For Martin Brudnizki, taking on a little too much work is good

Martin Brudnizki does not suffer from a lack of confidence. His career started when, during the Christmas break after studying economics at school, a design student friend showed him some drawings. “I was just thinking, Oh, I could do better than that,” Brudnizki told the host Denis Scully on the last episode of The Home Business Podcast.

Indeed, he could. Brudnizki, a truly cosmopolitan designer, grew up in Sweden as the child of Polish and German immigrants. After earning a degree in interior architecture and design from the American University of London, he started his business, which now operates there and in New York. It’s only fitting that his work takes him all over the world to design some of the world’s finest hotels and restaurants, including Annabel’s in London, The Beekman in New York and Soho House in Miami. Although his aesthetic is difficult to categorize, his work is generally bold and dynamic, in a word, “confident”.

Although he does residential work, Brudnizki always knew he wanted to do commercial projects. “I prefer it, because it has a beginning, a middle and an end. It has to end. The restaurant has to open,” he said. “The psychology of it – you make decisions when you design commercial space, and you see how it affects the business – I always thought that was interesting.”

Plus, he just loves a challenge. “Restaurants are one of the most complex projects you can design. From the movement of staff and the movement of guests through space to materiality to coordinating a huge amount of technical issues, there is so much,” he says. “If you can design a restaurant, you can design anything.”

In this episode of the podcast, Brudnizki discusses his strategy for running a big business, shares his thoughts on returning to the office after the pandemic, and explains why he always likes to take on a little more work than he can handle. This strategy will have particular relevance, he says, if an economic downturn begins to affect the flow of incoming projects.

“We don’t know what will happen in the fall. … the cost of living crisis, the war in Ukraine, it’s all happening at the same time,” he says. “At the moment we are looking at all opportunities.”

Listen to the show below. If you like what you hear, subscribe on Apple Podcasts or Spotify. This episode was sponsored by Serena & Lily and the Future of Home conference.

Homepage photo: Courtesy of Martin Brudnizki Design Studio

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