What Level is Your Design Business?

Andrea Hysmith: Structure and Flexibility, Keys to Reaching Goals in Your Interior Design Business

Episode 663 of A Well-Designed Business®

Today with Andrea Hysmith:

Welcome to A Well-Designed Business. Goal-setting isn’t always easy. Sometimes, we write a list of goals and never take any steps to get there. Other times, we become so obsessed with the goals that we develop tunnel vision and fail to see when we need to adapt. All too often, unexpected situations derail our goals entirely.  My guest today, Andrea Hysmith, has found the balance between flexibility and structure that allows her to pivot when the unexpected happens, maintaining a commitment to strong client experiences and to her business values. Today, she’s sharing her insights on how to do that, no matter what comes your way.

Pick it apart:

  • [5:50] Andrea shares her part-organic, part-structured process to goal-setting.
  • [11:10] Andrea breaks down the steps she takes to bring in a steady stream of referrals and network-based clients.
  • [16:12] Andrea discusses her unique process to building relationships with her clients.
  • [36:25] Andrea shares the journey she took to open her brick-and-mortar studio, the first black-owned business in her neighborhood.
  • [45:00] LuAnn and Andrea dive into the experience and challenges of being a Black business owner.

LuAnn and Andrea Hysmith’s Ah-Ha moments:

“For me, at least, when I have this structure in place, even if I have to adjust it, it gives me a guide.” -Andrea Hysmith


“Always tell people what you do and ask for what you want.” -Andrea Hysmith


“It’s walking that line and really figuring out the people whose values align with yours and making sure that they’re a culture fit from one human to another.” -LuAnn Nigara


“We keep the goal, but we throw away some of the things we thought were attached to the goal and open our mind to what other way we can get to the goal.” -LuAnn Nigara

More About Andrea Hysmith:

Andrea Hysmith, CAPS; Associate ASID Andrea Harvey; Founder of ASH Interiors and Design is an Interiors Specialist, Kitchen and Bath Designer, Manufacturer Representative, Speaker and Presenter that has been sharing her knowledge of luxury design and products in the design industry for over twenty years. Her industry experience includes kitchen, bath, and interior design…focusing on residential and light commercial spaces. Her background as a manufacturer’s representative of luxury kitchen and bath products has increased her knowledge of products, skills in training and business development. Her relationships with the A&D Community have made her a well-recognized resource in the Washington Metro Market. Andrea recently opened her design studio and office space in Historic Ellicott City becoming the first woman of color to open a brick-and-mortar design space in this area. In this studio space, she works with design clients as well as B2B partners educating them on the luxury products the firm represents. Andrea is a member of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID), The Hospitality Industry Network (NEWH) & Black Interior Design Network (BID). As well as an advisory board member of the Historic Ellicott City Board. Andrea loves connecting to her clients and peers…she is said to be relatable, knowledgeable, informative, and always fun. She believes that design is truly a lifestyle!

Connect with Andrea Hysmith:



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A Big THANK YOU to Today’s Podcast Sponsor:


The Seattle Design Center Spring Design Week is kicking off from May 3rd-7th. Join me and Kravet for “Design Discussions with Barry Lantz.” on May 4th at [10:00] AM PST. I will be hosting an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at Barry Lantz of Lantz Collective’s debut collection, “Canvas to Cloth.”

Join Barry and me as he shares how his newest collection came to life. Visit the link in our show notes, or at the link in our Instagram bio to register!

Other Shows Mentioned:

#282 Blanche Garcia – You Teach Clients How to Treat You

#598 Judith Taylor – How an Introvert Networks in an Extroverted Industry



What Level is Your Design Business?