross: Right. And then we kind of go down like, oh, they didn't hire me because my social media is not good enough. They didn't hire me because I don't have this XYZ certification. They didn't hire me, but it's not about any of that. It's not about any of those tangible things. It's really about these intangibles. So when I'm doing a business plan with someone, yes, we talk about, okay, these are the actions you need to take. But a lot of what we talked about is what you need to, the mindset you need to make this all happen.
Michelle Lynne: It's crazy how our voices in our heads are just getting in our way.
Andrea Liebross: Yes, yes. Absolutely.
Michelle Lynne: Those dirty little liars.
Andrea Liebross: I know.
Michelle Lynne: My daughter, she's been watching Peppa Pig lately. She would say, "those wretched voices in your head." A four-year-old is using the word wretched.
Andrea Liebross: I sometimes talk about it, that's really hilarious. I talk about it as a frenemy, like, you know, the friend-enemy? There's a little voice in the back of your head. It's like the person in high school who thought they knew everything, you know, mister popular who thinks they know everything. They kind of pretend they're your friend, but they're really not. And that little voice tells you things like, are you sure you want to do that? I mean, I don't know if that's gonna go well. So I always say, you've got to kind of quiet down the little voice
Michelle Lynne: Tell that B-I-T-C-H to shush.
Andrea Liebross: You know, and will the real Andrea or the will real Michelle, please stand up? Like, will the real person please come up. So you've got to kind of stop asking yourself these questions in a way or say, thanks so much little voice for letting me know, but I'm gonna move forward.
Michelle Lynne: One of the things, and I know I've gotten over it many times in this podcast, is that I tell people that you are not your thoughts. You have thoughts. But you know what? You have fingernails also and you are not your fingernails.
Andrea Liebross: Yeah, the fingernails are just a circumstance. Like, they're out there. They're a fact. But your thoughts about your fingernails.
Michelle Lynne: Exactly.
Andrea Liebross: If you can separate, get really good at separating the facts or the circumstances from your thoughts. Like, that's going to take you far.
Michelle Lynne: Is that part of your, I think you've mentioned before, the three laws of confidence?
Andrea Liebross: Yes. So number one, you have to be comfortable doing the uncomfortable. You've got to kind of have some emotional courage. Which means, kind of number one, you have to get out of your client's wallet. And, you know, into your own beliefs about you, yes, I have so much to offer. I think number two is, if you go from the confidence that you have, say today, you probably won't be willing to get into that uncomfortable place. So you have to go to the future you and ask the future you what to do, which kind of ties into if we're talking about money and pricing, it really ties into what your charging is not about what's going to happen today, it's about the lifetime value that you're going to deliver to your clients.
Michelle Lynne: There you go. I think that is a really nice way of looking at it. Just because they're going to pay you and it's going to take you six months to implement this project, it's going to impact them for 6, 10, 12 years in the future.
Andrea Liebross: Yeah, it's not just about the six months that you're working with them. Or it's not about even the furniture you decide to put in their great room. What they're paying you is really about the lifetime value of working with you, the lifetime value of living in a house you love, or having a space that you enjoy sitting in.
Michelle Lynne: It's a backdrop for memories.
Andrea Liebross: It is, it is. So that's like, you've got to project into the future of what you're giving them. So I like to say, it's the future you and the lifetime value of your offer. So if you think about that lifetime value of what you offer, what it really needs to start to do in your brain is to be, you've just got to start thinking about, it's an undercharge and an over-delivery, like you're not maybe charging enough for the lifetime value. So it takes the focus off of you and puts it on the value that you're giving. Okay, or another way to think about that is, the transformation or evolution or journey that you're providing. So if we want to talk about interior designers, if we want to paint a picture for an interior designer, I want you to picture like, you're opening a door for them, and it's a portal or an invitation for them to enjoy their home for example. So if you don't open that door wide enough, they're not going to get full enjoyment out of that space. They're gonna have to slither in and it's not going to be comfortable. So if you don't charge enough, or if you don't see the worth, your own worth, that door is like, it's just, it's creaking open.
Michelle Lynne: Yes.
Andrea Liebross: Versus if you really charge what you think you're worth, then you're opening that door wide and allowing them to like walk through it and say, oh my gosh, this is amazing. Like, you're giving them access to your energy and your competence and your abundant thinking.
Michelle Lynne: I would say it's like you're kicking down the door and leading them through it. Strut, babe, strut through that door.
Andrea Liebross: Yeah, so if you don't open it wide enough, you're taking away some of their power, like some of their potential joy, right? Because I mean, think about it, when you make a big decision to purchase something, once you make that decision, you're alive. You're like, I'm so glad I did that, right? Just instantaneously. Like someone paid me for coaching, we haven't even done her VIP day yet. But she sent me a message the other day, she's like, just by agreeing to do this, committing that I'm going to do it, I already see a huge difference in my business. We haven't even done it. It's not for a week. But that's what happens.
Michelle Lynne: Yes. And I think that it changes you from the inside out. And it gives you an electric energy that also starts attracting the better clients to you, because you're emanating this joy and this happiness versus this, wah wah wah, you know, I'm not worth it. I don't know how to do it. I'm not good enough. Nobody's gonna pay me blah, blah, blah.
Andrea Liebross: Right. It's almost like if you don't believe in your price, then it's saying you don't believe in your clients or you don't believe in the value you're giving. So you've got to hold your client's vision of how amazing this room could look and feel. You've got to hold that and kind of believe in it before even they believe in it. And offer them the opportunity to create that.
Michelle Lynne: Yes. And get them to buy into your joy and excitement about, like you said, the future. The future lifetime value.
Andrea Liebross: Yeah, so number one is, get out of their wallet. Number two is, really be more future-forward in thinking about yourself and in their future and the transformation you're providing. And then I think the third thing when it comes to confidence and really owning what you're worth, is about you thinking about how you're helping them save their three most valuable resources. Okay, so how much time are they saving by working with you? You are totally collapsing the timeline for them. Okay, so, for me, like in my business, when I'm in a coaching relationship, I really believe that I am saving my client's time from trying to figure out how to run this business alone, and not seeing the result they want.
Michelle Lynne: You're giving them a fast-forward button.
Andrea Liebross: Yes, I am totally giving them a fast-forward button. And like with the client the other day when we were doing the business plan, I mean, she walked out of the door, not just with a plan, but like total next steps that are gonna give her traction. So she doesn't have to go home and think about, okay, now how do I do this?
Michelle Lynne: So you're saving her brain power and time because you get it done 10 times faster. She probably could have come up with it. But it could take her 10 years to get to that point.
Andrea Liebross: Exactly. Exactly.
Michelle Lynne: It's the same thing with our design clients.
Andrea Liebross: Totally. I mean, we're building a house right now. Okay, so I'm working with a designer very closely.
Michelle Lynne: There you go. Good.
Andrea Liebross: I'm like, I'm living your client here. And I honestly, when I write that check to her, I mean, I am happy to hand it over. Like, it is the best money I'm spending.
Michelle Lynne: Can you repeat that for the audience? Because I think a lot of times, they don't hear that from clients as to how much it really is a help. I should do a podcast with some clients. Hmmm, note to self. But yeah, but repeat that like, why do you like, and I know we're going down a bunny trail, but why do you like writing her that check?
Andrea Liebross: So okay, so a couple of reasons. Shout out to Marika in Zionsville, Indiana, I love writing you my check. So, okay, so she is saving us tons of time, because she is narrowing down all the choices and saying, here's three options, pick one. Okay. Love that. She is saving me money because she also knows the kind of look we want to create. And she knows our budget. She's very respectful of the budget. I think people get scared about that. But she's super respectful of it. And she said, you know, what, if we want it, like right now we're working on, what do we want this mantle to look like? We can use lots of different materials to create it. You know, she's saving us money in the sense of she's helping us use our dollars wisely.
Michelle Lynne: Yes. And you're not having to redo things because you thought something was gonna work. But then you have to go back and redo it.
Andrea Liebross: Yes. And I think the most, or the reason I love writing my check the most is because she is saving me and my husband tons of energy. Right? You know, what would be the, and anyone who's built a house knows this, there's an internal and emotional impact in doing something like this. And there's a lot of like, what if we fail? What if this doesn't work? But by having her on our team, and I truly think of her as a team member, I mean, she is directing our energies toward what needs to be directed. She's kind of bearing the brunt a little bit of some of the decision-making process. And I think there's a huge emotional and internal impact for that. Like, it's hard enough, just this whole thing, is hard enough.
Michelle Lynne: Yeah.
Andrea Liebross: So like, we're saving brain power, like she's using her brain power to help conserve ours.
Michelle Lynne: Because that's what she does as a professional. So you can go and be the best coach to your clients and your husband can be the best physician to his patients that you guys need to be so that you can pay her.
Andrea Liebross: Yes. Like, if you think about the saving money piece too. Like, I'm making money, right? While she's helping me you know, doing the, like the back end, right? Doing her research and putting things together so that when we meet, she's like, okay, here are your three choices. So that's saving me money honestly in a whole different way. Yeah.
Michelle Lynne: Absolutely. Well, thank you for that detour, Andrea. But I think it's so important that the audience hears that.
Andrea Liebross: Yeah, the other thing, okay, here's another thing. She's really saving me a lot of I call it like head trash. Okay. So confusion, indecision, overwhelm, all the energy that it takes to navigate life, building a house, owning a business, kids, dogs, all of that. She, and I believe this when I'm working with my clients, I really think I'm saving my clients the energy it takes to fight the head trash, and the energy it takes to navigate all of the emotion that goes into like living, right?
Michelle Lynne: Adulting is hard.
Andrea Liebross: Adulting is hard. So, you know, if you think about your price, or your commission, or whatever your people are paying you, it's just a number. But really, it's just a compilation of the three beliefs and you are offering your client so much in return. But you've got to be able to communicate that. And not necessarily in words, a lot of it just comes through in your confidence and your energy.
Michelle Lynne: But that also comes from having processes and systems in place. Because then you know that this works. So you have that swagger, saying this works because this is how I do it. So one of my taglines for my Interior Design Business Bakery is that while every project is different, the process should be the same.
Andrea Liebross: It should be. And there's head trash, right? When you start to go, well, should we do it this way, this time? Or that way that time?
Michelle Lynne: No, just follow the path, follow the map.
Andrea Liebross: Follow the map.
Michelle Lynne: Like when you got in your red Cadillac and you drove from point A to point B, you followed a map. You might have a detour here and there if you had to get something to eat, but you get back on track and you roll.
Andrea Liebross: Right. And I think an important part of that, so when I work with my clients, I have this I call it the six P's. I should nail it down to four, but I haven't been able to do that. So you have to plug in, prioritize, plan, produce, like take the action, but then the kicker step here is process what went on. So assess, and evaluate how it went, and if you need to hone it or tweak it, fine, but you're not throwing it out the window. Like, you can, you know, use what's happened as knowledge, maybe tweak it, but then proceed. So the last P is proceed versus stop. It's like, you're not at a stoplight, you're just in a roundabout.
Michelle Lynne: There you go. Yes. You might go in circles a couple times but you're still moving forward.
Andrea Liebross: Yes. So that fuels more confidence. So I said to my client the other day when she said, I'm gonna have to tell my husband that he's gonna have to watch the kids. Okay. I said to her, well, have you ever done that before? Like, have you ever asked him to watch the kids? She's like, oh yeah, I totally have. Okay, so you didn't stop at the stop sign when you had to ask him. You proceeded through the roundabout. You proceeded through the roundabout with caution. Why is this kind of thing, when it has to do with your business, any different, right? But that worthiness factor was playing a huge role in her hesitation to move forward with that. So she had to kind of go back and think, okay, you have proof that he will watch them.
Michelle Lynne: You don't have to give him your agenda.
Andrea Liebross: Right. So like, really reflect on what's gone on and then proceed. Do not stop.
Michelle Lynne: Love that. I absolutely love that. It's so true too and the piece, yeah, we call it a post-mortem, with our projects. It's like let's get through, see what works, see what didn't work. And then also, just because something went wrong this time doesn't mean you have to change your entire approach. You just have to be aware of it and see, is this a pattern that repeats itself. If so, then I might have to redo my approach. But if it's a one-off, it's just a one-off. Don't rework your whole step.
Andrea Liebross: Exactly. My interior designer client, we were literally, we were talking about this week because she was telling me kind of a client story, someone she's decided she doesn't love working with. And I said, well, what has gone well? Okay, what has gone well with this client? Okay, she had some things. What hasn't gone well? And what would you do differently next time? And honestly, she said, I really wouldn't change my process. I love my process. But what I would do differently next time is say to this client, I don't think we're a good match. So she doesn't have to go reinvent the wheel and throw it all out the window and think she's a failure. She just had to kind of, what would I do differently next time?
Michelle Lynne: And also have the confidence to do that, knowing that there's another client waiting in the wings to hire her. That's not the last client in the world.
Andrea Liebross: Right. How do I have this difficult conversation? That was the next question.
Michelle Lynne: Yes. How do I fire him?
Andrea Liebross: Right. How do I fire them? Okay. So again, we will go back to the confidence piece, kind of did a little role-playing, but I said, do you think you do a good job? Like, haven't you helped other hundreds of millions of people out there? Are they happy with what you're doing? Yes. Like, okay, so, you got it. You got what you need, you just have to decide to be more, to have the confidence to say, this isn't working for me and know there's more.
Michelle Lynne: Yeah. It's like dating.
Andrea Liebross: It is like dating.
Michelle Lynne: You don't have to stick with somebody when you're dating them. If they don't make you happy, thank you. Please drive through.
Andrea Liebross: We forget that. We forget that when we get into our businesses.
Michelle Lynne: Because it seems so personal too but then it seems professional, so I can't really break up with them like I would a boyfriend. But technically you can.
Andrea Liebross: Exactly. And then when a business you think of, well, what if she tells someone else that I was hard to work with?
Michelle Lynne: There's enough ugly houses out there. There's enough ugly houses, girl. There's plenty of fish in the sea.
Andrea Liebross: I was like, is this your ideal client? No. Okay. I also go back to, don't go for what you don't know, go for what you do know. You do know, because we're always looking for, trying to answer what we don't know. But what do you know?
Michelle Lynne: But that's too easy. Shouldn't business be so much harder? It's hard enough, don't try to complicate it more.
Andrea Liebross: It should be. It's super confusing.
Michelle Lynne: Oh, that's awesome. So with all of these, like ingredients that you have, and you've got the programs, Committed to Growth and Runway to Freedom, and we'll make sure that we have that information in the show notes also. But like, do you have a secret sauce for success that you've kind of come up with with all of these?
Andrea Liebross: I think the secret sauce for success is, my most successful women business owners are those that have taken the time to create a business plan that aligns with not only what they want their business to be, but who they want to be.
Michelle Lynne: Yeah.
Andrea Liebross: And that really, and then step two of that is figuring out how to integrate it into their monthly, weekly, and daily actions. So there's lots of different kinds of business plans out there, too. It's something that's kind of scary a little. And we think it's a chore and something we should do, or we want to do, or even if we do it, we don't want to look at it again. So really what I love doing with my clients is helping them create that just foundational document and framework of thinking. So it's kind of like you got the system, and you have some thinking to go along with it. Doing that, and then taking it to that next level and integrating it into what's happening on a quarterly, monthly, weekly, daily basis, and then pausing in the next quarter to reflect on it.
Michelle Lynne: Right, because you have to proceed.
Andrea Liebross: Yes.
Michelle Lynne: You have to do the post-mortem on that and see what worked this last quarter, according to this structure that I have created or outlined by actually creating it or just reading it.
Andrea Liebross: Right. And I think, you know, we can kind of create like the annual goals, but I like to push people to take it a step further and say, yeah, but what are we doing in the next 90 days? And we don't have to work on all of those goals you created every quarter. You can just zoom in on a few.
Michelle Lynne: I'm gonna hear that in my head a couple of times. Because I'm that person. It's like, oh, I want to get this done. And I want to get this done, and I want to get this done. I even got a tattoo that says Be Still, like slow your roll Michelle.
Andrea Liebross: Slow it down. And I think, you know, if you've got high energy and you know that you're kind of like that whole like you're made for more, or you're capable and all that. It's hard to slow ourselves down. So it's like, taking that strategic pause.
Michelle Lynne: Well, yeah, because you get things done better when you are more focused instead of all over the place like a squirrel on cocaine.
Andrea Liebross: Exactly, exactly. So I think yes, I have my two coaching programs, to kind of go back to your question. One's more mindset-based and one's more business-based. But I think what I love really doing is just working one-on-one, sometimes with clients, during a VIP day, to create that business plan and to get going.
Michelle Lynne: Yeah, I absolutely love that.
Andrea Liebross: Because you don't do it yourself, and even if you do do it yourself,
Michelle Lynne: You always get better answers when somebody's helping you ask better questions.
Andrea Liebross: Exactly. You took the words out of my mouth. Yep.
Michelle Lynne: I'm psycho. I mean, psychic.
Andrea Liebross: You are. Psychic, not psycho.
Michelle Lynne: Oh, my gosh, I absolutely love everything you've had to say. Hmm. Well, as much as I could continue this conversation for like another six hours
Andrea Liebross: We could.
Michelle Lynne: I love talking business but I love, so I think you'll appreciate this, I love having fun as well. So the next segment is a little rapid-fire Q&A sesh for the audience to get to know you a little bit better.
Andrea Liebross: I'm ready.
Michelle Lynne: You ready? Dun dun dun. Okay, do you have any tattoos?
Andrea Liebross: No.
Michelle Lynne: Where do you find inspiration?
Andrea Liebross: Usually walking outside, I find inspiration just by looking into nature. And creating space to think.
Michelle Lynne: Love that. What scares the hell out of you?
Andrea Liebross: I'm not a super scary movie person. Like I hide under a blanket.
Michelle Lynne: And here we are. We're recording this on our way up to Halloween.
Andrea Liebross: I peek out from under the blankets.
Michelle Lynne: That works. When was the last time you laughed until you almost peed yourself?
Andrea Liebross: Oh, that's a good one. Well, I think it was, my husband and I went on a trip with three other couples to, actually to Naples, which we're recording this right after the hurricane, but it was right before. Sitting on the beach, looking at the sunset. I don't even know what we're talking about. But I remember almost peeing in my pants.
Michelle Lynne: Just laughing so hard.
Andrea Liebross: Yes.
Michelle Lynne: With such a beautiful backdrop too. And there's your inspiration walking outside. So what is your favorite book?
Andrea Liebross: Oh, that's another good one. I really like Essentialism by Greg McKeown, it kind of gets down to like, what are the essential things you need to do? So that's a great systems book. But I do like reading Brene Brown books for more mindset.
Michelle Lynne: Yes. What about fiction? Do you read anything just for?
Andrea Liebross: I do. One of my daily habits that I work into is 15 minutes of fiction reading every day, and I'm pretty good at it. I just finished earlier this week, The Last Mrs. Parrish. It was ok, I might only give it three and a half stars but it was entertaining.
Michelle Lynne: Okay. I'm not gonna write that down. I'm always collecting good books.
Andrea Liebross: I would skip that one. I'll send you a list of better ones.
Michelle Lynne: All right, that sounds good.
Andrea Liebross: Okay.
Michelle Lynne: Okay. What is the best compliment you've ever received?
Andrea Liebross: I think it is, you have made me just a better human by the questions you ask.
Michelle Lynne: Oh, I love that. And it's so true. Ask the right questions. Ask better questions, you get better answers. What's one piece of advice you'd give your 20-year-old self?
Andrea Liebross: Oh, interesting, because I have a 21-year-old self. It's in college. Okay, so true story. So my daughter, who's 18, just applied and got accepted into being in this Women in Business Club at Indiana University. It was a big deal. They only took 30 out of 260 or something. And my advice to her was, it really doesn't matter how you answer these questions if you're confident. Confident is better than correct. That was my advice.
Michelle Lynne: That is so true, too. Because I was in sales for a long time and I didn't know what the heck I was talking about. But I said it with confidence. And they bought
Andrea Liebross: Right. I said, show up and act confident and it'll be all good. And she got in.
Michelle Lynne: It's so true. That is so true. Oh, that is so funny. But you're right, if you could be 20 years old and have the confidence that we have now, can you imagine? We could have ruled the world.
Andrea Liebross: No. And it was interesting because it was almost like a sorority rush. One day you had to dress business casual, then business smart, then whatever. And so she would take pictures and say, Mom, do you think this is gonna be a good outfit? And I said Yep, but you got to own it. Like, you gotta walk in there and own it.
Michelle Lynne: I love that. Love love, love. Nice job, mom. That's gonna go a long way for her. Yeah.
Andrea Liebross: I hope so.
Michelle Lynne: Alright, last question is, if you could have dinner with anybody, past or present, who would it be?
Andrea Liebross: You. We should have dinner.
Michelle Lynne: I think we should.
Andrea Liebross: We could continue this conversation for six more hours.
Michelle Lynne: I know. We have to have some wine.
Andrea Liebross: Definitely have some wine. I'm all in on that.
Michelle Lynne: Oh, well Andrea, thank you so much for being here.
Andrea Liebross: Thanks for having me.
Michelle Lynne: I know that the audience really, just this has been so much fun and so informative. Like I took a ton of notes.
Andrea Liebross: Good. I love it.
Michelle Lynne: I took a ton of notes. Yeah. Now, tell our audience how or where they can connect with you.
Andrea Liebross: Okay, so here are the best places. Number one, you can go to andreaslinks.com, so Andreas with an S, and then links with an S dot com. And you can find links to everything. You know, it's all about me.
Michelle Lynne: Oh that's genius.
Andrea Liebross: So Andreas within S, links with an S dot com. You can, I think if you go there, my number one thing to do would be to click on take the quiz. So there's a quiz on there, I call it Reveal the Root quiz. And really what it helps you get down to, or why you're stopping at the stop sign, and why you're not going around the roundabout. What's at the root of how you're feeling? Or what's happening or not happening. So go there. And then I have a podcast called, Time to Level Up, and you can find it on all your favorite podcast players. So if you want a hundred more episodes of me, check that out, Time to Level Up. And then I am on Instagram and I am on LinkedIn, those are probably my two favorites for social media.
Michelle Lynne: That makes sense. I'm going to check those out. Fabulous. Well, I will make sure that all of that information is in the show notes, in case our audience is driving and can't be writing it down.
Andrea Liebross: I hope they're not.
Michelle Lynne: Drive carefully, y'all. And for those of you who can benefit from even more resources surrounding the business of running your interior design business, join the growing community on my Facebook private group. And yes, I know it's Facebook, but it's the best place to have a private group. It's the Interior Designers Business Launchpad. And you know what? I've got people who have created like fake profiles, just to come in to participate, because that's also where I hold like free workshops and go live once a week and do some training and so forth. So yeah, come join us, y'all. Awesome. Thank you, Andrea, and I look forward to connecting with you again in the future.
Andrea Liebross: Thanks, Michelle.
Michelle Lynne: Hey, y'all. If you love the show and find it useful, I would really appreciate it if you would share with your friends and followers. And if you like what you're hearing, want to put a face with the name and get even more business advice, then join me in my Facebook group, The Interior Designers Business Launchpad. Yeah, I know it's Facebook, but just come on in for the training and then leave without scrolling your feed. It's fun. I promise you'll enjoy it. And finally, I hear it's good for business to get ratings on your podcast. So please drop yours on whatever platform you use to listen to this. We're all about community over competition. So let's work on elevating our industry, one designer at a time. See you next time.