Updated: Jul 22, 2020
I set up my business in February 2018. I was fortunate enough to meet someone who was already a successful VA and she very kindly spent time with me showing me the VA Handbook website and Facebook page and sharing some documents with me to get set up.
Sometime later I met in person with other VA's at her house, one of those was Kathy Soulsby who's book, (Virtually Painless), about becoming a VA I later read. It was incredibly useful and inspiring.
My very first client was my previous employer - Danesfield House Hotel, they retained me to do some HR admin for them and I was off to a flying start.!
I had spent months lurking on the VA Handbook Facebook page and another page called VIP VA. They terrified me. I had no clue whatsoever what any of the posts were about and the subjects they discussed did not relate to any of my 20 plus years experience. I thought - I can't do this!
After a while, I got my website up and running got my invoicing sorted, I learned a few systems, and got a few more clients.
After six months or so, I began to work for a small business who I really fell in love with.
I was very happy to be working the majority of my hours with them. Unfortunately, the pandemic this year, like so many businesses, hit them very hard. Sadly, they had no choice but to reduce my hours temporarily. At the time, we had no indication of when that would improve.
My confidence was shaken and so I went in search of a self help book - my knee jerk reaction to everything! It was "You Are A Badass" by Jen Sincero [https://www.amazon.co.uk/You-Are-Badass-Doubting-Greatness]. As I read it, I decided that I wanted to try "showing up" fully. Putting everything into my business with 100% effort.
As a result, I began networking better on Linkedin and Facebook, making an effort to market myself and show others what I could do to make their lives easier - which is what us VA's do.
One day I was tagged in a post about a five day challenge with a mentor who taught Mission Led Content. This meant that when you wrote your social media posts, your message was consistent and heart felt and with your business philosophy in mind. It's that authentic voice that really speaks to your ideal client.
I remember when I first started out, aside from the fact that I had no money to spend on anything other than a basic laptop, I had no understanding of how little I knew about marketing, about structuring my business, about boundaries and about self worth. I actually think that this doesn't really matter, the main thing was that I got started. I am not a person who waits to be perfect at things - check out my Instagram if you don't believe me!!! I just start, wing it for a while and then go deeper when I am ready.
I wish I had found my tribe sooner and I wish I had found people like my Marketing Mentor sooner.
Today, my business is transformed. I am busy, thriving, optimistic and spend most of my time out of my comfort zone!
There have been so many tragic, difficult losses and negatives about this pandemic, but it has bought out a passionate ambition in me that I had no idea was there.