Marie Kondo for Business: 6 Principles to Apply

January 3, 2022 • 5 min read

Marie Kondo is the home tidying expert. As a best-selling Japanese author and host of the popular Netflix show, Tidying Up with Marie Kondo, she’s taught millions of people how to spark joy through organizing their homes. Also known as the KonMari method, her organizing tips and tricks help you get rid of clutter. The idea is by organizing your space, you make room for objects, people, and experiences that bring meaning to your life. The goal is to keep items that bring happiness and create a peaceful environment. 

Marie Kondo’s same decluttering principles for your home can be applied to your business. Because just like with your home, your company can and should be a source of happiness. And it all starts with organizing. Decluttering all aspects of your business can help you feel more organized and lead to a more efficient inventory management system. By tidying up your business, you tidy up your business goals. And when things in your business are running smoothly, that is guaranteed to spark joy. 

Here’s how to use organizing tips from Marie Kondo for business purposes:

1. Commit

First and foremost, commit to what it is you want to do and set a realistic timeline. Maybe your inventory room is a complete mess and you want to get it organized. Or maybe you want to finally get around to cleaning out your email inbox. When it comes to applying the principles from Marie Kondo to your business, it helps to think outside the box. It might be physical things that need tidying, like those papers piling up on your desk. It might also be things like updating your marketing presentation or creating a more efficient work schedule for employees. 

No matter what it is you are trying to accomplish, dedicate yourself to doing it. Carve out time on your calendar specifically for getting these things done. Don’t treat tidying and getting organized like an optional, free-time task. Schedule it in.  Treat it the same as a meeting with a client. There should be no interruptions to interfere with your Marie Kondo tidying mission.

2. Create categories

The KonMari method of decluttering is all about focusing on one category at a time. Have you ever looked around your office and felt overwhelmed by the piles of old receipts and invoices? If that’s the case, your category to focus on might be paper. Then you can start getting it organized. If your business has a lot of deadstock–inventory that isn’t selling–your focus category might be inventory control. 

What is most important is to pick one category at a time. This way the task at hand will feel much more manageable. Organizing by category breaks things down into bite-size pieces. And you’re more likely to accomplish your organizing goals if you bite off only what you can chew.

3. Make sure everything has its place

Everything your company uses needs to have its proper place in your business. This is especially important when it comes to your inventory. Having an organized inventory room means having an orderly and controlled inventory management process. This saves you time and money in the long run. 

But this Marie Kondo for business tip goes beyond having a physical place for things. Each aspect of your business should have a purpose. Have storage costs that feel out of control? Or recurring stockouts? You might consider changing up your inventory management software to something that makes tracking all your stuff easy and intuitive.

4. Practice gratitude

The Marie Kondo method encourages thanking discarded items that you give away to clear up emotional space for something new. While you probably won’t be thankful to sell off deadstock at a loss, you can practice gratitude with your clients.

A simple thank you note letting them know how grateful you are for their support can go a long way. By expressing gratitude to clients, you elevate your customer service to the top of its game and are more likely to retain their business.

5. Keep items that spark joy 

When it comes to keeping items in your office that spark joy, take a look around your space. Are there any objects that bring up negative feelings? Maybe that old rug makes you cringe when you step into work each morning. Or your desk is so cluttered with paper and pictures you find yourself avoiding it. This is the complete opposite of sparking joy. 

Marie Kondo would say that the space we work in is reflective of the work itself. If the objects around your office or storage areas cause you to feel stressed, your work each day will feel overwhelming.

But if your office space is inviting and peaceful, your work will be much more enjoyable even on the busiest of days. Something as small as placing a favorite candle next to your computer can spark joy. Or even a thank you note from a client that makes you smile just by looking at it. These are things worth keeping.

Take stock of what makes you feel joyful and build more of it. Any office items that do not bring you joy should be thanked and let go.

6. Simplify 

Find which areas of your business need improvement and implement upgrades in a simple, efficient way. How? By incorporating tools, literally and figuratively, that help you easily get organized. There are so many excellent productivity and organizational tools out there that can be used to make your office a more joyful, tidy space. 

Sortly inventory management software is displayed on a computer, tablet and smartphone.

One of those tools is an intuitive inventory management software system. Sortly helps you declutter, tidy up and boost profitability by doing the heavy lifting for you. You can track your business’s inventory and assets right from your smartphone, and even get alerts when it’s time to re-order. Simplify your inventory process and spark business joy! Get started with Sortly for free with a two-week free trial.