Episode 69: The ML Designers - The Client Journey


Show Notes


Like all businesses, so much has changed since ML Interiors Group began. In this episode, Debbie, Megan, and I chat about how the journey has evolved for us over time, including calculating design times, managing client expectations, and handling procurement.

The client journey evolves as your business evolves. So be sure to give yourself grace. Don’t think you have to have everything figured out when you start because it will change as you grow. Listen in as we share a few ways we used to run our design projects and how things have evolved for us at ML Interiors Group.

The 3rd Annual Interior Design Business Success Summit will be October 12-14, 2022. Visit www.designedforthecreativemind.com/summit for more details and to reserve your ticket.

Debbie Pratt & Megan Fornes are the lead designers behind the brand of ML Interiors Group. Their award-winning designs, amazing client service, and ability to manage large projects allows Michelle Lynne the flexibility to take her business acumen to the public via her Designed For the Creative Mind® outlets.

Connect with Megan & Debbie on Instagram!



About Michelle

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: Hello, hello, hello. Welcome back to the podcast, everybody. And it has been a hot minute since we have had Debbie and Megan, who are the senior designers at ML Interiors Group with us. So welcome back to the podcast, girls.

Debbie Pratt: Hi.

Megan Fornes: Hey.

Michelle Lynne: Yay. So today we are going to be talking about the client journey. Kind of talking about how we used to run some of our design projects and how we have evolved with the times and the pros and cons of it. So let's talk about what we used to do, just a quick overview, and basically, well, one, we were busting our ass doing our designs way too quickly.

Debbie Pratt: Yes. 

Megan Fornes: Way too quickly.

Michelle Lynne: We didn't know any better. We thought that we, you know, as people pleasers, we just wanted to get these designs to our clients as quickly as possible.

Megan Fornes: And then we learned if you just communicate with your client and let them know that it's okay that it takes you know, three months to get one out.

Debbie Pratt: Exactly.

Michelle Lynne: And have we had any complaints?

Megan Fornes: No.

Debbie Pratt: Not as long as we communicate.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, I think the difference was, is that one kitchen that we did that we expedited and then they traveled overseas while we were doing it.

Debbie Pratt: Yep.

Michelle Lynne: But they paid a premium.

Debbie Pratt: FedEx, not the post office pricing.

Michelle Lynne: So first of all, y'all who are listening, is that it takes more than a few weeks or a month to get a design done.

Megan Fornes: Yeah, depending on the spaces, of course, and the level that goes into each room. You know, all that good stuff.

Michelle Lynne: We've evolved with our designs too, plus you guys were working designs at the same time. So even if it was a month, it was probably two months of each of your time.

Debbie Pratt: Yeah. And it was very stressful.

Megan Fornes: Yeah, late nights.

Debbie Pratt: Late nights. The work week became bigger than it should have been.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah. So if you all are working that much, that hard, and getting designs done that quickly,

Megan Fornes: You don't need to.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, relax.

Debbie Pratt: It's not a life. 

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, we're not working in the ER. So there's not that big sense of urgency, under most circumstances. So we've always worked, well, not always, but once we nailed down our processes and procedures, which as a shameless plug, if you guys need help with that, we have our paid mentorship program, The Interior Design Business Bakery, commercial over. Okay. But once we nailed down our processes, we've had it pretty organized that we have our designs broken down into four phases, research, development, procurement, and then installation. So with that, we used to just cram all the research and development kind of into a short period of time. Now our research is extended, it's part of our sales process. And hey, there's another shameless plug for our workshop that happens probably five or six times a year, the Rolling in the Dough workshop, we teach a lot of that. But our research is, as we're going through a sales process, but then it continues into the development phase.

Debbie Pratt: Yes, you're always researching. 

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, so let's talk a little bit about the client's journey. In the beginning, we have them, it probably takes three to four weeks from the initial phone call to the signing of the contract. 

Megan Fornes: Yeah, easily.

Michelle Lynne: As we walk them through just a variety of different steps. Whereas before, I mean, we didn't go through and come up with as detailed of a scope of work. 

Debbie Pratt: No, there was almost a little bit of guesswork involved as the project would go on. But now we take that out in the beginning, and we get all the information, even what they don't think they want, that they really do want that they don't know they want out of the way ahead of time, you know, through a series of conversations.

Michelle Lynne: Right. And then we propose that as their scope of work, and if we need to, we can break it down in phases, which I think before we were so underpriced, we didn't have to do phases because they just said, do it all.

Debbie Pratt: And so now they understand that it's, it takes a long time for design and it's okay that it's more of a relationship than it is a boom in and out service.

Michelle Lynne: Let's talk about some of that research too. Oh, that's a cute picture. Megan's phone just popped up and she's got an almost six month old baby as her screensaver. So let's talk a little bit more about how did we use to interview our clients?

Debbie Pratt: A questionnaire.

Megan Fornes: Yeah, we really just relied on that questionnaire, which was even generic. We've improved that since then too. I mean, it was very, we guessed a lot. Thankfully we nailed a good chunk of it, but also had a good chunk of revisions. You know?

Michelle Lynne: Yes, definitely.

Megan Fornes: And then that was time consuming. 

Debbie Pratt: We didn't ask enough ahead of time.

Michelle Lynne: And why do you think we didn't? Because I know that the audience probably feels the same way.

Debbie Pratt: I don't know if it was, maybe it was just, you're being hired as the professional and you should already know what they need. But sometimes, even they, since they don't really know what they need, and the only way to find that out is to ask. And then just asking questions, sometimes you're intimidated, because does that make you look like you're an idiot.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, it's insecurity.

Debbie Pratt: And just, I mean, do they know what they're doing? Why are they asking me this?

Megan Fornes: Well, and it's, I feel like it's gotten even more personal too. Our client level, our design level, you know, and it was just very generic maybe at the beginning. 

Michelle Lynne: But even think about Julie.

Megan Fornes: Yeah, which it was still, I feel, yeah, I just

Michelle Lynne: It's definitely, I think that, so part of the message that I want in this particular podcast, is that as designers, you don't have to know it all. And, you know, our client journey has gotten more detailed, it's gotten a lot longer. But we're able to charge more, because our deliverables are better, because we're not having to poop them out in 30 days.

Megan Fornes: That and our vendors also increased. And the level of product has improved with all the performance fabrics and all these different things that you now, it's not special in a project, it's expected in a project. And so the level I guess of knowledge going in towards even that has improved.

Michelle Lynne: We've definitely evolved.

Debbie Pratt: And then, there's also something we relied on is taking their word as what, as they knew what they were saying and talking about. Like a lot of clients say they want a particular style. And what they think that style is, actually isn't. And so just because they say they want quote-unquote farmhouse, and they live in a more traditional home, maybe what they think they want isn't exactly what they want. Because their version of, it's just misinterpreting a term.

Megan Fornes: That and I've learned even just recently, we had a client, she thought, or and I thought, with her existing product was very traditional. And turns out she's transitional. And like a little bit of not rustic but has that heavier feel. Yeah, and she didn't even know that.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, she thought she was glammy.

Megan Fornes: So yeah, I think just educating them and then them trusting what's in your head to extract that out. And to make their vision even better.

Michelle Lynne: Which is also part of our research, is that we're educating our clients on a lot of our processes. So let me ask y'all something. Are you showing clients what you're specifying before the final design presentation?

Megan Fornes: You're asking us?

Michelle Lynne: Yeah.

Megan Fornes: Oh, yes.

Debbie Pratt: We didn't used to, but we do now.

Michelle Lynne: There you go.

Megan Fornes: There might be one or two things, for example, that I might surprise her with, because I don't want to work with her existing rug. There is a better solution. And there's a solution for her existing rug. Not that it's a bad rug, but that I'm kind of pulling on her last minute because it would look better with everything in front of her versus the onesie twosie things. And she can visualize a lot. So knowing your client as well, knowing what can overwhelm them is something you need to think about when showing them everything. Because she's practically seen the whole presentation.

Michelle Lynne: There you go. And before, we thought that that was going to ruin our services.

Debbie Pratt: Right. It's like because the surprise.

Michelle Lynne: HGTV

Debbie Pratt: Yeah, they ruin a lot of things for us.

Megan Fornes: And it's still a surprise when they get to see your energy level presenting it, the presentation is actually cleaned up, and it doesn't have like a million ideas on it. And then you have all the fabrics in front of them,

Debbie Pratt: Where they're going.

Megan Fornes: Yeah.

Debbie Pratt: It's okay if they love a fabric. Yeah, I'm going to use this, I just don't know where yet. So the surprise, and maybe what that fabric is and where it's working with other fabrics.

Michelle Lynne: So they've seen the fabric, they've loved the fabric, and then you throw it on a, hey, we're gonna put it on this chair. And this is the pillow that's gonna go with it and all the finishes, so it's not ruining it.

Megan Fornes: And then you're wining and dining them. And so just the whole experience, it's still fun. It's still like, Ooh, yeah, yeah. And you still get them even more excited.

Michelle Lynne: So I think that has been a big game changer for us as we've evolved in, as Megan was talking about earlier, our skills, our vendors, our deliverables have elevated in gosh, the last five years, just like, like a growth spurt.

Megan Fornes: Yeah.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, almost like a teenager.

Debbie Pratt: And it takes the stress level out of the business side of it, too, because you know that they're happy. And you don't have that anxiety leading up to a design presentation after you just worked your butt off.

Megan Fornes: Right.

Debbie Pratt: You know, that they know what's coming up.

Michelle Lynne: You still get all stressed out.

Debbie Pratt: I still get a little crazy, but that's just me.

Megan Fornes: Yeah, and it's still, it's just because you still don't know. I mean, they usually change their minds.

Debbie Pratt: Yeah, it's more so on, yes, you love it all, but do you realize this comes with a price? Sometimes, you know, having those conversations like, okay, keep adding stuff

Megan Fornes: Because you can talk about budget. And it's not just furniture, it's your receiver. It's the freight and shipping.

Debbie Pratt: That's usually the hardest, that's what remains is the stress. But if you let them know along the way, like if you take into a showroom to sit on a chair, depending on that showroom, there may be a retail price on it. And it's like, look, I don't know what yours is going to cost. But that's a ballpark because it's a different finish. It's a different fabric. It's multiple fabrics, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

Michelle Lynne: Well, that and sometimes they think they want something and then maybe you take them to a showroom and they want something more expensive.

Debbie Pratt: And it blows the budget.

Michelle Lynne: Or even after the design presentation. You know, you had the one that changed the side tables. And then you had to blow the budget there because of the rug. But it's that conversation because Debbie's had some clients that just kept adding to their project, hey, let's do this, let's do that. And she's like, you know, this doesn't fit into your budget originally, right? And they were just like, okay, not a problem.

Debbie Pratt: Yep. It's all right, we want to do it. That's a lot of while we're at its. But even when you do have the while we're at its, you still keep them in the loop along the way.

Michelle Lynne: Well, and you create a new scope of work as necessary. So it's not just one of those while you're here, what do you think about this? 

Megan Fornes: Yeah, nothing's for free.

Michelle Lynne: No, and I think that's important as well. So the client journey has been extended, it's given us better deliverables. But then it's also allowed you to get to know your clients better.

Megan Fornes: Totally.

Debbie Pratt: You know how they live. You know little bit more about their family, about what they're doing, what their likes are, their lifestyle, what they value.

Megan Fornes: Entertainment level. If there's going to be a lot of people over or if there's not. The comfort, you know, do you want your family room to be loungy or sophisticated?

Debbie Pratt: What do they value? I mean, as far as, you know, they don't care so much for the little things, but you know, they want like the high-end appliances, well, you know, that's going to cut into the other thing. That's okay, we still want a performance fabric on our sofa. Well, you know that's gonna, it's like it's okay.

Michelle Lynne: But that's also part of that, what we consider research, but it's also educating the client and not being, I think one of the things that I'm proud of is that we're not as shy about talking about money with them.

Megan Fornes: Right. 

Michelle Lynne: You know, as we've grown, the clients' budgets have grown, and we've worked out of most of our own money stories, when it comes to our clients. So I think that's been super helpful and just educating them and saying, Okay, I know you want that fancy fridge, but that's going to top off your budget. Where do you want us to cut back? And oftentimes, they don't want to cut back.

Debbie Pratt: And how does that fancy fridge snowball into the rest of the kitchen? So it's a lot of, it's like, okay, you have to be, you know, devil's advocate sometimes and say, Okay, I just want you to know, yes, we can work that in but we're gonna have to change the cabinetry with this. You're gonna lose space here, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, you've got to, they sometimes they think

Michelle Lynne: You can just pop it out and pop it in.

Debbie Pratt: And just boom, and then they have to wait for it too. But it's just all a lot of different things like, you know, just you have to anticipate that there's going to be these expenses coming ahead and just give them that disclaimer ahead of time saying, this is out of my control. And I don't know what the contractor's gonna charge. You know, it can go on for days.

Michelle Lynne: It definitely does snowball. But also, before when we were just doing their designs, we had to go and shoulder all of those decisions and thoughts and juggle around without even talking to them. It's like duh, why weren't we talking to them and asking them questions? We were making decisions for them, thinking that we were doing them the best service. But those conversations are not ignorance. No, it's not stupidity. It is ignorance about how they live and what they want. So you know, if you're not having conversations with your clients, because you think you should know it all, quit shoulding on yourself. So then the clients, they see the design pulled together, I think you've touched on it earlier, another benefit of having all these conversations is a lot fewer revisions.

Debbie Pratt: Yes.

Megan Fornes: Yes. Like if any.

Debbie Pratt: Hardly any, it's like one or two.

Michelle Lynne: Dude, you have nailed like the past three big presentations with very few of them.

Debbie Pratt: One fabric

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, out of three designs.

Debbie Pratt: Yep, because they didn't want their cat to scratch on the outside of the chair. So we changed one fabric and that was it. But, you know, it's a lot of conversations, it's a lot of detail, it takes a lot of time, it’s managing expectations, which is key to keeping your sanity.

Michelle Lynne: Talk about that a little bit.

Debbie Pratt: You just have to let them know, there's a lot of things in this world that are out of our control, even before they were out of our control. But you know, things take time, things take money. With fuel prices, you know, fluctuating we get unexpected fees for freight, sometimes there's unexpected surcharges, and just letting them know, look, at the end of the day we estimated, because we do estimated freight based on the numbers that the vendor gives us, but we just tell them at the end of the day, one might be higher, one might be lower, we're going to settle up at the end of the project, but there could be another check. But that's it, just manage their expectations. And no one has complained.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah. And again, it's just setting those expectations. And not, it's like a relationship, it is a relationship. But I liken it to, you know, expectations with us working together, expectations when you're married, you know, if your expectations are not met, that's when frustration occurs.

Megan Fornes: Yeah. And that means zero communication, because you wouldn't have those expectations if you just communicated.

Debbie Pratt: And as you develop this relationship with your clients by keeping them informed along the way, when mistakes happen, because we are human, they know you as a person too, because you talk about yourself and your life. And so if, you know, if you forget something, it's like, Oh, I forgot the icemaker on the appliance order, which did happen. I'm not afraid to have that conversation because I know these people and they know me. And they know I didn't do it on purpose that it was just an oversight. And it happens. 

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, it's a relationship.

Debbie Pratt: It goes both ways. It's you know, you try to keep those to a minimum, but when they do happen, they know you.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah. And you can almost laugh about it and say, whoops, blonde moment.

Debbie Pratt: But it was ordered.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, it was.

Debbie Pratt: Yeah. Anyway.

Michelle Lynne: So I think that's good. So the revisions are less. And then how has our client journey changed during procurement?

Megan Fornes: Well, our procurement system in general has changed so much since we first started so that alone.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, so let's just say outsource that shit, it makes a huge difference. So why were we procuring our own stuff?

Debbie Pratt: We thought we were saving money.

Megan Fornes: And more time efficient and all this stuff and control because you know the items that you source, you have the relationships, so might as well just order it when you don't have to do that at all.

Michelle Lynne: So what would you tell the designer who says, I can't afford to outsource?

Megan Fornes: Charge more for your design fee.

Michelle Lynne: And?

Debbie Pratt: Charge for procurement and cover those expenses.

Megan Fornes: Yeah, because you shouldn't be paying for procurement, the client should be.

Debbie Pratt: I mean, it's your time, why not have someone who's not a designer, do that for you and manage those logistics and those orders for you? 

Megan Fornes: Because then you can crank out more designs.

Debbie Pratt: And you can spend your time more efficiently and you don't have to chase the dining tables and stuff.

Megan Fornes: Right. And that was the goal for us was like, we needed to be spending our time wisely. And use our talents where they're at and get somebody else to manage that stuff.

Debbie Pratt: Because when we weren't charging for it, it would just eat away at our profits out of the design fee.

Michelle Lynne: Well, we charged for it but, because we charged a percentage of the flat fee that we drafted, the design fee, but at the same time, it was taking money out of our pocket, because it was time out of the day that you couldn't design and at the end of the day, we make money designing we don't make money procuring.

Megan Fornes: And it was pushing out our schedule. Because we had to make sure that there was enough time because it's just as time consuming to do procurement as it is to design.

Michelle Lynne: And then you get interrupted when you're in the middle of a design with procurement stuff that you have to chase down right then and then it knocks you out of the design zone.

Megan Fornes: Yep.

Debbie Pratt: And that goes back to when we didn't plan well for how long the design would take. Because we'd think, Oh, we're going to be done with this design. But we were doing the procurement ourselves and so we were, unfortunately, basically overwhelming our workload by managing the procurement when we were telling people we could get designs done, because we were still on these projects. Now we can hand off the procurement to somebody else and it makes us more time efficient as well with the design.

Michelle Lynne: And our clients can interact directly with that person that we outsource to and they know that their details are being 100% focused by her and not torn.

Megan Fornes: That and I would say it even allows a small buffer for you if the client comes to you with a question. Technically, you're not handling it. So let me get back to you, I will reach out to you so and so and let you know. And it kind of just gives it also like, just it's not your fault. It's not your fault if something else happens.

Debbie Pratt: I'll find out when I check the tracking report.

Megan Fornes: Yeah, so it kind of just gives you a little bit of buffer, which is nice.

Michelle Lynne: So throughout the research, the design development, the procurement, and then the installation phase, how has our client journey evolved, like from when we were busting our booties trying to get these done so quickly? Do you see, so let me ask you this, are we delivering in more than one installation? Or do you find that we just have like one big HGTV reveal day.

Megan Fornes: I just really depends.

Debbie Pratt: Usually there's a big one, and then a few smaller ones, it depends on the items. But waiting until the very end. It all it's just because the delivery times have been so weird. But we try.

Megan Fornes: We have because it makes more sense because it's more expensive to go out and deliver than it is to store it. So it's like if somebody doesn't care and they just want their items, cool, that's their choice, and they can pay for it.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, so they can pay for two or three deliveries.

Megan Fornes: Right. And that's as long as you tell the client like, look, because we tell clients we just pass on the invoices. We don't mark it up. You know, that's up to you designers out there. But no, it is more expensive to hire guys, drive out there, even depending on location.

Debbie Pratt: The crew.

Megan Fornes: Yeah, they spend a couple of hours

Debbie Pratt: There's travel time involved.

Michelle Lynne: And they have to pull all the furniture and all the things.

Megan Fornes: Yeah, so yeah, and it's less expensive to store it, which is usually why we do do an overall large install and then depending on the items like we said, onesie twosie some things.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, if something's been backordered for eighteen weeks.

Debbie Pratt: But and we also with construction delays, you know, sometimes it takes a little bit longer, but they understand that they don't want their stuff if they're still painting or sanding or something to be done. And so it's been very helpful not to promise. So we under promise and over deliver by not saying, you know, and you know, you don't have to tell them every single item and when it's expected ship date. Usually, it's like if there's one thing you know, onesies or twosies are coming in, we're waiting for this before we can schedule, eta six or seven weeks.

Michelle Lynne: Right. And that's a great point because during procurement, our job is to protect the client from all of the details. You know, they pay us to know and to get things done properly. If they want to know that's great, but we do not need to inundate them with this is backordered until June. Oh, this is backordered again until August, like all the things. They need to be updated but just keep in mind that our job is to protect the client. They're busy. Their mind is, I mean, think about how many things are going through your head. They have their own busy lives. They have their own busy jobs. They have their own busy families. They have a lot of things going through their head as well. If you just tell them, hey, I'm going to take the majority of stuff, deliver it in three weeks or whatever. And then there's going to be a couple backordered things. I'll handle those too. You can share with them what they are and kind of what you're intending. But just keep that in mind.

Megan Fornes: And I'd say if there are those clients out there, which there are, it's going back to the expectations and managing your expectations.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah. Because some of them want all that information.

Megan Fornes: Because it's easy to fall into that. And typically, designers are people pleasers anyways, so you want to get those answers. But if you just set the expectations at the beginning and communicate, like we've been saying, then they aren't so disappointed when something's backordered.

Debbie Pratt: And they should trust you based on the relationship you've developed through the research and development stages. So they trust you that you didn't just take their money and ran with it. You know, some people are a little nervous about that. They're writing a big check and someone else is managing their purchasing. So they need to trust you.

Michelle Lynne: I think that's a very valid point. That's a lot of our research and sales phase, is just setting those expectations and those boundaries and stuff. So something else that we've changed, I think, gosh, this is not just about the client journey, this is kind of like the ML Interiors journey, as we've evolved, is the accessories. So we used to, again, like bust our ass to try to get all the details done and handled and presented and approved and revised and all the things, including accessories, and I know a lot of designers do it that way. And hats off to you, that's just not our strongest suit. So we have, instead of purchasing a shit ton of accessories and some of them not working, but they already paid for it, so we need to put that vase in the corner. Right? Like where's it going? It looks ok in the corner. 

Debbie Pratt: Because a lot of it's not returnable.

Michelle Lynne: Right. We have broken it down into a separate phase. So how has that worked for y'all in regards to the effectiveness, the client experience, and so forth?

Debbie Pratt: It's nice that you don't have to think about it until after installation. You know, you may have like little ideas in your head. But a lot of times it turns out differently than what you originally think is going to happen.

Megan Fornes: Well, yeah, because even though we're good at visualizing and all of that stuff, it's still the overall feel is always different once you put in the new stuff, the new selections, the new design. And I think that helps the client too like, oh, yeah, I thought because maybe they want their house full. And they see oh, I don't want that. You know, so it's nice to reassess everything once the new items are in. And then you go from there and do the walkthrough.

Michelle Lynne: And you can stand through the room that's almost done.

Megan Fornes: Yep.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, I think it has been a lot easier. I think it's less expensive for our clients with a better outcome. Because, and for us, because I'm not gonna buy the accessories back.

Megan Fornes: Well, not only that, it's still just as time consuming. Again, so if you don't charge enough hours, or within that some of you know design fee, and you get to the end, and you're like, Oh, crap, we still have to do accessories and we're out of hours, you know. So that's what's nice about a phase two, is you look at it and say, Okay, it's gonna take 20 hours to do this. It's going to take so many hours to go shopping, which is just as much and then installing.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, so it is definitely, yeah.

Megan Fornes: And you're getting paid for it.

Debbie Pratt: And that's another communication that that accessories fee is not only just purchases, it's the selection, the purchasing, the procurement of it, because you know, you know, it takes time figuring it out.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, you might be ordering it online, you might be ordering it in person.

Debbie Pratt: And then the installation. So it's all of it combined, you've got to take those hours, because sometimes it takes just as much time.

Michelle Lynne: Yeah, it's those little details and the details make the design. So yeah, I guess, so we were gonna say this is the client journey podcast, but I think it's the client journey evolves as your business evolves. So if you're sitting back and you're thinking, Oh, I should be doing this, that, and the other. Give yourself the grace to know that you have to evolve your skills, you have to evolve your planning, you have to evolve your processes, you have to evolve in your pricing, in order to continue to elevate your client's experience. So it is a journey. It's not just the client experience. It's a client journey all the way through the design process. Any words of wisdom before we wrap up girls, I think this was fun.

Megan Fornes: Yeah.

Debbie Pratt: Yeah.

Michelle Lynne: Okay. So that's also like a really good example, Debbie says that, you know, you might be in the middle of a design and it changes, and it wasn't exactly what you anticipated. So was this recording of the podcast. Right? So give yourself the grace that you don't have to have everything figured out as you go into it because it evolves. And sometimes it's a natural progression, like our conversation. The design is, it's like a living creature. It grows like a child and it's going to change, so just give yourself that grace. 

Debbie Pratt: Yeah.

Michelle Lynne: Anything else? All right. Well, Debbie and Megan, thanks for being here. It has been a hot minute. Yeah, so much fun. And for those of you who are listening, if it is the summer of 2022, a reminder that we have our Interior Design Business Success Summit coming up in October, here in Dallas, Texas. And also, another shameless plug for our paid mentorship program, it's called the Interior Design Business Bakery. And you can find that on our website. www.designedforthecreativemind.com. So thanks for joining us.

Debbie Pratt: Bye. 

Megan Fornes: Bye, y'all.

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 fine. 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.


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