Competition vs. Collaboration

How do you feel when you meet someone who offers the same services you do? Are you excited to meet a peer, or do you view them as a competitor that you must beware of? Most people will feel either threatened or excited or possibly somewhere in between. Where you come down on this spectrum can be very telling about your general philosophy of business and life.

If you believe that there isn’t enough business to go around you will view other people who offer similar services as competitors. Every client they land is one that isn’t on your roster. You avoid sharing any information that might give a competitor ways to improve their offerings or make their work life easier. You hold your knowledge and your resources close to the vest.

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Working with Authors and Speakers – Rewarding and Profitable

I often talk to Virtual Assistants who are struggling to find clients. When starting a business one of the most pressing concerns is generating revenue. In an effort to fill their practice they try to be all things to all people. In many cases, after years of experience in administrative roles in the corporate world, they have many skills and experience that can be valuable to many different kinds of clients. Casting a wide net will surely yield the best results in finding clients – right? Actually, the answer is no.

When I first started my business as a Virtual Assistant I developed a list of things that I could do to help busy entrepreneurs. With over 25 years in a variety of different industries, the list was VERY long. I even created a brochure that listed them all! But what I found was that it only confused potential clients about how they might use my services. There is an old adage in the marketing world that says, “A confused mind says no.” I found that to be true and a disappointingly small percentage of the people I spoke to about using my services actually became clients.

I did manage to establish some ongoing client relationships and my business was underway. I pitched my services to many people in networking and in replying to requests for proposals through several VA groups. My rates were not very high (after all, I was desperate for clients) and when I spoke to potential clients I always felt like I had to compete on price. I found myself struggling to make a real profit in my business.

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International Virtual Assistants Day is May 19th

International Virtual Assistants Day has been observed on the third Friday of May since 2006.

Virtual assistants are independent contractors who work remotely either by themselves or with a team of experts.

What does it mean to work remotely?

Usually working from their home office they provide administrative and/or technical support for clients in a variety of industries.

Virtual assistants own their own business and work independently or assemble a versatile team of other virtual independent contractors. The members of the group work independently, have shared interests and use technology to communicate and collaborate. Virtual teams bring together people with the best expertise, regardless of where they live.

When working remotely or working as part of a virtual team you rely on email, instant messaging, and video chat to communicate.

“As technology continues to evolve, implementing telecommuting policies will become easier—leading your business to save money on overheads, while keeping employee retention high thanks to a better work/life balance.” Global Telework 2016 Survey Results

Getting started

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The Benefits of Maintaining a Weekly Action Plan

To succeed in growing your business, staying in action weekly is an absolute must.

Do you fill out a Weekly Action Plan?

It only takes a few minutes and it has been proven that when you write your goals, you have a much better chance of achieving them. And when you do the basic action steps below, in time, your business will flourish and be sustainable.

This simple exercise is the key to building your business, week in and week out. It’s quick, easy and highly effective. Top leaders do this every single week.

Do you know what your goals are?

Answer the following questions honestly:

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Employee to Entrepreneur — The Choices Are Up to You

While many people take the Professional Author and Speaker Assistant Courses as a way to expand existing virtual assistant businesses, we find quite a few of our students are transitioning from the corporate world as an employee to the world of entrepreneurship. There are many things that change in making this transition but they almost all boil down to freedom to make choices.

Now, flexibility and freedom to make choices is a good thing. In fact, it is one of the things most often cited as the reason someone decides to go into business for themselves. The ability to chart your own course, set your own schedule, without having to answer to an employer is something that almost everyone who is working a traditional 9-5 job will tell you they want.

But the reality of being responsible for all of those choices can be daunting. If you have worked for someone else for years you are used to having someone tell you when to work, how to work, and clearly define what is expected of you. It was pretty easy to know if you were “doing a good job” or not – your employer probably gave you regular performance reviews and even pay raises to go along with positive reviews. If there was a problem, you most likely were given a plan you were expected to follow to resolve the issue.

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