What Level is Your Design Business?

Studio Thomas: Finding Clarity on the Brand and Culture of Her Interior Design Firm

Episode 314 of A Well-Designed Business®

What does it look like to be so committed to the success of your business that failure simply CANNOT be an option? For some, there is a crutch to fall back on, but for others, the welfare of their family depends on the level of commitment—and there is no Plan B. Today’s guest is passionate about her design business and there is no doubt about her commitment to success and claiming her niche.

Kristen Thomas is the principal designer and owner of Studio Thomas, a full-service interior design firm based in Denver. With a degree in interior design and a background in real estate and home building, Kristen has spent the past 20 years honing her ability to transform homes into spaces that truly enhance and elevate the lives of her clients. When you hear Kristen on the show today, you will understand how the term “elevating and enhancing the lives of clients” is a true goal for her—a true mission. She has given careful and thorough thought to knowing very clearly who her ideal client is, what her ideal project is, and what the Studio Thomas aesthetic is. It’s because of this self-discovery that she made a very bold move this past January, and I’ll let her explain exactly what transpired.

What you’ll hear in this episode:

  • The growth of Studio Thomas in just 5 years
  • When failure is NOT an option, so you MUST make it work
  • “I’m really concerned with infusing value into my clients’ homes.”
  • The emotion behind the hard work and commitment
  • Creating the culture where employees are empowered and valued
  • Kristen’s goal: to have a company that people love to come and work for and where everyone’s voice is valued
  • The “slow” hiring process in creating chemistry and culture on the team
  • In January 2018—the complete overhaul because Kristen “didn’t want to be everything to everyone”
  • Deciding who you are, finding your best value, and being comfortable in your philosophy
  • Being the best at what you do and making the highest contribution, facing the fear of turning down the jobs that aren’t WHO you are
  • “You have to run your business and not let it run you.”
  • After acquiring 16,000 Instagram followers, Kristen erased it all and started over with intention at every step
  • Revamping, rebranding, and narrowing the focus
  • “Our favorite color is texture.”
  • The story behind the K. Thom lifestyle brand
  • Vetting the client—how it’s done
  • Why clients are willing to trust Kristen and Studio Thomas
  • Kristen’s husband’s role in Studio Thomas and how he helps the growing business
  • The visions, systems, and processes that make the business work and grow as you take bold steps in claiming your niche

Resources mentioned in the episode:

Camp Chroma


Kristen’s Website: Studio Thomas Kristen’s Instagram: Studio Thomas Kristen’s Facebook: Studio Thomas

What Level is Your Design Business?