Podcast EP40: Why I Sold My Professional Organizing Business

Oct 09, 2023

Welcome to Podcast Episode 40: Why I Sold My Professional Organizing Business 

We are BACK and Kate is answering your questions about selling her professional organizing business, including why she decided to sell it, and what's next for her business-wise. Life has been a little wild in the last 6 months since we released an episode, so we are catching up on all the things! 

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Talk to you soon!



Owner + Founder, Kate Waldo + Co. 

Creator of the Smarter Not Harder: 3-Day Workweeks for Millennial Entrepreneurs©  Program

P.S. Curious how you can grow your 6-figure business while slashing your workweek in half? Click here to learn about the Smarter Not Harder© program!


 Hey, and welcome back to another episode of the three-day workweeks podcast. I'm your host, Kate Waldo Jones. Now Hodgdon, I haven't figured out which name I'm going to drop. We're not doing a hyphenated thing. I don't know. What do you do when you're known by like your middle name and not your last name? Do you drop your last name? I don't know. Anyway. It has been about six months since our last episode and a lot has happened. I sold my business. I kinda took a little a break, a sabbatical. And we're back. So I'm very excited to be chatting with you here today and update you on all the things share. Like what's been going on behind the scenes. I always love when other business owners have these big shifts and they're willing to share. What's been going on and what they've been going through and what's been happening for them because I find it very insightful and it's exciting to see people grow and change and morph their business in whatever form that looks like. So. Everything that we talk about today will be linked in the description of this podcast. If you're watching on YouTube, it'll be in the description there. And if you're listening to this episode on a podcast app, it'll be in the. Podcast notes section. We also have it on our blog. Yeah, in the last six, well, really the last, all of 20, 23 has been quite a year. And the biggest will, like so many big things have happened. So. In June of 2023, I sold my professional organizing business orchid organizing to one of my lead organizers, which was such a cool thing to have happen, such a. Amazing full circle moment. And I'll talk more about that in a second then. Sadly, we lost both of our dogs. It was really, that was tough. But John and I got engaged, we started planning our elopement and we eloped and got married in Italy. In on August 31st and then we did a one month. Kind of sabbatical honeymoon in Italy. It was like 99% in Italy. We spent one day in Switzerland. And. It's there's been a lot of other things too. I sold a, I sold two business ventures that I will be able to share with you soon. I hate like teasing that kind of stuff, but but we're buttoning up some things and then I'll be able to share. So hopefully that'll come in the next couple months. I've just been simplifying a lot of things, as you can imagine, and was selling the businesses and getting married and just a lot of life changes. So probably the biggest thing and probably why you tuned into this episode is. About selling my organizing business. So if you're not familiar, I started my entrepreneurship journey with a professional organizing business. We started in Savannah, Georgia and did onsite organizing. So if you're not a pro organizer, this is like organizing people's pantries in their closets and their garages.

And we did some really cool different projects, like. Worked with an artist, organizing her. Her art room and like where she, where she actually did her work and then her whole shipping station to ship her prints, just so many cool projects over the years. But I started that in 2018 and I knew that from the beginning, I wanted to eventually either be able to sell or remove myself from working. In the business on a daily basis, like going on site. So I always had that in the back of my mind, and that is really where all of my online education has. Blossomed from, because I had to figure out ways to do that, to be able to remove myself, to make myself not the only like, and most valuable part of the business, I needed to leverage systems technology. Repeatable. Systems and actions. So that I could scale and make more money. Cause you start, you start to cap out at a certain point. Because there's only 24 hours in a day, seven days in a week. And. Then and then be able to eventually remove myself from working on site and now sell the business. So why did I want to sell? We have. We accomplished, like I say, we like, I couldn't do it without my team. Of organizers of admin assistance of my CPAs, and, and my now husband, like I couldn't have done it without all of those people. So we built it into this pretty cool business where it was five locations, five different cities. I have. Oh man, like 20 on the team at a given point, like at our, at our biggest and doing all sorts of different projects across. The country, which was very, very cool. We were in magazines. We want a lot of awards, all sorts of cool stuff. Got a lot of really cool opportunities because of it. And then of course K-12 doing code. Blossomed out of that, doing all my online education and having a social media presence and sharing things that I love that. That organize and make your life simpler, but more luxurious. So. It had been. It's been a really cool journey with that business. That's where it's all started as a professional organizer, but I knew that eventually I wanted to sell and I didn't really know what that looked like or when it was going to happen or how it was going to happen if it was even possible. All sorts of things, but it all It all started to like the, the wheels really started turning in December of last year. So December 20, 22, and I approached my lead organizer in Savannah and she's also a good friend and I approached her and asked if she was interested in buying the business because she had been just crushing it at being a lead organizer and really running the Savannah area. And I just knew that it had gotten to a point where. I didn't quite have the fire in my belly anymore. We had done so much with the business, but there was still so much that could be done with all of our locations with. Just different things that we could offer our clients, how we could work with our team. Even better, all sorts of things that I just didn't quite have that like fire to do anymore. I felt like I had had gotten it to the point where it was time to pass the torch because that's kind of what I had always wanted to do. So being able to pass the torch to Lindsey was like the best thing ever, because I knew that the business and the brand were going to be in really good hands. I knew what she could do with it, for her life. Like I saw all this untapped potential with the business. And I have multiple businesses and it just felt like. Everything. Was aligning up to where it was time for Kate to move on and, and for someone else to be able to take on that role and really. Like blossom the business into what it could be. What's wild. Is that. Every selling situation is different. I've had a lot of questions about selling, which if you are curious about selling your professional organizing business, And you just like, want to start your wheels turning on that or you're in the process. Reach out to me. I'd love to talk about it. Email is the best way DMS, like stuff can get a little bit lost, but. If you email us [email protected]. I'd love to chat with you about it, and if there's a way that I can help you through that process and happy to, and if you decide that it's not what you want to do, then it's great to have explored it. So. So it was what was wild is that. We had. Two people. One who wanted to sell one who wanted to buy, we had agreed on a price and we were both happy with it. And even still, it took us like seven months to get everything done. So you never know what you expect. Like, I felt kind of guilty. I was, I thought it was going to have that conversation happened.

The initial conversation with Lindsay happened in December, and I thought that by February, at the latest we were going to be. I done all transferred over clients, notified team notified everybody, like, you know, happy and, and on our way. But it took longer than that. And that. So I was like a T I was teasing it in like January. I thought, oh, this is going to be so snappy. It's going to happen really quickly. And that wasn't the case. But I learned a lot and it was quite an interesting growth process because letting go of your like first business baby. Letting go of a lot of like my identity in that was wrapped in that business. And you know, having to trust that this was the right decision to make. And all, all these things that had like, nothing to do. Like I said, like we had checked. All the main boxes of like, I wanted to sell. Lindsay wanted to buy. We agreed on the price. We agreed like that we wanted it to happen as soon as possible. All these things, but even still, it was just so strange to me that I was experiencing so many different emotions and And there was. It was such a, a growth period. For me and still is. As I see this happening, like right now, like Lindsay just had a stellar month and and it's so cool. And I like fully know that I made the right decision when I am on the phone with her. And I just am so excited for her. There's no, not an ounce of regret. There's not an ounce of like, oh, I wish that was me. Or like, man, I could have been making that money or whatever. I just feel purely like, oh, it's going to make me emotional. I feel purely happy. And so excited and so glad that everything worked out the way it did. So part of. Selling orchid organizing is that. My. Focused. And my passion has shifted, which is only human nature. And I feel like typical entrepreneurship over the years, but my husband and I, we have a business called heartbeat safety. Where we sell safety equipment and do safety training, think CPR, AED, first aid, lifeguards any kind of, of. Health professional and lay people. We help make communities a safer place. And. That really became clear to me that. I could see my husband and I being able to fulfill that mission together and make this huge impact in the world. We have really exciting plans and. And hopes and dreams for this heartbeat safety business. And I I'm going to bring on John to the podcast soon so that we can debrief Italy. And we'll talk a little bit about heartbeat safety, too. But it has been really cool to see how the systems and everything that I teach in smarter. Not harder, everything that I teach in the pro organizer success kit. That all of that. A ton of it. Was, I was able to use force laying the groundwork on heartbeat safety, because it is both a product and a service based business. And we want our reach to be both local and worldwide. So taking the two entities of orchid organizing and Kate Waldo and co and bringing those together to be able to make this impact that we want to make in first, our communities and then the entire world. Is. Something that I'm really passionate about. And so as John, and then on a, on a personal level, it feels really good to be able to. Work together. He and I, as partners and as spouses for our life. And our business to be headed in the same direction. You know, we, we both like very much value, freedom. We very much value rest and self care. And so to be able to incorporate that into the same business, going towards the same goals, it's, it's really cool. Like we both are like, heck yeah, three-day work weeks. We can get as much as we want done. In a three-day work week period. We don't have to stress ourselves out about. You know, working some 40 hour weeks because we are our own bosses and we're on the same page. So that was, that's been really cool to make that transition. So I got a lot of questions about like, what's next. So orchid organizing is fully owned by Lindsay, Melvin, and I'm going to have Lindsay on the podcast. Eventually to, to talk about her experience and and everything that you know, that she's got going on with the business, like how it's changed hands and. All that cool stuff. But So orchid is in Lindsey's hands. It's doing great and not so exciting. And then my focus now is Kate Waldo and co and heartbeat safety. And there's been, what I kind of talked about was, well, some of the sad things. So we did lose both of our dogs, which was very sad. We first lost my dog. She was only seven. She's a golden retriever and and sugar, like, it was crazy. We went to the. That on a Monday, she had been like acting sick all weekend, but I thought that at most it was like, A stomach bug or, you know, an infection of some kind. We found out she had leukemia. And then by Thursday, she. We had to, we had to let her go. And that was very unexpected. It was very quick and really sad. And especially because she was only seven, I, I definitely didn't expect that to happen. She had had ACL surgery just the year before. And so I thought, you know, we're on like the second half of her life. But I don't know. That was crazy. It was very, it's been very sad, you know, I still.

Get upset about it. Cause she really was my dog for all of my adult life. I got her when I was 23, I think. And now I'm 31, almost 32. Helen. Yeah. I forget. Sometimes you have those milestone birthdays and then the years in between are just like, whatever, but yeah, I'm about to be 32. So It, it, it was really sad to, to lose her and very unexpected. We kind of knew that we were probably going to lose John's dog soon. He, he was almost 14 and he had cancer and he was just an old man. And He hung on for a few more months. And then, and then it was time for him to go to. And so that was something really unexpected that. We knew that we knew that Hasselhoff probably wasn't gonna make it much longer, but we just figured, oh, we'll still have a dog. And like, we'll probably get another dog. And so it's, it's been a huge adjustment. I really. I don't know why, but thought that I could just power through and continue on after I lost sugar back in April. And that really, it was a time where I feel like God, the universe was like, you need to stop just you sold your business. You done what you needed to do? You just need to S to slow down and stop and enjoy the success. Enjoy the time off that you're allotted because of this. And take a breath. And kind of refocus everything. So that's been a lot of why I just continued to take a break and be easy on myself for the last several months was because I could tell that there was the shift that was happening needed to happen. Realignment, refocus.

Just do things differently and and not in all ways, but sometimes I think it's easy to keep piling on. Things and adding things to your plate and forgetting to take others off of your plate. And so through this process and, and through. Going abroad for a month then. And getting to do that and having that flexibility. It really became very clear that. I wanted to simplify, continue to simplify. I know I've talked about that in the last couple episodes, but I have a blog that some of you may or may not know about called Simplified Lux Life. And I had been doing this podcast and a podcast for that. I'd been writing the blog for Kate Waldo + Co. and Simplified Lux Life

I was running two Instagram accounts. I had to email Like to float us accounts and it just became like too much. Or, I don't know. I just, it just didn't make sense for it to be separate anymore. So. I'll talk more about that. In the coming months, but I'm slowly starting to combine and simplify. The things that, that make sense, because I really like sharing the holistic lifestyle of an entrepreneur. I feel like there are a lot of business accounts and then there are a lot of straight lifestyle accounts, but not. I like to follow people who like show both sides of things. I'm not a huge fashion person, but like I like clothes and things that work that are cute and functional. So I like to share those kinds of things, because I want to know too. I was just texting one of my best friends yesterday and I was like, help. I need new sneakers and workout shoes. Like, what are you loving right now? And it's because of her light bulbs, she's super athletic. But her lifestyle and the way, like, because she is one of my best friends, I know that based on what she values, we pro we have similar tastes and we like. Similar things because we have. Certain. This is sounding like way more serious than it is, but like the, we just have certain values in like, we're not just trying to look cute. We want to be cute and functional and you know, what's whatever that is. Like, she also got me on to. The olive in June Nail Polish. Where it's like you can do an at-home manicure because I started to get really frustrated that I was spending. Like, oh my gosh. I don't even know. Every three weeks I was spending at least like four hours at the salon for lashes nails. Pedicure and w plus the drive there. And it was just, I was like, this is an efficient. So I tried out doing my nails at home, which I did, like I liked using that all of in June said, I, I needed to do my nails right now and I probably will do that. But just playing with different things that are different ways to be efficient and live a easier, more enjoyable life in all aspects of life. So. That'll be coming soon. We get where you'll start to see more and more crossover of both business and lifestyle stuff. If you have any questions, definitely asked me, let me know, but everything is going to be housed on Kate Waldo and co very much still doing online education. We have our signature programs. The smarter, not harder. Three-day work weeks for millennial entrepreneurs, the pro organizer success kit, which has the building teams for pro organizers, the dub Sato for pro organizers and a bunch of cool bonuses. So yeah, it's, it's been quite a journey and I'm excited to see what happens next. John and I he's like a master manifester. I say. Like he, he can just say that he wants to do something and then it happens. He said while we were on our honeymoon, he was like, I want to travel more. I, I really want more trips. Well, now we have a trip every single month, if not two a month. Through March. Now we just need like April, may, and then we have something in June. So you like. Mint manifested some awesome trips for us. That happened very easily. Within the next, like for almost an entire year. So that's something that we're focusing on is traveling more again. And yeah, I have lots to share about the Italy trip. That was, that was quite a month of travel and. An experiences and. There's a reason that we went to Italy and why we went for that long, but I'll save that for another episode. So, yeah, it's, it's been a lot, but it's been. It's been a good transition time. I think it's important to share like sometimes. Let's not, well, you don't have to share what you don't want to share, but I always wonder sort of like when somebody is all hot and heavy with their new boo and they're posting them on their Instagram and then all of a sudden it goes dead silent. And you're like, what happened? Like, I don't know. So you're just curious. So I, you know, there's sometimes with entrepreneurs just kind of fall off the face of the earth and you're like, well, what happened? Or they completely change course. And you're like, but why? I don't know. I don't understand. And not that it's really anyone's business, but I do think that it's interesting to know that. To kind of have an idea of the evolution. So that's why I wanted to share this with you guys of what's been going on and. What what we've been up to. So. I will be. I have lots of new content for you. We have some cool episodes that are already recorded. I'm going to keep to a bi-weekly schedule for now, just so that I can keep on top of things. But but we may move to weekly. I don't know. We'll see. Depends on what you all think about these episodes. So DM me @katewaldoandco. I, if you like this, if you want to see more of certain things love to just hear what you guys are up to too. Like if you've made a change recently in, in what you're doing, I know that I get a lot of questions, especially from a professional organizers about like changing course or doing something different. So. This will be like K-12. always like. I my passion project and my like creative outlet. So it's exciting to have a new, like work thing where I think heartbeat safety is really going to stretch me and what I'm capable of. So, We'll talk more about that. In the next few episodes, but we've got some like holiday content coming up. We've got a Pinterest episode. We've got an Airbnb episode. All sorts of things. Oh, Italy debrief going to get John on the podcast. So it was good. Hanging out with you guys. It's been too long and thanks for listening and sticking around.


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