It happens. You’re meeting someone new and amongst all of the dreaded small talk (to me anyway, please don’t ask me about the weather), the inevitable question comes up;
‘So, what do you do?’
I’m never really sure how to answer this one. Do I say administrator? Social Media Manager? Business Assistant? In the end I usually go for the simple answer, that I’m a VA. The question that nearly always follow is;
‘What’s a VA?’
Aah the million-dollar question, which took a while for me to figure out how to answer properly. I’ve been called a vaaa, a vay and asked if I’m ever going to get a ‘real job’, which is a little insulting. I work hard at what I do and it is very much a real job. A good VA can organise your life and keep your business on track giving you time to do what you started your business for in the first place.
So what actually is a VA?
Let’s get down to it! The term VA stands for Virtual Assistant and you can also hear VPA which stands for Virtual Personal Assistant. They are one and the same basically and if you run a small business and don’t have time to do every aspect, they can save your life.
While the term is a bit of a catch-all, most VA’s will be able to do all of the things you’d expect an administrator to do; invoicing, filing, data entry, diary organisation, chasing creditors etc, etc. If you’re the kind of person who doesn’t really know how to do these things or frankly, doesn’t want to, then a VA really can help your business.
However, to distinguish ourselves from each other, VA’s will often specialise in a specific skill such as time management, book-keeping, or HR. There are a lot of us out there so we need to stand out from each other in some way.
Mine is organisation. I love it. I really mean that, I do absolutely love it. Not quite in an OCD way but it’s probably getting there. I know exactly where every file is on my laptop because there’s folders and categories and sub-categories and my house is pretty much the same. It’s not always tidy (whose is really), but I can put my hand on anything at any time. It’s just how I work and is something I’m happy to pass on to my clients to help them get everything in order. My OCD (let’s call it what it is) is your gain!
And it absolutely is your gain because VA’s work hard to earn our clients’ trust and respect and have often trained or been working for years in our respective fields. We take pride in our work and are pretty damn good at what we do!
So there you have it. I’m not sure job descriptions are usually as lengthy as this (and I don’t think I’ve ever said VA quite as much at one time), but hopefully this has answered all of your burning questions about the murky world of virtual administration. If not, send me a message or leave a comment and I’ll attempt to shed some more insight!