Ok, you're on the fence about hiring a design assistant. You either don't need a full time assistant hanging out in your office or you think you've got it all handled. In by business, I have had the opportunity to work with some amazing and extremely successful interior designers. They mostly work solo from their studio at home, they balance multiple clients at once while putting the same amount of love and talent into each project. They travel solo from job site to job site, usually during their "lunch break", checking on construction progress or regrouping with clients for some unanticipated changes. 😬
I received a phone call from one of my designers while she was on her way from a job site to pick up her daughter at school and attend her dance recital directly after. Her client had changed their mind. They no longer liked the sectional sofa - it was too light - they also wanted to change the throw pillows because they didn't bring out enough blue in the backordered rug they fell in love with. So, she needed a few sectional options to present to their client (a dear lady), along with those pillows and another in stock rug option. She needed all of these options by that evening. There's only so much one lady can do! She called for help and help she received. After the dance recital, she was able to grab a celebratory meal with her daughter knowing when she got home she would have 3 design presentation boards with 3 options for that dear client of hers.
If you can relate and love the outcome of that story, then maybe it's time to hop off the fence and find a virtual design assistant. Psst...she won't be taking up office space.
VIRTUAL DESIGN ASSISTANT TASK #1: SOURCING
Once you've dialed in the overall design scheme, set up a moment to chat with your virtual design assistant to give her the lowdown on the project. This phone call usually includes the designer spilling the beans about the project and sharing the outline of the initial meeting with the client.
This is where you start to delegate what you need taken off your plate. It usually begins with product sourcing. What is the client's style, what is their daily lifestyle at home? Do they have kids and pets that require easy to clean, durable materials and furnishings that are kid-friendly (ie: let's go with an oversized upholstered ottoman as opposed to a glass and metal coffee table). Budget and timeline? Are we talking Crate & Barrel in stock items only, or high end pieces with an acceptable 8-12 week lead time.
Finding the right materials, furnishings, fabrics and accessories can be the most time consuming tasks a designer has to tackle. It's hard to balance finding the right fabric, pricing it, checking stock, ordering memos and making the final order - which includes tracking the order. This time could be spent at the local tile showroom doing some hands on selecting with your client.
It's time to choose wisely. 😉 Where are you willing to juggle and what are you willing to pass off? Whether you're still on the fence or not, let's schedule a time to chat and see if a virtual design assistant is right for you...right now.