Tidbits from the National Organizers Conference

NAPO Virtual Conference Logo. A few tidbits that anyone might find interesting.

This week I attended the annual conference of the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals (NAPO). Given COVID, this year’s event was all virtual. While much of the content was geared toward professionals, I did pick up a few tidbits that anyone might find interesting.

I jumped around to many sessions, so I’m sharing these in no particular order – which isn’t like me at all, but I’m just going to go with the flow. I should also note that I was writing so quickly that I didn’t catch the sources for the various pieces of data.

I invite you to scroll through and see what catches your eye – enjoy!


Moving in the near future? Wondering what to bring and what to get rid of before the move? You might be interested to know that on average, it costs about $1.00/pound to move items with a moving company. When conducting a “pre-move declutter,” use this benchmark to determine whether it is worthwhile to move your items. For instance, a box of canned goods can be more cheaply purchased on the other end.

Another moving thought: when you are moving, consider staying in a hotel on the front and back end of the move. Yes, it costs a bit more money. However, if you can handle the expense, doing this will reduce your stress level and make the whole process more pleasant. In addition to having your “necessary” items in a suitcase by your side, you will be able to sleep in a bed with fresh sheets, use a shower with clean towels, and get a hot cup of coffee and/or breakfast before your day begins. Even better, you can walk away from that room without needing to clean up after yourself.

Remember the phrase, “A picture is worth a thousand words?” This is very true. Apparently delivering a message visually improves recall by 55%. That is a pretty impressive number! If you want someone in your life to remember something, deliver the message with a visual rather than just saying it or writing it in words.

Videos are becoming more and more popular in our digital world. For instance, if you send an email, and include the word “video” in your subject line, recipients are 19% more likely to open it.  Of course, this only works if you actually have a video in your email for them to watch.

Want to be more efficient when working on your electronic device? When you want to “undo” something you’ve typed, just hit Control + Z (Command + Z on a Mac). This will automatically undo your last action. Using a shortcut like this saves you having to access the menu bar and look for the “undo typing” button. Quick and easy!

Our attention spans are getting shorter and shorter. The average person will only watch a video (such as a TikTok or Instagram video) for fewer than two minutes before moving on. Interestingly, we may sit at our devices for as long as two hours watching these videos, but our attention span is limited to under two minutes for each individual clip.

Many of us are watching videos on social media without the sound. In fact, as much as 80% of videos are watched with the “mute” in effect. Are we watching when we shouldn’t be and don’t want those around us to know? Could be!

First impressions are also getting shorter and shorter in length. The average person makes up his mind about someone in 1/10th of a second. When we visit a website, that drops to 1/20th of a second. That doesn’t mean we are making good decisions, but that is another topic.

Technology has become part of how we shop and buy both products and services. Approximately 30% of customers now report that they won’t consider a company who doesn’t have a website. Do you check out websites before making a purchase or hiring a supplier?

More and more, we are living and making choices on our smartphones. It is estimated that somewhere around 42% of web traffic these days comes from mobile devices. Furthermore, 82% of smartphone shoppers are using the “near me” function. Apparently, the days of planning in advance where to eat, shop, and relax are giving way to “in the moment” decision making.

One characteristic of successful people is inherent curiosity, manifesting as a desire to dive deeper and learn more. Successful people often talk about being unsatisfied with the information that has been provided and being willing to ask questions. Are you curious? Do you ever think, “I’d like to know more?”

Want to get better at a new skill? Here’s a formula to try: Watch one -> Do one -> Teach one

Acquiring a new skill begins when we watch someone else perform a task or skill. (On a side note, apparently 72% of us are turning to online videos for this first step these days!) If we want to master a skill, we must then try to perform it ourselves, perhaps with someone coming alongside to supervise and guide us. The best way to then sharpen and cement our expertise is to turn around and teach the skill to someone else.

We are drowning in email. The average person receives 122 emails/day. Since many people are not diligent in deleting these emails, it is not surprising that the average person has 8,024 emails in their inbox. Feel better about your inbox now?

Data theft is real and growing. Last year, 7.8 billion online accounts were breached. Apparently the requirement for complex passwords really is justified. Be on the alert and periodically change your passwords! Not sure how to keep track of your passwords? Password managers (e.g. Lastpass and 1Password) are increasingly popular.


Productivity and organizing professionals are working hard to stay current and provide clients with timely guidance and smart solutions.

Did you learn anything that surprised you? Have you heard any fun tidbits of your own recently?

32 thoughts on “Tidbits from the National Organizers Conference”

  1. I love all of these bits of information and stats you picked up at NAPO’s virtual conference. I didn’t go this year, so it feels especially great to see what things caught your attention. Much of what you noticed seems to speak to this larger category of communication, particularly how short sustained attention spans have become.

    You gave a presentation about blogging. Congratulations! How did it go? What was the biggest takeaway participants received from attending your session? I know you did an amazing job.

    1. I think communication was a big area of conversation this year. Of course, I didn’t attend all of the sessions, so this also reflects that I chose to attend sessions where this was discussed. I guess I’m interested in trends on this topic:) My session went well, I think! I was at the very end of the conference, so I didn’t have a huge crowd. I guess you would have to ask those who attended what their major take-away was. I hope they felt empowered to give it a try!

  2. I’m happy to see that you found lots of interesting tid-bits from the conferece, Seana. I registered but intend to listen to the recordings during the next few months with the exception of the opening and closing which I will get to before they disappear.

    1. I was surprised by how fun it was. Still long days, but NAPO did a great job pulling it all together. You will enjoy the sessions. I still have a few I’d like to listen to as well. Don’t miss the bloopers reel at the end – it was funny!

  3. I love, love, love this! Stats are so interesting, especially when it’s current. By the way, I think the way you ordered the info makes it fun to read.
    I never knew that 30% of customers won’t consider a company that doesn’t have a website. That’s huge.
    I am definitely one of those who does all my online shopping from my phone. It’s so easy and my phone is always with me.
    The most eye-opening is, “First impressions are also getting shorter and shorter in length. The average person makes up his mind about someone in 1/10th of a second.” That’s faster than it takes to blink your eye. This means that most of us don’t have a chance. I recently had a discussion with a friend who had made up her mind about someone, a long time ago. I had suggested, over the years, that she reconsider and that I thought her impressions were inaccurate. Well, she recently hired this person because she was in a time crunch, for a project. Guess what, she’s been raving for days. I do think we judge too soon.
    Ronni Eisenberg recently posted…11 Really Happy & Unique Mother’s Day Gifts That Say I Love You, MomMy Profile

    1. I love this story about your friend! I know I have come to realize that my first impressions were inaccurate in the past, and this statistic makes me realize I’m probably making up my mind much too quickly. I don’t shop much from my phone, but I know this is growing in popularity. I would say most of these statistics didn’t surprise me in content, but I was surprised by how extreme they are!

  4. One insight I had from Regina’s Organizing the Invisible: Women, ADHD, and emotional Labor is that when someone offers to help you with a task – they are showing that they feel the task belongs to you. Hmmmm.

    1. Oh, that’s good, Jonda! I will definitely be chewing on that today. Regina’s is one talk on my list to listen to “after the fact.”

  5. What an awesome round-up, Seana! I’m hoping the video thing will pass me by before I have figure out how to do it – fascinating to read that so many people don’t listen but do watch. I find myself avoiding watching videos because it feels like such a commitment. I can skim an article, but a video won’t make sense if I do that.
    Lucy Kelly recently posted…What Is Clutter?My Profile

    1. I think it’s so funny that we are basically sitting around, watching short videos in silence. We sure do go through phases with behavior, and this is an interesting one!

    1. I didn’t know about it, so I’m going to try to be using Command +Z. I find I really love and use the key commands that I do know! I can certainly relate to making mistakes when updating the blog LOL!

  6. I’m wondering which session the “Watch one, do one, teach one” is from, because I was telling people about that during my ad hoc Remo networking sessions! It’s a rubric from medical school, and it’s so true, because we really do know we’ve learned something when we can teach it. Which, I guess, means that you really learned a lot of varied information at conference this year, because you’ve presented it so well and compellingly!
    Julie Bestry recently posted…Paper Doll Recaps the NAPO2021 Virtual ConferenceMy Profile

    1. Ah, that tidbit came from you sharing it, Julie! I thought it was one of the best tips I got from the conference, even though it didn’t come from a session. Kudos to YOU!!

    1. There’s always next year! At least you get a little glimpse. Julie Bestry’s post gives even more insight into what it was like to be there:)

  7. This stuff is gold! Holy cow! I hope it can be non-virtual next year but glad you got to do this again. I bet you’ll be running this one day. You’re an ace!

    1. What a sweet thing to say, Tamara! I really appreciate that :):) It was a terrific time, and I’m always amazed at how much I learn. Often, I learn as much from just chatting with other organizers as I do from the instructional time. Hopefully for everyone we’ll be live next year, along with all the other conferences that have had to cancel or go virtual.

    1. You could have run the presentation on blogging, Janet – so sweet of you to watch! I loved your session as well. I think the blogging organizers represented pretty well at this conference, right?

  8. This is a great recap and I love how you’re sharing your focus for each area of attendance. I especially resonate with watch-do-teach. This is something I’ve always valued but never put a formula to.

    1. That one really stuck with me as well! I think it is really true. If you can teach it, you probably really understand it and have mastered it!

    1. Thanks so much, Bev! I thought NAPO did a terrific job with this virtual conference, and I’m so thankful that you found my session helpful. Looking forward to Baltimore next year!

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