People are surprised to learn that I’ve flipped over 300 houses in my career! It was a lot of work (Highs: I bought a new property! Lows: Oh no, the home hasn’t sold in 2 days!), but I loved the frenetic pace. I learned so many valuable lessons while flipping those hundreds of houses. Most of those lessons have helped my interior design business over the years, too. Here are the top 5 things I learned that are key to success in any business!
1. Hard Work Pays Off
I know! I say this ALL of the time, but it is true! You DO have to work hard! I hope you didn’t think there was a magic bullet – there never is! It was hard work flipping all of those houses. And really, I don’t know any business that you can run that doesn’t require some serious commitment. You need to be very clear-eyed about running your own business. There are always times when you’ll want to throw in the towel (OK, sometimes you want to throw it in once/day! Ha!), but being persistent and committing to doing whatever it takes will always pay off in the long run!
2. Patience Is a Virtue
Flipping houses took a LOT of patience! Sometimes, it took forever to find the right house to flip, and then, forever to fix it up and then forever to sell it! So many forevers, it’s a wonder I kept on going! In any business, you have to have a long-term strategy. I always love “overnight” successes. The “overnights” actually take 15 years. There is no such thing as overnight success – anything that looks like that actually takes a lot of planning and work (see tip #1). Be patient as you build your business, or when you add any new service or marketing plan. You can’t just put one ad on Facebook and then say it wasn’t successful because you didn’t receive an immediate phone call. Patience really is a virtue! PS. I remind myself this ALL. THE. TIME!
3. Go With Your Gut
Usually, I knew when I wanted to buy a house when I walked in the door. It could have been (OK, it usually was) smelly, dilapidated, and HIDEOUS, but I would know immediately that I could make it a jewel! You have to learn to trust your gut. When you’re doing an initial assessment of a project, deep down you know right away if it’s the right fit for you. You can also tell whether the client will be a dream, or a nightmare. Trust your gut and know when to walk away! That goes for hiring the right people, too. You want to work with subcontractors and employees that you trust and can count on – so go with your gut.
4. Harness Your Emotions
I was passionate about flipping houses, and I think that’s what made me good at it! But one thing I never did is allow emotions into business decisions. (Yes, I may have cried once or twice in the bathroom!) My price was (and IS) my price. I’m in business to make money, not to do favors or limit myself in any way. I know that can sound harsh, but we are in business to make money so we can enjoy fabulous personal lives. RIGHT?! So keep those good emotions like humor and optimism, but keep a handle on the ones that can lead you into trouble, like fear and anger!
5. Organization Equals Success
I could never have kept all of those flipping projects running if I hadn’t been extremely organized. And it’s what keeps my interior design projects running like clockwork, too. You HAVE to organize your time. If you aren’t organized, you can’t focus, you raise your stress levels, and you tend to drop the ball. Or more than one of them. Keeping your design projects organized makes you more efficient – and more profitable. And having your finances clear and under control will not only lower your stress and worry, it will also keep your financial goals in sight!
I have a little something for you that will help with that last tip – my ROI Sampler! It will help you organize each of your projects and keep your business humming along – and it’s FREE!
Use that sampler, and my tips, to uplevel your business today!