Hey, everyone, it's Angel with Assistant Angel, the owner of the Virtual Assistant Training Network. I wanted to give you guys some encouragement today. Starting a virtual assistant business can be challenging. I remember working a part-time job, trying to build my VA business on the side, and all the challenges that I ran into. My first encouragement is to not give up. If that's your dream to be home with your kids, don't give up. Fight through it and work late nights if that's what it takes.
I wanted to make sure that you guys know that you're not alone. It is really a challenging journey, but the reality is you can have what you are searching for. You can serve amazing clients from home, and still be there for your family. Now one of the things I wanted to give you guys some advice on today is how to have confidence as a new virtual assistant. That sounds so funny to say, but the truth is you do need to be confident because when business owners want to hire you, they want somebody who's confident. I don't mean confident in like I'm amazing. I mean confident that you can help them.
Hone in on your skills.
What is your skillset? Are you great with admin work or calendar management? Do you know how to navigate Outlook or social media? Are your skills in SEO and website design? Focus on what you're naturally good at. Take additional training and utilize your new tools. Make sure that you're able to be top of the trends so you can help people.
Make sure that you are confident in your clients.
Now, this is a little different because when you're first starting out, we're all like, "I'm so excited to have a client!" We take any client we can, which is great, but the more we build our client base, the more we realize there are certain clients that are an amazing fit for us that we can serve. There have been many times in my years of VA business where I've had to part ways because the fit just wasn't right anymore. That's natural. Don't ever feel like you can't-do what's best for you!
My encouragement is this, have confidence and choose the right client. How do you do that - by working backward. Who do I want to work with? Where do they hang out online? Where can I best serve them? What is their pain point? How can I help them? Take it slow and don't rush in and take 20 new clients that you can't serve. Take two clients and hit a grand slam. I always tell new virtual assistants, under promise and over deliver. It will be the greatest asset to building your business.
You need a support system.
I'm telling you guys, this is literally one of the most important things. Have a support system. The Virtual Assistant Training Network has a Facebook page and we talk, figure out problems, and post jobs when they're available. It's important that VA's know they're not alone. Find VAs who've been in the business a long time that you can partner with and say, "Hey, I'm struggling with this. How do you handle that?" In the early days of my virtual assistant business, I started with Colleen Gray at Boomerang Social in Raleigh, North Carolina. We would call each other and be like, "How do you handle this? What do you think?"
The important thing is this, don't despise those small beginnings, guys. That community support at the beginning is so vital. Just take it one step at a time, one client at a time, one day at a time to really reach your goal to be able to work from home.
Be confident in is yourself.
I don't mean in arrogance; walking around like I'm the best thing since sliced bread. What I mean is saying, "I really can help businesses." This confidence I submit to you actually comes from your clients. Here's what I mean. I've been in business nine years now and it took me seven years to recognize that I'm really good at what I do, which is really funny to say because I have an incredible team. They're incredible and highly talented. We get great results for our clients, but I wasn't confident in what we did. It was the feedback from the clients that said, "Because of you, we can do this. Because you partnered with our business, I can do this. Because of you, I can reach my marketing goal." That's when I realized we can have confidence.
My encouragement is to start small. Start with one or two clients. Help them. Get feedback on what you can do better. Get feedback on ways that you can grow and ways that you could serve them better. That is going to build your confidence so as new clients come in, you will be more confident to be able to answer their questions and solve their problems too.
Have a process.
What I mean by that is to have a plan. You want to have it in writing so you can see a manageable goal. You will hear Dave Ramsey on the EntreLeadership podcast say, "To be clear is to be kind." Be clear and kind to yourself. "I want to serve X amount of clients by the end of the year. By the end of next year, I want to be fully working from home and leave my part-time job." Okay, what do you need to focus on for that to happen? Let's move backward. I'm going to need nine clients. How do I get nine clients? I need to know my time, etc. You start slow, and what's going to happen is you're going to build some momentum and see progress towards your goals.
Have goals, but be flexible.
Every year we have a word. Last year it was "change" and this year is "flexibility" because we can have all the goals and all the visions and all the things that we want, but marketplaces change. The market will dictate where you go, so have a goal and go to get there but understand that the path may be different on how you get there. Just enjoy the journey. Have confidence that, hey, I accomplished this. I can do this. I served two clients, I can serve three. Oh my word, I managed to have a business meeting while my kids were napping. I can do that again. You figure out what works and what doesn't work. It's going to be a back and forth, give and take, but what you're going to see is that as time goes forward, you're going to see what works for you.
Don't compare yourself to other people. I can tell you what worked for me, I can tell you what works for my team, but you're going to see what works for you in your life. Everybody's business is so different. We want to be home for different reasons. Some of our VAs are stay-at-home dads. They're there to support the family. It's all okay. The bottom line is we want to be able to make sure that we're serving clients in excellence, that we're doing things that are going to forward their business that's going to forward our business and help us take care of our family. That's why we're here. That's why moms and dads like us work from home. Enjoy the ride, and you guys are going to do great as a confident virtual assistant.