Have you ever been given the opportunity to review something a friend and colleague has produced? It’s exciting and a little scary. The creators of the 2nd edition of Become a Virtual Assistant: The Virtual Assistant Forums Guide to Success and others at The Virtual Assistant Forums provided me with some of the most helpful information and support when I started my business. Because of this, my expectations were very high.
Let me say right now, my expectations were far exceeded. This is the information I truly wish was available when I was forming my business. There are other systems and books created with the same theme in mind. However, none that I’ve read come close to the value provided in this e-book.
One of the things I found really impressive about the book is the way the information is provided. You can read a small section of the book and take a few days to implement these practices into your business. Then read another section and implement that process. The information is clear, concise & comprehensive.
So, I bet you are saying “What is all this fuss about? Just tell us what is included?”
130 pages of information, direction and assistance
35 Business Start-up worksheets, including sample contracts & other business documents
100 small business and virtual assistant industry resources and links
Here are a few of my favorite topics:
Introduction: Do You Have What It Takes? – A lot of the How To books out there for virtual assistant don’t get into the nitty- gritty of day-to-day life as a virtual assistant. The section titled “Do you have what it takes?” really helps you understand what is involved in starting your own business.
Beyond Trust: Ethics = Business Success – Unfortunately, not everyone starting a virtual assistant business is right for this career. You will run into people who have had bad experiences with virtual assistants which makes it hard for you to earn their trust. The information provided in this section is invaluable in helping you understand how to navigate this difficult situation.
More than a Name: Creating Your Brand – Determining the name of your business or creating your tag line or mission statement can be a little intimidating. This section walks you through the process with two real exercises that are very effective in helping you create these important aspects of your business.
Getting Their Attention: Marketing and Networking – This section walks you through how to get your business out there in front of potential partners. It gives you some of the best advice on how to network locally and online. In the end, you will have a complete marketing & networking plan in place to kick-start your business.
You can find a Table of Contents with all of the section titles here.
Be sure to check out:
- Do What You Love: Determining Your Services
- Crunching Numbers: Setting Your Rates
- Who Will You Partner With?: Defining Your Ideal Client
- The Good News & The Bad News
The worksheets & sample contracts are incredibly useful. Take the documentation and add your logo & brand information to it for a great start. Work through the worksheets like “Success Plan Worksheet” and create a successful plan. For my business, the web development questionnaire is extremely helpful. I remember documentation being one of my biggest questions when I was starting out. If you have any legal concerns, I would definitely recommend running the contract by your lawyer.
The resource list included with the e-book is very comprehensive. It includes links to training sites, graphics, file sending, social media, time management, website creation, video resources and much more. In fact, this list is probably one of the best features of the e-book.
This book provides potential virtual assistants with a blueprint for what is actually needed to start their business. It’s the perfect resource to help you create a viable business and helps you anticipate any problems or issues. If you are considering a long-term career as a virtual assistant, please invest in yourself and take advantage of this opportunity! I’d even say it is a good idea for anybody starting an online service business to read this well thought-out book. Some of my miss-steps and uncertainty could have been avoided if this resource had been available when I started out. The Smart VA for You says this is a Smart Buy.
Disclosure: As I stated, I received a copy of the e-book and all accompanying resources in order to complete my review. I decided to become an affiliate for this e-book because I feel this is a valuable tool for any potential virtual assistant