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NAPO and Your Business and Career Success

NAPO and your career and business success

 

It’s exciting to lead our thriving association and get to know smart, professional colleagues in an expanding industry.  It’s thrilling to be at the front of what is a bustling industry. This has been a fantastic year as President of NAPO (National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals) and I want to share my State of NAPO address with you!

NAPO empowers and partners with us in our businesses and careers.

Let me share just one of many NAPO stories with you about our relationships.  It’s a story of us. Amanda Wiss met Eileen Bergman before conference. Many referrals were passed between the two and then there came Urban Clarity’s largest referral amounting to over $50,000.  As a gracious thanks, Amanda gave Eileen tickets to the play Hamilton. And guess the name of that client – Hamilton!

That’s the power of our relationships and our connection to NAPO.

5 Ways NAPO empowers our businesses and careers

That story speaks about one success, however there are many more.  I am speaking today about 5 of these: education, credentials, leadership, financial scaling, and work life integration.

NAPO Education

We’re education junkies and NAPO has the stuff we need.  It’s our certificates, on demand education and bundles. NAPO offers top notch education available affordably and easy access 24/7.  Our NAPO certificates are game changers. I just completed Household Manager Specialist Certificated and loved each class. As Deborah Gussoff, In Place owner says, certificates have given her more education to help her clients. NAPO Education ranks as a top member benefit.

Certification

We have the gold standard here at NAPO. It’s our certification program, the Certified Professional Organizer (CPO).  This is about credibility, education and ethics. As my friend Janice Simon, who works at M.D. Anderson says, certification gives her additional credibility inside an institution that values this.  Congrats to our over 350+ CPOs. We’re growing!

NAPO Leadership

There’s a leader in each of us.  We have opportunities to lead that include major opporutnities and micro volunteering. Our industry has passion for making a difference and these opportunities are available to each of us. As my friend and President – Elect Susie Hayman says, NAPO leadership gives her the opportunity to empower others.  Be sure you are signed up to share your strengths and talents.

Financial Success

No matter how big our financial goals are, NAPO is here to support you in meeting these.  NAPO members can scale their businesses to the size that works for them, can be a team member in a larger business, or decide on a career organizing within another arena or company.  We support financial success in supporting each other. As my friend Lisa Mark says, she and a mentee worked together on a project that included over 35 subcontractors of various forms.  Together they earned 5 figures in 6 days. That’s how we can support and work together to earn what we want.

Work Life Integration

NAPO gives us the opportunity to create balance in our work and life. That’s my NAPO success story. Each Friday I close the week off at 12 noon to start Gigi Friday. That’s when I spend the afternoon with my grandkids.  I appreciate the flexibility of my work and the opportunity to spend every Friday afternoon with my grands.

NAPO is thriving because of each of us and our partnership with NAPO.  As we move forward with our work and careers, there is no limit to what we can accomplish together.

As I end my term, I want to thank each of you for the amazing opportunity to lead our association.  It’s beyond my biggest dream to lead the smartest, most innovative, most collaborative members in our bustling association and a growing industry.

How Leadership Empowers Change

leadership inspires change

 

Mothers Against Cancer (MAC), a grass roots effort to raise funds for children’s cancer research, hosts an annual fundraising luncheon each year.  The event includes an amazing raffle, silent auction and live auction as part of it’s event.  In an effort to raise the bar, this year our event took a bold step.  We entered the 21st century of fundraising by using Greater Giving with online access to bid.  Leading the charge is our executive director, our communications director. and our board.  Our leadership empowers change with this step into technology.

Why change?

MAC has hosted this event for almost 30 years.  We have had the same process which our attendees love with a cash, check and credit card payment system.   It’s working so why change?  We learned that other associations income was increasing with greater use of credit cards.  We wanted to implement a system where bidding on silent auction items was easier and more profitable.  We wanted our attendees email addresses so we can stay in touch all year.

 

How did it work?

Our leadership reinforced the positive with this change. It would be different. Our attendees would need to learn our new system but it was easy. Our board knew it was the step we needed to take to and our attendees would be fine after this first year of transition.

 

Our leadership brought the tools we needed, such as ipads, laptops, and a router!  With change brings new skills, new technology and new connections.  When we set  up and did a run through, it all came together as we each learned the software guided by a on site liaison.  Our leadership not only sat side by side with us as we each learned, they provided tools we needed to insure our success.

It was hard work and a little chaotic at times.

As the event started, we ran into a few glitches.  There were long lines that our attendees were unaccustomed to and there was resistance to sharing personal information.  However our resourceful leaders started serving drinks to those waiting and that smoothed things out.  Those of us at check in heard a lot about what was not working.  However, as the event moved forward,  the virtual bidding on silent auction items was a fun focus for our attendees. How to out bid others at our table took our tallies for research funds higher and higher.  It was easy to purchase raffle tickets just by clicking your credit card access and our total sales of raffle tickets shows how easy and profitable for MAC is it.  Check out at the end of the event was seamless.

 

As a student of leadership, MAC showed me that it takes many different aspects to make change, and that there will always be something unanticipated that we will learn.

  • Listen to others as new options open up.  Transitions and change only happen if we are open.
  • Add in as much support as possible. Training, onsite support and tech tools make change possible.
  • Communicate change in baby steps.  Our Board shared the change with our members first, then our attendees.  We used email newsletters to let attendees know how to access the new site and add their information.
  • There will be glitches.  Research the obstacles and then review. I know our next year event will benefit from this year’s glitches.
  • Positivity makes the difference.  Our Board stayed positive throughout the process.

MAC made a difference for our attendees, our members and our beneficiary Texas Children’s Hospital this year.  Our funds raised this year totaled $283,000 for children’s cancer research.

 

More on Mothers Against Cancer here.

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Be a Leader

leadership

 

My National Association of Professional Organizer’s (NAPO) membership has provided me with education, collaboration, service opportunities and the framework for business success. I started my business in 2000 and immediately joined NAPO. In 2002, I became a charter member of NAPO Houston and have served as Chapter President, Membership Vice-President and Golden Circle Liaison.  I am currently serving NAPO at the national level as Committee Chair to the newly reinvented Membership Committee. I have also served as Conference Chair, and on the Education, Leadership Development, Statistics, and Marketing Committees. In 2013 and 2015 I was honored with the esteemed Service to NAPO Award.  Starting in May 2016, I will begin a term as President- Elect. In May 2017, I will serve for 2 years as President.

 

Serving NAPO has contributed to my business success. In surrounding myself with incredible colleagues, my business has thrived.  My colleagues are on “Team Ellen,” creating an ongoing mastermind group focused on personal and professional development.  In serving with others with a common goal, team efforts create an outcome of something more than an individual can imagine or accomplish.

 

Why share this with you?  Are you already a leader? Are you ready to make a difference?  In using our strengths and leading others, we stretch and grow. We learn different perspectives and gain clarity.  We become smarter and better.  In addition to organizing and productivity, I will be blogging about leadership here on Ellen’s blog.    The connection between leadership, organizing and productivity is clear.  The more organized you are, the more other’s look to you to lead. The more productive you are, the more time you have to serve.  Being a leader requires balance and coordination.