For years, Laake managed a certified public accounting firm, but in 2017 she decided to change things up and turn her talent for organization into a business.
“It was easy and a natural fit,” Laake said. “I ended up taking a class, which ... really kind of skyrocketed me, and I was just off from there.”
Laake created her own logo and branding for her business, settling on the name Refresh.
She offers professional organizing services to homeowners and commercial clients throughout the Austin area, though she said the majority of her clients are homeowners.
Laake’s process involves working with clients to assess their needs before reorganizing their space with specific goals in mind.
She said kitchens, closets and pantries are some of the spaces she works on most often because of how central they are to people’s day-to-day routines.
Laake said keeping those areas organized can make things like getting ready for work much quicker and easier.
“If you have a home for all your things ... you can get out the door, and therefore you’re not late, so you’re not as stressed out in the morning [and] you’re on time, which makes you feel good,” Laake said. “It’s much better than you hustling.”
For commercial clients, Laake helps with more than physical reorganizing—she also works with clients to develop helpful systems and procedures.
As an example, Laake encouraged a recent commercial client to set aside a “power hour” each morning for intensive, focused work.
“It seems really hard, but that’s your time to catch up on past work, that’s your time to really focus on your email,” Laake said. “I’ve gotten really good feedback on that.”
Laake said a major priority in developing her process was to avoid causing clients unnecessary stress.
That goal informed many of her decisions in choosing how Refresh would operate, from working in three-hour blocks to using an all-inclusive pricing model that does not charge for communication.
“Sometimes professional organizers are like, ‘Okay, we only get one email,’” Laake said. “I just try to run my business like how I would want on the other end."