Hiring a Professional Organizer as a gift.


Liz Jenkins


Hiring A Professional Organizer as a gift… sometimes a great thing… sometimes not!

Every once in a while I get a certain type of phone call from someone who wants to hire me. The downside is that they want to hire me for someone else. Usually it’s a husband or wife, or maybe for a parent. While it is really tempting to want to hire someone to “fix” a problem – this isn’t always the best solution.

In our profession, the person we help get organized has to be really ready to “be organized.” If they aren’t, it usually just won’t take. And it’s a major struggle for everyone. Think of times when you’ve tried to help someone who maybe didn’t really want your help (a co-worker, a child, a friend) and how disastrous the consequences can be.

If you are considering hiring a Professional Organizer for another person, ask yourself these questions:

  • Has this person expressed an interest in having a Professional Organizer come in and help them?
  • Is this person motivated to make a change or is it something YOU want?
  • Is the situation brought on by a life change such as divorce, death, marriage, a move, birth of a child, etc. or is this a chronic problem?
  • What are YOUR expectations for the organizational experience?

If the person is not ready or willing to work with a PO, then it is not a good idea. If it is you , and not them, that wants the change, it is not a good idea. If it is a chronic situation that has resisted help in the past and the person is not interested in changing, it is not a good idea. If you expect the organizer to come in and wave a magic wand to “fix” someone, it is not a good idea.

However, if you want to gift the services of a Professional Organizer, here’s what can make this a terrific idea:

  • The recipient has been talking about wanting to make a change and needs a professional or outside opinion. They might have been holding back due to finances, or embarrassment.
  • The person is really motivated to make a change for themselves, not to please anyone else, and needs someone to help get them on their way.
  • The person has had a life change that has caused a formerly organized person to become temporarily disorganized, or they are entering a new phase of their life where they need some assistance getting situated.
  • You are gifting the services with no strings or expectations – just because you know the person would really appreciate and welcome the gift.

Two recent examples:

I was hired as a birthday gift for a client by her husband. Of course, the first question I asked was, “Does she want and need my help?” and the second was, “Is she on board with this?” Apparently she had been talking about wanting a PO to help her in her office and other areas for a long time but just hadn’t pulled the trigger. Our sessions have been delightful and productive, and extended beyond the time of the original certificate.

My cousin became pregnant – a first time mom in a city far away from me. My sister and I wanted to do something nice for her but she really didn’t need any more stuff. So I found a wonderful Professional Organizer in her area (turned out she lived only a few miles away from my cousin!) and we gifted my cousin with two hours of organizing services. This was a huge hit as, while my cousin is an organized person, the baby room was a whole new ball game.

Tanya Whitford of Organizing Wonders was my choice. I wanted someone with kids who had experience with new moms. She totally fit the bill and my cousin was delighted to have the help. She was able to point out time savers and tips on arranging the room to make it more functional when the baby was actually in it! This can be an awesome present to a new mom – I mean, how many onesies does one kid need? Here’s the “after” photo of her closet – how cute & functional is this!

So if you are considering hiring a Professional Organizer for someone else, STOP and ask yourself the questions. You’ll be glad you did. Nobody can change another person – they have to make the change themselves. When they are ready – so am I!