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FAQ


Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Professional Organizer?
Professional Organizers help people take control of their surroundings, their time, their paper and help establish systems that will last for life. As defined by the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO):

"A Professional Organizer enhances the lives of clients by designing systems and processes using organizing principles and through transferring organizing skills. A Professional Organizer also educates the public on organizing solutions and the resulting benefits."


Why hire a Professional Organizer?
Some people who struggle with disorganization feel that they should be able to tackle their problems on their own. Hiring a professional who can objectively evaluate your situation, design organizing systems based on established organizing principles and teach you how to use these systems can help you turn your organizing goals into realities. A Professional Organizer can also help keep you focused and on task and can provide invaluable assistance in making decisions as you work through the process of getting organized. 


How does a Professional Organizer work? Is it like what I have seen on television?
All organizing projects; such as clearing clutter, weeding through paper, or setting up a new office, require decision making. Professional Organizers help you make the necessary decisions by asking questions, offering advice, and providing hands-on help. Organizers provide their services onsite (e.g. in your home or office) often in multi-hour work sessions. 

Many organizers also offer an assessment, which is a written or verbal overview of the work that needs to be done and plan for getting it done. This assessment is usually offered as an initial appointment or within the first work session. Professional Organizers may also offer phone or email consultation services. 

Unike cable television reality shows which feature many hours worth of work in each episode, a "real life" organizing project usually involves fewer people and more time. Rather than providing a crew of help, which would be significantly more expensive, most Professional Organizers work in a one-on-one partnership with you to achieve your organizing goals during multiple work sessions. For this partnership to be effective it is important to choose an organizer that you "click" with in order to work well together during these sessions. 


How do I find a Professional Organizer to help me?
If you know of friends, colleagues or others who have used a Professional Organizer, consider asking for recommendations. 

You can also use the free and confidential Find an Organizer search tool provided by NAPO-St. Louis. We recommend that you contact at least three Professional Organizers to find the one who best matches your organizing needs, personality, and budget. 

NAPO-St. Louis members adhere to a strict Code of Ethics so clients can feel safe opening their doors to NAPO-St. Louis members. 


What are NAPO and NAPO-St. Louis?
The National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO) is a non-profit educational organization founded in 1985. NAPO is the premier national association dedicated to the field of organizing. NAPO serves its 4,200 members through education, networking, industry resources, and promoting the profession to the public. By joining NAPO, a professional organizer demonstrates commitment to the professional organizing industry. 

The St. Louis Chapter of the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO-St. Louis), the 24th NAPO Chapter, was officially established in 2006. For more information on our chapter history, see our About page. 


Why hire a NAPO member?
By hiring a NAPO member, you know that you'll be working with a skilled professional with access to high quality education, exposure to the latest trends in organizing, access to manufactures of organizing products, and knowledge about and exposure to the latest organizing products. By joining NAPO, a Professional Organizer demonstrates commitment to growth within the professional organizing field. 


What types of services do NAPO members offer?
The NAPO-St. Louis chapter consists of organizers who offer a variety of services. Our organizers offer residential organizing, home-based business organizing, small business organizing and organizing services for corporations. Our members offer assistance on organizing space, paper, and time. Some of our members use coaching principles in their business. Some of our members offer virtual consulting services via telephone or internet. Please visit our Find an Organizer page to find a local organizer who specializes in type of organizing you need. 


What credentials are required to become a Professional Organizer?
There are no formal prerequisites for becoming a Professional Organizer. Many organizers enter the organizing profession because they have a natural organizing ability and a desire to help others. Some enter the profession because they have struggled with organizational issues themselves and want to share the solutions they have found. 

Certification is not required to become a Professional Organizer. Opportunities are available for certification for the experienced organizer, and many training opportunities exist for new and experienced organizers alike. 

CPO®
The Certified Professional Organizer (CPO®) certification is available through The Board of Certification for Professional Organizers (BCPO®). An organizer with the CPO® credential has passed a written examination administered by the BCPO® .
Organizers must be able to document 1500 paid client hours in the past three years to qualify to sit for the examination. Alternatively, organizers may document 1250 paid client hours and 250 substitute hours of education or professional development. 

CPO-CD®
The Certified Professional Organizer in Chronic Disorganization (CPO-CD®) certification is available through the The Institute for Challenging Disorganization (ICD). An organizer with the CPO-CD®  credential has been educated in depth on the issues in chronic disorganization. The CPO-CD®  student spends 17-20 months of intensive time studying and applying this learning in practical application with current clients. In addition to the CPO-CD® credential, the ICD offers ten levels of certificates of study and four specialist certificates. 

COC®
The Certified Organizer Coach (COC®) certification is available through Coach Approach for Organizers. An organizer with the COC® credential has completed the Coach Approach for Organizers™ program. The COC® student must also work with a mentor coach, complete 100 paid client hours of coaching and receive two letters of recommendation from credentialed coaches. Alternatively, one letter of recommendation may be from a credentialed Professional Organizer. 

Golden Circle
NAPO Golden Circle members have been in business for at least five years and have been members of NAPO for at least one year. NAPO Golden Circle membership is NAPO's way of acknowledging the expertise and elevated level of experience of seasoned professional organizers. NAPO Golden Circle membership is indicated by the Golden Circle logo.

Additional certifications are available through training programs offered by professional organizers and related companies. These include the Clear and Simple Training and Certification, Eyes of a Stranger Training and Certification and Freedom Filer Training and Certification


I am a news reporter/producter and I would like to do a story on organizing. Who should I talk to?
Please contact our Director of Marketing, Lisa Bianco for all press requests and our President, Denise Lee for general information about our chapter. 
 
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