As professional organizers, we need to be strategic with our time. And one way we can be strategic, is to streamline workflows for our project planning. A workflow is a way to automate the steps we use when taking in a new client or new project. By creating implementation plans, you are able to take the guesswork out of what comes next. And you are less likely to miss a step when they are automated.
The first step to streamline your workflow is to actually think about what all the steps are. Write them down. I like using Post-It notes to write down each step. Then I lay them down in an order so I can see everything. And I can move the Post-It notes easily instead of crossing off items on a written list.
I start with the very first thing I do if a new client reaches out. What do you do? Then what happens after that phone call/email/text exchange? When do you send the contract? How do you book a session? Do you schedule a consult? Is that consult free or do you charge?
Get clear on the process you want your client to go through in order to work with you. And don’t forget the follow-up once a job is completed! You want that review, so how do you capture it?
The next step is to streamline your workflow is to find a system that can keep your workflow in tact. I am familiar with Honeybook and 17Hats. Both programs offer workflows for creative professionals, which is professional organizer! Inside these programs you can create your workflow. There are other workflow programs you can also consider as well, but I am rather familiar with these two.
For example, I use Honeybook. Inside Honeybook, I have my entire workflow process for every client.
I have a template email that is sent to that client as my initial email. From that email, I have reminders to check in with them if they don’t respond. Inside my initial email, I have my new client intake form along with rates, information about my in-home organizing team, and my calendar so they can book with me immediately. I don’t like making my clients wait or jump through hoops to work with me.
Once I get their response back from my initial email, I send my contract and confirmation regarding appointment times.
Finally you get to set your workflow on automate! Because when things are automated, you don’t have to worry about missing a step.
Now I know that as organizers we do like to be in control and send personalized emails. So my suggestion to this is to send a follow-up email that is more customized after you get the information you need from the initial contact. Then you can start the automation.
I will give you an example. Let’s say a client emails you to ask more questions about your services. You already have a template email to send to them with rates and your process. After they answered the questions in your template email, you can send over your calendar to book a session. Once that session is booked, you can send the contract. After the contract is signed, you can confirm the appointment. All of this can be automated through programs like Honeybook or 17Hats. This way you don’t have to think about your workflow process, you can have it streamlined!
I have more tips for running an organizing business below: