I recently received an email from a woman who is thinking about become a Virtual Assistant. She’d tried her hand at a couple of businesses and had found it hard going and then was offered a good job and took it. Much later she discovered the VA industry and wished she’d known about it before. She has since been offered fulltime work by a man who wants her to become his VA and she wrote to me for advice. I had concerns about this possibility for her and below is my response which I hope will also assist others, should they find themselves in a similar position.
The reality of starting any business is that it’s going to take time to build it up to a fulltime income – it won’t happen quickly for most people. To have a client wanting you to work fulltime for them rings alarm bells for three reasons:
1. If he is your only client and you have no others, and he no longer needs you, where does that leave you?
2. You would need to check with the tax department in your country but in my country and I believe in others too, if you are earning 80% of your income from one source, that person or business could be deemed your employer. He would become responsible for your taxes, insurances and holiday pay. He might not like that idea.
3. If the above is then true for you, and you are working fulltime for one client, that leaves you no room to take on any other clients, to get you out of that situation. And if you’re earning less with him than you are now, you need to think about this very carefully. What expenses do you currently pay out that you won’t have to pay out if you were working at home? You can deduct that amount from what you’re now earning and know you can manage on that figure, but you still should not be dependent on one client for that income.
I would encourage you to build your business part time as many VAs have done before you. Once you have a few regular clients and you can see you are getting regular income, then consider taking leave from your job for a period of time to give it a go fulltime, or leave your job completely. Many VAs work in the evenings and on weekends to build their businesses up. It’s currently 10.25pm here in
and here I am responding to you! Know that even when you are fulltime with your business that there will be times when you are working at night or on evenings – it takes time to develop a reputation as a reliable business operator and some jobs come urgently and at the last minute – you need to do it as is needed when possible. Melbourne
I suppose what I’ve outlined above isn’t any magic wand for you and might not be what you needed to hear, but it is reality and will help you move forward toward your goal with a realistic view of what’s needed.
In the meantime, I encourage you to join one or two VA forums so you can keep in touch with many VAs and see how they cope with managing their businesses and families – you’ll learn heaps from them. There’s a link to join a forum I run on my website at www.vadirectory.net.