Posts Tagged ‘2011’

December 2011 Meeting Summary

Wednesday, December 21st, 2011

The December NAPO-WDC chapter meeting was held on Monday, December 5, 2011 at Kena Shriners in Fairfax.  There were 26 members in attendance and 2 guests.

Alisa Levy welcomed everyone.  Maria White introduced a new member and our guests.  Our ice breaker tonight was something a little different.  Alisa asked for chapter members to talk a little bit about any personal experience they’ve had with one of our Corporate Partners.

C. Lee Cawley talked about her experience with Noel of Eco-nize Closets.  He helped her with a client with a physical disability by installing a valet rod for her quickly and at no charge, really going the extra mile. Pierette Ashcroft highlighted an experience with Shred Ace.  They shredded 85 boxes of paper in 45 minutes, sent the invoice to the client and couldn’t have been easier.  Victoria Robinson talked about Shelf Genie and Joe Johnson.  He did a wonderful job for a client of hers who moved into a condo with a very small kitchen.   Maria White raved about 123Junk who helped with several clients.  Their friendly follow up is fantastic, and she liked their philosophy of donate/recycle/trash.  Nealey Stapleton endorsed Ron Goodes of ReSale Solutions.  He has come many times to a client’s home to pick up books, DVDs and CDs.  She’s happy, Nealey’s happy.

Victoria Robinson hosted the “Ask the Expert” table tonight and had 2 visitors.

Terry Fischer introduced our Corporate Partners in attendance:

Ron Goodes and Joan Clark:  ReSale Solutions
Zach Johnson:  123 Junk
Helen Long:  Partners Estate Sales
Joe Johnson:  Shelf Genie
Noel Sweeney:  Eco-nize Closets
IKEA:  Wendy Rogers
Alonzo Zamora:  B. Thrifty
Andy Ryman:  Modern Image

Noel Sweeney gave a five minute presentation about his services.  Eco-nize provides a 3D design rendering along with their estimate and proposal.  Eco-nize Closets was recently named Contractor of the Year on the DC area Angie’s List.

Zack Johnson of 123Junk spoke about his company’s services.  Recently re-branded the company with new logo, 20% larger trucks and a new emphasis on their process of disposal via charity, recycle or trash (in that order).

Wendy Rogers from IKEA spoke about the products that IKEA provides to help organizers bring out the best in their clients.  Home furnishing consultants are available at each store to help clients.  Pick and Deliver service will start in January.  For $99 they will take your shopping list, do the shopping and have it delivered.

Pierrette Ashcroft then introduced the evening’s speaker:  Terri Holley, CEO of Holley Creative.  Terri spoke on “Social Media Marketing:  Driving Business Value.”  Her presentation goal was to help answer questions like:

How do you translate using social media tools into more clients?
How do you leverage the tools?
How does a small business owner take their social media to the next level?
How do you connect with prospective customers using social media? (versus B-to-B interactions)?
How do you create more content?
How do you sync social media with your CRM?

Terri reviewed 3 “must haves” before you jump in to using social media:  setting goals around your use of social media, thinking long term about your use of social media (i.e. blogging, tweeting, etc.), and tying everything together (how to funnel leads back to your website, nurture them so you can get a new customer, etc).

Terri’s presentation was full of great information whether you are a social media wannabe, newbie or early adopter.  You can find more info on her website

Alisa Levy reviewed the calendar for the upcoming month.

Scott Roewer announced that if you reserve your NAPO conference hotel room by December 31st, you will receive free Internet access in your room and 20% off at Hilton’s two bars. Also, for each night you stay at the hotel you receive 25 “NAPO Bucks” to spend on future NAPO courses.

Door prize winners included Andrea Hancock and Nealey Stapleton.

The meeting closed after a lively networking session.

The next meeting will be held at Rock Creek Mansion in Bethesda on Monday, January 9.

Welcome to our newest Corporate Partner: Modern Image!

Monday, December 19th, 2011
Andy Reiman, President of Modern Image, provides cost-effective document scanning services for projects of any size, from one folder to several rooms worth of documents.  Document scanning can benefit us personally, as well as be a great service to offer our clients.  Modern Image specializes in financial, medical, and legal records, always using safe and appropriate practices, in compliance with regulations, and assuring confidentiality.

Benefits of scanning include becoming more profitable by processing paper more efficiently, reclaiming space from your file cabinets, saving time by retrieving documents electronically, and ensuring that you can recover from disaster. If you are often on the road, scanning gives you the freedom to telework from anywhere.

Welcome, Andy!  It is great to have you as a Corporate Partner!

NAPO-WDC Gives Back

Monday, December 12th, 2011

Each year, NAPO-WDC selects a Community Partner with whom we can give back to our community. This year, we have chosen A Wider Circle located in Silver Spring, MD. They are dedicated to helping children and adults lift themselves out of poverty through the use of resources that exist in our own community.

As Professional Organizers, we have the unique opportunity of being able to help in redistributing these resources. We help our clients to give their unwanted, unneeded property to those who can really use it. It is clearly a win-win situation.

So far this year, we have collected mountains of excess cleaning products and given them to the families of A Wider Circle. Soon, we will be spending a day working at their facility as volunteers. We’ll do many things including sorting incoming donations and assisting families with their “shopping” there.

Please join NAPO-WDC in providing support to A Wider Circle through donations of your unwanted furniture, toys and many other things. For more information, visit the NAPO-WDC website and/or download this flyer.

Thank you for helping those in need!

A Message From Our President: Create Your Own Support Network

Tuesday, November 29th, 2011

Did people think you were crazy when you started your own professional organizing business? It was a huge risk and most people are not risk takers. It takes guts and there is not an easy path. I still run into challenges that I could not have anticipated. These are some of the many reasons why I believe that it is important to set yourself up for success. One thing you can do is get a support team that can help you navigate your way through business building.

It’s inevitable that, at times, you will get in your own way. Move out of the way! There will be enough obstacles, don’t be one of them. My support team has helped me work through my obstacles. Build a network that works for you. It doesn’t have to be made up of organizers, just people who can learn and grow together.

We are told “build your business around what you are really good at and hire out the rest.” Easy to say, but what do you do when money is tight? This is when you turn to your support network for ideas. There’s always some one else who has been there, done that. Learn from them as I did and still do.

Building a business can be all-absorbing. Sometimes my to-do list is a mile long and there is no time clock to punch. I still use examples of my chapter members to teach me how to step away from my desk and enjoy life.

As for me, I built my support network within NAPO-WDC. Soon after joining the chapter, I volunteered for a position I was comfortable with. It allowed me to fit in, contribute, and meet people. I soon created a bond with many chapter members who offered a pat-on-the-back or some words of encouragement when needed.

I have worked with and for chapter members, attended meetings, shared meals, drank coffee, discussed a book, attended conferences, went to a movie, took classes, had a drink, sat in the sun, flew on a airplane, visited homes, and volunteered with fellow NAPO-WDC members. All of this has benefited me greatly.

My support team was small at the beginning. When I found more success, I moved to paying it forward. I learn from new organizers all the time. One thing that is so great about this organization is how we are all so different. Each of us has unique experiences and perspectives to share with others. We learn and grow together and as individuals.

All of us at NAPO-WDC have similar business challenges. Together, we can encourage each other through our different phases of business building. Put together your own support network. Build your way to success!

If you’d like to contact our President, you can email her at

December 2011 Meeting!

Monday, November 28th, 2011

Monday, December 5, 2011

Kena Shriners

9001 Arlington Boulevard

Fairfax, VA 22031

Social Media Marketing: Driving Business Value  

With 69% of the US population using Facebook, reading blogs, listening to podcasts, and watching online videos, social media is a wonderful way to connect with your target market, generate more leads, and increase your revenue. Have you jumped in? Are you still waiting by the shore? Either way, it’s important to understand how to use social media to drive business value.

Join us as we welcome longtime veteran and early adopter of social technologies, Terri Holley, as she speaks about interactive marketing, emerging technology and how both can be used to drive business value. Ms. Holley will speak about her successes with social media, lessons she has learned along the way, and pitfalls you can avoid after you jump in. Topics will include:

  • Must-do tasks before you begin marketing your business on the social web
  • How you can tweak an existing social media strategy to achieve better results
  • Best practices for reaching your target market, generating leads, and converting leads into sales
  • The importance of measuring ROI and how you can do this easily
  • How to maximize the use of social technologies so it saves you time and money

A tech-savvy, insightful, and highly creative new media “maverick” who is always operating outside the box, Terri Holley understands the nuances of interactive marketing, emerging technology and how both are used to build deeper relationships with prospects and customers. Along with serving as CEO of Holley Creative, Terri has been a contributor to Women Grow Business and recognized by Forbes magazine as one of the best marketing and social media blogs written by women. She is known for skillfully taking on emerging technology skeptics and enjoys sharing the story about her 80-something mother learning how to text. Literally walking her talk, Terri is an active user of Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. She also authors two popular blogs and is the producer and host of Social Media Voices, a podcast that features small business social media success stories.

December Tips: Working From Home

Monday, November 21st, 2011

If you are a home-based business owner, count your blessings. You are providing opportunities for yourself and your family that are unavailable to 9 to 5ers. Research also indicates that productivity rises 15% to 25% when work is done at home vs. the office, and self-employed people are more productive than others. (Working from Home, by Paul & Sarah Edwards)

Here are five suggestions for boosting productivity if you work from home.

1. You can’t multitask between work and kids. Set office hours for yourself and arrange for assistance with your children during those hours.

2. Delegate, delegate, delegate. Outsource tasks you don’t have time for or don’t have desire to do. This is the key to success. Assign housework to family members or outside vendors. Hire professionals like a virtual assistant to support your business.

3. Hire your older children to work with you. You can supervise their work. They will learn more about what you do for a living and be a part of it.

4. Structure your day. You will need self-discipline to focus on only things that contribute to your business during office hours.

5. Take advantage of the flexibility that a home office provides. Set hours that are convenient for you and your family.

Basic Organization was started in 2005 by Janet Schiesl to provide professional organizing services to busy families, home-based business owners, down-sizing seniors and the chronically disorganized in the Washington DC Metro area. She helps people gain the skills to get organized and live a more simplified life. Janet provides her clients with ideas, information, structure and solutions to help them gain control of their most important space, their home. Visit her web site

November 2011 Meeting Summary

Monday, November 21st, 2011

The November NAPO-WDC chapter meeting was held on Monday, November 7, 2011 at Rock Creek Mansion in Bethesda.  There were 35 members in attendance and two guests.

Alisa Levy welcomed everyone.  Janet is on vacation. Maria White introduced a new member and our guests.

There was no “Ask the Expert” table tonight but there was a great deal of interest and activity around the Corporate Partners’ Expo.  Terri Fischer introduced the following CPs who participated in the Expo:

Ron Goodes and Joan Clark:  ReSale Solutions

Zach Johnson:  123 Junk

Helen Long:  Partners Estate Sales

Linden Coyne:  Junk in the Trunk

Denny Stotlemyer:  Closet Factory

And our newest Premium Partner:  IKEA, represented by Wendy Rogers

Pierrette introduced Naomi Abrams.  “How to Organize Without Breaking Your Back, Not to Mention Your Client’s.”  She showed us things that we experience that hurt us without us even knowing it.  Her objectives for us:  1.  Understand the fundamentals of ergonomics that you can apply with any client.  2.  Create the initial muscle memory to understand ergonomic principles.  3.  Relate ergonomics to the profession of organizing.

Ergonomics:  Science of work or activity.  How the work/tasks and tools fit together with the person and their environment and/or context.  A disconnect between these three things causes injury as well as loss of efficiency and productivity.

Principals of Ergonomics to create muscle memory:

Up (stand up, then stand up)

Square Up (try to square hips and shoulders to the task)

Search for Support (the more body parts that are supported, the less the rest of the body has to work)

Reach Envelope (most efficient reach is right in front of your body, your back doesn’t have to do any work)

Horizontal Reach (heavy, frequently used items should be forward)

Vertical Lift (safest reach area is between knees and shoulders)

Push v. Pull (pushing is safer than pulling)

Use v. Organized (think about weight, horizontal reach, vertical lift, frequency of use and physiology of user when planning)

Grab or Pinch (containers, tools, knobs, files)

Vision (light, distance, shape/font, contrast)

Multitasking = Distractions


Client Evaluation:

Overall context

Look, listen, feel


Frequency, force, repetition

Task requirement



Actual and optional


Currently used and available

Ergonomics is simply working smarter not harder!

Alisa introduced co-chairs of GO Month, Leslie Nathan and Penny Catterall.  We will be spending the day with A Wider Circle on January 28.  We will be volunteering with a variety of tasks.  Tiffany Mensing will help with social media for GO Month.

Cris, our 2011 MARCPO Chair, announced that conference session recordings are available from VW Tapes.  Link is on our website.

Alisa reviewed the calendar for the upcoming month.

Door prize winners included Alisa Levy (Container Store fabric sorter) and Helen Montfort (Naomi Abram’s book).

The meeting closed after a lively networking session.

The next meeting will be held at Kena Shriners in Fairfax, Virginia on Monday, December 5.

Welcome To Our Newest Corporate Partner: IKEA!

Monday, November 14th, 2011

Please welcome our newest Premium Corporate Partner; Wendy Rogers of IKEA in Woodbridge!  Many in the chapter know Wendy through our GO month project last year.

IKEA strives to be ‘The Life Improvement Store,’ and since its 1943 founding in Sweden, has offered home furnishings of good design and function, at low prices so the majority of people can afford them. There are currently more than 320 IKEA stores in 39 countries, including 38 in the U.S. IKEA, the world’s leading home furnishings company, incorporates sustainable efforts into day-to-day business and supports initiatives that benefit children and the environment. For more information, go to  Welcome, Wendy!

ICD Now Has Teleclasses Available for the Public

Monday, November 7th, 2011

As part of their commitment to providing information, organizing techniques and solutions to the public, the Institute for Challenging Disorganization (ICD) is proud to announce that four teleclasses for the public are now available!

ICD’s award-winning teleclasses have historically been available to subscribers only. But now, four teleclasses have been rerecorded specifically for the general public and are available for only $10 per class.

The new teleclasses for the public include:

  • Understanding Chronic Disorganization presented by Lynne Johnson, CPO-CD®
  • Introduction to ADD presented by Denslow Brown, CPO-CD®
  • Introduction to ADD and Procrastination presented by Tiffany deSilva, CPO-CD®
  • Introduction to Hoarding presented by Geralin Thomas, CPO-CD®

To sign up for a public teleclass, go to the public teleclasses page of ICD’s website and pay the $10 teleclass fee. Within 48 hours of sign up, you will receive an email with instructions to access the recording. You will have a two-week window to listen to the class from the time you receive the access instructions. At the end of each class we will ask you to take a brief survey. Your feedback will help us continue to provide these teleclasses as a resource to the public.

If you are already an ICD subscriber, please let your clients and others know about this new resource.

They are very excited to be taking this important step in helping CD-affected individuals learn more about the issues which challenge disorganization.

Institute for Challenging Disorganization
1693 S. Hanley Rd.
St. Louis, MO 63144
Phone: (314) 416-2236

November 2011 Meeting!

Monday, October 31st, 2011

Rock Creek Mansion

5417 West Cedar Lane

Bethesda, MD 20814

How to Organize Without Breaking Your Back, Not to Mention Your Client’s – Naomi Abrams & Corporate Partner Expo

Organizing can be physically demanding work; however, it doesn’t have to be painful. During this workshop we will discuss methods of protecting yourself from injury while helping your clients do the same. We will cover the basics of ergonomics from the standpoint of the organizing professional and the person using the space. Did you know you could affect how someone else physically feels at the end of the day? Keeping some basic ergonomic principles in the back of your mind while you are organizing can dramatically change your client’s feeling of wellbeing. We are going to try of few of these principles out right there in the meeting room using everyday objects for some dramatic changes.

Naomi Abrams holds a Doctorate degree in Occupational Therapy and a certification as an ergonomic assessment specialist.  Holding the firm belief that prevention is the least expensive cure, she currently owns and operates a national consulting firm specializing in occupational health and ergonomics.  Dr. Abrams speaks around the country on how people can work comfortably and efficiently in a variety of spaces.

Ask the Expert” Focus Group

If you are new to organizing, attend the “Ask the Expert” session. It is an informal gathering where new organizers can receive free advice on owning an organizing business from members of the Golden Circle, a prestigious designation within NAPO for experienced organizers.