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Each month in my Interior Designers Business Hangout community I ask members how they are feeling. By tracking these single feeling words, it helps me understand how designers are not only feeling, but where they are in their business journey.

Unfortunately, emotional Roller Coasters are all too common…

For example, one Designer used the following words over a 3-month period:
From Crap, to Motivated, and then back to Disappointed.

Another Designer:
From Nervous, to Confident, and then to Run Ragged.

My objective is to give interior designers the skills and tools they need to be confident in business and get off the Roller Coaster ride of highs and lows.

So first, let’s discuss the different types of fairground rides as a metaphor for your business. I’d love you to take a moment and think about which one best describes you –

  • The Big Roller Coaster
  • The Bumper Cars
  • The Ferris Wheel
  • The Waltzer
  • Riding Dumbo
  • The Baggage Handler

You’ll need to use your imagination, but as creatives I don’t think you’ll find it too hard. This will help to identify which areas of your business need the most help.

The Big Roller Coaster*


Are you being pulled up the incline to then hurtle down into sharp turns, dark tunnels, 360-degree loops? Changing speed and direction so you don’t know which way is up, and which down. Do you get off feeling thankful you made it through, at the same time exhilarated but a little sick?

Is the obligatory photo at the booth a snapshot of you looking petrified through a gritted smile?

And you then queue to ride again!

*You know the one that you queue for over an hour to ride for 2 minutes (or less!)

The Bumper Cars


The classic ride that most ages love – but beware the jolts and jerks you feel when slammed from the side, rear or front as another car deliberately crashes into you. You might be driving alone, or have a passenger, with a flimsy strap ‘holding you in’.

Do you skirt around the edge of the arena playing safe and just enjoying the ride? Or are you getting stuck in aiming your front bumper on someone else’s car?

The Ferris Wheel


It seemed a good idea at the time… a smooth seated ride which rotates around like a giant bicycle wheel, until you realise it’s a ride of highs and lows.

Up high, you’re enjoying the view in the distance (assuming you’re not afraid of heights), surveying the land, watching in awe the ‘little people’ scurrying about in their day. It’s a moment of surprise and delight, but out of your reach.

But then the ride takes you to the bottom and let’s be honest, it’s boring. All you see is the cars in front and the structs holding up the ride. There is very little to be inspired by.

The Waltzer


A classic ride for me growing up near Southend-on-Sea. The ride that feels safe as you’re travelling down each side in the cart, but it then whips you so hard you slide from your seat around the corner, into your passenger’s lap. You can see the whip coming, but each time it’s a surprise on how hard it pushes your round.

A once around go is enough but you can’t get off until the ride stops.

Riding Dumbo


A ride for the smaller people in our lives, the gentle rotation of the elephant that you can make go up or down using a joystick (if you are lucky). It’s a smooth and simple pace with no drama or excitement (certainly for an adult). It’s safe and comfortable with little or no reward.

The Baggage Handler


Maybe you’re the person that doesn’t ride at the fun fair and you’re happy holding the coats and bags for those that have gone on the ride…

You find yourself a base camp and all the excited riders come back after each ride to tell you about their experience. You dish out drinks and snacks, taking care of everyone else whilst playing safe in the background.

So which ride resonates with you the most? Or maybe you’re a mix of a few.

How this relates to your interior design business


In my Interior Design business, I was 100% on the Big Roller Coaster. Some goes around where exhilarating when a new client came on board, the design process went well, the client responded to messages and the result was as the client expected.

But there were some darker moments when bespoke cabinetry hadn’t been made to spec, and the client was disappointed, or the curtains had been made to short (too long is much easier to deal with), or the furniture delivered looked nothing like the colour on the website.

Then let’s not start on when the client decides to buy pieces that aren’t in the design and the design has to be re-worked to fit these in.

The list can go on…

Build a predictable interior design business


If you’d like to get off whichever ride you’re on, then book a one-to-one chat to see how I can help to build a more predictable interior design business.

If you’re ready to take action, get a Fresh Pair of Eyes on your business for a plan to start making changes (and finally get off the ride!).