MMDH: Design Tips for Starting a Business

Screen Shot 2018-11-11 at 10.37.21 PM.png

Happy New Year, Friends! Since we are all talking resolutions, and we are already a solid week into the new year, I figured there was no better time to reflect on the past year and a half of building MMDH as a business.

For those of you following along on this journey and curious as to if you could make your entrepreneurial dreams happen, here is a list of my top 5 tips to get a small business up and running:

  1. Set goals: I learned quickly from my business mentor, Shanna Skidmore, that it is crucial to set and document goals in life, and maybe even more so when you are running your own business. Whether you are twenty years into running your own company, or simply pondering the idea of starting your own business, there is no better time to begin setting goals for the future. While you won’t always have time to look back at your documented goals, you will be surprised at how you’ll have them on recall daily once you write them down.

  2. Take a business course: I am thankful that I took the time and made an investment in my business dreams before I even left my decade+ career in commercial interiors. I will never regret that initial investment of money and time I spent learning about how to run a business successfully. The Blueprint Model is the course I took, and one that I am now a firm believer in… 2019 class enrollment is coming within days, so keep your eyes peeled!

  3. Ask for help in areas you are not an expert in: I have met the most solid support system a one woman show could ask for. When you own your own business, there are always going to be tasks that are outside of your wheelhouse. Your goal should be to find people who are passionate about those tasks, and pay them to run with them! Collaborating with other creative entrepreneurs has been hugely rewarding, and serendipitous in nearly every instance.

  4. Know your numbers & your ideal client: Understand what it takes to run your business and what you need to charge clients to be the best you can be for them. This calculation does not happen overnight. It is one of the many things you need to work towards and gather data on as you go. The overall equation will continue to evolve each year, although being conscious of every detail within your product costs, service fees, and/or proposal terms will bring you closer and closer to a full plate of your ideal clients.

  5. Be nice to people: I hope this sounds like common sense, as it really should be, although it is amazing how many people in this world are just not friendly :) No matter what your profession or industry, you will always benefit from being nice to others. Show interest, remember names, be genuinely nice to everyone you meet throughout the day. It is incredible how small any given industry is, and how many times you run back into people that you will be thankful you were friendly to when you last interacted with them.


I set high expectations for the first full calendar year of MMDH. While a few of my goals have shifted to 2019 as works in progress, I had not realized how many goals I had actually reached last year before taking a step back and reviewing what I first set out to do. Thank you so much for being here… I hope you continue to follow along on this unreal ride of reaching for some of my wildest goals!


Shop This Post

Chicago Interior Designer // Hinsdale Interior Designer // Interior Design Blog // Glen Ellyn Interior Designer // Naperville Interior Designer