I receive a lot of calls and emails asking for advice on how to start an organizing business. I hope to address most of the questions I receive in this post but if I miss something or I don’t fully address a point, please feel free to make a comment.
1) Join NAPO. I have friends who disagree but for myself this is what truly kick started my career. Without NAPO and my fellow professional organizers I would not have received my first customer referral. Without NAPO I wouldn’t have been contacted by HGTV to audition for Mission Organization. Without NAPO I wouldn’t have the amazing educational or conference opportunities that I do as a member. NAPO has a lot of benefits and I believe that it is worth the cost.
2) This is a business so treat it as such. Write a business plan, develop a marketing strategy, create a website that is organized, . For some, organizing is a hobby and that is great, however if you want to be a Professional Organizer whose clients are not just friends and family, I would recommend utlizing every tool to enhance your business.
3) Build a portfolio. I wish that I had taken more before and after photos! I have completed some amazing projects with awesome clients and I wish that I had those images now.
4) Understand Client Expectations. I went to an amazing class taught by Standolyn Robertson in 2005 and she discussed client expectations versus your expectations. She noted that what you might find organized is not necessarily what the client wants or expects so first make sure you know the client’s end goal and what they expect.
5) Adverstise Locally. I received more clients from the local news magazine than I did from my television appearances.
6) Educate yourself on organizing techniques and products. You might have the most organized home in your area, however, it takes a lot of patience and knowledge to be able to help others get and stay organized.
7) Work with other organizers in your area. I fully believe in collaboration not competition when it comes to my fellow organizers. Some of my closest friends are organizers I have collaborated with.
8) Have fun! I truly enjoy working with individuals and businesses and seeing how my efforts help them to get and stay organized.