Hugh Stearns’ background in psychology comes in handy for his remodeling business. His company has what he calls a Clarity Council, comprising Stearns, the company’s designer, and its production manager. The council was created as a means of controlling the company’s growth, in terms of both revenue and size, as well as producing a quality product and bettering customer satisfaction.

The council begins each year with a review of the company’s long-term plans before creating a plan for the coming year. Once the yearly plan is made, the council creates quarterly plans that include goals and obligations. “Every company needs a means of directing its growth,” he says.

Stearns also fosters a culture of learning. He asks his fellow Clarity Council members to read one or two books a year so that they can discuss them and “harvest what [they] can” to use in the business.

“We spend a lot of time making sure that everybody in the company is gaining new information,” he adds.

His psychology background extends to his design theory as well. He calls his design approach Transitions, as it creates physical and visual transitions from the home to natural settings.“We [design spaces] to create happy and healthy environments,” Stearns says. “Studies have shown that designs that create a connection for people, to each other and to natural settings, increase health and happiness.”