In episode 122 of the Design Biz Survival Guide, we welcomed Hillary Kaplan and Miriam Silver Verga – principal designers of Mimi & Hill, a full-service interior design firm based in Westfield, New Jersey. Hillary and Miriam shared how they met, their passions, their distinct differences, and how their relationship culminated into a design business. We also discussed their team structure and how they rely on an untapped pool of talent to create a more diverse scope of design services.
Below are a few of the key pieces of information Hillary and Miriam shared on being an employer, hiring employees for the job they excel at, and building a diversity-based business.
Stay at Home Moms
Hillary and Miriam love to hire stay at home moms. If they can manage their kids, they can manage their work. Many have previous career skills but have decided to stay home and raise their kids. At Mimi & Hill, moms are able to choose their own hours and work on as many projects as they like, all from home. The flexibility provides them an opportunity, and Hillary and Miriam are happy to offer it.
Representing All Groups
A diverse group of individuals at a business will provide a diverse perspective. Hillary and Miriam strive to hire people of all races, genders, viewpoints, and backgrounds. They believe that if you want a diverse client base, you need a diverse team to serve that client base. They also say that if they want their design to be intimate, they must be loving, kind, and intimate with their design team.
Having Team Members of All Ages Working Flexible Hours
Many of Mimi & Hill’s project managers tend to be always available. Since they work flexible hours, they are usually available when needed but don’t necessarily work eight hours per day. The younger Gen Z generation is more boundary-based and will be more opposed to answering a call on Monday if they only work Thursdays. This was one of the learning curves Hillary and Miriam faced when they became employers at their company.
Overall, having a great team comes down to listening to their needs and placing them in positions where they can thrive.
If you want to learn more about building a diversity-based business, visit www.designbizsurvivalguide.com/podcast/dbs122