Certified Professional Organizer, Mentoring, Part 2
I’m thrilled to announce that I earned my designation of Certified Professional Organizer® (CPO) from the Board of the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals (NAPO) on 7/1/2017. I’m one of only nine CPOs in WA among 318 in the US. Fewer than 10% of all NAPO members have earned this status.
I’ve worked with more than 200 clients, clocking over 1,500 hours perfecting my craft, in a combination of paid, volunteer, continuing education and speaking and writing efforts. I’ve worked with clients aged 8 to 80, in every space in a home from basement to attic, home office, home-based business office, garage, shed and even a horse barn.
Once I logged those 1,500 hours in a three-year span, I passed an exam on Thursday 6/8/2017. Now I’ll have to recertify every three years by passing the exam again or through continuing education. I’ve already promised myself “No more exams. Too nerve-wracking!” I’m excited about my strengthened obligation to further my knowledge of leading-edge best practices to use with my clients.
And here’s where the mentoring comes in. I find exams easy. I love my vocation, and I’m GOOD at it. But those 1500 hours were gifts to me:
- from my clients who teach me as much as I teach them
- from Denise Allan, Simplify Experts, who has let me shadow her on jobs large and small, and who gives back to her community in countless ways
- from Anne Blumer, Institute for Professional Organizers, who encouraged me very early on, and who is another leading light for my colleagues and I
- from all my ‘mates in the Seattle Area chapter of NAPO, the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals. They are my friends, my inspiration and sometimes my sanity.
- from Professional Organizers all across the country and around the world
- from the authors, researchers, clinicians, educators, craftsmen who share their skills and understanding in blogs, lectures, and books, looking at details as particular as “how to build a good closet” and as broad as “How do people think?”
I’m lucky to have found this calling. It speaks to my strengths of being creative, detail-oriented, able to think on my feet and empathetic. I wish I’d found it 20 years ago. By now I’d have all 15 (I think that’s the current count) certifications you can get in this field, I’d have webinars online and I’ve have written at least one book for kids. I’m on my way: I joined the Institute for Challenging Disorganization last night. Getting its certifications is the easiest way to maintain the CPO!
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