You are moving forward on your organizing challenges. You’re at the point where you want to enlist the help of a professional organizer. There are thousands of organizers in the world and each is as unique as the clients they serve. With so many choices, how do you find an organizer that’s right for you? By considering some of these questions, you can find a good fit.
1. Assessment – Clarifying your needs will help you find which organizer is right for you.
- What kind of organizing help do you need? There is a wide-range of organizing specialties. Some organizers specialize in residential or business organizing. Some organize papers while others orchestrate moves. Some organizers are generalists while others specialize in working with the organizationally challenged.
- Do you need assistance with a single, short-term project such as organizing a closet or do you need help with a more complex long-term project including ongoing support such as organizing an entire household?
- Has organizing always been a challenge for you? If so, consider hiring an organizer that specializes in working with chronically disorganized clients.
- Do you have the time and financial resources to invest in your organizing goals?
2. Contact – Initial conversations can be indicators for the future success of your relationship.
- Did you find the organizer through a referral, ad, professional association, article or Internet search?
- When you first communicated with the organizer, were they responsive?
- Did they answer all your questions?
- Did they understand your unique challenges and organizing goals?
- Would you enjoy working with them?
3. Availability – Even though organizing is a service industry geared towards our clients, individual organizing companies are structured differently.
- Are your schedules compatible?
- Can the organizer accommodate your needs?
- Do you want to work with the organizer evenings or weekends? If so, is the organizer available then or do they only work during the weekdays?
4. Research – Exploring further will enable you to make a more informed decision.
- Did you interview more than one organizer? Organizers have different personalities, business practices and methodologies, so it might be beneficial to contact several organizers to compare differences.
- Did you ask the organizer for references? If so, consider the type of work the organizer did with those clients (was it similar to your needs) and the longevity of the relationship. What insights did the client share?
- Does the organizer have a website? If so, did you review it to learn more about them and their business? What impressions did you have?
5. Intuition – Let your insights help guide you.
- What does your inner voice tell you about the organizer?
- Were you able to easily communicate with them?
- Did you feel hopeful or hopeless after talking with them?
6. Education & Experience – The level of the organizer’s education and experience can have an effect on your organizing success.
- What type of special education or training does the organizer have?
- How long have they been in business as an organizer?
- Do they continue to educate themselves on organizing issues and trends?
- Do they have resources such as other professionals, publications or products that they will share with you?
- Do they belong to any professional organizing associations such as ICD, NAPO, POC, NBPO or AAPO? The more involved the organizer is with their industry, the more value they can offer to the client.
Like you, organizers want the relationship to be successful. If they are not well suited for you, they should be able to refer you to another organizer that can better meet your needs.
Are there any other questions that are important to consider? How did you find your organizer?