With the recent pandemic arose the need to rapidly “go virtual” in many areas of our lives. We visited with friends and family via Zoom, even playing virtual Bingo, celebrating birthdays, Mother’s Day, graduations and the like. We conducted business virtually, learned virtually, ordered groceries, even attended concerts or went on virtual vacations. So, why should virtual organizing be left out of the fun?
Some Professional Organizers have been offering virtual services over the past few years and are running very successful businesses as such. Others of us were thrust into it when in-home visits became unsafe. In fact, on one webinar on conducting productive virtual organizing sessions, over 500 organizers were on the call from across the country!
So, what is virtual organizing? How does it work? Is it for me? Here are the answers to all of your burning questions…
What is the basic concept?
Virtual organizing works very similarly to in-person sessions. The only differences are the mode in which the organizer delivers the service and the fact that the organizer is not there to physically hold the objects with or for you. So, the good news is no mask or Purell needed!
Virtual sessions tend to be shorter than in-person sessions, typically 1 -1 ½ hours. The goal is to identify one specific area to work and hone in on. Time spent going room to room and/or all over the house is not an efficient use of virtual session time. That being said, longer sessions can take place and it is still ok to take breaks when needed.
Who is virtual organizing ideal for?
- Those who do not have an organizer near them
- Those who would like a more affordable way to get organizing help
- Those who would benefit from shorter sessions, which may be less overwhelming
- Those who are busy professionals, parents, or overall have limited availability for longer sessions
- Those who need time management assistance
- Those who need an accountability/check in session
- Almost anyone!
What is the process for starting to work virtually?
Step 1: Like any prospect call, I will take the time to discuss your needs and goals over the phone.
Step 2: Upon deciding that we are a good fit for one another, the first session will be scheduled, usually via Zoom where I have a paid business account with no time limits. I will schedule the call and send you the link with log-in information. You can opt to send me pictures of the space(s) so I can review ahead of time.
Step 3: At the time of our scheduled session, we will each log on. For me, I will be sitting at my desk on my computer with a camera (yes, you can see what my own home office looks like but be mindful of the fact that I’m moving soon and boxes are starting to pile up). You should be on a device that is easy for you to hold, laptops or tablets tend to work better than phones. You will be using the camera to literally show me around. This can be the most challenging part, as a little motion sickness may be involved. A tripod or some kind of stand is often very helpful for this reason.
Step 4: I will guide you through the process step by step of clearing the space we have agreed to work on, decision making, space planning, making the various piles for donate/relocate/trash, and placing items in their new locations. We will continue through this process until the space is complete or we get to a good stopping point, at which time we will discuss next steps.
Step 5: We will schedule our next appointment.
Step 6: I will scan and email you an invoice as I always do outlining what we accomplished, what needs to be done and/or purchased by our next session, the date and time of our next session and an accounting of time and cost involved. Payment can be sent electronically using Zelle or a check can be mailed to me. Please note, the next session will not take place until after payment has been received.
Sound familiar? It should, as it is not drastically different from what your in-home sessions have involved.
The main difference is that I am not there to help take out the trash, relocate items, assist with the physical labor or take donation items on your behalf. You would have to either commit to doing so on your own (with me holding you accountable) or have a friend or family member assist with these needed steps. I am also happy to arrange for a donation pick up and can make and send labels for your containers.
Still not sure? Why not try it and see? There is no long-term commitment. And, of course, I am available to answer any, and all further questions as well as discuss your specific situation.