You’re Never Stuck In A Bucket - Molly McDonald - Defining Hospitality - Episode #104

Checking in for today’s episode of Defining Hospitality is a passionate member of the hospitality space who sees design through a unique lens. She’s a design maven who flawlessly utilizes her skills for business development. Joining us today is Associate, and Director of Business Development at Looney Associates, Molly McDonald. Molly joins host Dan Ryan to share her journey from Designer to Director, explore hospitality as a sense of community, and explain why you’re never stuck in one bucket in the industry.  

  • For Molly, her definition of hospitality has changed with her career. When she started, hospitality was a space she designed within. As her career progressed, hospitality began to evolve into a feeling of community, highlighting the importance of collaboration. 
  • As a young designer you may feel worried about getting stuck in one place for too long. You’re not limited to one path, but a change doesn’t need to come externally. If you vocalize your wants to your company, you can find a fulfilling change internally. 
  • Every client facing business relies on strong customer relationships, and hospitality is no different. In the hospitality design industry, client relationships can last up to 5 years, and you need to be prepared to work with that client for a long time frame. 
  • If you’re looking to get into business development, having a strong design background is crucial. To effectively sell, you need to know what you’re selling, and be able to speak to nuances in schedules, processes, vendors, and more. 
  • While there are many talented driven designers out there, there are only a handful of lead designer roles at firms. For designers looking for other high caliber roles, business development allows you to both utilize your design skills, and drive growth for your firm. 
  • While Revit and BIM may feel like overkill on some projects, they provide value in communicating ideas to clients. 3d renders give a better sense of the project to decision makers who aren’t familiar with reading floor plans. 
  • Hospitality design has gotten more and more intricate. More frequently, designers are interacting with architects at early stages, and providing the lens of hospitality to non-traditional projects like senior living facilities and social clubs. 

Quote of the Show:
  • “I've always loved getting to know everybody and I didn't realize that I could turn that into my job.” - Molly McDonald


Shout Outs:

Ways to Tune In: 
You’re Never Stuck In A Bucket - Molly McDonald - Defining Hospitality - Episode #104
Broadcast by