Recently, I have been on a journey of social media exploration as part of a marketing/program development/self education/re-branding exercise. My newest foray was into Pinterest from my relatively new iPhone. While cruising through the myriad of visually stimulating material, and practising posting, I came across a re-post by a colleague on her Minimalist board. With my new-found social media/iPhone techie confidence, I cheekily posted this picture about owning vs. organizing to our local professional organizer Facebook group asking about conflict of interest. I left out the LOL since I sincerely believed everyone else would join me in the irony of professional organizers endorsing minimalism. Several hours later while discussing marketing strategies over lunch, I became aware that with 7 comments already logged on my post, not everyone saw it with the same ironic perspective as I. By 10 comments, I also had an email asking me if I might like to write a post on the subject for the group.
Now the real irony was hitting me like a sledge hammer and I felt compelled to clarify my position. You see, amongst other volunteer activities in the industry, I sit on an industry task force which will be soon be redeveloping a Conflict of Interest policy for the Canadian association for professional organizers, Professional Organizers in Canada. I had no real interest in making a political statement for or against minimalism. In fact, as a professional organizer, I believe it is important to clearly understand any new trends that have an impact on our industry. I believe this so strongly, I have founded an annual think tank, The Organizing Summit, to this end.
In reading the posts, however, I learned some other interesting information about my colleagues that has left me with renewed admiration and humility. I learned, for example, that not only are my colleagues ensuring that they are educated on new trends (Minimalism) but that they are finding related topics and trends (Essentialism) on which to educate themselves. It was evident that even relatively new professional organizers are concerned about conflict of interest in their professional lives and can write eloquently about it. There are also different ways of defining minimalism so even the irony is not straightforward. Finally, it was very apparent that many of my colleagues are tracking their social media accounts carefully and taking time to comment, like, re-post and share quickly and efficiently.
Bottom line for me? 1. No haphazard posts: be clear on your intention and if an LOL helps to clarify, add that in. 2. I still have some catching up to do on social media education. 3. The professional organizers in our group are a)sensitive to discussions on conflict of interest and b)making sure they are up to speed on new trends.