Q – Kindly give our readers an introduction to your business. Please include what your business is all about, in which city you are located and if you have offices in multiple locations/ cities.

Ans – Our company is Clutter and Hoarding Pros and we specialize in full service remediation of severely neglected hoarder homes. We are located in Southern California and currently work in Los Angeles, Orange, and Ventura counties.

Q – Kindly give us a brief description about yourself (it should include your brief educational or entrepreneurial background and list some of your major achievements).

Ans – I have my masters degree in clinical psychology. I worked in publishing sales with a major educational publisher for 16 years before starting my business as a professional organizer specializing in working one-on-one with clients who had severe hoarding disorder or clutter issues.

Q – What inspired you to (start a new business venture) or (to make significant changes in an existing business)? How did the idea for your business come about?

Ans – As a solo professional organizer, I realized that as baby boomers began to pass away or were being re-located to assisted living or nursing homes the demand for residential hoarder clearing services increased. I began receiving calls from probate attorneys, fiduciaries, real estate agents, executors of estates and landlords to assist with the challenging problems they faced and realized I needed to re-invent my solo professional organizing business to meet this demand.

Q – What three pieces of advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?

Ans – 1. Embrace failure – learn from it, do not let it get you off course ever. If you quit you will never achieve your dreams and goals of having a highly successful business.

2. Read ! then read some more. Get your hands on every book regarding sales skills for entrepreneurs, building excellent customer/client skills and 3. leverage your profits so they can be re-invested in the business wisely.

Q – What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?

Ans –

  1. Listen to your gut. Its never going to let you down if you trust yourself
  2. Listen to others who have been in your business and have experience they can share. No matter if that information seems to be outdated or old-fashioned LISTEN to it because if they have succeeded, why wouldn’t you?
  3. Continually work on communication skills and LISTENING to what your client are really wanting not want you may think they need. Never assume. Ever.

Q – How many hours do you work a day on average?

Ans – I work as many hours as I need to get the job done- but can average 10-12 per day.

Q – To what do you most attribute your success?

Ans – My training in corporate America as a field publishing sales rep. My manager encouraged me to run my territory like it was my own business and I thrived with that advise and learned a lot about self motivation and self discipline.

Q – How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?

Ans – I attend networking function whenever possible and I ask satisfied clients to refer us if they run into others who would need our services. The personal touch has worked wonders for this business.

Q – What is the best way to achieve long-term success?

Ans – Keep learning – do not get into a rut.

Q – Where you see yourself and your business in 5 – 10 years?

Ans – Expanding into other counties within Southern California.

Q – Excluding yours, what company or business do you admire the most?

Ans – I really admire zappos.com and how they operate their business. Excellent returns policy, stellar customer service – a joy to do business with.

Q – How important have good employees been to your success?

Ans – Absolutely critical.

Q – What motivates you?

Ans – Walking in nature whether it be the ocean of redwoods of California – I’m also motivated by highly satisfied clients- We continually strive for excellence and exceed not meet client expectations.

Q – What are your ideals?

Ans – Bringing compassion and respect to all of our clients.

Q – How do you generate new ideas?

Ans – By the mistake we have made in the past.

Q – How do you define success?

Ans – Having the time and money to do what you want defines only freedom – being truly loved and appreciated by family and friends equals indescribable success to me.

Q – How do you build a successful customer base?

Ans – We have stellar Yelp.com and other online reviews which has helped build our customer base – potential clients trust those reviews and come to us for that same experience.

Q – What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur?

Ans – Being able to recreate or re-invent as I go along without the bureaucracy of a corporate or institutional setting.

Q – What has been your most satisfying moment in business?

Ans – Looking back after 20 years and realizing I had no idea initially what I was doing or how to help solve the huge issues we encounter and presently feeling like I have mastered so many varied skills over that time – very satisfying.

Q – What do you feel is the major difference between entrepreneurs and those who work for someone else?

Ans – The freedom to create your own vision- to re-invent it and to be fully accountable for your choices.

Q – What kind of culture exists in your organization? How did you establish this tone and why did you institute this particular type of culture?

Ans – The clutter and hoarding pros crew is fantastic because we all work together as a team and have an unnerving sense of trust and respect for one another. I did not create this culture, it created itself – the work we do is very intense and the people that have not had these same attributes or sense of passion for the work have not lasted with us.

Q – In one word, characterize your life as an entrepreneur.