By Ellen Delap, CPO
The year was 2000 when I received an inquiry from a neighborhood woman seeking a professional organizer to help her and her newly retired husband get organized. As an established professional organizer, author and NAPO member, I knew I could help her! This was the start of a 20 year client relationship based on trust and connection.
In that first year, my organizing work with the couple flourished. We organized many things, starting with their closets and important documents. The wife, who had also recently retired from her boutique clothing store, loved having a professional to help incorporate her amazing vintage clothing and extensive designer clothing collection into her closet. The husband on the other hand, appreciated the assistance in organizing his growing consulting business paperwork and residential documents.
Throughout the years, our connection progressed. We decided on monthly maintenance for paper management, where I would help the couple organize their files and eventually help pay their bills. The wife and I even worked together with a closet designer to envision and transform their guest room into a designer closet. This soon became the jewel of their home and all visitors were given a tour of the wife’s fabulous closet.
The family eventually decided to age in place at home. I began to organize their medical documents including paperwork regarding their benefits and medications. Together we interviewed new team members for the family, including a cleaning lady and a caregiver. I have continued to serve as their professional organizer in aiding them with documenting their paperwork and other organizing needs. We coordinate their medical and personal care with our quarterly team meetings.
In our 20th year together, we are celebrating our success in organizing. This family and I have created an organized lifestyle, streamlined paperwork and maintained organization together. What built this trust is the expertise of being a certified professional organizer, the confidentiality and ethics of our profession and the core knowledge base of paper management.
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