Fresh Perspective.

Lasting Results.

The Cross Décor and Design Case Study

The Cross is a successful décor and design retailer. Stephanie Vogler and Darci Illich opened the doors seven years ago to realize the dream of running their own business and having the necessary creative control to do things their way. The Cross has been growing ever since.


With growth, however, a series of challenges confronted Stephanie. How to properly address the new demands of a growing business and save enough personal time for family and leisure? How to inspire while simultaneously holding accountable new and existing staff? And, how to better understand the financial implications of decisions made? Her long term goals included:

  • Keeping the company healthy and solid;
  • Drawing an additional $100,000 out of the business annually;
  • Creating a management team & improving her delegation skills;
  • Having more time to spend with family.


  • Redefined and shaped what Stephanie, as President, should be doing to lead a company for greatest impact, including, improving her delegation skills and weighing decisions based on financial analysis paired with qualitative analysis.
  • Developed leadership skills in key managers.
  • Developed accountability systems, driving actions needed for profitability.
  • Shored up measurement systems for financial controls and sales.

Results – After Six Months

  • The Cross is hitting its annual sales targets despite a difficult first quarter—the financial outlook is optimistic.
  • An example of Stephanie’s new ability to delegate and free up time for strategic business planning was a recent buying trip. She scheduled two days to reflect on next season’s trends—48 uninterrupted hours that had never existed before. She also included the sales manager on the trip who returned  to share information with the staff—this used to fall on Stephanie’s shoulders.
  • Marketing plans now exist and are executed. Tactics have shifted, from tradeshows, to establishing a targeted approach to two key market segments. This was significant because it reflects a new strategy of targeted marketing.
  • Motivation was always strong; however, staff engagement continues to improve, demonstrated by employees’ sales results, new leaders taking on responsibilities, and career paths toward interior design work being forged.
  • Stephanie knows where and how she will get her increased revenue. The Cross will be ready to withstand any future pressures it may face.

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