What Level is Your Design Business?

Pimlico Interiors: Navigating the Hard Conversations

Episode 517 of A Well-Designed Business®

Welcome to A Well-Designed Business! LuAnn’s guest today is Melissa Lindsay, Co-Owner of Pimlico Interiors, located in Westport, CT. She will be sharing some of the methods and tactics that she and her partner, Jill Kakaletris, use when dealing with difficult conversations and difficult clients.

As #seasoned designers, Melissa and Jill have had their share of difficult conversations with clients and together they have developed a personal philosophy for handling these as well as some actual tips to help you navigate them, too.

Whether you are crafting an email or having a hard person-to-person discussion, there are some strategies here that you can most certainly find useful!

Melissa brings 20 years of luxury residential design experience and award-winning interiors to the firm. Named at home Magazine’s A-list award winner multiple years over, she has been lauded by industry professionals from Celerie Kemble to Bunny Williams.

Show Highlights:

  • Be truthful with kindness and grace!
  • Listen more than talk. This is the only way to truly know what the obstacle is for the client. And if you are reading an email from a client— read it closely and consider only what it says; don’t make up stuff in your head.
  • Keep to your talking points and be clear and focused.
  • Keep the conversation respectful and unemotional.
  • Know your value and be confident in it.
  • Have a value statement prepared that you are ready to say when you are in a situation that is getting tricky.
  • Keep re-stating your points, rephrasing if necessary, and don’t get dragged into details that are irrelevant. This distracts from the solution.
  • Keep a cache of pre-written emails that you can go to in the tough moments. You can tweak as needed for the present client. This helps in both diffusing your emotion of the current situation as well as saving not having to start from scratch over and over.
  • Stop talking once you have made your points. By continuing to talk it opens the conversation to points that are not core to the current conflict.


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Pimlico Interiors

Interior Design Standard

East End Interiors Trade

Mydoma Studio: Well Designed Business


Stamford Waterside Design District

March 19this the 4th birthday party for this podcast! Thanks to Kravet Inc for hosting this. Please join us [5:30]- 7:30 pm at the Kravet Work Space Showroom at 200 Lexington Ave NYC. You can find the RSVP on EventBrite as well as on the website under the Events Tab.

March 21stto 24th Exciting Windows and IWCE  / March 25th to the 27th

Teaching the Professional Window Coverings 7 Step Process, which is open to the public. Go to Exciting Windows. At the IWCE, Luann will be doing Closing the Sale Begins with Hello, as well as moderating some panels on Profitability with the Vin Man and Michele Williams. Next, LuAnn has a panel with Sara Brennan on Packaging your Process and Working with Window Treatment Professionals with Sara Brennan and Vita. Please visit IWCE-Vision.

April 2nd, Thursday, East End Interiors is celebrating 30 years in business this year and they have invited LuAnn to speak at their showroom in Long Island NY. If you were at LuAnn Live last year, then you know Sal and Enza and you already know what a fantastic family business they run. If you are in the NY Metro area, especially LI, you must make the time to join us so you can see everything they have to help you complete all of your design projects. They are a strictly to the trade showroom featuring furniture, lighting, accessory and more. LuAnn is also delighted to share that they are the Exclusive VIP Experience Sponsor for LuAnn Nigara Live 2020.

High Point Market in April. It all starts with LuAnn’s PTF Tour on Friday, April 24th, 8am to 11:00 pm. Yup, all day, this event is jam-packed, loaded-to-the-gills, with eye-opening A-ha’s and advice specific to your business. LuAnn brings you 3 of her PTF Experts and one of them is Sandra Funk, the CEO of HOF. Sandra will be on an upcoming PTF where you will learn how she truly runs the back end of her business. And then, get to spend the whole day picking her brain? Uhmmm, the price of admission is worth it right there, no question. During the next few days at HP, LuAnn will have several presentations and panels. Saturday, April 25th, she’ll moderate a panel at the showroom of the newest sponsor to join the show, Jaipur, which will be co-hosted by Revelwoods and the Interior Design Society. They will be talking about the Design-Build Process and how to navigate the big-ticket projects.

On Sunday, April 26th, LuAnn will be in the HP Theater at [12:00] noon for a very special one-on-one conversation with a very special friend, designer, and all around outstanding human being…not sure if ASID wants the proverbial beans spilled yet…so just put LuAnn on your dance card! Here’s a hint: If you were at LuAnn Live, you could probably make a good guess as to his name… Sunday at 4:00 pm you can always find LuAnn at the Kravet showroom. This is a wonderful opportunity to see and meet the incredible leadership team atKravet Inc. Later at 6:00 pm Sunday, there will be a special VIP party with Mydoma Studio. YOU are the special VIP 🙂 This is a kickoff event to celebrate this new collaboration, so please join us.


Monday morning, LuAnn will moderate a panel all about Process Leads to Profits. LuAnn’s friend and Process Leads to Profits course teacher, Sara Lynn Brennan will be there along with a few others yet to be announced. This is also hosted by Mydoma Studio. Check LuAnn’s Website later this month for all of the locations and details.


What Level is Your Design Business?