Life as a Virtual Assistant (a VA)
I am now entering into my fourth year as a "VA" and must say that certainly at the start of my first year it had been difficult. I suppose I'm no different to any other business starting up with the struggles and still learning to be "self-employed".
I have been lucky though as I have had a variety of individuals supporting my endeavours to provide a secretarial service to businesses. This has ranged from undertaking self-employed training, mentoring from a support group where the organiser encouraged me to continue against all the odds, having specific training/development on the "VA" industry, a local networking group providing support to gaining networking skills and to joining a group of ladies (who have their own businesses) and who have helped and advised me how to grow my business. A big thank you to all those that have helped me on my journey.
Now moving forward to today, I find that I have worked with a number of businesses and have attended meetings and transcribed the notes, providing an audio transcription service for a property consultant and maintaining a secretarial/quality management support to a renewable energy company. This has meant I have needed to understand my client's quality systems and ensure all documentation is correct so that they pass their first year MCS audit without too many non-conformancies, which I achieved for them without any non-conformance reports being issued. Now we have just been audited today and I have helped them achieve their quality certificate for the second year. This is brilliant news.
So being a "VA" or freelance secretary has allowed me to work with a variety of businesses which means one day I could be providing a digital transcription service based at my office to another day working on site with a "PA"/Quality Management support service through to understanding the different standards that are involved within the renewable industry.
I always try to accommodate and when a potential customer rings requiring his business cards entering into a spreadsheet so they can upload into their database, then I'm there to help them too.
Working with my clients has helped me understand their business and their success is my success too; seeing their business grow, ensuring they stay within the constraints of quality procedures and in most cases do the "thinking" for them. Seeing that tasks need to be completed and earning my clients' trust to do this for them.
It has been an eventful past three years and I'm looking forward to the next 3 years and beyond.
Kathryn | Mob: 07918 667509