TELL ME ABOUT YOUR CURRENT BUSINESS. WHAT ARE YOU DOING EXACTLY?
I am a virtual assistant and an online business manager. I help entrepreneurs and their businesses with tasks that are too technical or just too time-consuming. This gives them more time to focus on their business rather than worrying about the “behind the scene” tasks.
HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH YOUR BUSINESS IDEA?
Virtual assistants and PAs have been around for years so I can’t say I came up with the idea, but I do feel that my love for learning new skills and being happy to try new things is why I have managed to succeed in helping people.
WHAT WERE YOU DOING BEFORE THIS, AND IS THIS YOUR FIRST BUSINESS?
I have worked in many areas. I started off working with children when I was a teenager, mainly working with children with specials needs. I then went on to work in car sales which was amazing I loved working with cars. From there I decided I wanted to follow my dream of travelling so I went to France to work as a nanny for a ski company and then went off working as a children representative within a travel agency for five summers. I had tried to set up my own face painting business in the UK when I returned from travelling, but it didn’t really take off. I then decided to move back abroad to the sunshine. After a short stint as a private nanny, I decided that I really don’t want to work in shops, with children any more so I started looking at online work.
WHAT SPECIFIC ADVICE WOULD YOU HAVE FOR YOUNG WOMEN WHO WOULD LIKE TO BECOME AN ENTREPRENEUR?
Have a good support group and make sure you can deliver with what you are offering, make the most of free resources and tools that are found online.
MY GREATEST OBSTACLE AND HOW DID YOU DEALT WITH IT:
Explaining what I do without confusing people. This is still something I struggle with some times. I have created a sheet where I have pointed out my services and I can expand on those services when needed.
MY PROUDEST ACCOMPLISHMENT:
Building my business from earning zero to having a steady income. When I started my business I had zero money to my name and no food, I was struggling to pay rent and I was alone living in a foreign country my family all wanted me to go back to the UK but I couldn’t leave my dog. So I persevered and just threw myself into work, following people that inspired me learning tasks where I could and taking part-time work in the evenings to get by. Three years later I didn’t need to work part-time anymore my company was supporting myself and now five years later my house is furnished. I now have a second dog and I am making a profit every month and slowly building my savings back up. I did all this single and alone with little support from my family not because they didn’t want to help but because I want to be able to show that I can do it.
HOW I BLEND LIFE AND WORK TO CREATE THE LIFE I WANT:
I struggled with this to start with as I needed the money. But now things are a bit easier and I make sure I have a good plan, I use great tools to monitor my work and give myself working hours. I love working from home as I can nip out with my dogs during the day. I am most definitely a morning person so I get up to walk the dogs go to the gym and then start my day. I try to get all the important work done before lunch so then the afternoon can be more relaxed and I can go to the shops and out with the dogs if I want. It’s all about preparation, checking your calendar first thing so you know what you have to do for the day, booking time out in your calendar for yourself and working later if you want to do something extra in the week.
I AM INSPIRED BY:
Vicki Nicolson – she created my branding and I love how informative and helpful she is, she is such an inspiration in everything she does.
WHY I CHOSE THIS CAREER:
To have that balance of working at home with my dogs, trying new things and being able to work online.
HOW I PREPARE FOR SUCCESS:
Planning, if this happens then ….
Its the same as my emergency plan. If this happens I will do this. Having a backup plan for certain things is always a good idea.
DID YOU WRITE A BUSINESS PLAN? WAS IT AN EFFECTIVE TOOL FOR YOU?
I tried but when I started I was so new to the world I didn’t really know the potential of it.
ARE THERE SPECIFIC ADVANTAGES, DISADVANTAGES TO BEING A WOMEN BUSINESS OWNER?
I don’t think there is any advantages or disadvantages really, not for me personally I have worked with men and women over the last few years. I think my background in car sales makes me more able to get on the same level as men. I think sometimes women prefer to work with women.
MY FAVOURITE BUSINESS TOOL IS…
I have a new one, I have always raved about Asana but recently I have started using Clickup and it is like Asana but with so many more advantages. Like a little note pad, multiple assignees. Also, I couldn’t live without Google. Both business and personal… I’m still not sure what we did before Google existed.
THE BEST PIECE OF ADVICE I HAVE EVER BEEN GIVEN IS…
Never assume it makes an Ass Out of You And Me! I was given this advice after a few weeks working as a car sales executive. I was 18 and made a little mistake and the older guy who was training me turned around and said this to me. I use this saying almost daily now. I would rather ask 100 questions to get the right outcome than to assume and it’s wrong.