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Along with many of you, I’ve just returned from NAPO conference in Atlanta. I hope you are as energized as I am. It is always so inspiring to be with our colleagues from around the country and the world. If you were unable to attend this year, I urge you to try to make conference in Pittsburgh part of your plans for 2017.
I’m not sure if you’re aware that NAPO recently updated their mission statement, which includes a focus on industry research as a core initiative. My favorite sessions at conference were focused on research and statistics. NAPO recently undertook a survey of 1001 people. Here are a couple of facts they found:
- Respondents revealed that the the most disorganized living areas in their homes were the home office/den (42%), kitchen (35%), and laundry room/mudroom (33%) (respondents were allowed to select more than one answer)
- The areas they feel most disorganized in at work are paper (65%), workspace layout (40%), and email (38%) (respondents were allowed to select more than one answer)
- 64% of those surveyed were familiar with the term professional organizer
- However, only 4% of those surveyed have hired or know someone who has hired a professional organizer
In addition, the Statistics Database on the NAPO website has been revamped. New statistics and data have been added (and will continue to be added). Research and statistics may not sound exciting, but the media craves statistics: by using this information in your blog posts, tweets and articles, it will help show the impact of our work as professional organizers and position NAPO as the true “Organizing Authority.” Be sure to credit NAPO as the source when using these statistics.
If you missed these sessions, I will share some additional findings with you at our next chapter meeting. And when the conference recordings are available, please do take advantage of this member benefit.
See you in June!
Collette Shine, NAPO-NY President
June Chapter Meeting: Helping Clients Maximize Use of Their Closets
Monday, June 6, 6:00 - 8:30 p.m.
Cicatelli Associates, 505 Eighth Avenue at 35th Street, 20th floor
Join NAPO-NY members for a panel discussion all about closets. Whether you’re a seasoned organizer or just embarking on your professional organizing career, this discussion will offer useful and in-depth advice on one of the most challenging spaces for New Yorkers: closets!
- How to determine and anticipate client needs
- Tips for designing a closet from scratch
- Measurements! What you need to know
- So many options...modular, custom, basic...how do you choose?
- DIY Hacks that impress clients
- Great products your clients must have
- The big mistakes to avoid
Book Club Meeting: "The Power of Habit"
Saturday, July 16, 10:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Barnes & Noble Cafe, 33 East 17th Street, north side of Union Square
This quarter, the NAPO-NY Book Club will be reading “The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business” by Charles Duhigg. Read the book, then join us for a fun, informal discussion! For more information, contact Mary Reed.
May Meeting Recap: Products & Services Fair
The NAPO-NY meeting room was filled with displays and tables, each manned by Corporate Associate Members and other vendors. Members and guests walked around to gain insight and information about the products and services available to themselves and their clients.
Featured vendor Savor is offering a discount code for use by NAPO-NY members and clients: take 10% off using the code NAPO10.
Korinne Kubena Belock was featured in the video “Get Organized: De-Cluttering Your Entryway Closet” on ABC News.
Katie McCann was featured in “Stylish Office Decor Ideas for National Cubicle Day” on Inspirations and Celebrations.
Lindsay McLoughlin wrote “Purge the Periodical Pileup!” on Yoffie Life.
Jeffrey Philip became the "Good Housekeeping" organizing expert starting with the March 2016 issue. Check out his column in the June 2016 issue, about using color to keep your space organized and calm.
The spotlight this month is on the AV Tech Assistant, who sets up the microphone and speakers in the meeting room at the beginning of each chapter meeting. This position is held by two people, so you wouldn’t have to be present at every meeting. Don’t worry, you will be thoroughly trained!
This is a great position for someone who doesn’t have much time to volunteer but who comes frequently to chapter meetings.
Other open positions:
- Product Spotlight Coordinator (shared position)
To learn more about either of these positions, please contact NAPO-NY’s Volunteer Coordinator, Sharon Lowenheim.
Rebecca Wood of rebecca REorganize and Sarah Roussos-Karakaian of Nestrs, LLC both attended NAPO 2016 conference in Atlanta this month. Read on for their most noteworthy takeaways!
Rebecca Wood on Mike Vardy
Many attendees at this year’s conference shared the desire to educate themselves not only for the sake of their clients, but also for personal improvement. This was evident among the people in Mike Vardy’s session, "The Art of Tactical Time Management."
Vardy touts the methods within his program, The NOW Year, as being simple, flexible and durable. I would agree, since he’s packaged the options that make up the program in a way that followers can choose what to use and how to use them, as opposed to the all-or-nothing KonMari method.
During his presentation, Vardy created a sample to-do list, using a true life example that he did not have dental floss and still has not purchased any. He is a self-proclaimed procrastinator and had a short stint as a comedian. Lacking floss became an ongoing theme – or joke, depending on your taste for his sense of humor – throughout the presentation.
To help determine which tasks are important to do at any given time, the first step in Vardy’s program is to “time theme.” This can be done by choosing a few motivating words (ex: Focus, Forward, Family) for each month to fall back on when making decisions, or by assigning a theme to each day of the week (ex: Monday is Admin Day, Tuesday is Client Day, Wednesday is Writing Day, etc.).
To stay in a productive flow, Vardy’s next step is “modes.” Grouping tasks by theme, resource, energy level, activity, or time (as in, tasks that can be completed in 5, 15, or 30 minutes) allows them to be completed with fewer interruptions.
Keeping a daily log and reviewing goals against tasks and journals are also crucial steps in The NOW Year program.
These methods are not necessarily new ideas, but what was different was the package in which they were presented. Hearing this information with Vardy’s pretty bow on top made it clear to me that I want to come up with a few more branded methods for my company, and made me wish I had taken one of the marketing sessions at conference.
Vardy’s presentation wound down with questions from the audience. A woman stepped up to the microphone but did not have a question. Instead she had something Mike needed – floss! He was surprised and grateful. The whole group cheered, and I thought to myself: We are such a resourceful, generous breed of people and I am so happy to be a part of this club.
Sarah Roussos-Karakaian on Scott Greenberg
NAPO 2016 was my second conference. Although it didn't hold quite as much wonder and awe as my first conference, NAPO 2014 in Phoenix, AZ, I was able to anchor down and focus on what I wanted to get out of my 5-day educational and networking event much better this time around.
I've been in business for 3 years; however, I'm going through a lot of personal and business changes as we speak. I had no idea how personal and poignant the NAPO 2016 Keynote speaker's presentation would be for me. I must admit, I've been known to roll my eyes when things get a bit "hokey" and I was prepared to send my peepers upward as I settled in for the first big moment of conference, the opening Keynote, "The Third Factor: The Mindset for High Performance Leadership." But boy, my eyes never left the incredibly inspiring and funny Scott Greenberg.
Greenberg decided to get personal with us right off the bat. Not only did his first fiancee leave him heartbroken, he was also forced to leave his training at NYU's prestigious film school to battle cancer. His point was not to say that his life has been harder than anyone else's – his point was to say, "who knows what's good or bad?" Who are we to say a "failure" isn't a learning opportunity or that a "tragedy" can't lead to light? Life is best understood looking backward, but best lived looking forward.
Greenberg talked about how important mindset is and how, instead, so many of us focus on things we can't control like the weather, the economy, and our own DNA. He touched on the importance of our business operations (sales, marketing, and education), but reminded us that nothing is as important as our mindset. How we train ourselves to look at problems, and how positive our attitudes are, means everything to our success and separates those of us who will fail from those of us who will thrive. Billionaires, he states, are made up of those elite few who find the one thing they can do for 10 years and never get paid. To be that passionate about your work will make you stand apart from the rest. You must be numb to rejection. You must stop stressing over work/life balance and instead achieve work/life integration. And you must ask yourself what your business and life values are. Never stop living those values; never be anything but authentic.
Probably the most prominent part of his incredibly inspiring talk was how he approached and named that little voice in our head that tells us we "can't" or "shouldn't". He calls that little voice our "Mental Heckler". This little voice is always with us. He even admitted that his Mental Heckler was chatting up a storm during his Keynote. However, he's chosen not to let it stop him. He's learned over the years that the Mental Heckler is usually wrong, rarely based on fact, and almost always based on emotion. Our Mental Heckler loves to remind us of fear. He challenged us to feel fear and go for it anyway. He told an incredibly adorable story of his son at a baseball game. The little boy was up at bat when he was hit in the face by the ball. Upset, he ran to his dad for support. Although Greenberg couldn't guarantee his son wouldn't get hit in the face again, he challenged him to face his fear and give it another try. The boy courageously decided to try again and stepped up to the plate. This time, his son hit the ball with his bat. He raced to first base but was quickly declared out, as the pitcher threw the ball to first base quicker than he could run. However, he didn't care. He was so thrilled to make contact with the ball with his bat that everything else was secondary. He beamed. His dad was pretty proud, too. If we face our fears and take a leap of faith, we'll be surprised by how much we can do, even if it is a small step.
Greenberg went on to talk about comparison. We all compare ourselves to more experienced professionals, more attractive friends, and wealthier neighbors. However, we hardly ever know the entire story. What if every successful person read their ENTIRE bio? Greenberg made a point by reading a version of his bio, with many things added in that one would usually leave out of a bio. Needless to say, it was pretty funny. People rarely share their whole story. Don't spend your life proving yourself; instead, spend your life IMproving yourself.
He wrapped up his speech with a reference to the book “The Giving Tree” by Shel Silverstein. If you’ve never read the book, you should definitely take a moment and add it to your "must-read" list. It's a great reminder that life's greatest gift is to give. Have confidence, serve humanity, and be grateful. Only then can we grow and thrive as individuals and professionals.
Thank you so much for sharing your experiences, Rebecca and Sarah!