Starting Your Career as an Interior Designer: The Business of Interior Design
One time Robert was invited by a client to Maine to work on her summer home. He flew up on a Thursday and planned to return Sunday afternoon. He had agreed on a day rate for the time he would be out of the office and his expenses would be paid. We thought, what could be bad? Answer: everything.
I won’t go into details but, upon his arrival, he realized, to his horror, he was there for their entertainment. He had hardly gotten seated in the car when the design questions started. They didn’t stop the entire weekend. What had he gotten himself into? These people sucked free advice from his non-stop all weekend and didn’t even provide lively conversation or good company! They were plain boring and he was plain bored by the end of the weekend.
Once he returned to the office, we reassessed our travel procedures. Now, we insist our accommodations be a small hotel or bed and breakfast. At least that way, we can get away every evening. We also try, as often as possible, to limit out of town work to one business day during the week. No weekends. We know, it’s not always possible but we certainly try.
I once even flew roundtrip from Baltimore to St. Paul in the same day! An early morning departure and hour time change helped make the day work out very nicely. A long day, yes, but very profitable and I didn’t have to tap dance on stage for days on end. The client was pleased to have me visit the new home and it helped with selections as we moved into the full design phase of the project.
As I said last week make sure you aren’t killing yourself traveling very little or no return. At the same time give your client your full attention when on site. All the way around a good deal.