What is a Professional Organizer?
The National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO) explains that, “A professional organizer enhances the lives of clients by designing systems and processes using organizing principles and through transferring organizing skills. A professional organizer also educates the public on organizing solutions and the resulting benefits.” Members of this organization abide by a Code of Ethics.
What is a Certified Professional Organizer?
The Board of Certification for Professional Organizers (BCPO® ) states that “BCPO® certification is a voluntary, industry-led effort that benefits the members of the organizing profession, as well as the public. It is a recognition of professionals who have met specific minimum standards, and proven through examination and client interaction that they possess the body of knowledge and experience required for certification. This program recognizes and raises industry standards, practices and ethics. For the public, while the CPO® designation is not an endorsement or recommendation, certification of professional organizers maximizes the value received from the products and services provided by a CPO®.”
How long does it take to get organized?
It depends on many things, from the items or areas being organized, to the people working, to how quickly decisions are being made. A physical trainer can’t usually tell someone how long it would take them to lose 10 pounds. It simply varies too much and is dependent on the commitment of the person involved. I can tell you that it generally takes longer to organize papers than it does to organize objects. The same stack of papers can take one person 15 minutes to go through and another person 4 hours to go through. After working together for an hour, we would both get a sense of how quickly things can progress based on your habits and comfort level. Getting organized and staying organized takes time and commitment, but the results are more than worth it.
I know I need some help, but I am so embarrassed to have you see my house.
A lot of people feel this way, but there isn’t anything to be embarrassed about. I understand how things can get out of control and I look at it as a challenge. I walk into a cluttered room and can visualize how it will look when we are done. It is exciting! And don’t try to organize before the organizer comes! We need to see how things really are so that we can find the right solution for you.
Are you going to make me throw lots of things away?
Not if you don’t want to. If things are important to you and you have the room to keep them, then we simply find a suitable way to store them. It is completely your decision. Please keep in mind that not everything can be equally important and rarely is there suitable space for everything.
I am afraid you might throw something important away?
Absolutely not. When sorting piles of papers, I create a pile of things that you probably don’t need. Then you sort through and make that decision. I do not throw anything away without your permission.
How do your sessions work?
Everything I do is tailored to your needs and situation. I help people on many different levels. Sometimes, I serve as a consultant to point people in the right direction with an outline of how to accomplish their goals. Sometimes, I teach assistants and housekeepers so they can do some of the work between my sessions with the client. Most often, I work one-on-one with clients to teach them the skills they need to maintain their desired organizational level. And then there are clients who want things organized, but do not want to do any of it themselves, or even be around when the work is being done. Sessions are typically 4 hours long.
Do you work with children?
Yes! I have had great success with children from 3 year olds to teenagers. We have a great time! They are never too young to learn the skills that will help them for a lifetime.
I have pets. Can you work around animals?
Yes! I love animals and am not allergic to them. I often find myself organizing client’s papers with their cat or dog in my lap.
Do you have some sort of training?
In May 2007, I became a Certified Professional Organizer (CPO®) after meeting work and education requirements and passing a written exam. This was the first ever certification exam for organizers. There are less than 325 CPO®s out of over 4,000 Professional Organizers worldwide. I passed the re-certification requirements in 2010 and 2013. I am also a member of the Institute for Challenging Disorganization where I attend frequent teleconferences on a variety of subjects. I completed my training to become a Chronic Disorganization (CD) Specialist in 2002, an Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) Specialist in 2006, and most recently a Hoarding Specialist in April 2011. I continue to expand my knowledge in new products, related services, and programs than can help my clients achieve their goals by attending meetings and conferences for organizers.
There are so many organizers out there. How do I pick one?
There are many different organizers with a wide range of rates and specialties. A big part of finding the right organizer for you is making sure that your energy, enthusiasm, and vision compliment each other. You will know when you talk to the right one for you!
Do you have some sort of guarantee?
Yes! If you book a session with me and you are not happy with how things are going after 1 hour, we can part ways with no hard feelings and no money owed.
Do you have references?
I have posted client testimonials on my website but I do not provide references for you to call. I take client confidentiality and privacy very seriously and do not discuss who I work with. My clients include a wide range from high profile celebrities to teachers and everything in between. I let my work speak for itself and enjoy receiving constant referrals from satisfied clients.
How far will you travel?
I don’t travel as far as I used to because I have 2 small children now. My travel radius is about 40 minutes in any direction from Burbank (including traffic).