I am excited to share this interview with you!
I met Suzanne at a local business networking meeting and we quickly became friends. She has a great personality and a true desire to encourage everyone she meets. She is someone that you want to be friends with because her energy is contagious!
I admire her entrepreneurial drive! She has two businesses that -at the surface- do not seem related but as you talk to her, you see that they are related! Suzanne can help you “make everything beautiful” from your house to your skin!
She is an Interior Designer and an Independent Consultant for Rodan + Fields. She is great at both businesses and is also a wife and a mom, and very involved in the community!
I thought it would be great to interview her to share her story with you all and to see what a balance is for her between all that she has going on.
Now, on to my interview with Suzanne Harvey…
What is the best part of your interior design business?
Suzanne: The best part of my design business is helping people make their homes really work for them instead of against them. Our homes need to be a haven for us to recharge from the craziness of life. If there is something in our space that doesn’t work well or causes us frustration it is a problem. I love finding solutions that make a home a calm retreat (even with kids and pets😉). And it is so fun to find solutions on a budget. It doesn’t have to be expensive to be functional & beautiful!
What is the best part of helping others find the right Rodan + Fields products?
Suzanne: Skincare is a very personal thing. It requires a relationship if you are talking to someone about it, so I love the fact that if I am helping someone with Rodan + Fields products we have developed some trust. I am a relationship person. I love that I get to help men & women find the right skincare solutions with Rodan + Fields. Our skin is what everyone sees and when there are issues it can affect us on this inside as well as the outside. When I am able to help someone solve a skincare issue and see them gain confidence and love the way they look it is life changing – for them and for me.
How do you balance running your businesses with other life responsibilities such as being a wife and a mom?
Suzanne: Haha! Balance is what we all strive for. I don’t know that it is attainable but as a mom I really try to keep realistic expectations and give myself lots of grace. My son is in elementary school so that really helps. I work while he is at school most days. On the days I need to work after he is home, we have an agreement that I will only work until 5p. I also keep a note on my desk that he wrote me as a reminder of what is truly important. It reads, “ You need to finish your work so you can play with me”. As a mom, wife & business owner, I get to choose my hours and it is my responsibility to hold to those boundaries so that my family gets the best of me, not the leftovers.
What do you hope to teach your son as he sees you be an entrepreneur running 2 businesses?
Suzanne: I want to teach him that we have choices about how & for whom we work. The business world is constantly changing and I want him to find his passion and find the work that suits him best – whether that is working for someone or working for himself. The other big lesson I hope he sees in the way I do business is that it is always about service. We are always able to help someone. We always have something to give.
What is your morning routine?
Suzanne: I am really not a morning person, but I have created a routine that works for our family. I get up a bit before 7am and get coffee & breakfast for my son (by breakfast I mean cheerios & a cereal bar – nothing fancy or glamorous here!). We snuggle and watch cartoons until it’s time to get ready. I am the mom in the drop off line with my yoga pants and a hat on with no makeup (although I usually have washed my face & brushed my teeth). I head home and spend 20 minutes reading and quietly preparing for the day. My office hours start at 10am. With a relaxed morning routine, I am ready to tackle my to do’s by 10am.
What does a typical “day in the life” look like for you?
Suzanne: What I love most is that everyday is different. But I do have routines that are a part of my day, every day. I head to my home office at 10am on most days. It’s important that I schedule 1-2 days that are mostly office days and schedule appointments during the afternoon and on the other days. I love being with people so office days aren’t so fun but they are necessary. It’s important that I spend about 30 minutes checking in with my Rodan + Fields customers and follow up with anyone wanting more information. Then I revisit the to do list from the day prior and see what I need to take care of. A lot of my time for the design business is spent doing research – getting the best material options and pricing for my clients. Since I work from home, I try to take an actual lunch break and sit at the table. It helps me clear my head and get ready for the afternoon. I plan most of my appointments for the afternoon before school pick up.
What do you do for self-care?
Suzanne: Self-care is critical for every mom! I have not always been good about taking time for me but since starting my skincare business I have to take time for me or I will burn out and be useless to those who need me most.
The first practice I started was taking Sundays off. Whatever I don’t get done Monday through Saturday, waits until the next Monday. We start Sundays at church. I must get my soul recharged first. Then I take a long, afternoon nap, read a book or watch TV. These are also the times I schedule fun family activities. Taking one day a week to relax & recharge has made a huge difference and I get more done during my work hours.
Another favorite self-care practice is time with my friends. I schedule coffee, lunch and even weekend trips with my inner circle. These are the friends that speak truth to me, keep me in line and help me keep my priorities in order. I build this time into my schedule and put it on the calendar. If it goes on the calendar it happens! And a huge thank you to my husband who steps up every time so I can get away.
Another important way that I take care of myself is date nights. When our son was born, we made a commitment to have a date once a month. Getting away with my husband, even if just for a quick dinner to review our upcoming schedule or catch up from the week, makes me better. When we are connected, I can handle whatever craziness comes my way during the week. Then I am ready to get back to mom & entrepreneur.
Who is an ideal client for your interior design work?
Suzanne: My ideal design client is someone who’s been in their house for awhile and it needs some TLC. Unlike some designers, I love working with DIYers and I am always trying to find ways to provide better services to them. Most homeowners just need help with the ideas. They want to do the work themselves or they have a friend / family that can do it. It is so fun to help them find the right elements to create the space they have been dreaming of. It is fun to get creative with a small budget and see what can be done (although a big budget is a wonderful thing too).
Who is an ideal client for Rodan + Fields Products?
Suzanne: One of the things I love about Rodan + Fields is that our products help with 90% of the most common skin care concerns. We really do have products for everyone. And with a wide range of consultants, we can take care of every demographic. Most of my clients are women & moms that need help for those pesky wrinkles, tired eyes, sensitive skin or adult acne. They want to take better care of themselves and they want to look better with less makeup. They aren’t trying to look like they did 20 years ago, just a refreshed version of themselves without the needles and surgeries. When we look better we feel better.
Thank You, Suzanne, for this amazing interview and for helping us all make our homes and skin beautiful!
My favorite, must-have product that Suzanne introduced me to is the Rodan + Fields lip shield. That lip balm is the best for chapped lips especially in this dry, Winter weather. I use it on my toddler’s chapped lips, too!
Suzanne is offering a special discount on Rodan + Fields products for the Akron Ohio Moms’ readers. Simply complete the solution tool on her website and you will get a customized list of recommended products from the Rodan + Fields doctors as well as her special discount! Check it out here:
If you are interested in chatting with Suzanne about interior design, check out her website! That is where you will find all the details on the services she offers! Check it out: www.suzannemharvey.com