Interview – Carly Nemtean & Erica Gelman

I’ve got another bonus round-table discussion episode for you! In this episode, I have a very candid conversation with Carly Nemtean of Carriage Lane Design-Build & The Collective Workspace, and Erica Gelman of Erica Gelman Design, about team building and everything that goes into it!

Carly is a special returning guest to our podcast. She was first on the podcast for another bonus episode with Jessica Kelly. Click here to listen. Carly Nemtean is the Co-Founder and Principle Designer of Carriage lane Design Build and recently the Co-Founder and CEO of The Collective Workspace, A coworking space for the Design and Architectural community. Carly graduated from Interior Design at Sheridan College and started her journey into the industry working for design firms. She met her business partner Rocco in 2009 on one of her job sites and soon found herself working for him at Alta Moda Millwork designing their cabinetry. Shortly after, Carly landed an opportunity to be a designer for HGTV’s Property Brothers and brought Rocco and his companies along to create full home updates with the show. Realizing the success of their skills combined, they opened their own boutique design and build firm, Carriage Lane Design Build in 2011.

Erica Gelman is the principal designer of Erica Gelman Design Inc in Toronto. She graduate of the esteemed International Academy of Design & Technology leads the talented team. Erica prides herself on a keen eye for detail; combining formal training with her flair for style and impeccable sense of colour to create truly unique spaces. Erica’s work can be seen in numerous national lifestyle publications. Her design approach is simple yet sophisticated; a combination of lush textures and bold patterns infused together to create timeless designs.

Our conversation is incredibly candid while we all share our individual experiences while trying to build a team – from hiring, to training, to placing the right person in the right position, and to the complicated event of losing or firing employees.

As a small business owner the onus is on you to plan, to navigate the business (while also designing and interacting with clients), and finally to act as Human Resources – which a lot of us are not equipped for. It can be difficult to grow a team – especially to find the right people to fit your company and your process. Through our chat, Carly and Erica share how they’ve learned to spot some red flags in hiring, some hard-learned lessons through all of their experience hiring, and who they’ve found to help them react efficiently as an employer.

Finally, we talk heavily about leadership, which can make or break a team. Leadership drives results! Carly expresses the importance of being a present leader, because a business is only as strong as its team, while Erica speaks to the importance of celebrating your wins, while also acknowledging and learning from your failures.

You can find Carly Nemtean at, www., and on Instagram @thecollectiveworkspace.

You can find Erica Gelman at and on Instagram @erica_gelman.