Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Martha Rules: Rule #3

Rule #3: Create a business plan that allows you to stay true to your big idea but helps you focus on the details. Then remain flexible enough to zoom in or out on the vital aspects of your enterprise as your business grows.


Well after reading that I’m not going to lie my initial intake of information was, blah, blah ,blah. I had to re-read the chapter a couple of times to fully grasp the concept.


I have always understood the importance of needing a business plan for a business such as a store. It’s necessary in order to get a loan from a bank or investors. Since I was starting a service business and didn’t need $$$ from investors/bank to start out I truthfully didn’t think about doing a business plan.


I’m now thinking that perhaps I should free up some time and try to get some basics down on paper. A sort of business map for me so that I know how to stay on course.


The basic concept in Chapter 3 is to make sure that as an entrepreneur you see outside the big picture and make sure no mistakes are made in aspects of your business that you may find boring. For me that would be book-keeping. A total snooze, but it must be done.


Martha is a big believer in hiring professionals to help you aspects of your business that you are not strong in.


Since I haven’t done  a business plan yet I don’t have much of my own experience to add to this rule. Any other interior decorators/designers out have a business plan or are you like me and need to get in gear and write one up?


All images via Decor Pad

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Blogger Loving life in Southern California! said...

I'm with you! I don't have a business plan written down on paper, just in my head. The task seems daunting to me and I'm afraid to start because I don't know where to start! You know? It is great to hear that there are others out there that feel the same :)

November 11, 2009 at 12:21 PM  
Blogger tiffany said...

You might want to check out Jen Lee's right brain business plan.
She really encourages people to take a nontraditional approach to their planning. I haven't gone through the steps yet, but when I get my act together, I'm definitely going to give this a look!

November 11, 2009 at 12:24 PM  
Blogger Lauren said...

i did one a few years ago & go back to it just to see where i'm at every once in a while... (whenever i stumble across it because it's not in a safe place haha)

it's actually really satisfying to find i've reached a lot of the concrete goals i set for myself.

i think they're great to do but also important to update- WHICH i haven't done eeeek- so maybe when i take my little break i'll get on that.


November 11, 2009 at 12:24 PM  
Blogger Miss Wendy said...

I have a business plan outlined but find researching the local competition is impossible. B-Plans are vital though, keeps you on track and focused on the goal.

November 11, 2009 at 12:26 PM  
Blogger Blair said...

I have had fits and starts of wanting to do just what you are doing--starting your own design co-but this step of a plan always gets me! I keep telling myself that I will do it "this weekend" and then of course it never happens! Good luck! xx

November 11, 2009 at 12:26 PM  
Blogger Dagny @ Beautiful Living said...

I think business plans are super important, but oh so boring to make! These Martha are really great. Puts things into perspective. Thanks for the super sweet comment on Indie's room! I'm totally in love with that spray paint as well, you should see the store! They have every color imaginable! There's like 15 shades of blue! And green! And aqua! LOVE LOVE!!

November 11, 2009 at 12:30 PM  
Blogger brynalexandra said...

yes yes YES. Business plans are crucial. Design*Sponge did a great post about it a while back in their series for woman entrepreneurs. I haven't written mine yet because unfortunately right now it's still more of a hobby. But once I quit the day job, it's the first thing I will do! That, along with getting a wholesale license and all my tax sh!t together haha.

November 11, 2009 at 12:53 PM  
Blogger Shannon said...

I wholeheartedly agree about making a business plan. This is sort of my forte in life, so they come a little easier to me. When I started my own little crafty business, it was the first thing I did. It helps me stay focused when my heads gets clouded with all things crafty and pretty and I lose track of the nitty gritty not-so-fun details. And I also agree about letting a professional handle the nitty gritty as well. Luckily my husband is a finance guy, so he gets to play around with Excel while I make pretty things.

November 11, 2009 at 12:59 PM  
Blogger carlee said...

Sorry, I can't help you with the business plan. I know in a Women of Business meeting I went to yesterday at school the speaker said that's the only thing she regrets about her last business, she didn't start with one so strange it's today's rule! I wish I was more help! Good luck, I'm sure you will come up with an amazing plan :)

I can say that the first two photographs are gorgeous. I wouldn't have thought to stack the two mirrors like the top photograph. Love it.

November 11, 2009 at 1:08 PM  
Blogger Sarah - La Jeune Marie said...

Whether it be a formal business plan or just a list of goals, I think it's important to write down what your hoping your business to become. Good advice, I think I need this book!

November 11, 2009 at 2:12 PM  
Blogger Re:Fresh Design Studio said...

I was lucky that during my ID schooling, I had to take a class called Professional Business Practices. During the class we had to write a business plan and that is what I am using for my business today. It was extremely helpful to lay everything out and have a plan in mind for the direction of your business.

The book we read in class is called Professional Practice for Interior Designers by Christine Piotrowski.

I highly recommend getting it, I thought it was super helpful and it talks about contracts, sales and use tax, business plans and many other things that will help you start your business.

Good luck!!

November 11, 2009 at 2:23 PM  
Blogger Erika @ BluLabel Bungalow said...

Writing a business plan can be a bit boring. To get started I wrote about my business in past tense and how I want it to be perceived by the public. I add to it from time to time and it gives me direction and helps me to stay focused when writing out my plan.

November 11, 2009 at 2:36 PM  
Blogger Emily said...

Fabulous post! I love the pics (and desire an office like one someday) and the advice is perfect. Very motivating!!

November 11, 2009 at 2:38 PM  
Blogger Willow Decor said...

Great post! I am really enjoying these. I agree a business plan needs to be written down -its just such a daunting task.

November 11, 2009 at 5:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love these pictures! Especially number two with the pink :)

November 12, 2009 at 1:02 AM  
Blogger Haven and Home said...


I never wrote a formal on but maybe I should. I do think it is great to have goals to work towards though. Let me know if you write one!

November 12, 2009 at 9:53 AM  
Blogger Crystal @ Plush Palate said...

I definitely have to pick up a copy of this book! The business side of running a business can sometimes be a snooze, but nothing is more stylish than a well informed, savvy business lady :)

I love how you're sharing what you learn with us along the way!

November 12, 2009 at 10:28 AM  
Blogger Design Actually said...

I really need to do a business plan...and a million other things to get rolling and be more productive. I'm loving the Martha rules, thanks for sharing :)

November 12, 2009 at 11:37 AM  

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