Interview with Professional Organizer Jill Katz

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Jill Katz

My latest interview is with Jill Katz of One to Zen Organizing, LLC, who offers in-person residential organizing in the DMV (DC, MD, VA) Metro Area, and virtual services to people all over the country.

Welcome, Jill! What is your specialty?

The Chronically Disorganized (people with ADHD, anxiety, HFA, bipolar, those with health conditions) and those going through life transitions.

How do you approach a new organizing project?

I start by having a conversation with my client. I think it’s very important to tease out their goals. The client doesn’t always know their true goals and having this foundation will define what success will mean to them. Once we have their goals in place, we can work on strategy.

What is the biggest challenge you currently face in your business?

I just had my 5 year “workaversary” and I am at a point where I have a full slate of clients so my biggest challenge is figuring out what direction I want to go in now. I am thinking about organizing a workshop or creating a support group for my clients.

What’s your favorite organizing product? Why?

I love shelf dividers and drawer dividers. They are simple but powerful tools. And of course my handy sharpies and post-it notes which I use during most projects to temporarily label and provide simple reminders to my clients.

What’s the most surprising thing you’ve discovered about running an organizing business?

How much work is involved on the back end of running a business. Asking for help and delegating are necessary because no one person can excel at all these parts. I am still working on those things.

How did you come up with your business name?

I sat on the phone with a close friend and we wrote down any words that related to my organizing business. I love yoga and I wanted the mindfulness of both my yoga and organizing practice to translate to the business name. That’s why we came up with the word “Zen.”

I also love a good pun and as a past marketer, I liked the possibilities of using “One to Zen” in place of “One to Ten.”

Marketing can be a downfall for many organizers. Do you think your marketing background was a key factor in getting your organizing business off the ground?

My marketing background definitely helped me! My immediate thought when starting my company was to differentiate myself by defining my customers and how I am best positioned to serve them. I understand the neurodivergent market (people with brains wired differently such as those with ADHD & High Functioning Autism (HFA) ) since both my daughter and myself are “out of the box” so that is my target market of clients. I also met with a Speech Therapist that worked with my daughter when she was in grade school. She would write up each session and leave a summary with me. I liked the idea of creating summaries for the adults that I worked with and so I modeled my write-ups after the speech therapist. I don’t know any other organizers that do this.

I also added another target market: Those that are going through life transitions such as grief, new job, marriage/divorce, new kids, empty nesters. This group has severely compromised executive functioning during their time of transition and needs the same kind of help as those that are neurodivergent. Both groups need an organizer who is compassionate and looks at their situation with fresh eyes.

My marketing background also taught me how to become a problem solver which is helpful not only in serving my clients but also in becoming a successful business owner. There are so many issues that crop up and marketing has honed that analytical side of me!

What professional associations or other organizations do you belong to?

NAPO and ICD

What do you like to do when you’re not working?

I love practicing yoga, taking walks in the trail behind my house with my dog, and spending time with my family.

What else should we know about you?

I started out serving the neurodiverse community because my child is neurodiverse so I understand that group. I ended up discovering that I am neurodiverse as well!

Would you like to be interviewed for Your Organizing Business?

Simply fill out the questionnaire!

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"Asking for help and delegating are necessary because no one person can excel at all these parts." Read an interview with Jill Katz of One to Zen Organizing on Your Organizing Business.

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A former professional organizer, I now eliminate stress for my clients by hosting, monitoring, and maintaining their WordPress sites so they don’t have to worry about security, downtime or performance issues. When I’m away from my desk, I enjoy reading, photography, watching movies, and cooking.

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6 Comments

  1. Linda Samuels Linda Samuels on August 8, 2023 at 10:41 am

    I love this series and how it helps us learn more about our colleagues. Thank you for sharing all about Jill. Congratulations on her 5-year work anniversary, the market she serves, and the ways she incorporates her unique talents to help others.

    • Avatar Janet Barclay on August 8, 2023 at 11:15 am

      I agree – it’s very interesting to learn about different people’s specialties and the paths they took to arrive there.

      • Avatar Jill Katz on August 10, 2023 at 11:29 am

        Julie,
        when I first came up with my name I thought I would use it for blog posts where I would have tips from “One to Zen.” I’ve only done that once in the 5 years! I guess it’s up to us to showcase the pun.

  2. Julie Bestry Julie Bestry on August 10, 2023 at 2:36 am

    I’m embarrassed to say that (just as my longtime clients and colleagues don’t always recognize that my business name is a play on my own name) I have seen your business name over and over and never made the connection between “one to ten” and “One to Zen” and now I want to thump myself on the head, Jill! It’s a great name, and gives you the sense that you’re taking one step at a time toward that Zen-like goal. I got the meaning, just not the OTHER meaning!

    Fascinating to learn about Jill’s path! This is such a great series!

    • Avatar Janet Barclay on August 10, 2023 at 8:26 am

      I’m very excited about the wide range of people who have come forward to share their stories and wisdom.

  3. Avatar Janet Schiesl on August 11, 2023 at 1:18 pm

    Great interview, thanks for sharing!

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