How To Start Your Own Virtual Assistant BusinessWritten by Liz Folger
Thanks to Internet there’s a new way to make money with your computer. You might be surprised at all different services you could offer with this new home business. Most people have become familiar with word processors, which usually consists of typing manuscripts, letters, transcription and writing resumes, but new virtual assistant is like word processing on steroids.
Diana Ennen, has been a home-based word processor now for about 15 years. She started to educate herself about all possibilities a person has when starting a virtual assistant business. Diana Ennen along with Kelly Poelker, a certified Master Virtual Assistant, just finished writing an ebook called, “A Bizy’s Guide: How To Start Your Own Home-Based Virtual Assistant’s Business.”
So What Exactly Is A Virtual Assistant?
Diana Ennen explains, “A virtual assistant, or VA, is a highly skilled professional who provides administrative support and other specialized services to businesses, entrepreneurs, executives, and others who have more work to do than time to do it.
Many VAs work as independent contractors from their own home. VAs use leading edge technology to communicate work assignments via Internet, e-mail, disk transfer or such traditional methods as regular mail, overnight shipping and even pick-up and delivery in local areas. A VAs services typically include word processing, medical or legal transcription, database management, Internet research, e-mail handling, reminder service, bulk mailings, information processing, and any other tasks typically given to office secretary. Many VAs also provide web development, design and maintenance, desktop publishing, meeting and event planning, bookkeeping, and business start-up consultations. The services are endless depending upon your knowledge and skills.”
Tisha Silvers explains her virtual assistant business as, “One who assists another from literally anywhere in world. I don't limit it to just business support functions. And I consider person a few miles down street to be just as virtual if you don't meet regularly or at all. I have a few of those kinds of clients myself.”
How Can You Market This Business?
Showing clients how much you can help them as their VA isn’t as hard as you think. Julie McMann explains, “Using a virtual assistant allows clients to outsource any projects that can be done from a remote location. It allows them to accomplish more with less time. Since time is so precious to business owners, anything that frees up time and keeps business moving ahead is extremely valuable. It's also convenient to be able to hire and utilize a virtual assistant whenever you need them. One month you may have more projects than another. It's much less expensive than hiring a full-time employee who doesn't get used to their full potential. Clients also benefit by not having to worry about providing employee benefits such as insurance, 401K, vacations, etc. Finally, office space and equipment are provided at expense of virtual assistant, which again saves client money.”
Smelling the roses and recharging our batteries!Written by Lisa Schmeckpeper
This holiday season marks my 3-year anniversary in Internet Marketing business. Of course, on such anniversaries we all ask ourselves: Am I better off now then when I started? My enthusiastic answer is: By far :-) That automatically raises another anniversary question: Am I where I want to be? My answer, thoughtful but still enthusiastic, is: Not quite ;-)
Sound familiar? Or maybe you haven't gotten to "better off" part yet. Regardless of how you answer these two introspective questions, my piece of advice to you this holiday season is same: Take some time off. Relax, enjoy your family, regroup your thoughts and goals and decide what is really important to you, your personal life, and lives of those most important to you.
This piece of advice, like most advice I give, comes from personal experience. I have been running around like crazy for past three years growing this Internet business. Granted, it has paid off well, in many visible ways, but at what personal price?
My children miss their mommy, my husband feels pressure of his long hours at work, compared to all work here at home (which I can't always attend to because of my own business time and focus requirements), and I can feel my good health slowly diminishing.
Many organizers and time management specialists will tell you that if your life, as a whole, is not running smoothly then your neglected areas will suffer. And how true that is! If kids ain't happy, nobody in house is going to be happy. If your spouse isn't happy, then how can you truly be happy? If all ongoing work and resultant unhappiness in family cause you to be unhappy, how effectively do you think you will perform your job? Not well at all!
And what do you, as owner-operator of your own web business, think happens when your health fails? Not much! Most jobs in "real world" include someone who is there to take your place while you are out sick. But when you run your own business, nobody is hovering in wings, ready to take up slack and keep operation humming.
I have personally been putting off having my wisdom teeth extracted for over a year. I haven't seen my gynecologist since my daughter was born three years ago, and my once-religious exercise routine has ceased to exist as pounds keep getting measured by my unforgiving, depressingly honest bathroom scale. All in name of entrepreneurship.
Some people would call that extreme dedication, laziness or even a unique late-twentieth century form of mental illness! I'm not even sure what I consider it anymore. What I have realized is that taking time off can be like recharging dead (but rechargeable) batteries. Accomplishing even simplest of tasks with dead batteries can be a chore--nearly impossible. But take time to recognize problem, put in a fresh set and you can get three times work done effortlessly.
This past Thanksgiving weekend I spent a glorious three nights at Wilderness Resort Lodge in Wisconsin Dells. Just my husband and I and our children, enjoying water park, horseback riding and getting away from stress with other activities we found open in off-season. It was great!
Am I totally refreshed? No, not yet. But I plan to be as I am not going to come back fully from vacation until after new year. One thing this mini-vacation made me realize is that I am not happy if I miss out on what I normally view as "important stuff." I say normally view because when I have my entrepreneur mindset on I experience complete tunnel vision. I don't even realize what I'm missing because all I have my eyes on are all opportunities to grow my business on little glowing electronic screen in front of me.