Hi from Teesside


#1

Hi Everyone, I have been working as a virtual assistant for four years but only been completely self-employed since January this year as I have gradually built my business up.

I am looking forward to speaking to other virtual assistants, getting tips and advice and looking to build up my network of contacts!


#2

Hi Emma

What made you finally take the leap? (I know we had a few people asking about when the right time was, so wondered if you’d be able to share your story a bit more!)

C


#3

Hi Caroline

Yes of course. For years I had an idea of working in admin from home so when I went part time due to childcare I started doing audio transcription on an evening just to bump up my pay.

In my employed job I worked in HR, which I had done for 12 years and worked at quite a large company. I was part time and they asked me to change my hours which worked for me. However I found myself for the last six months I was there just photocopying passports which wasn’t utilising my skills.

I decided to push myself to get more clients. One of these clients asked me to go and work for them on an employed status but meant I could work completely from home. I had totally flexible hours as long as I did a set amount a week. This was perfect for me building up the business.

I worked employed for this client for three years, in the background I started building up a client base and working out exactly what services I wanted to offer. Then last year I realised I wanted to grow more and i could only do this if I left the employed work completely. So I have spent the last 12 months working on a website, facebook and starting to do networking. I got a couple more clients which has given me an income that meant I could go fully self employed.

I honestly love being a virtual assistant, there is no other job where you get to know a variety of businesses and business owners and feel you are adding value to their business. There are some really great clients out there as well who I have found let you have input and allow you to learn new skills as you work with them.


#4

That’s really interesting that even given complete flexibility by employers, this was still an itch you needed to scratch!

I took part in some research with University of Glasgow about 18 months ago, they were investigating why there was this shift to working from home for small businesses. They wanted to know whether it was the downturn in the economy or increased desire for work:life balance - and whilst those were factors, overwhelmingly the people who opted to work this way were doing so as a choice, because they valued that freedom.

It was a very interesting study to be involved in!


#5

Sounds like a fun project to be involved in Caroline. I agree with you freedom is the big thing for me also.