What Level is Your Design Business?

Power Talk Friday: Kimberly Merlitti: Profitable Firms Build Estimates Before They Sign The Contract

Episode 592 of A Well-Designed Business®

Welcome to A Well-Designed Business, it’s Power Talk Friday! LuAnn welcomes Kimberly Merlitti, the Virtual CFO, back to the show. Kimberly also happens to be one of the co-authors for our third book, A Well-Designed Business, Power Talk Experts Volume 2, which is coming out in November.

On today’s show, Kimberly is sharing with us the importance of preparing an estimate for your job before you sign a contract. If there’s one thing Kimberly knows, it’s numbers! And she is going to walk you through not only WHY preparing an estimate at the very beginning is important, but also how to do this the right way, how to stay on track, and how to rely on data, so that you’re not playing a guessing game and risking losing money in your business. Because at the end of the day, you are not just a designer, you’re an entrepreneur, right?

Kimberly Merlitti owns KMM Consulting based out of Washington, D.C. She has 20 years of experience working in accounting for companies such as Swinerton Builders, WRNS Studio, and Martin Group. She has her Masters in Accounting from Golden Gate University. Located in Washington D.C. Kimberly’s clientele includes a diverse group of service-based companies, with the main focus on small interior design, construction, and architectural firms. The goal of her firm is to make the businesses she works for as profitable as they can be by educating them on accounting, cash flow management, tax deductions, project reporting, and business management.

Show Highlights:

  • Kimberly sums up WHY you need to learn how to estimate.
  • Kimberly has a streamlined process when it comes to teaching others how to estimate.
  • Tracking your time and taking really good notes is imperative, not only for interior designers but for architects and contractors, as well.
  • What to do if the job is outside of the original scope.
  • Respect a client’s time and money, and they will be thankful for it.
  • Although Kimberly can be hired to teach how to estimate, she explains the way that you can also teach yourself using these four categories:
    • Design fee
    • Purchasing fee
    • Installation fee
    • Indoor & Outdoor furniture fee
  • Tracking your time is one of the biggest factors in your profitability.
  • Have cross-checks in place.
  • Confidence is in the knowledge and execution of the process and makes fielding clients’ questions more systematic.
  • If you’re new in the business, here’s Kimberly’s advice!
  • The data drives your whole company. You’re not just a designer, you’re an entrepreneur.
  • FREE From Kimberly: 7 Tips for Estimating BEFORE the Contract

(Without Just Guessing!) – get yours HERE!

Connect with Kimberly!

Kimberly’s Website

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Kimberly’s LinkedIn

Kimberly’s Email

Links :

FREE From Kimberly: 7 Tips for Estimating BEFORE the Contract

(Without Just Guessing!)

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Other shows mentioned to link:

#361 Power Talk Friday: Kimberly Merlitti: Does Your Interior Design Business Need a CFO?

#442 Power Talk Friday: Kimberly Merlitti: Do You Know Your Cash on Hand Number?

#384 Sarah Magness: Practical Strategies for Talking Budgets


What Level is Your Design Business?