Wendy Green is an accredited Designer, a member of the Design Institute of Australia and a member of the Master Builders Association. With a wealth of industry experience behind her, Wendy launched her design consultancy, Wow Factor Design, in 2003. More recently she has brought to market Designer in a Box, a luxury home wares and corporate gifting online store.
Her colourful, widely varied resume includes fitting out a restaurant in a train carriage and giving colour advice to a funeral home, among scores of high-end homes and commercial properties in Newcastle and beyond.
Wendy’s aesthetic is clean and contemporary finishes, with a focus on line, shape and style. Thriving on creativity, Wendy has never overlooked a detail.
- What was the journey that led you to start your own business?
15 years ago I did some work for a lady who had come in from South Africa and she had no idea of any sort of building materials or products that were available in Australia to build a home. I wasn’t qualified then, but I said to her that after being in seven homes and two unit developments that I could probably help her. So I did, and at the end of the time she said to me ‘is this your business?’, and I said no, and she said it should be! It got me thinking about all the other things that I had done and how much pleasure I got out of doing them and so I decided to study Interior Design and so that led me obviously from there to where I am now.
- How do you juggle two different brands within your business structure?
Very carefully. I found it’s a learning curve, I’m very organised and you have to be trying to run two businesses.
I try not to let things slide, if something needs action I take the action straight away because otherwise it can then create a big drama at the end of the time.
I found with the businesses that I have, having them both under the one roof has been a very good move for me after trying to run two from two different locations.
I think planning and learning, always keeping up to date with what is happening in your own field is a big advantage.
- Have you ever turned down a client or chosen not to work with someone?
I have, and it proved to be a good thing at the time. About six years ago I went to look at a commercial job, and I just didn’t get the right feel from the client that I was going to be able to work with him and so I just put it as nicely as I could and just said I don’t think we have a great fit here and look I wish you well in your project and he hired another designer. A couple of months after the job had been finished I happened to run into her and she said it had been an absolute nightmare. So for that I was really glad that I didn’t take the job and sometimes I think that people have to remember it is about the contact and being able to work with someone well.
- Did you always know you want to be an entrepreneur?
Of course I didn’t, I had no idea and even now I don’t see myself as that ‚Äì I see myself as someone who is really passionate about what I do. I love the learning process, so I think that developing and growing in that way has been really good for me.
If you had of said to me 15 years ago that I would own two businesses ‚Äì one interior design and one online business ‚Äì I would have said you have the wrong person, it’s not me.
- What local businessperson do you find inspiring?
I think Leigh Bryant from Scorpion International ‚Äì I’m a very big fan of Leigh. Apart from the fact I think that in the role that she has with dealing in international freight, it’s basically a man’s domain and I am not saying there is anything wrong with that, but she is has been in business a long time, she is very successful, she also is a big believer in giving back and she does a lot of mentoring as well so I think she is a fabulous business person.