Becoming a professional organizer is a rewarding career—your work improves the lives and homes of every client you work with. But, that doesn’t mean it’s always easy! Since your role as the organizer delves into the personal lives of your clients, your job can become complicated—fast.
Here at QC, we know that being an organizing expert comes with unique challenges. Don’t worry—we won’t tell if you won’t! Read on to hear about (or relive) the struggles only a professional organizer knows…
Working with roommates
Any client can be difficult, but working with two separate individuals? That is always a professional organizer’s biggest challenge. Since roommates are very different from a couple or a family, you need to tread water lightly in these scenarios. If there’s clashing of personalities, it can be treacherous sorting out a plan. The key here is compromise. Getting roommates to work together to create a longstanding, successful plan will be your biggest feat.
Helping the professional shopper
A popular professional organizing client is the professional shopper. Someone who LOVES adding to their collection of clothes, shoes, kitchenware, home décor, etc. There’s always a reason or a positive thought behind the purchase, but a lot of the time these are impulse buys. As the professional organizer, it’s your job to point out what is a productive purchase and what can be given up. For these clients, an annual garage sale or trip to a consignment shop will help a lot.
Inspiring the change
To your clients, you’re one of the best things that has happened to their home. Yet there’s always that fear in the back of your mind that your plans won’t stick, and eventually this home will become chaotic again. To be fair, a call to a pro organizer is a huge step for your client to take—so give them the benefit of the doubt! They already felt the inclination to become more organized and constructive in their life, so capitalize on this feeling.
Inspire them to live a healthy and easy life just by being more organized. Put a simple system in place for them to follow; it only takes 30 days to make something a habit!
One of the hardest things for your clients to let go of? Sentimental items. Even if they have no value and just take up valuable space, it’s extremely difficult for people to remove memorabilia from their homes. It’s even more difficult being the professional who has to tell them it’s hurting their home’s organization!
In these cases, it’s hard to come up with a compromise. They hired you to do a job—but with too many unnecessary items hindering your plans, you may need to stand your ground. But it’s important to remember that it isn’t your home. If you can’t make progress with your client, then this business relationship might not be the best for either of you.
Feeling like a counsellor
Although you do love organizing your clients’ spaces and helping them live an easier and healthier life, sometimes you feel too caught in up their problems…
Of course, you are there to listen and understand what needs changing. However, you’re (probably) not a trained psychologist. Some clients can misinterpret your improvements to their lives as a type of counselling, but that’s not your role. You are not a marriage counsellor. And even though you want to improve relationships and living standards for your clients, you’re not the one who should provide them with relationship advice.
Explaining what you do
No matter how much training or how many certificates you have, there will always be someone who doesn’t really “get” what you do. Professional organizer? What does that mean?
It can be hard to explain your job when it is exactly how it sounds. You are a trained professional in organizing homes, offices, and lifestyles. Organized people may not see the full value of your career because they are already organized, but this definitely doesn’t mean you need to validate your career. You see the success of your work in how you help clients—and that’s enough of a reward for any job!
Ready for a sneak peek at a professional organizer’s career? Check out this design course sample to see what you can do!