EP 072 | Collaboration Rather Than Competition with Leah Ansel & Maury Riad

August 7, 2018

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At Business of Design™ we believe that working together as collaborators is a better way to get ahead as an individuals. Listen in to this conversation from NYC where three design advocates explore how we can lift the whole industry.

In this episode we learn:
– when we collaborate, we help each other run better businesses
– being on an island has less upside than collaborating—don’t do this on your own
– giving trade references to other designers will keep your best trades working
– to be cautious about where your data is stored when working with sensitive information
– not all advice is good advice so be choosy
– there is no limit to what you can charge—providing you are delivering a great result


Take Aways

Interior Design Community (IDC)


Design Intervention

Kimberley says: Consider improv to improve listening and communication skills. Protect your partner by always saying “yes and…”


Meet Maury Riad

For more than 25 years, Maury Riad has worked in the world of interior design. As a steward of the Fortuny legacy, he, along with his brother Mickey Riad, took over operations of the Venetian textile company from their father in the early 1990s. Together, they brought the 100-year-old firm online and into modernity, expanding design, sales and distribution. Mickey directed design and creative, while Maury oversaw the business and its operations. Against all odds, they grew and reshaped the business while keeping Fortuny’s soul intact, preserving the original printing process that Mariano Fortuny developed in the early 1900s.

Working closely with interior designers, Maury has seen design go through seismic shifts. Technology has cracked open the once-insular world, bringing design to more people but also making it more homogeneous. Maury sees an opportunity to usher in an era of creative design that adapts to the digital age without losing its independence. Just as he once did with Fortuny, through Fuigo, Maury is bringing design into the future while protecting its past.

About Fuigo

A Japanese word, fuigo are the bellows used to fan flames for traditional sword making. Without the bellows, the oven wouldn’t get hot enough to forge a sword. Fuigo is the power behind the process, the energy that keeps the fire going. For a design firm, Fuigo means community, workspace, an unmatched resource library, software, access to top-tier product vendors and sourcing, business support and bookkeeping—it’s everything you need to design your firm’s future.

With co-founder Bradley Stephens of Stephens Design Group, Mickey and Maury Riad created a flagship space that expresses their shared vision for the future of interior design. The full-floor, 18,000 square-foot New York City studio inspires with beautifully appointed workspaces and all the amenities and resources designers need to grow a successful business.



Meet Leah Ansel

Leah Ansel is the President of Space Planning Technologies, Inc. a full service interiors business based in Manhattan, which she founded in 2002.

Her mission is to provide original, personalized design solutions in residential, commercial and hospitality spaces. With a background in Art, Architecture, Fashion and Jewelry Design,
Leah brings an holistic approach to every Interiors project. She believes in a Higher Purpose of Interior Design and Decorating – to elevate the experience of our daily living/working environments.

In 1996, Leah was accepted to an exclusive certification program for Feng Shui, taught by Masters Barry Gordon, Steven Post and Edgar Sung. These universal principles are inherent in her work.

Speaking Engagements/Teaching Experience:
*The New York School of Interior Design
*The 92nd Street Y – Makor Center
*Gracious Home
*Fashion Institute of Technology
*Yale University
*NYIT – teaching courses on Interior Design for the last 6 semesters.

Leah believes Beauty (as defined by its beholder) is absolutely essential for All, not a luxury for the few. We need Beauty to thrive because it feeds our soul.

Website: Space Planning Technologies

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