You started your own business because you have a burning
passion for what you do. You are also - we hope -- good what you do and
have a desire to help others. Little do you know that running a business
includes, well...running a business. This little bombshell can throw many
a new business owner for a loop.
I receive numerous phone calls every week asking me how to
start a business as a professional organizer. The first thing I say is
that the organizing part is easy because it is a natural gift (sometimes a
curse); it's running the business that can trap you. This is not to scare
a potential entrepreneur away, but to help them realize that it's not all
fun and games doing what you do best. You have to:
Find an accountant
Get legal advice on how to set up your business
File for the company name with the state
Find working capital if necessary
File all the proper tax forms
Open up a checking account
Get office supplies
Market the business
Build a network
And the list goes on and on...
In the initial start-up stage, entrepreneurs are often so excited about
starting a new business that they pay little or no attention to what is
happening with all the paperwork and electronic data you are generating.
That is typical and expected. However, around the six to twelve month
mark, entrepreneurs start calling people like me - a professional
organizer - begging for help in setting up a system to help them be
organized. I envision a hand protruding from mounds of papers reaching for
The sad news is that many small businesses have never taken the time to
set up systems once they've built up paper and electronic backlogs. They
just keep generating documents without stopping to assess what is being
I firmly believe that the healthiest small business is the one that visits
and reviews their organizational systems every six to twelve months. The
small business that keeps doing the "same old, same old" is losing money.
So where do you stand?
Something that has really hit home in the past year or so is that you
don't GET organized and have long lasting success. You have to BE
organized. Getting organized is a quick fix of cleaning up and putting
things away - usually a Band-aid (r) approach - that doesn't last for more
than a few days.
Being organized is recognizing that organization is an ongoing journey.
Life doesn't stop happening the minute you GET organized. You have to have
systems in place that will help the daily flow; a lack of systems will
cause clogs. These clogs come in many forms:
Piles of papers
Misplaced items - glasses, phone, pens, keys
Stress and frustration...
You get the picture.
When it becomes clear to you that you are running through your day feeling
like you've accomplished nothing, you may need to reassess your
organizational skills and systems.
Your small business must overcome many hurdles to be successful.
Fortunately, being organized is one hurdle that you can learn to overcome.
Or you can work with a professional organizer to set up customized systems
that make you functional, productive, and more pleasant to be around.
I challenge you take a deep look at the state of your small business'
organization. If you see your passion being overrun by disorganization,
it's time to take some action.
Here's to simplifying your life!
Kreamer, owner of Kreamer Connect, Inc., is a professional organizer,
speaker, and author of the Making Life Simple... Again! e-course available
http://www.ByeByeClutter.com/MLSAHome.htm. If your business or
organization is looking for a fun, dynamic, and effective speaker, you can
email Patty at patty@ByeByeClutter.com or call her at 412-344-3252.
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