Archive for the ‘Mastermind Group’ Category

Mastermind Spotlight: Laura Lee

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portfolio picOne of the great things about my Mastermind Consulting Program is that the members are from many different backgrounds and careers – but they are all passionate about design! Laura Lee began her St. Louis-based design business, Laura Lee Home, in 2012 as a second career and never looked back! She joined my Mastermind Program in 2014 after attending Design A-to-Z and Designer MBA the previous year.

Laura’s niche is helping to direct her clients’ resources, both time and money, to help them get the very most for their investment. “Tobi really helped me see that my financial background is a unique benefit to my clients, and I love that I get to do what I love every day,” Laura says.

“Decorating and renovating are expensive and I help my clients achieve their goals without the stress of an open-ended cost structure,” Laura says. “We are vigilant about communicating every step of the way. When I approach design projects, we get very clear about budgets and timelines. I help direct clients on where to splurge and where to save.”

Laura also specializes in bringing fresh, classic, edited interiors to older homes. From the first 1920s bungalow Laura and her husband John painstakingly renovated, to the 1930s colonial and two 1920s Tudor homes she’s also worked on, Laura knew she loved historic architecture and design.

“My expertise helps to make the most of the wasted space found in many older homes and to support 21st century living,” she says.

DSC_8741Laura says that 2014 was a big year of transition for her business with the launch of her first website in June and evaluating everything about running her business.

“I worked to streamline my design process, documented my systems, renovated my office-to-house samples as well as paperwork, and addressed my financials,” Laura says. “Design is the fun part and getting really serious about the business side of running the design business took discipline.”

Elevating her business and her transition year was not without its challenges.

“The biggest challenge I have faced was realizing that not every client that calls our office is right for my firm,” Laura says. “We do a lot of work in Mastermind on identifying our ideal clients and what differentiates us as designers. Educating people on the design process and what I am able to do, as well as not able to do, sets the tone for a successful partnership.”

Laura’s goals for this year are to continue to grow her business and to hire an assistant to allow her to spend more time on the design work. She is also investigating options to work on a show house as well as developing a focused social media strategy.

“I am looking forward to some exciting new design projects, including a first-floor renovation and a mid-century modern home,” Laura says.

familyroom2 When Laura isn’t working, she loves to cook, spend time with her friends and family, read, walk and garden. “My favorite place to spend time away from home is the beach, especially Sanibel Island in Florida,” she says.

Laura says it has been a challenge to strike the right balance between work and personal commitments since starting her business, especially with two teens at home, Audrey and Jack, and their oldest son Eric in college.

“My husband and I start each morning having coffee together and playing with our dogs Charlie the Golden Retriever and Lucy the Shih-Tzu,” Laura says. “That time is sacred and keeps us connected. I have learned that exercise has to happen very early in the morning and that I have to be more structured about appointments, errands, and commitments. John and my kids have been so supportive – pitching in and taking on more responsibility, especially when I need to be out of town.”

Laura says her biggest takeaway from the Mastermind program is to be 100% authentic in everything she does. “Tobi really helped me lean in to my niche and the unique perspective that my financial background brings to my clients and business,” she says.

Laura is an amazing designer, and a fantastic businesswoman! She does have the discipline and drive to really succeed in this tough business – and I look forward to seeing what she achieves in 2015!

xo,

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PS – If you are interested in seeing how my Mastermind Consulting Program can help you transform your business for success, just click here to learn more!  Or contact me at info@tobifairley.com!

Mastermind Spotlight: Minhnuyet Hardy

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Today, I want to spotlight one of my Mastermind Consulting Group members, Minhnuyet Hardy – a fabulous and high-energy interior designer based in Atlanta! Minhnuyet has been such a great addition to my Mastermind Deluxe group and she has really found a unique niche to call her own, focusing on designing interiors for professional men and bachelors.

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She is one of the only designers in her city to focus on that target audience. “[Last year] I started working with my first single male client, a recently divorced man with two young girls,” Minhnuyet says. “He was living in a small hotel room and needed his condo finished quickly and with everything: new furniture, linens and pots and pans and, of course, several TVs.  We had a blast and the project turned out very modern and stylish while incorporating all of his technology needs.” Minhnuyet soon found herself working with three other male clients with similar requests. “I realized that working with men was a natural fit for me,” she says. “I really understand their design aesthetic and what they want in their interiors.”

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She also has teamed with a smart home technology specialist in Atlanta to help men fit all of their fun gadgets into her inviting and functional design. In addition to finding her perfect niche, Minhnuyet says her greatest triumph so far is her upcoming publicity. She will be published for the first time in Modern Luxury Men’s Book Atlanta’s March 2015 issue. “I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect magazine to feature my work!” she says.

Her biggest challenges, she says, have been pulling together her social media strategy, re-branding, and launching her new website. “I am slowly getting the hang of it, one tweet at a time. It’s fun to see a lot of high-profile men following me on Twitter,” she says. “Another challenge has been the re-branding and the new website. That was almost like having another large project on my books, so I’m glad that we are at the finish line on that chapter of my life.”

Minhnuyet has just launched her new website, which helps focus her marketing efforts toward her niche clientele. “I really want to focus on taking projects that elevate my brand and business model,” she says. “I would also like to hire a junior designer to help with projects. I am most looking forward to getting published. This was my goal this year so I am beyond excited that has come to fruition. If only I had a crystal ball to see what the future holds for me!”

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Minhnuyet is married to Joe, an air and space attorney and part-time actor, and together they have two kids, Owen, 13, and Melia, 10, as well as a fur baby, a Doberman named Beatrix. Minhnuyet was born in Bien Hoa, Vietnam,and likes to hang out with her kids and travel in her spare time. “I love to visit restaurants, hotel lobbies and museums,” she says. “It just fascinates me to see different and interesting foods, cultures, art, and interiors.”

While balancing work and personal life has been a challenge for Minhnuyet since going into full-time design, she is working on hiring so she can delegate and assign tasks and have more time to spend with her family. Minhnuyet says that her biggest “a-ha” moment happened when she was traveling home from her first Mastermind session in Dallas, which was about licensing agreements and making partnerships.

“Serendipitously, the gentleman sitting next to me turned out to be the CEO of Republic Tequila. We chatted the entire plane ride back to Atlanta and we have since kept in touch. We are discussing some different ideas of how to work together,” Minhnuyet says. “Had I not attended the session, I would have never even thought about partnering with such a company. Tobi’s classes and coaching have opened my eyes to new ideas and thoughts about my design business.  Her coaching is really worth the investment of your time and money, she is truly a very smart and savvy businesswoman.”

Aren’t Minhnuyet’s designs gorgeous? And she really is proof that knowing your niche, and really keeping your focus on it, can propel your business into the stratosphere!

xo,

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Your Most Profitable Year Yet – with Mastermind!

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It is an exciting time at Tobi Fairley & Associates! We just announced our brand new online educational site Tobi U. It’s been a dream of mine for years and now you can get my foundational business of design courses on demand from anywhere around the world! I am so happy to have achieved that goal, and to be able to help so many others cultivate their strengths and improve their businesses.

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Have you thought about YOUR design business? What goals do YOU have for 2015? What if you want to REALLY take your business to the next level – complete immersion, no-holds-barred? What if you are saying “Tobi, 2015 is THE year for me and I am ready to quit wasting time and go full speed ahead to making the kind of money I want and designing the dream business and dream life that I desire?”

I have the answer for that! You should join me in my Mastermind Consulting Group for 3 AMAZING on-site sessions around the country AND get 2 FABULOUS bonuses – a semester of Tobi U AND my Build Your Dream Business Telecourse! Keep reading and I’ll tell you about a fabulous FREE telecall I’m going to have next week that will tell you even more!

My Mastermind program is a progressive consulting group for design professionals. As a member of Mastermind, you will not only get instructive business coaching curriculum and advice straight from me, but you’ll also participate in a community of forward-thinking businesspeople who draw on experience from an array of backgrounds and specialties!

As a Mastermind member, you will receive weekly emails to hold you accountable for doing the work to build your business, monthly telecalls on the latest hot topic, a FREE ticket to Designer MBA (my most popular live event!), and three live events that feature guest speakers that present with me on the most important issues we face in our businesses today! It will be an incredible year!

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As if that wasn’t enough, though, for just the month of January, in honor of the launch of Tobi U, my 15th anniversary in business, and my birthday (woohoo!) I am offering a crazy-low price for all these amazing things rolled into one! And I will give you a payment plan for the investment. Crazy, I know. But I am going SO BIG with my thinking this year. I am following my dreams like I have never done before, and I want the same for YOU!  Mastermind pricing typically starts at $10,000 per year, but just for January, I am offering Mastermind at MORE than 25% off AND giving you a free semester of Tobi U ($1299 price) and my Build Your Dream Business 6-part teleseries ($447 price) which is PERFECT for jump-starting your goals, avoiding procrastination, and ensuring that THIS YEAR is your most productive and profitable EVER!

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So how can you pass this up? If you want me to email you the special pricing for this fantastic Mastermind Package with the 2 AMAZING bonuses – a free semester of Tobi U and my Build Your Dream Business 6-part teleseries – send me an email at info@tobifairley.com and I will respond to you myself with ALL the details.

Plus, if you want to hear more about the special package of Mastermind plus Tobi U plus Build Your Dream Business and get the details of what you can really expect from all three of these, join me on a free telecall next Thursday, Janu. 15 (the day Tobi U launches) at 12pm Central Time, to hear all the details. To be on that call, sign up here. I can’t wait to tell you all about this special deal next week! But if you are ready to take the leap now while you are excited and want to keep the momentum going, then send me that email at info@tobifairley.com so I can get you signed up for Mastermind+Tobi U+Build Your Dream Business right away!

Wishing you the most successful and most profitable year yet!

xo,

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Mastermind Spotlight: Michelle Lynne

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Today, I want to introduce you to one of my newest Mastermind members, Michelle Lynne! Michelle started her design business, Michelle Lynne Interiors Group, in Dallas in 2008 and has really revved things up in the past year! She has a terrific niche – creating glamorously functional interiors for the busy professional – that comes from her nearly two decades of corporate management experience before she made the leap into full-time interior design.

“I can really relate to the necessity of having a retreat to come home to after hours and hours in an office every day,” she says. “Plus, if the house isn’t well thought out and diligently organized, what good is it? When you’re working such long hours, you don’t want to work at home trying to find your keys or anything else – everything has to have a place.”

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Michelle says that her greatest triumph in 2014 has been re-branding and re-defining the business. “2013 was challenging, to say the least. So in 2014, I really dug in to the identity of the firm, analyzed the financials – and focused on streamlining the areas that result in the highest profitability,” Michelle says. Her biggest challenge, she says, has been recovering and re-inventing her business instead of being able to dive head first into her design work.

“I am so incredibly grateful that my staff is wickedly smart and talented and hard working and trustworthy – and just overall lovely people I enjoy being around,” Michelle says. “From the business standpoint, I couldn’t have made it through the difficult 2013 and recovery in 2014 without them. In fact, we’re looking at a record-setting 2014, so I think we are onto something!”

She says her biggest “a-ha” moment in Mastermind was realizing what her assets are, and appreciating them. “My experience in corporate america IS a huge benefit to my clients,” she says. “I was insecure about my lack of classical interior design education. I really got the ‘a-ha’ from Tobi that my business experience, management skills, and financial savvy are all a value to my clients who would otherwise be dealing with a solely ‘creative’ designer. So now I brag about my business brilliance.”

Michelle’s business goals for 2015 are to continue up-leveling her business’s service so it can continue to increase the value to her clients – and her profitability. “Providing a step-by-step defined process while giving our clients an experience is what I’m most excited about,” she says. “The foundation should be solid in 2015 so I can start implementing some of the genius takeaways I’ve received via Mastermind.”3824PalloVerdasDrive-Dallas-TX

Her favorite things to do offline these days include catching up on sleep and running, and she says she has her work-life balance down to a science. “I work before The Handsome Hubs wakes up, go into the office after I’ve seen him off, and then when I come home, I leave my work at the office,” she says.  “There are exceptions, but when I tell the Hubs that I’m working on a $100K presentation and need to stay up late, take a call, etc., he gets it. I think he just has flashbacks of 2013 and doesn’t bat an eye. Additionally, I took up running this year – completed a couple of half marathons this spring – and have enjoyed the time that I’m thinking about dying of exhaustion on the side of the road instead of anything related to work.”

Michelle is really a go-getter, right? I need to take cues from her to get my work-life balance back in check! If you’re in that corporate rat race and need someone to create a sanctuary to come home to, she’s the person to call! I hope you’ve enjoyed getting to know her!

Happy Weekend Y’all! xo,

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Mastermind Spotlight: Meredith Bohn

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_MG_3885 Today I want to introduce you to another one of my fantastic Mastermind members – Meredith Bohn. Meredith is one smart cookie, particularly about historical design and the story behind amazing old homes in her New England area. You know how I am enamored with antiques but not yet an expert in them? Well Meredith is definitely one of my go-to experts on that topic when I need to take my antiques expertise up a notch or two. York Bohn livingrm 1 Meredith has been in the design business in one form or another since 1990, but has been working for herself in the industry since 2004. The part of the business that makes her happiest is her niche: honoring history but designing for today’s living. All of her work is based on that strong sense of history and a classical approach to today’s lifestyles. “I always found the romance in the wear pattern on a stone step, or the marks made from years of handling – these things make the past very real for me,” she says.

And as you can see from one of Meredith’s gorgeous Showhouse rooms above, she is very talented at making historic elements blend with current pieces for a fresh, classic result! Meredith says her biggest triumph in her business for 2014 is re-launching her website and redefining her business to showcase her niche and truly define what she does that sets her apart. “I feel that has been the number one factor in beginning to become ‘known’ in the area, both to clients and the industry here,” she says. large size meredith photo Meredith’s goal for 2015 is to put all that she’s learned into consistent practice, both with marketing and blogging and business revenue growth.  She says she is also pointing toward a published presence in the larger regional magazine other than showhouse features. And though we can’t reveal all her secrets just yet, we know that Meredith is well on her way to achieving this goal in the coming months.

When Meredith isn’t working, her favorite thing to do is travel, especially to England and Europe.  She hopes to do a big trip in 2015 and her ultimate goal is to live in England for at least 10 years in her own Cotswold cottage! And I for one hope Meredith makes this happen sooner than later, because I will for sure be going for a visit.  She also loves anything beach related, but only the ocean will do, from Maine all the way down to Florida. She laughs while saying her Viking heritage demands a sea breeze and the smell of the salt water, if at all possible! And there’s that love of heritage and history coming up again–I love how her personality is SO authentic to her new brand. GWP_Bohn_BohnKitchen-1 Meredith’s sons are grown, but she says they are always the light of her life!  She has worked in design almost their whole lives. “They laughingly explain to friends that our lives are always one big decorating project!  Seriously, I love doing design work, but I love family time and I work hard at making sure I take care of both,” Meredith says.

She says that her biggest a-ha moment from her two years in Mastermind is really defining her strengths. “Tobi and her great team have absolutely made a profound difference in my approach to my business.  Mastermind is not just a collection of great ideas and insights from a group of fantastic people and designers.  Mastermind is a true synergy of ideas, methods and approaches that has allowed me to create a design business that I am passionate about and is unique to ME.”

So if you’re looking for a designer to create a home that “Honors History but Lives for Today”, Meredith is your gal. Thanks for letting me share this amazing designer with you.

See you soon! xo,


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