Between New Year’s resolutions, Marie Kondo, spring cleaning, the approaching real estate moving season or whatever your motivation, choosing the right Professional Organizer for you is an important decision. There are many people out there offering this very valuable service, and I have the utmost respect for my fellow organizing colleagues. Here are some pointers to help you find the right man or woman to meet your particular needs…
- NAPO! I cannot speak enough about the importance of being committed to our professional organization. From having to abide by a code of ethics to vast education opportunities to access to related business partners, libraries and more the commitment to being a part of our organization distinguishes those that treat the world of professional organizing as a career versus a hobby.
- What are your specific goals? Being able to communicate that clearly from the very first introductory meeting and throughout the process is crucial towards reaching your desired outcome. Having a clear eye on the prize ensures you find an organizer who has experience in those areas and matches your communication style.
- Self-awareness is key. If your organizational struggles stem from deeper issues of ADD, depression, grief and the like, it is imperative that you find a PO who is skilled in those areas.
- Empathy and non-judgmental personality traits are crucial. It is very hard to invite someone into your personal space and open yourself up to struggles. The organizing process is deeply personal and finding someone who can bring aid and support in a manner that is comfortable for you is essential.
- Will adjunct services such as junk removal, document scanning or shredding, memory preservation, custom closet design be needed as well? Does this person have contacts in the areas that will also be needed?
- Is a Certified Professional Organizer necessary? It depends on what your needs and goals are. To become certified, an organizer needs to have clocked in a lot of paid client hours, passed a not-so-easy exam which required reading and studying, continued learning through required continuing education hours and dues. If you fall into the category identified in #2 above, then I would say yes, although there are many very good organizers who carry the necessary credentials who may not have gotten certified for whatever reason. So, ask questions about his/her experience in the areas you need help.
Now that you are armed with some key information, where do you go to find your perfect fit? Visit NAPO, www.napo.org, NAPO-GA, www.napogeorgia.com, the Institute for Challenging Disorganization, www.challengingdisorganization.org and to learn more about Certified Professional Organizers, https://www.napo.net/page/_certificatio. Ask your friends, ask for references. Basically, ask! Get as much information as you can to make sure the person you trust with your organizing needs is the right fit for you.