I saw a question at answers.yahoo where a woman was asking about becoming a Virtual Assistant. She’s keen to find work she can do at home and had been doing some research and discovered the term ‘virtual assistant’. She wanted to know if she could become one and how to get started.
I answered her query, gave some information and websites and then thought it was important to add this little bit of information: “It is important for you to know that being a VA means you are self-employed. So you need to be prepared for that responsibility.”
Why did I add that? Because, all too often, I hear from people who want to work from home and have work given to them (so they can get paid also) but they do not realise what’s involved in being a VA. It means being a business owner – it means you have the full responsibility for sourcing clients, marketing your business, tracking your finances, recognising that the buck stops with you if anything goes wrong and managing things every day, day in and day out, whether things are going well or not.
As I’ve often said in this blog, being a Virtual Assistant does not mean you’re an employee with limited responsibilities – it means you are a self-employed business owner. The good thing is you get to make all the decisions about the work you do, who you work with, how much you charge and how many hours you work. The bad thing is you get to make all the decisions…. etc, etc.
So, if the goal for you in 2012 is to set up a Virtual Assistant business, please go into it with your eyes wide open. There are many out there willing to help you on your journey (including me), give you advice, point you to resources, assist you with training, and networks available to support you in your new career. But ultimately you are still responsible for the day-to-day activities of your business. So, are you prepared for the responsibility?