Small Business: Expanding relationships

  • Article by: TODD NELSON , Special to the Star Tribune
  • Updated: March 23, 2014 - 9:31 AM

Kailen Rosenberg, president and founder of Love Architects, is working to help more people prepare for or strengthen relationships.

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Kailen Rosenberg started Love Architects, her Wayzata-based relationship-building business, two decades ago. She has written a book titled “Real Love, Right Now.”

Photo: RENÉE JONES SCHNEIDER , Star Tribune

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Kailen Rosenberg, president and founder of Love Architects, her boutique relationship coaching firm in Wayzata, has gained a national reputation as a celebrity matchmaker.

That’s what happens when you coach Hollywood’s lovelorn, offer relationship advice on network morning TV shows and co-star in an Oprah Winfrey series, “Lovetown, USA.”

Yet Rosenberg would seem to prefer to be known as a successful entrepreneur working to expand her business. Above all, she wants the world to understand that her goal is helping people prepare to find a soul mate and not just serving as matchmaker to the rich and famous, however lucrative that may be.

“I could have taken advantage of my platform and all the press on a level that, truly, I could have retired right now with millions in the bank,” Rosenberg said. “But I would have been miserable as a soul. … I want this to be a healthy-relationship firm, focusing on healthy families, individuals, whatever it takes to create a better world.”

Book broadens reach

Efforts to broaden her reach include her recent book, “Real Love, Right Now,” published by a division of Simon & Schuster, and a planned online portal for vetted singles.

Both would help make her services, which can reach into six figures for “elite matchmaking,” more affordable and more widely accessible to those potential clients who, unlike some celebrities or CEOs, don’t fly here or have Rosenberg flown to their location to work with her.

She’s also exploring opening a Los Angeles office, to expand the work she has done there for years on a limited basis. The positive response to her book, which she succeeded in having placed in Golden Globe nominees’ “swag bags,” and encouragement from friends and clients in Southern California has gotten her attention.

“Actors would pull me aside and their eyes would swell with tears and they would say, ‘Do you work with married couples?’ ” Rosenberg said of her Golden Globes sessions in January. “If I can help them heal in their lives and bring peace to them, they can help bring more love to the world.”

Rosenberg, whose firm has three employees and had revenue of $700,000 last year, is looking at bringing on additional coaches to help spread her methodology. She recently launched a website, theloveradar.com, that “tracks the energy of love and hate via Twitter” in cities across the country. Rosenberg, 46, is not a licensed therapist but makes referrals to certified professionals when specific issues arise.

Self-image coaching

Rosenberg said she understood from a young age, during a chaotic childhood that included witnessing and experiencing abuse, that her mission was to “teach what love really is and that, no matter what, they can absolutely have it.”

She was a top local model in the early 1990s when she began offering support to cohorts, which led her to form a self-image coaching business in 1993.

Within a few years, she had begun introducing people she had coached and others she had met everywhere from coffee shops to airplanes. Local press coverage of her matchmaking exploits led to national attention and calls from celebrities and their agents. Along the way, after an early marriage and divorce, she met her husband, Lance, a builder whose work provided a metaphor for her 2008 rebranding of her business as the Love Architects.

Dr. Dana Thompson, a Chicago-area surgeon and Love Architects client, said she had known Rosenberg for four years and at first found her methods shocking and frustrating. Instead of lining up dates for her, Thompson said, Rosenberg concentrated on issues that were “getting in my way of recognizing what was good for me in a relationship.”

The approach led to some conflicts and “tough conversations,” Thompson said, but she appreciated that Rosenberg stuck to her method. “I thought I was hiring a matchmaker, but that was so not the case,” Thompson said. “I’m much happier with who I am as a person through the work I’ve done with her.”

Alana Hamilton Stewart, a friend of Rosenberg’s and ex-wife of singer Rod Stewart, said Rosenberg helps people gain insights to deal with insecurities or other issues that create problems in starting or building relationships.

‘Intuitive about people’

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