How To Become a Successful Virtual Assistant
As you ponder how to become a successful virtual assistant, know that the business world is shifting this way.
Major businesses worldwide save up to 78% of labour costs by hiring a virtual assistant (VA). This is a significant amount to save because there are no taxes to pay.
This is why there are VAs in different sectors of the corporate world in the 21st century.
For example, you could be a virtual assistant in bookkeeping, real estate, administrative assistant, and writer. You could also be a social media marketing VA or a receptionist VA.
In short, pick a field that feels right to you and one that you can deliver on flawlessly.
According to estimates, there are between 5,000 and 25,000 virtual assistants globally. And this number is increasing because working as a VA is an excellent option for those looking for flexibility.
As a VA, you determine the number of hours to work in a day or week, something that's not there with other jobs. You even get to pick the location of your workplace. Some prefer to work from home, while others prefer to meet colleagues in a co-working space.
Subsequently, the demand in this industry is growing as more people take to freelancing and remote working. A case in point is the virtual assistant market in the United States; it is substantial.
Data by the Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2019 show there were over 3.6 million VA secretaries and administrative assistants. This number could be higher now after the COVID-19 pandemic.
With these insights, this article tells you everything on how to become a successful virtual assistant.
Can I Be Successful as a Virtual Assistant?
You have every reason to be a successful virtual assistant. It is tenable with the right skills, and determination to stand out. Nevertheless, professionalism starts you off on how to become a successful virtual assistant.
Do the following things.
Pick a Conducive Working Environment
The most excellent part of working as a virtual assistant is that you can do it from the comfort of your home. But, working from home frequently necessitates a decent workstation.
The ideal location for your workplace should be a calm and peaceful section of your home. A corner of your living room or bedroom can suffice if a dedicated home office isn't feasible.
A calm and structured work atmosphere free of distractions is ideal for deep work. Secondly, get every other tool of work you need. You require sticky notes, a work light, headphones, and a working computer.
Know Your Work Priorities
A virtual assistant's job means you control your working schedule. You must, however, make sure that your chosen schedule and location are compatible with your client's needs.
Reliability is perhaps, the whole secret on how to become a successful virtual assistant. You must be someone a client can trust. Keep your word if you promise to complete a task by a specific day.
Moreover, be incredibly organised because your client is not about to monitor how you work. The onus of your output is solely on you.
Time is of essence if you are bent on finding out how to become a successful virtual assistant.
Your tray is always full of managing emails, data input, and project management. Thus, create a plan and learn how to prioritise your duties in order to ensure that you don't miss anything.
Be systematic; schedule your tasks accordingly and work on each at a specified time.
Pay Attention to Detail
Paying attention to the smallest of details is essential in this profession since you work independently. You should complete tasks thoroughly and accurately as per the client's instructions.
Errors can cost your clients money and harm their reputation. Your clients have nothing more frustrating than receiving emails riddled with typos or omissions.
Having a keen eye for detail isn't something everyone is born with. The good news is you can learn.
Ability to Handle Challenges
A virtual assistant is not immune to feeling pressurised and agitated even when working from home. However, the sad reality is that a client's concern is their work, meaning you shouldn't let your challenges affect your work.
You must have the ability to think creatively to overcome work-related challenges. Your stunning output is the only thing that matters most.
Give it Your All
You must constantly try to improve your skills and abilities as a VA. There are days when you have to put in more effort than usual to get the job done.
Make an effort to improve your abilities by learning something new about the industry online.
What Skills Do You Need to Become a Virtual Assistant?
You need a set of skills to execute your role as a VA. Here are four skills to guide you on how to become a successful virtual assistant.
Outstanding interpersonal and communication skills – verbal and written - are essential for any successful virtual assistant. A VA's job centres on communication because they are either on the phone with a client or writing emails.
Being able to express oneself clearly is a valuable asset for a company hiring a VA.
A VA's ability to prioritise and keep track of multiple tasks is critical. They must be well-organised to meet tight deadlines.
Management of Projects
A VA's project management abilities must be wide-ranging. They may include establishing and implementing specific plans and assisting firm projects.
Other roles could be creating emails and related content for marketing projects and rendering online assistance for web-related operations.
The bare minimum on how to become a successful virtual assistant is possessing IT skills. Why? Because you execute every VA task using a computer.
Decision Making Skills
The ability to make quick decisions is an absolute necessity for virtual assistants. If the business owner is unavailable, a VA could determine the best course of action.
This could mean thinking outside the box to get a solution.
Managing Social Media
A company's marketing plan would be incomplete without consideration of social media. Having excellent social media management abilities is a must if you're looking for a virtual assistant gig.
You should know how to work with various social media sites, create social media content, and interact with other users. It's also a good idea to know how to schedule and promote your material.
Outgoing customer relations skills are the nerve centre of how to become a successful virtual assistant.
The ability to provide excellent customer service is a must for any assistant who has contact with clients or customers. This means that you know how to remain calm in any situation, operate well under pressure, and communicate effectively.
Excellent customer service skills build a solid reputation for your company.
Data Entry Skills
Since data entry is a regular VA activity, having the knowledge of word processing is necessary. Further, know formatting documents, organising files, conducting research, and transcribing data.
Online-based Apps Knowledge
Familiarise yourself with how cloud-based apps like Dropbox or Google Docs work. They are essential in executing your role as a virtual assistant.
Is there a time you needed to brainstorm new ideas or put together an appealing post? Having a virtual assistant with creative abilities could help your firm launch new projects, marketing campaigns and generate leads.
How Do I Become a Virtual Assistant With No Experience?
Having no prior experience doesn't stop you from honing your skills to become a successful virtual assistant. You can always learn how to do it like a pro.
The first step on how to become a successful virtual assistant with no experience is knowing what a VA's job entails. Ideally, a virtual assistant is a person who offers assistance to other firms remotely.
Secondly, take an online class and learn more about the basics of the VA world. Only then can you choose a VA service you would provide to clients.
It could be a receptionist, bookkeeping, administrative assistant, creating invoices, preparing payroll, among others. This is great, but is not good enough to get you a client.
So, what do you do to get a client? Read on.
How Do Virtual Assistants Get Clients?
Getting a job as a virtual assistant shouldn't be too difficult if you have the skills. Plenty of companies offer virtual assistant gigs on a full-time or freelance basis.
The following platforms help get a VA job.
Various work-from-home options are available on FlexJobs, such as virtual assistant jobs. All employment opportunities are thoroughly reviewed and examined for scams before.
This means jobs posed here are legit - they are your next path for a paycheck.
How does this work? This service isn't free! To apply for jobs, you must pay a $14.95 monthly charge. As a bonus, the product comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee. Paying the cost and requesting a refund if you do not wish to renew your subscription is possible. There aren't any.
It's an excellent place to gather experience when starting your virtual assistant career. You can create an online profile and apply for projects placed here.
If you spend some time creating a good profile, you obtain excellent entry-level work. You gain valuable work experience that you can use to apply for higher-paying positions on other platforms.
The downside with Fiverr is there aren't many high-paying assignments.
UpWork, a significant marketplace for freelancers, is very similar to Fiverr. This means that there is always a lower bidder competing for every project, which could lead to you charging a lesser rate than you deserve.
For those with no prior experience or looking to jumpstart their virtual assistant career, Upwork is an excellent beginning point.
Besides the three platforms, several others offer VA jobs, even for beginners. They include:
• People Per Hour
• We Work Remotely
• Time Etc.
A second option you may consider is opening your firm offering VA services. You can market it on social media to get clients – you make more money this way than with third parties like Upwork.
And it's simple to market yourself. For instance, if you are good at bookkeeping, you can join a book readers group on Facebook and market your services there.
Alternatively, pitch companies that would be interested in your VA services. A free trial, for starters, would help you get clients. It is an excellent tip on how to become a successful virtual assistant.
Also, use the power of networking to get clients. Connect with other virtual assistants to see if they know of any openings. Check with your contacts to see if anyone needs your services.
IS BEING A VIRTUAL ASSISTANT WORTH IT?
Working with virtual assistants is a lifesaver - it is worth your effort. International virtual assistants' hourly salaries typically range from $3 to $12.
However, these rates depend on their location, English proficiency, experience level, and expertise in their respective fields.
As a general rule of thumb, the hourly rate for an overseas VA is $4-$6 per hour. In contrast, the rate is closer to $12 per hour and up for American and Canadian virtual assistants.
Senior-level virtual assistants can earn up to $55 per hour, depending on their experience and skill set.
Besides, being a virtual assistant means you are more flexible – you control how many hours you work in a week. Call it being your own boss!
Moreover, working remotely is really nice. No minute is lost in traffic. In fact, you have the freedom to work from any location you choose.
Lastly, you are also in control of your earning potential. To have such financial flexibility is a significant benefit of being a virtual assistant. The more hours you work, the more money you earn.
In addition to internet enterprises, virtual assistants revolutionise how busy professionals and entrepreneurs manage their schedules. With the information on how to become a successful virtual assistant, you can make a career change.
VA gives you another chance to try and succeed in something else in life.