Interview with Ronni Eisenberg, Professional Organizer

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Ronni Eisenberg, Professional Organizer

In my latest interview, I’m excited to feature an organizing industry veteran, Ronni Eisenberg. We connected on Facebook just a few months ago, but she’s been in business for 42 years, so I’m thrilled that she’s offered to share her story and her wisdom with us.

Ronni, what services do you offer?

After 42 years I think I’ve done it all. As a spokesperson for Fortune 100 companies, I loved promoting the organizational benefits of their products, my 10 books being the media hook. I also designed a line of organizing handbags which sold out on QVC.

I’ve organized households, set up schedules, streamlined papers, paid bills, sold furniture and revamped closets and kitchens. I planned moves and getting settled after the move. I’ve overseen contractors, renovation, and removed gift and personal shopping from to-do lists and managed time.

I set up household notebooks of information, organized all occasion cards and holiday gift wrapping supplies. I sent floral arrangements, selected stationery, chose framing, and purchased home goods for my clients.

I’ve also helped clients with virtual services. I have consulted with clients through phone chats and Zoom on organizational practices. For example, I helped a Senior VP with time management and office systems. Tracking how she spent time, I was able to design a more efficient schedule. Another client hired me to stage his home for sale. As I had already viewed his home and taken measurements, I was able to make all the purchases online.

There’s lots more. But after four decades, if I don’t write it down it gets harder to remember. 🙂

Do you offer any products or services for other organizers?

I’ve been a mentor for many organizers coming up over the years. I’ve always been happy and willing to help anyone that could use help getting started or working through a business problem.

How do you approach a new organizing project?

It depends on the project. I first decide if it’s something I want to do and if I can make an impact. Then, and I find this critical, I’ll have an in-depth conversation with the client to pinpoint and manage expectations and the process involved. Clarity is key.

At what moment did you consider yourself successful?

Immediately. I was one of a core group of women who took an idea and filled a need. No one heard of “Organizing” back then. It was pretty much associated with unions and cleaning services.

There wasn’t a tremendous amount of competition, I was good at what I did so it was easy to promote my services. The media loved it.

Here’s the first article I was included in February 1978. It’s too difficult to read, you need a magnifying glass, but if you scroll down the page the full article is there.

After my first book was published, Organizing was put on the map.

How did you come up with your business name?

I’ve always gone by Ronni Eisenberg. For a while I was Ronni Eisenberg and Associates, then after my first book was published, Organize Yourself!, I wanted my name to be the brand and so I stuck with it.


How has your business changed since you first started out?

I love this question. The truth is, many of the problems I saw 42 years ago I still see today and many of the solutions are the same. What has changed, mostly, is technology, and how everything is faster and expectations are greater. Technology has made our lives easier in more ways than I could’ve imagined but it’s also caused tremendous stress and a sense of urgency. That’s why so many people are in a constant state of overwhelm. 42 years ago, there might have been 10 things on your to-do list that you should’ve done yesterday. Today there are 25, at least.

What would you do differently if you were starting your business today?

I wouldn’t have changed a thing. I’ve loved every minute of it.

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

The biggest surprise is how the field has grown. The need is giant.

It has also surprised me that most people don’t have an understanding that it’s going to take longer than they think it will.

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

I’ve made a shift as I wanted to do something that I’ve never done before. I’m doing a lot of work online and blogging.  I’ve created a presence on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest. It’s ENORMOUSLY time consuming. It’s not as easy for me as it is for younger generations because my generation didn’t grow up with the same tools. So it’s a learning curve and it’s been a struggle but I’m enjoying it.

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

I love spending time with my family, especially my almost two-year-old grandson (though I haven’t seen him in three months).

I also love doing all the things that we have to be cautious about today: dining out, moviegoing, the theater, having fun at the casinos, travel.  All of this will have to take a wait-and-see right now.

What impact has the COVID-19 pandemic had on your business?

As my focus is currently online, a new direction for my business, that’s where I am spending my time. I’ve been doing videos and have been part of other’s videos which can easily be done digitally.

What I know to be true is this, regardless of our situation, the value of staying in touch. The pandemic cannot stop that. I keep in touch with all my colleagues and clients. Some daily and most on a weekly basis. I do this to stay informed and up to date. Moreover, I genuinely want to know how they’re doing. It’s an important part of building relationships so that when this difficult time is all over, we still have our relationships. And they can flourish.

Many professional organizers are struggling right now because they’re unable to work with clients in person. Do you have any advice to help them get through this, and/or to help them hit the ground running when the world opens up again?

Here’s another suggestion. I’ve done this on my social media platforms. I’ve reached out and offered my virtual organizing services to anyone who has lost their job. I won’t charge for that. It’s something I can do to give back and to help someone who needs the help. It builds goodwill in a hard-hit climate.

Is there a course you can give? Most of them are paid programs. Can you write and publish an e-book as a freebie? If you’re on Instagram or Facebook, can you put together a summer giveaway? That entails finding sponsors for the products to be given away and promoting the giveaway.  (It’s a win-win as the sponsors get lots of publicity too.) It’s great exposure on all the social media platforms, especially Pinterest. The bonus is you can build more subscribers. All the while you’re creating connections and when we’re back on track, you may have gained a few more clients.

What else should we know about you?

I love that I made an impression on the world of organizing throughout the last four decades. However, I’d rather be known for my big heart and kindness. That’s who I am.

Who’s next?

If you’d like to be interviewed for Your Organizing Business, simply fill out the questionnaire.

Gravatar mystery man

A former professional organizer, I'm now a Website Design and Care Specialist. I love helping others succeed by sharing the knowledge and insight I’ve gained through marketing my own business for over 15 years! When I’m away from my desk, I enjoy reading, photography, watching movies, and cooking.

Gravatar mystery man

A former professional organizer, I'm now a Website Design and Care Specialist. I love helping others succeed by sharing the knowledge and insight I’ve gained through marketing my own business for over 15 years! When I’m away from my desk, I enjoy reading, photography, watching movies, and cooking.

16 Comments

  1. Avatar Seana Turner on June 10, 2020 at 1:33 pm

    Well this is such a delightful interview. My response is really to say, “Thank you,” Ronni, for all you have down for the organizing profession over the years. You were a true pioneer in the industry! I think you are right that the fundamentals have stayed the same over the years. Technology, and perhaps higher disposable income (for awhile there…) have increased the need for smart organizing and storage solutions. I bet you are missing that little grand baby – I hope you get to be together in person soon!

    • Avatar Ronni Eisenberg on June 11, 2020 at 1:14 pm

      Seana,

      I’ve always found that my fellow organizers are the most down -to -earth group of hard working professionals. I thought so when I started and I still do.
      I love seeing how the field has grown and how it’s such an important contribution to our world.
      If I don’t see my grandson soon I think I’m going to be swallowed up in quicksand. 🙂

      Thank you!!

  2. Avatar Linda Samuels on June 10, 2020 at 7:35 pm

    What an incredible interview with a true pioneer and veteran of the organizing industry! I’ve had the chance to get to know Ronni through the blogging community that you’ve created, Janet. And that’s been such a pleasure. But it’s also fun to read here about Ronni’s start, all the amazing things that her career has encompassed, and that she wants to be known for her “big heart and kindness.” She’s that and so much more.

    • Avatar Janet Barclay on June 11, 2020 at 12:55 pm

      I agree! When I read that she’s been an organizer for 42 years, I thought it must be a typo, because (a) she looks too young; and (b) I didn’t know anyone was organizing professionally that long ago! I have so much admiration for Ronni.

      • Avatar Ronni Eisenberg on June 11, 2020 at 1:25 pm

        Janet, you are funny!

        Again, I cannot thank you enough for this feature! You truly wrote an outstanding article and as I said, I’ll be gushing [and promoting it] for the rest of my life.

        As far as 42 years go, can I say I started when I was 8?

        ??

    • Avatar Ronni Eisenberg on June 11, 2020 at 1:19 pm

      Linda,

      I really have had a great journey, thank you! The bonus is in the relationships with the people I’ve met.Also, with how much I’ve been able to teach.
      I do believe we learn something from everyone and you’ve been inspiring!

  3. Avatar Terry Prince on June 12, 2020 at 2:22 pm

    Nice to have a perspective of the start of Organizing! Ronnie, you are right on saying how you want to be remembered, you are very kind and big hearted.

  4. Avatar Ronni Eisenberg on June 12, 2020 at 11:50 pm

    Terry,

    It’s so nice to see how the field of organizing has grown and changed. It really answers a need.
    I hope you enjoyed reading Janet‘s article. There’s so many great stories in our field.

    Best,
    Ronni

  5. Avatar Sabrina Quairoli on June 15, 2020 at 10:24 am

    What a great interview! Ronni’s responses to your fabulous questions are so in-depth. It’s wonderful! Thanks for sharing.

  6. Avatar Ronni Eisenberg on June 15, 2020 at 11:02 am

    Sabrina,
    I’m so glad you liked the interview. Regarding my in
    depth responses, I had to give homage to all the years I’ve been doing this. I can’t believe how many years.

    I’ve loved the journey!

  7. Avatar Janet Barclay on June 15, 2020 at 1:28 pm

    I’m thankful for all your wonderful comments on this post! Ronni was a delight to work with.

  8. Avatar Lucy Kelly on June 15, 2020 at 8:04 pm

    Thank you for this interview Janet, I feel like I can hear your voice so well now, Ronni! Your initiative and determination in organizing before we knew what organizing was is inspiring. Here’s to the next 42!

  9. Avatar Ronni Eisenberg on June 15, 2020 at 11:14 pm

    Thank you, Lucy. What fascinates me are all the initiatives that have taken place by so many dynamic organizing professionals.
    Much appreciation !!

  10. Hazel Thornton Hazel Thornton on June 16, 2020 at 11:00 am

    Nice to get to know you better, Ronni! Love your interviews, Janet!

    • Avatar Janet Barclay on June 16, 2020 at 4:19 pm

      They are so fun to do! You’d think they might get repetitive, but everyone has a unique story to tell.

  11. Avatar Ronni Eisenberg on June 16, 2020 at 11:08 am

    Thank you, Hazel! We all have a story?

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