Floral Design and Entrepreneurship: Lessons Learned from Miranda ter Voorde

Floral Design and Entrepreneurship Lessons Learned from Miranda ter Voorde

Ter Voorde Shares Insights into her Entrepreneurial Journey During Open Lecture 

In an open lecture, floral entrepreneur Miranda ter Voorde offered students and alumni a glimpse into her journey from florist to successful business owner and entrepreneur.

The lecture, held on 29 February in Apeldoorn, saw attendees eager to learn from ter Voorde's wealth of experience.

Ter Voorde, known for her flower arrangements in Rituals Cosmetics stores, shared anecdotes and emphasised the evolution of her skills and mindset over the years.

"I started as a florist, but in the 24 years that I have my company, I started to be also an entrepreneur," ter Voorde explained. "I'm now more an entrepreneur than a florist. It doesn't mean I don't have the passion anymore, but my skills are so developed in the growth of my company that I love being an entrepreneur." Here, she mentioned her company based in Apeldoorn, Meesterlijk Geschikt, of which she is owner and creative director. Apart from creating flower arrangements for various occasions, ter Voorde and her team at Meesterlijk Geschikt also engage in concept development, event organisation and more. The company has a rich history of organising events, one notable example being the creation of a boat for the coronation of the King of the Netherlands, Willem-Alexander.

Ter Voorde also talked about her book, published in 2010, called 'Celebrations'. In this book, she touches on a world of different festivities (birthdays, bridal showers, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, and more) framed with flowers to show how powerful a floral emotion can be. 

Floral Design and Entrepreneurship Lessons Learned from Miranda ter Voorde

She further detailed how she met Raymond Cloosterman, founder and CEO of Rituals Cosmetics, stating: "He asked me if I want to do something with one of his lines. It was the perfume line with the cherry blossom in it. I thought about an idea to have the cherry blossom integrated into these shops and that's what I did. That was the start of eight years working for Rituals Cosmetics and developing the cherry blossom."

Rituals Cosmetics later wanted to work with more than one supplier. This and the Covid-19 pandemic made her think about how to be less vulnerable as an entrepreneur. After moving the company to a new location in October 2021, she had to find ways to do some cost-cutting and be more profitable.

"As an entrepreneur, you have to be willing to adapt and evolve," ter Voorde advised. "Success is not final, failure is not fatal. It's the courage to continue that counts."

She also says that you always need a plan when you are an entrepreneur.  

"Take time to calculate your costs now and then. This way you can decide what is necessary, what is nice to have, and what I can do without to run my company."

She is now looking at opening a home furniture store and would also like to focus more on various sustainable practices. Apart from that, she believes that it is important to give back to your hometown.  

"I also want to grow as a person. I want my team to be able to manage themselves without relying on my working hours."  

Dr Colin MacKenzie, Associate Professor of Applied Sciences at Wittenborg, who attended ter Voorde's open lecture said that students found the lecture to be inspirational and admired her determination to never give up despite facing various obstacles, such as the pandemic.  

He remarked, "Business is not a straightforward linear journey, sometimes it has its highs and can have many lows. Miranda’s journey illustrated the challenges of growing a business. As a lecturer in Entrepreneurship and Creativity, for me, her talk was a practical example of how to apply creative thinking to the problems posed by outside forces."

MacKenzie highlighted another key takeaway from the lecture, stating, "'To value yourself’ - if you know you have the necessary skills and knowledge to add value, make sure to say 'This is the price'. Too many people undervalue their talent."

He further noted that ter Voorde acknowledged the importance of continuous learning, stating, "She also made a point of taking time out to think about her business and personal vision and aims. This is important; people need to know how to work on the business and not simply work in the business."

Reflecting on the inevitability of mistakes in business, MacKenzie emphasised, "Every business person has, at some point, made some mistakes; however, the ability to learn from them and adapt makes the difference in whether you are going to be successful or not. Ter Voorde highlighted these attributes with practical stories and stoicism, and the students appreciated her explanations." 

WUP 15/03/2024

by Erene Roux

©WUAS Press