Hello, I’m Suzy Sanders, Founder of the award winning Virtual Assistant Business Alchemy VA (www.alchemyva.co.uk).
We’re the trusted Virtual Assistant partner of Miss Jones Group and when Lisa
Boissel asked me to write about my journey from EA to VA I was delighted, primarily because my VA business has changed my life so positively.
What is a Virtual Assistant?
Wikipedia explains it quite well:
“A Virtual Assistant (typically abbreviated to VA) is generally self-employed and provides professional administrative, technical, or creative (social) assistance to clients remotely from a home office. Virtual Assistants are independent contractors rather than employees, clients are not responsible for any employee-related taxes, insurance or benefits, except in the context that those indirect expenses are included in the VA’s fees. Clients also avoid the logistical problem of providing extra office space, equipment or supplies. Clients pay for 100% productive work, and can work with Virtual Assistants, individually, or in multi-VA firms to meet their exact needs. Virtual Assistants usually work for other small businesses but can also support busy executives.”
Before I started my VA business, I was Executive Assistant to the Chief HR Officer within a global recruitment company. When I fell pregnant and EVERYTHING changed. I returned to work following a year of maternity leave and I felt so unfulfilled and uninspired. I loved my job but not the
circumstances in which I was doing them. As my personal life had changed so much it only felt right that my professional life underwent some transformation too.
The VA industry is so diverse and thriving. Many Executives, online entrepreneurs and small businesses are switching onto the vast benefits of working with a Professional VA. But more importantly, many talented EAs and PAs are also recognising the freedom, flexibility and fulfilment they can enjoy from their own VA business.
Why should I care?
The client working with a VA benefits from the support highly skilled Virtual Assistant without the risk and cost associated with traditional recruitment. Making the VA an ideal solution for online businesses or sole-traders without a traditional office set up or regular and reliable patterns of work.
The client pays for exactly what time they need making a VA a powerful and flexible solution for managing projects and seasonal demands. With no worries about equipment, software, holiday pay, pension etc and no time lost by employees chatting at the water cooler!
The Virtual Assistant benefits from working from home (usually), setting their own hours and working patterns and enjoying the satisfaction and accomplishment that comes from running their own business.
Since I started my business, above all, I’ve enjoyed a huge period of personal growth. I’ve met some incredible people, I’ve had the opportunity to build a flexible and fulfilling career around my family, I’ve had the freedom to learn and strengthen new skills and pursue projects that I am really passionate about.
Do I have the right skills to become a successful VA?
As well as running Alchemy VA I also mentor and support talented Assistant’s on their own VA journey. One of the questions I get asked a lot is:
“Do I have the right skills to become a VA?”
The answer is usually ‘yes’, as the VA industry is so diverse…
Traditional PA duties, Executive support, social media, general admin, event planning, research, email marketing, bookkeeping, lifestyle management, customer service, data entry, copywriting, SEO, web design…
But skills aside, I believe success in business comes down to mindset over skillset. In my experience, many talented PAs and EAs already have the empathy, resilience, commercial awareness and drive to become successful VAs.
Offer for Miss Jones Elite Members
If you’d like to learn more about how to make the transition from PA to VA, as a Miss Jones Group member you’re entitled to a free 20-minute call with me so we can explore if becoming a VA is the right option for you and whether you’d benefit from VA Mentoring. You can redeem this offer through the Miss Jones Elite Hub!
*If you are not a Miss Jones Elite Member you can sign up here for £50 for the year and access lots of member benefits! www.missjonespa.com/signup