Thinking about becoming a professional organizer? It’s no easy decision! The job demands just as much from the professional as it does from clients. If you’re looking for an easy desk job you can coast through, professional organizing isn’t for you. But do you crave a challenge? Do you like working with people? Do you have a knack for organizing? Then you might have a bright future ahead of you in this field!
The truth is that most people don’t really know what a professional organizer does. With so many stereotypes and myths floating around, it can actually discourage talented people from even considering this profession. It isn’t as simple as just sorting and storing a client’s belongings! Intrigued? Keep reading!
Job Description of a Certified Professional Organizer
Let’s start off by discussing what a professional organizer is NOT! As a professional organizer, you aren’t a personal assistant or a full-service cleaner. You aren’t following a client around and doing everything for them. You do have to work very closely with your clients. But, if you simply do things for them, they’ll never learn how to create order from chaos once you leave. They’ll slip back into chronic disorganization once again!
So what exactly would you be expected to do?
A professional organizer is hired by a client to declutter and create organizing solutions for a space. The goal is to improve their client’s lives and have lasting results. If you undergo professional training, you’ll learn a variety of different strategies to aid your client. Your best assets are to be non-judgmental and objective. You’ll work with them from start to finish, turning a messy space into a functional one where everything is neat and cleared away.
Don’t be fooled. Applying blanket organizing strategies isn’t what the job is all about. There is no one-size-fits-all solution. Every client is different, so every job will be, too. That doesn’t mean that time-tested principles should be ignored. It’s all about combining theory with your creativity. Getting creative and customizing organizing systems will set a certified professional apart from the herd.
Where can a professional organizer work?
Another misconception is that professional organizers only organize wardrobes. Although you will be able to take this on, the reality is that professional organizers work in residential, commercial, and professional settings. Try your hand at working for a company that’s downsizing. Perhaps a retailer needs to have their inventory storage space optimized. Or maybe a client’s loved one has passed away and they need someone to handle emptying and sorting through an estate. When you’re open to new opportunities, you’ll find yourself working in a variety of unique fields throughout your career!
What does a typical client look like?
Here’s the thing: while HGTV portrays only hoarders as needing professional organizing services, they’re actually not your typical client. You’ll only work with them a fraction of the time. The rest? Well, here’s a list of your most common clients:
- Busy bees: When someone’s swamped with task after task that they’re pouring all their time and energy to, keeping their home organized is difficult. You’ll work with busy professionals, students, and families. After you implement various storage solutions for them (physical and digital), you’ll make keeping organized part of their daily routine.
- Overwhelmed procrastinators: Ever notice that when you put stuff off for too long it becomes harder to get started? Procrastinators may find it impossible to start and continue. Here’s how to deal with these clients: Coach them into sticking to a schedule. You must have patience and help them break down tasks into bite-sized When you make the task seem less like work, and they see immediate results, they’ll be motivated to keep going.
- Transitioning: If a client is moving, you could help them downsize items before they pack. You may wish to offer additional services to help them sort, pack, and possibly even clean after they leave. It’s all up to the level of involvement you and tasks you wish to include as part of your services. You could also help new business owners. It takes a lot of work and organization to launch your own business. If they’re starting with a home office, your help will ensure they start things off without a hitch!
- Affected by life circumstances: Grieving individuals lack the motivation to complete simple tasks. Sometimes this state can carry on for months. The first positive step is asking for help! Your sensitivity and professionalism along with an organized model to tackle their homes are necessary.
- Elderly clients: These clients may be physically incapable of organizing their spaces! They likely need a professional organizer to take over and help them sort through clutter, and mementos of sentimental items. You, in turn, could hire cleaners for them and purchase organizing solutions to reorganize and file everything in a way that is accessible to them.
What does the schedule look like?
It’s not a 9-5 job. Since it’s such a client-oriented profession, and things may get quite personal depending on the client’s case. Depending on the client, you may evenings and weekends to accommodate them.
In fact, the schedule could change drastically from one day to the next. You may have two weeks of light work and then 3 weeks of intense 50-hour weeks! Obviously, you aren’t expected to do this, and it is to your discretion as a professional. Don’t exhaust yourself! Taking care of yourself comes first.
You may visit up to three different clients a day. Traveling is part of the job. Thankfully, you’d be able to charge a small fee for traveling as part of your contract, and write them off as a business expense!
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