We had the good fortune of connecting with Rande Leaman and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Rande, other than deciding to work for yourself, what was the single most important decision you made that contributed to your success?
Several years into starting my own interior design firm, I was contacted by a couple to do a full scale gut remodel of their kitchen. I had spent the previous few years concentrating on living room, family room & bedroom interiors — not wanting to risk my growing reputation and take on the stressful commitment of kitchen and bathroom remodels. I turned them down. She persisted. And something inside me said to take this risk, and that one decision changed the success of my business profoundly. Most of my work is now large scale home renovations and kitchen design is my absolute favorite part of what I do. Helping clients feel great in their homes and changing how they function and live in their space (now more than ever) is a complete privilege and a joy. This decision was a major shift for me both personally and financially as my business grew. I learned to really trust my instincts and sometimes when you do the thing that scares you, the rewards are infinite.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
One of the things that clients repeatedly say about working with us is how easy and enjoyable the design process is. Remodeling a home is both costly and emotional for people, and knowing that you have us to oversee all the millions of decisions that occur is a relief for those that hire us. One of the most important skills I have as a designer is to listen and to translate our clients ideas into reality. I get excited to bring each clients “story” into the design and strive to make each house reflect the unique family I’m working with. Years of training and experience, my unique creative style, professional attitude and attention to detail is what sets us apart from other design firms. Dealing calmly with any issues that arise definitely helps me navigate any challenges that come up in my business. The biggest challenge has been renegotiating our working style due to the pandemic this year, along with unexpected delays in products and in remodel timeframes. Having a good attitude and communicating clearly with clients helps us effectively deal with any setbacks that occur. Design is always a creative puzzle and we are persevering and putting the pieces together in a gorgeous and functional way, albeit with masks and gloves on!
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I love living in Studio City and we’re lucky enough to have some of the best restaurants in LA to enjoy. Dinners at Wood and Water, Firefly and Mr.O’s; going to the theatre and museums (in normal times); shopping the La Cienega Design Quarter; and hanging out with a glass of rose in my backyard.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Dedicated to my amazing clients who continually trust me and my team to help transform their homes — and to the talented contractors and tradespeople who help bring our vision to life. And on a personal note… my supportive husband and kids!
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