This is often a very tough decision.
For many aspiring VAs, it seems like the “safest” option to follow the money – to start a virtual assistance business part-time.
There is nothing wrong with the approach of starting a VA business part-time. In-fact (in some instances) I even recommend it, especially if you are the sole breadwinner – you first need to live and pay the bills. But there are some underlying pitfalls to be aware off, especially if you want to keep your full-time job as sort of a “backup plan” should things not work out with Virtual Assistance.
Having a back-up plan is good, but it often originates from thinking about how “NOT TO LOSE”. It dilutes the focus, because subconsciously if something goes wrong with your new business, you feel you can always fall back on you current career. Unfortunately, with this mind-set of “how not to lose”, many part-time VAs struggle to survive because…
Reason #1: It’s Difficult to Find Time & Energy to Build a VA Business Part-time
If most of your productive hours in the day are spent on a career you do not really want (your day job), then reaching your virtual assistant goals (the career that you want) can take so much longer.
For example: if you wake up at 6:00, get to work by 8:00 or 9:00, spend eight hours at work, another one or so commuting and another hour or three tending to family matters in the evenings, you will be exhausted by the time you are ready to work on your VA career.
It will take a truly extraordinary effort to get anything worthwhile accomplished during after-hours and on weekends, to build your VA related income to a level that enables you to leave your job.
Reason #2: They Work Without a Definite Plan
Part-time VAs often struggle because they do not have a plan how to transition from a day job into a Virtual Assistant career. They simply hope things will work out for their VA business. Without a plan they eventually reach a point where they are confronted with the choice of either:
- Leaving their day job entirely to give all their attention to their VA career, or
- Staying in their day job and giving up their VA plans.
The latter usually wins.
So , What is the solution?
The solution to working part-time on your VA business and slowly transition it into a full-time career is to develop a plan that is built around your VA CAREER GOALS. This changes your mind-set from “how not to lose” into a mind-set of “how to win”. You “win” the business, lifestyle and dream you want even if it requires hard work, courage and persistence. Here’s how you do it.
1. Develop an Action Plan
Create a plan where your VA career is your primary goal and clarify what you will and won’t do. Create time in your daily schedule to work on your VA business (e.g. before work, during lunch, after hours) and set a due date when you want to make the final transition. Don’t make it a plan about “here is what I must do in order NOT TO LOSE”, but rather focus on “here is what I must do in order TO WIN”! This approach will make it more likely to accomplish your VA plans.
2. Take Care of the Financials
This is most of the time the “make-or-break” factor when starting your own business. Within your action plan think about ways to:
- Reduce your monthly expenditure,
- Save big chunks of your monthly pay check, and
- Start using only the income from your VA business to pay for living costs.
This approach will help minimise the impact of “cutting your income” when you eventually decide to go full-time into your VA business. On the up-side you will have a nice savings account as well.
3. Think Long-term
When you are in a job, you can see an immediate result on your efforts in the form of a monthly pay cheque. In having a VA business, the results of your efforts are usually much higher but may not show up immediately. Getting a VA business stable often requires slow and steady work.
The approach of thinking long-term will help you keep your eye on your VA career goals.
As you design your path to transition from a day-job into a successful VA career, remind yourself that:
NOTHING IN LIFE IS IMPOSSIBLE.
If having a VA business from home is your dream, it is your decision if you want to follow your heart, your gut or your money. Eventually you will find a way to make it reality.
If you’re just starting out and wondering how to set-up your business quickly and have it ready without you having to spend too much time getting everything sorted out, then follow a system that feels easy and authentic to you. The 5-week action, implementation & accountability Start From Scratch program gives you step-by-step the most important things to do to (1) take care of yourself (while getting ready to perform business); (2) take care of your business (by setting up simple, solid systems and plans) and (3) take care of your clients so you can consistently fill your pipeline and continually get new clients. All the tools, templates, and examples are handed to you on a silver platter. Easy.