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Calling All Virtual Assistants And Digital Nomads – This Is For You

Michelle Dale - Friday, September 09, 2011
Back In 2005, at 23, as a fiercely independent, almost fearless young woman, I quit my job, sold my house and everything I owned and decided to leave my home country of the UK, to start travelling. I quickly realised that I was in no way near ready to return back to the UK anytime soon, if ever, and that I needed a way to fund my life, and earn an income while on the move… It’s not easy now, but it was even less easy back then. After much research, I discovered a very wonderful concept, it was a business idea for providing office-type services to people from around the world, entirely online. This was called, “Virtual Assistance.”

I began researching further into becoming a virtual assistant and it was apparent to me I needed several skills, I knew nothing about working online, websites, or even running my own business and what it involved, let alone a virtual one, I spent hours and hours researching and learning software programmes such as Adobe Dreamweaver and Photoshop, I went on virtual assistant forums, applied for VA organisations (and got turned down by some!) and I thought, a lot, for many hours, on how I was going to create a virtual assistant business that could provide me with the income I needed to basically not have to go back to the UK.

It took me 2 years of playing, fiddling, researching, learning, learning and more learning, working for friends for free or very low cost to test out my theories, my new skills and how to provide these services entirely online. I then learnt how to obtain clients entirely online, and also during this time I met my husband while travelling and we fell pregnant, it wasn’t until in November 2007, with a 1 month old baby, I decided that now I was ready to launch my VA business “officially.” I had no choice, we were in a tight spot, neither myself nor my husband were in employment, and we had very little funds.

My journey went from me, to another 3

Since then, I have lived, eaten and breathed virtual assistance, and apart from a brief visit back to the UK to have my first child, I have never officially returned back to live there. I have continued travel, with my husband, and our now, 2 children, our second child was born in France in 2009. Throughout this whole journey, what kept us going was the virtual assistant business which I had created, Virtual Miss Friday.

By 2010, I had gone from starting solo, to hiring a couple of contractors, to increasing my rates, to developing a team, to establishing an IBC (international business corporation), to expanding my services and creating a multi-6 figure virtual assistant company. All remotely, while travelling, while being a mum, and then I realised at that point, that other people could not only benefit from my expertise and the journey I took, but could also benefit from the amazing team I have around me. I decided in August 2010, that I was going to create a business programme, to teach new or seasoned virtual assistants exactly how I created this business, and actually build the online presence for them as part of the programme, step-by-step, with all the things I did ‘right’ and I wanted to also hold the hands of the people willing to learn from me so they had long-term, ongoing support. After all, Virtual Miss Friday is still evolving and expanding all the time, it is of course important that I can continuously pass on my current experiences in order to provide the best possible service to the VA’s who choose to listen.

Virtually Anywhere

This idea I had to help teach people how to create a completely mobile VA company, turned into a number of things, which I refer to as the “Virtually Anywhere” roadmap, a collection of helpful resources that have helped me live a life from virtually anywhere.

They include this blog, officially launched exactly 1 year ago. The VA Apprentice Programme, beta tested by many and since then has helped change the lives of VA’s across the globe. The VA Passport, a more affordable, direct access learning centre where I am able to provide support to anyone who needs it. The VA Black Book, a directory of virtual assistants who have taken The VA Apprentice programme and have excelled with flying colours, The VA Business, my FREE “back to basics guide” to working online, and then where it all began, Virtual Miss Friday (now VMF Ltd), the VA company that went from zero to multi-6 figures in 3 years.

When I started this blog, and this journey of helping VA’s I never knew if it would work, my ideas and my thoughts can sometimes challenge the traditional methods of doing business as a virtual assistant, I am a little more ‘earthy’ and laid back as a person in my ways than most business people, and while I am very professional in my business, and really anything but laid back when it comes to my clients, for my blog, I would much rather show you my more human ‘real life’ side. I told myself I would give it a year, and if nothing came from it, then I would return to being a VA only and step back to let the other more traditional VA’s do the teaching and the coaching.

Well, I am very pleased to say, thanks to you, the readers of this blog, the people participating in my VA Series and everyone who has sent me emails and social media messages of thanks, my blog is here to stay!! I am confident that the extraordinary members of the VA industry will continue to benefit from the content I am producing and I now have the confidence to grow VA Live, bigger and brighter than ever before.

A BIG Heartfelt THANK YOU goes out the amazing people who have supported me over the last year, when you put your heart and soul into something, working into the wee small hours, forfeiting time with family, to hopefully produce something which is really going to help other people and make a difference in their lives, I cannot tell you how amazing it feels when you have actually managed to achieve it.

Please visit regularly and take advantage of The VA Roadmap, it’s there for you.

Thank you again…

Michelle x

P.S. A huge thank you to my ever supportive and awesome team of VA’s, that includes my husband, who work with me, helping me in Virtual Miss Friday, and also helping me put together The VA Series, I know I have had my head down for a while now with getting VA live off the ground, and without you, none of this would have been possible.

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Hi I'm Michelle, an entrepreneur specialising in virtual assistance, a digital and real world nomad, and a down-to-earth mother of three.

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