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Posts tagged ‘Northern Virginia’

Do You Need A Basic Virtual Assistant, Or A Business Grade Virtual Assistant?

When I go to networking events, I get asked what I do (naturally), and when I tell people I own a virtual administrative management company they get a glazed look over their face. ‘Oh like a virtual office?’ ‘No.’ ‘So, a virtual assistant?’ ‘No.’ *Sigh.

Since I do do a lot of networking, and get a lot of questions about the difference between VA’s and Business-grade VA’s(of which my company is made up of), I thought I would clear the air, and help you decide which is the best choice for you.

Virtual assistants are great for individuals who need data entry, or just basic trivial things. Chances are you will need to train them, and give them the tools they need to successfully finish the work you need help with.  Think of the secretary or receptionist in an office; they answer emails, calls, schedule travel and do basic admin.

Virtual assistants are also broken down to two different categories: Onshore, and Offshore. Onshore is an assistant located in your country. they can be in the same time-zone or region and will communicate with you in your native, regional language, understanding cultural nuance, like work ethic, timeliness, and vernacular.

Offshore assistants are generally located in developing nations, with language skills often around the 75-90% fluency. Although they work well for interoffice communication, they may not b appropriate for answering emails, speaking with clients, and developing company communication for marketing purposes. Yes, these assistants tend to be cheaper than onshore, however, with onshore, you won’t have to worry about break downs in communication.

A business-grade VA handles much more complex functions, like social media, bookkeeping, web design, email marketing, web development, web admin, and much, much more.  Business-grade VA’s are generally affiliated with a company (like mine). They possess not only advanced skills, but also experience, maturity and track-records that handle high level responsibilities. Yes, business-grade VA’s generally cost more than a basic VA, but if you require specialized skills, the business-grade VA is worth the extra investment.

 

If you aren’t sure whether a basic VA or a business-grade VA would fit best with your needs, contact me for a consultation.

 

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How To Transition From A Full Time Job To A Full Time Business

I get asked all the time how I got started. I get phone calls from people I don’t know, I get stopped at business events, and I even get questioned when I’m involved in events with my kids. It’s as though what I’ve done is this amazing feat and how could anyone possibly do it? Well, frankly, it’s not that difficult, and I personally don’t see the transition as being that scary; it’s all about how much you want it. When you’re heart and head aren’t in your full time job anymore, it’s pretty easy to transition into your new life. The only issue, which is the biggest issue is money. So, how do you keep your full time job while trying to build what will hopefully become your full time business? Well, that part? That’s not as easy. It’s all about how bad you want it.

 

Most full time jobs are between 9-5, Monday through Friday. When you’re building your new business, the rest of your time must be committed to creating a solid foundation for that new business. This means researching your new field, your new competition, your new potential clients and their habits, and where you may find a majority of them. For example, Northern Virginia is overflowing with solopreneurs, and my company fully caters to them. I know what they like, who will most likely become a client, and what my competition can do to take away those clients from me (which keeps me on my toes!)

 

You have to commit to working early in the morning, late at night, and throughout the weekends. Attend as many networking events as you can, and most of all, truly believe in yourself. If you think you can you can, if you think you can’t, you’re right! No truer words were ever spoken, Mr. Ford, and the adage stands true for your business. If you think it will succeed, it will! If you don’t, well…you know the rest.

 

There was a point when I was working three jobs, falling asleep in front of my laptop, making sure my home was run like a tight ship, and YES it was exhausting, and YES it’s frustrating, and NO there’s never any security, but so long as you love what you do, it will never become a job. Keep your goals realistic and small too, and it won’t become overwhelming either. Remember, “just keep swimming, just keep swimming” and you will eventually get everything you want! So, how do you eat an elephant? You take small bites 🙂

 

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