Category Archives: Talent Selection


How to resolve indecision when hiring a designerEver feel like you have too many choices? A quick trip to the grocery store proves beyond a doubt that we live in an age of choice. On the shelves you find all manner foods, cleaning supplies, vitamins — you name it. Each does the same job, with a variety of options.

Frankly, I think we have too many choices! This feeds indecision, which leads to

  • too much time spent researching our options
  • anxiety over whether we have made the right choice
  • projects that stall soon after starting

Sometimes the level of indecision results in no choice at all.

I often see people become overwhelmed with choices when they approach the design industry. You have numerous firms and a lot of talent to choose from, especially in places where top design talent congregates, like New York and Los Angeles.

With that in mind, I want to talk about the protocol to follow when you interview anyone for any project. It can be summed up in one word: respect.

When you announce your opportunity and start the process of hiring a professional, you’re triggering a certain degree of excitement. You called; the people you’ve called are going to get busy focusing on your needs. At this point you are responsible for giving honest information about yourself and your project. The designers you approach need to determine what stage you’ve reached in your decision process, and if you’re a potential client for them.

If you cut through indecision before you begin the interview process, you will save everyone time, energy and resources. When you have clear ideas about what you are looking for, you give yourself the best chance to find the most fitting match for your project.

If you are clear and candid, and speak openly with the design professionals you are considering for the work you have in mind, everyone benefits.

To smooth your way to hiring the right designer:

  • Know what you want up front
  • Ask for it
  • Be clear about whether you are just gathering information or you are ready to start your project

Whether the interviewee is the designer you want to work with, or one you decide does not fit your project, this honest communication and respect helps everyone work well together and get what they need. Everyone deserves respect and honesty. If you want someone to be transparent with you, then offer the same to those you meet along the way.


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How to Hire Architecture & Interior Design Professionals

Modern home on the water designed to maximize the homeowner’s enjoyment of the area’s sunsets and life on the water.

Choosing a designer is a bit like choosing other professionals or vendors.

You always check on reputations, appropriate licensing, insurance, and other basic screening criteria.

However, one distinct difference is the type of service you get from a design professional. Your designer or architect is providing artistic products or services.

So here are a few decision points to address wen looking for the desired fit between the professional and client.

What Do You Want Done?

Define a scope of services.  Just because a firm wants to do all aspects of your project, doesn’t mean you should agree by default.

How Much to Spend?

Once you have laid out the work involved in your project, you want a general idea of your overall budget. This will help you set your sights on the caliber of the firm you hire.

What’s Your Style?

Next you need to see which firm has the aesthetics you seek. Many people feel that style is the most important deciding factor.  In fact it may be the least important.  Most firms maintain that they design according to their clients wishes and can do just about anything. My experience is that this is true.

What’s Your Timeframe?

You will need to factor in the size of the firm, scope of the project, and your budget.  These factors determine how soon your project can be scheduled and how fast it can be completed.

Getting Along With Your Professional

Personality plays a major part in the outcome of your project.  At the end of the day, business issues aside, this is an emotional process. Not all designers have the temperament to work well in every situation — and people need to like who they’re working with.

Your goal is to find the optimal relationship when you weigh these factors.  These are some of the major factors that impact how you find the right professional and the quality on the design that results from it.

This article first appeared on iMatchDesigners as:   How to Hire Architecture & Interior Design Professionals


How to Hire an Interior Designer: Choosing an Interior Designer Yourself


Your designer helps you see what you want; here's an example of French Regency style

Renowned logo designer David Airy has posted a popular piece on the client’s perspective when hiring a designer.  Though the issues deal with web design, they aptly describe the concerns interior design clients have about choosing a professional wisely.

Here are key issues to think through and apply when you are choosing between candidate interior designers, landscape or architecture firms.

“I don’t know what I want”

Help me see what I want.  Listen to my concerns, be they about building my business or nurturing my family or making guests welcome and comfortable.  Hear what outcome I seek.  Then share your vision.   I want a person who can help me clearly picture what I’m looking for.

This is where your portfolio and your consultation are important. I may choose you because I want something similar to work you’ve done.  I may choose you because you responded best to my need for vision during our consultation.

“I don’t know anything about design”

Still, give me the means of control.  Define the decisions I make in the process. Explain the steps and stages, and show me my control points.  If you disagree with my ideas or my input, tell me why.  But in the end, assure me that the final decision will reflect my choice.  I need confidence you’ll give me control.

This is why a contract is important. A contract protects my interests as a client in receiving work that meets my specific terms.  It protects your interests in working to a defined scope and your terms.  I want you to offer me a contract that puts our agreement in writing and explains how you and I control the project.

“I need to see value for your pricing”

Explain to me what value I get from your services. Pricing will be something I’m learning about in the process of interviewing designers.  I may not be sure yet about my budget.  Price isn’t the only measure that matters.  But I may be wary if you seem expensive and can’t clearly show why your services are better than your competitors for the outcome I seek.   Your pricing should be in line not only with your creativity, but with the practical work you take on to build, install and deliver the changes we are making.

This is where your relevance to my benefit is important. Don’t assume I’ll see your value as you prefer to present it.  Worry less about what you say, and more about what I understand.  Explain the benefits of your work in terms that are relevant to my life, values, and situation.

“I need to be able to talk to you”

Check in with me.   Follow up with me. Don’t disappear during or after work is underway.  If you go the extra mile to resolve small issues before they become big ones, I will remember your efforts to ensure success and my satisfaction.  This means I may look no further for my next design project, or when I want to recommend a designer to a friend.

We need to get along in a friendly way.  I know you are a professional and not my personal friend.  Yet I am looking for a ‘good vibe;’ some affinity between us.  If we like each other, this will emerge in the work we take on together.  If we don’t like each other, that will almost certainly cause problems. We need to be honest with ourselves about how good we feel that we are likely to get along.

You may not think like a designer, but you can make a great choice

This is where a talent matching service, like iMatchDesigners, has an important job.  It’s hard to tell in a 20 minute conversation whether any two people are going to get along during a full design project.  A seasoned referral resource can bring valuable background and perspective.  We welcome you to find inspiration or styles you like in our portfolio.  Then we invite you to tell us about yourself and your project.  You receive our personal referrals to design professionals we know well, who we believe are strong in the skills and personal traits most likely to promote your project’s success.

Limited experience in working with designers need not hamper your ability to choose wisely and choose well. You can contact iMatchDesigners for assistance in finding and choosing design talent to bring your new solution to life.

Find an Interior Designer for Total Transformation, and Save Your Sanity

Ready to have an interior designer, architect or landscape professional to overhaul your space?  If you’ve worked with a designer before — or if you haven’t– you may wonder if you’ll find fluid collaboration, or a blind leap into the unknown.

On one hand, you’re joining forces with someone to help you make a major change.  Some parts are certain: known remodeling tasks, a budget, scheduling, and style decisions.  On the other hand, you may never have tried to say what you want from your environment in words before. Now you’re sitting down with someone new, to bring about the hopes and dreams you have for your family or your business.

There’s a practical side to making major transformation in your life;  then there’s the emotional side

How do you keep your sanity during the whole process?

When we make a referral through iMatchDesigners, we draw from a community of seasoned design professionals. These are individuals who know about the range of decisions, emotions, and ideas many clients bring to the prospect of major transformation.

We completely understand that you have your own individual approach to a design project

You may find the process easy, challenging, or unnerving.  You can turn to your design professional for practical guidance about how to proceed with your plans even while you’re embracing a host of “unknowns.”

Great results start with finding the right people

First things first. We know the best team or person to help you will often compliment you, instead of clone you.  We look at your interests, your personality, your questions, concerns, and ultimate goals.  Then we target and recommend design candidates who will make the most of the opportunities you present.  We can help you define your targets and expectations, through your selection process.  This gives you the best opportunity to find the best set of talents to take you from concept to resounding success.

The most important decision you’ll make when you invest in a design project isn’t about the color or the furniture.

It’s about choosing the right creative talent as your business partner.

We don’t think it’s a good idea to trust your investment of time, money and emotion to chance, luck, or what worked for ‘someone else’.

We take a personal approach to defining design goals and choosing the best talent to deliver outstanding results. Contact us to find out more about intelligent design talent selection with iMatchDesigners.