Becoming a VA is serious business. Because it is just that – a business. If you’re not sure that you want the stress and the responsibility of owning your own business then becoming a Virtual Assistant is probably not for you. To be a successful VA you need the following:
An idea of what your practice is able to offer
Competent experience and knowledge in your area of expertise
A plan or a strategy to make your business successful
The financial resources to support you and your business during its start-up phase
A complete and honest assessment of yourself. Do you have what it takes to succeed?
Drive, energy and ambition
The ability to think originally, creatively, critically and analytically
The ability to deal with all kinds of different personalities. You are emotionally stable, social, considerate optimistic and tactful
Superior verbal and written skills. You must be able to communicate effectively with everyone from your banker to the potential referral or client in the line-up at the grocery store
All-encompassing knowledge of your service
If you’re still reading then maybe you have what it takes to operate a successful practice as a Virtual Assistant.
The amazing book – How to Build a Successful Virtual Assistant Business includes information and tips to help aspiring and established VAs with every aspect of starting and building a Virtual Assistant business. From naming your business to upgrading your skills, to expanding your business, we have put together everything you need to know based on our combined years in this industry and the input of successful VAs worldwide. click here for more information
To start, you must research the VA industry, your geographical area, the internet, the legal issues, insurance etc. Here are some resources that I have discovered along the way, hopefully, they will shorten the time you need to spend on your own research:
VA Education and Accreditation
assistu.com VirtualAssistanceU.com A Virtual learning campus dedicated to establishing “leading edge” virtual assistant practices through dynamic curriculum, small classes and diversified participant experience levels. Virtual classroom settings, linking real people around the world. work-the-web.com This page lists all kinds of VA Certification programs as well as information on training programs and other organizations supporting the VA industry. vacertification.com An independent evaluation authority for the Virtual Assistant industry
The Global Alliance of Virtual Assistants (GAVA) & the Canadian Association of Virtual Assistants (CAVA) were both formed to provide a venue for VAs to network, share knowledge and skills, plan events and obtain valuable support from other VAs in various stages of business development.
Just HEARD the words… “Virtual Assistant (VA)” and YOU want to learn more?
wingscanada.com WINGS (Women in Networking Growing Strong)
bnicanada.com Business Network International “Givers Gain”
occ.on.ca Chamber of Commerce
Online Networking Groups
CAVA emerged in 2013 from the amalgamation of CVAN and CVAC which was founded on March 18, 2002. The goal of this group is to support fellow Canadian Virtual Assistants with meetings, workshops, and events Canada-Wide to be held in each Province where VAs are located. It is the goal of CAVA to provide Virtual Assistants, based in Canada, a place to hang out… chat with others…learn from others… and work together to make the industry and all VAs the next best thing to cell phones.
GAVA emerged in 2015 to bring all of the benefits of CAVA to VAs from around the World.
And Finally… Do a search of virtual assistants and word processors in the major search engines. Each one can provide you ideas on how to make this kind of business successful. Be sure you have decided on an appropriate company name. Then put together a corporate identity (business card, letterhead, brochure etc.) Network, network, network! Every opportunity you get, present your ‘one minute’ presentation of who you are and what you do or give your literature to someone. Even if they may never need your services, they may know someone who does, or someone who knows someone who does. Attend your local networking meetings. Join business associations in your area. Sign up for online newsletters; they can be a wealth of information. Start with Virtual Tidbits by Janice Byer of Docu-Type Virtual Assistance and Web Design There are so many out there these days that are loaded with great ideas and tips. Pick up business magazines whenever you get a chance. These, too, are loaded with helpful information. Take a small business course; continually upgrade your skills either locally or online at one of the ‘virtual’ universities. So, while it is certainly not easy and you will encounter some setbacks along the way and there will be days when you wonder what the heck you were thinking, there are so many benefits and the experience of owning your own business; being your own boss is so incredibly rewarding. I wish you all the best on your journey to becoming a VA – if that is what you truly want.