I was reflecting on some of the great reasons why I became a VA and if I had to pick a top 5, what would they be? Well, here they are. And just to prove not everything is a bed of roses, here also is my top 5 things that aren't so great about being a VA.
The 5 best things about owning your own Virtual assistant Business.
Being the Boss
It’s great being able to say “No” to something I don’t want to do because I am the Boss. I also get to decide how I would like to tackle a task and I also get to decide where I am going to take my business next. I love being in control of my work and my time. No longer having to ask permission to do anything is very freeing.
No company could give me the work life balance I have now. With a young family and the constant pushing and pulling most working mums experience, I have the flexibility to decide when and where I work. I don’t have to ask for time off, I just take it when I need it. Whilst the majority of my work does take place during business hours, I can choose to work outside of the traditional norms if I want to.
I remember coming in to work some mornings feeling great until I met the office “downer” . You know the type of person I mean? They seem hell bent on sucking all the happiness out of a room and dragging everyone’s mood down to their level. As a Virtual Assistant most of the people I work with love what they do and the result is an uplifting, positive environment to work in. No more office politics, petty gossip and “downers”.
Money! Money! Money!
I don’t have to beg for a pay rise, I just go out and get one. I decide how hard I work and what I earn doing it. The sky really is the limit when you own a business. It can be as big or small as you want it to be. I control the purse strings and I reap the benefits.
By far the most satisfying element of my career has been the sense of achievement I get from every dollar I earn. The knowledge that I can generate my own income without relying on anyone else is very freeing. Every success is my success. I made it happen. It is truly very satisfying.
The five worst things about owning my own Virtual Assistant Business
Fluctuating work load
Whilst I get to call the shots on what work I do and when I do it, there always seems to be a great deal of fluctuation in my workload. I can’t always predict when the next wave will hit. Learning to manage this and making proper use of the slower times to get yourself up to date and prepared for the next onslaught,can be draining at times.
No IT Guy
VA’s are technology reliant and when something goes wrong with the technology, there is no IT guy to come and fix it for me. I have to work it out and find a solution by myself. Thank God for Google! There are many online techie forums which have been very helpful to me too. But seriously, some days I’d sell my first born for access to a decent IT techie.
Taking a break
Ask anyone who is self employed and they will all tell you that the toughest aspect of owning a business is how to manage taking a much needed holiday. Luckily I have a small team of trusted VA’s I subcontract to and who will babysit my clients for me (as I do for them when they take a break). However, I never really switch off from my business. Even on holiday, I find my
thoughts drift to planning my next move.
I enjoy my own company, however working alone for long periods, even for an introvert like me, can be pretty isolating. I make sure I get out of the office to lots of business events and functions to give me some much needed human interaction. Having no colleagues to bounce ideas off is at times frustrating. This is where annual conferences and online forums can sometimes help fill the void.
The scary reality is that if everything goes pear shaped, there is nobody to blame. There are no other team members that let the side down. Any disasters I create, just like the successes are mine to own and that is pretty confronting. We all make mistakes and I desperately try not to make the same one twice.