Angela Ploetz is a Certified Professional Organizer, CPO®, and owner of POSH Space Professional Organizing Specialist serving the greater Austin area since 2005. POSH space provides solutions for home and office organizing challenges, specializing in residential paper and filing systems, home office establishment and new home relocation and unpacking services. Professional certifications in her organizing business include Freedom Filer Certified Consultant and Clear & Simple Certification.
Angela is an experienced speaker and addresses women’s groups and business organizations in topics ranging from entrepreneurship to professional organizing skills. A mother of two, Angela is a self-starter who can be defined as a blogger, writer, speaker, wife, clutter controller, toy wrangler, yoga lover, and life-balance seeker. She is also partner in a second business, A Red Bench, a company specializing in providing continuing education teleclasses to help professional organizers grow their business.
Read on to see how Angela got started making money as a professional organizer.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your entrepreneurial journey.
I have been an entrepreneur from a very young age. Growing up I made a variety of items and sold them. I even sold things out of my window to the neighborhood children. After graduating from college, I worked from local government for several years and after having my first child I knew I was going to have to make a career change. That was when I looked at what I loved and what I could do that would allow some flexibility. I sought out training in Professional Organizing and joined my local NAPO chapter. Soon after that I quit my full-time job and started my business full time.
Do you have any special training?
Yes, I felt it was important to get training before I took my first client. I didn’t want people to think that one day I just decided to be a professional organizer and therefore I WAS one. So I went to training to learn about becoming an organizer and I got certified in the FreedomFiler paper filing system. After a few years in the business, I studied and sat for the exam to become a Certified Professional Organizer, CPO ®. I really believe training is important in building your own confidence and letting your clients know you are serious about your business.
What types of services and products do you offer?
I offer Professional Organizing and unpacking services for clients who have just moved. My team and I can help someone get out of moving boxes and get their home set up in a matter of a few days rather than the months or years it often takes.
I also offer virtual organizing and virtual organizing groups where I work with clients over the phone and via Skype. I think there is a lovely power and support that comes from working with a group of people. I think people feed off other people’s energy and it helps keep them motivated.
Finally, I offer coaching and training to Professional Organizers who are ready to for their next big thing.
Give us an example of how you landed one of your first clients.
My first few clients were all people I knew well. My very first client was my eye doctor! I think when you are new and excited about what you are doing you talk to everyone about it. People can often feel your excitement and enthusiasm and it’s amazing how your own small network of friends can pull through and help you get started in your business.
What do you believe has contributed to your success?
One thing I have done that has made a big impact in my business success is to get help when I need it. After doing my Quickbooks wrong for an entire year, I realized the importance of getting help from someone who could do what I could not do. Over the years, I have also started using an in-office assistant and virtual assistants to help with specialized tasks, small projects, and weekly recurring tasks. It always feels a little risky to bring on someone new, but every time I have done it I have seen an increase in income.
How are you currently growing your business?
I am currently growing my business by offering more workshops and group opportunities, where I can help people by giving them steps and ideas and that they can incorporate into their own workspaces.
What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own Professional Organizing Business?
Seek out training and information. Learn as much as you can by reading and seeking out training. Just because you might be great at organizing your own home does not mean that you will be able to help someone else with their home. You have to understand what works for your client not what works for you. Look up the National Association for Professional Organizers (NAPO) and find out if there is a local chapter near you. If not there is a virtual chapter you can join.
What’s your best organizational tip for work at home women?
Don’t be afraid to spend some time setting up your home office and getting organized. Some entrepreneurs don’t want to spend much time on activities that are not directly bringing in money. But it’s important to remember that time is money, when you have to spend a lot of time looking for a client file or an important document you are wasting valuable time that you could have used for an incoming generating activity.
Thanks to Angela for sharing your story!