Interview with dual certified Professional Organizer Elizabeth Gross
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Elizabeth has been serving clients in Albuquerque, New Mexico and surrounding communities for almost 20 years, so she has a wealth of experience to share, and I was delighted to interview her for Your Organizing Business.
Elizabeth, how did you come up with your business name?
My company name, Organizing for Everyday, represents my goal – to help my clients make every day easier, simpler, and more efficient, so they have more time to do what they love in an environment that inspires them.
What is your specialty?
I specialize in working with Chronically Disorganized clients. I especially enjoy working with seniors.
How do you approach a new organizing project?
Clutter is not about the stuff; it is about the person. It is a reflection of what has been/is going on in their lives. With every client I listen carefully to hear how they describe their clutter. I ask a lot of questions to get to the issue that caused the clutter problem. I look at a home and try to find something that is organized and then work with the skills that the client has already demonstrated in that space and expand that to other areas.
How has your business changed since you first started out?
When I first started organizing, as with most of us starting a business, I would work with anyone. I charged by the session and hoped and prayed that clients would want more sessions. Now, I work almost exclusively with chronically disorganized clients. I changed my pricing structure to encourage clients to commit to the many sessions, over a long period of time, that digging out from years of clutter would take. I develop long term relationships with my clients and over time can celebrate huge successes with them.
What would you do differently if you were starting your business today?
Instead of spending lots of time and money on every marketing scheme that I saw, I would spend my time and money on education. I would learn as much as I could so I could be the expert to my clients. I love the education I have gotten from the Institute for Challenging Disorganization because I have learned what causes the clutter so that I can work with my clients to teach them how to stay organized.
What’s the most surprising thing you’ve discovered about running an organizing business?
I have discovered how much I enjoy the relationships I have with my clients. Clearing clutter has led to amazing changes in their lives. When someone who was afraid to let anyone in their apartment can finally get their dishwasher replaced without fear of eviction, that is something to celebrate.
What professional associations or other organizations do you belong to?
I’m a member of the Institute for Challenging Disorganization (ICD), the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals (NAPO), Faithful Organizers, and the Fellowship of Companies for Christ.
What is the biggest challenge you currently face in your business?
My biggest challenge is either being too busy or not busy enough. I have learned to trust that God will provide. And He always does.
At what moment did you consider yourself successful?
I felt successful when I could refer a client to a colleague because I knew they weren’t someone I wanted to work with.
What’s your favorite organizing product?
The FreedomFiler is a fabulous product. It can corral all the paper in a home and make it easily accessible. As a FreedomFiler® System Certified™ consultant, I use it with several of my clients. I also use it at home, for family paper and my business papers.
What do you like to do when you’re not working?
I spend time with my family. I have a wonderful husband of 44 years, two lovely daughters and a terrific son-in-law. And the very best grand doggy ever! I attend two different Bible studies. I love to read murder mystery series – always in order! I quilt when I can find the time. I don’t have the time or the patience to hand quilt, so I use my sewing machine. I really enjoy traveling with my husband. In the last few years, we have been to Australia, New Zealand and our best trip – Antarctica. Our next trip is a river cruise in Europe.
What else should we know about you?
I tell people that the story of my life is punctuated with “and then we moved.” I was an Air Force brat and an Air Force spouse. I’ve lived in everything from a mobile home to a 4-story historic home. Moving so many times has made me very resourceful and flexible. I can adapt to all kinds of things and make anywhere a home.
Would you like to be interviewed for Your Organizing Business?
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