Publish May 28, 2024
CLIENT perspective: What it’s like to work with me
pam durkin

From Finance to Fabric

Today, I am thrilled to welcome Lauren Cabral of Lauren Cabral Interiors to discuss her journey, challenges, and future goals on the Six Figure Designer Podcast. Lauren’s journey is unique. Located in Walnut Creek, California, she transitioned from a career in financial analysis to one in interior design. “Design is a second career for me.

She has an undergraduate degree in accounting and worked as a financial analyst for advertising agencies in New York City.”  Lauren recounted the monotony of financial analysis and her desire for creativity. “I started going to school at night at Parsons to get my certificate in design. I realized how much I enjoyed it and thought maybe one day I’d want to do this as my business.”

Building a Business in Walnut Creek

Lauren focuses mainly on residential interior design, emphasizing kitchen and bathroom remodels. “Where I live, we have a lot of homes that were built in the ’50s and ’60s. As the neighborhoods turn over, new owners are looking to update their spaces.”

She’s expanding her business into other rooms of the house. “I start with renovations, updating kitchens and bathrooms, then move into furnishings, often starting with the living room and family room,” Lauren explained.

Transferable Skills

I asked Lauren how her financial background influences her design approach. “I’m pretty methodical. A lot of accounting is detailed and process-oriented. With design, it’s similar. You need to manage details and make sure everything is connected,” she noted.

Clients appreciate Lauren’s meticulous approach, especially during complex renovations. “People want to know they can rely on you to take care of all details,” she emphasized.

Tackling Business Challenges

Before we started working together, Lauren struggled with presenting costs to clients confidently. “I didn’t have the confidence to give my clients the full cost for furnishings including delivery.” We worked on bundling pricing, making it clearer and simpler for clients.

Pre-qualifying clients was another challenge. “During the initial discovery call, I now ask clients about their budget and provide ballpark estimates based on my gathered data. This prevents any surprises later on.”

Shock and Awe: Creating a Comprehensive Client Package

We developed a “shock and awe” box to wow potential clients and give a comprehensive overview of Lauren’s work. It included her professional profile, articles, and interviews showcasing her design philosophy. “This package helps clients understand my point of view on design without needing to voice it directly,” Lauren explained.

Knowing Your Numbers

Discussing the importance of understanding project costs, Lauren shared, “I feel more knowledgeable and confident in answering questions about costs. I now have a pricing document breaking down contracting and material costs per square foot.”

This preparation allows Lauren to confidently answer clients’ questions, ensuring she presents herself as an expert. “Having this data makes a significant difference because clients want to hire someone confident in their craft,” she said.

Working with Lauren Cabral has been inspiring. Her transition from finance to interior design, methodological approach, and perseverance in tackling business challenges make her journey remarkable. By understanding her numbers and confidently presenting them, she has positioned herself as a trusted expert in her field.

Thank you, Lauren, for sharing your journey. Stay tuned for more episodes of the Six Figure Designer Podcast, where we explore the business of design and provide techniques to help you break through that five-figure ceiling. With insights and techniques from professionals like Lauren, you too can take your design business to new heights.

To listen to the full conversation click here! And keep up with my other blog posts.