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Build Your Business by Hiring Strategically

By Gail Doby, ASID
CVO and Co-Founder of Gail Doby Coaching & Consulting

Less than ten years ago, Garrison Hullinger was a successful project manager with Old Navy when he suffered a work-related brain injury that required him to relearn how to walk, read and write. During his recovery, on the advice of his physical therapist, he undertook a small home remodeling project and discovered he had a passion for design. He started offering design services out of an office in his attic, and today is one of Portland, Oregon’s most sought-after interior designers, with a team of 34 employees.

When I met Garrison and heard his story, I was blown away, not only by the challenges he had overcome, but also by his meteoric rise to success in his new career. He gives a lot of the credit to his team and explained that while working at Old Navy he came to appreciate the value of hiring the right people. Over the years, he built his business organically and strategically. When he wanted to expand into a new area, he acquired the talent he needed. That saved a lot of time and trial and error.

Garrison knows s thing or two about how to hire. He already had a lot of experience—he hired over 3,000 people during his time at Old Navy—before he started building his design business. He’s also very talented at reading people. Still, the lesson I took away from my first conversation with Garrison is how important it is to have the right team. No matter how talented, dedicated or hardworking you are, you can only go so far on your own. Combining your talents with those of others, then funneling and nurturing that talent toward a common vision and goals is like acquiring a whole new set of superpowers to take your business to higher levels.

Erin and I are delighted to announce that Garrison will be one of the keynote speakers at this year’s Genius Exchange in Providence, Rhode Island, July 17-19. If you’d like to benefit from his wisdom and experience regarding building a stellar team, plus gain a trove of other insights from top designers to grow your business, we hope you will join us. For more information and to register, go to the Genius Exchange website.

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