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Do You Need Qualifications To Become A Virtual Assistant?

Michelle Dale - Thursday, September 30, 2010

Transcription Of Video:

One thing that is actually asked of me quite a lot is “do I need any formal qualifications to be a virtual assistant?” Well, if you do then I wouldn’t be a virtual assistant because I don’t have any formal qualifications. I’m going to be completely honest with you now. I actually left school and I left home when I was 16 years old and I never took any further education from there.

You could say that I ended up really in the University of Life and how I developed my business was basically through having a hard time, because I was 16 years old and I needed a job. I had to take care of myself so I worked really really really hard, harder than I thought I would ever have to, in order to keep myself going. But I supposed when you’re 16 years old you think you know everything.

Anyway, I took several jobs. They ranged from working as a waitress to working in a hotel as a housekeeper and a chambermaid to actually cleaning surgical instruments in something called CSSD, which is the Central Sterile Services Department in a hospital. So, for a period of time I was actually cleaning surgical instruments and bones out of hip replacement things. Then I went on and landed a job in a bank. From there it sort of took me on the path of something quite different. Actually before then I had an office job. I had a small office job which I was able to take an NVQ in business administration and it was one of those work-on-the-job sort of training schemes NVQ. I learned how to do spreadsheets and things like that and how to write a word document, which pretty much anybody could do now if they have half a brain, if they just got Word up and fiddled around with it for a little while. I can’t say that that was a huge part in me becoming a virtual assistant.

But anyway, I went on and I took a job in a bank. I started working in a Mortgage Unit as somebody who actually processed mortgages and that sort of sparked my interest in properties. I then went on to work in the Check-Outs (at the bank) and hello to everybody at the bank where I worked because they all know me, Annette and Kim and Lo. So, once I started working at the bank I went on to do more things to do with the loans and businesses and mortgages and I started buying properties because the market at that time was really really good. I could get properties quite cheap and I started doing them up. Eventually, I ended up working privately in a private office as a paraplanner, which is somebody who actually processes mortgages.

That basically was the foundation of my Virtual Assistant business. It was everything up until then, up until I was 23 years old. So, everything I’ve just reeled off to you took me to the age from 16 to 23. At the age of 23 I decided that I really had enough and that I wasn’t doing what I wanted to do. I wasn’t doing what I really enjoyed doing. It was mundane and boring. I didn’t have the opportunity to travel because I had a huge mortgage. So, all of these factors really led me into virtual assistance and this is really the first part of my journey.

But the whole point of this is to demonstrate to you that you do not need any qualifications to start virtual assistance. In the end, the primary services that I ended up doing, ironically, was website development after I’d spent a year learning how to develop websites on my own, teaching myself. I bought myself a copy of Dreamweaver. I actually decided that I was going to become a virtual assistant and I started learning Dreamweaver because I knew that I had to build myself a website, because I really didn’t know anything about anything at that stage. I thought to myself, well if I need a website I have to get it myself and build it myself. It wasn’t until after I built my website that I started to get quite a few inquiries from people asking me, “Who did your website? Can I have their contact details?”

So that was really how I accidentally went into website development as part of my services and I love it. The reason that I think I was so good at it and people started asking me for it was just because I loved it and I loved doing it. I worked really really hard for an entire year teaching myself the nitty-gritty of how to do it and I was doing it for myself, I was doing it for me. No, you don’t need any formal qualifications but you do need to love something enough that you can get so good at it that somebody’s going to want to buy it from you.

So, that’s basically the amount of qualifications that you need to be a virtual assistant, it’s just a lot of passion for what you do. For those of you who do have really good qualifications, you have an excellent foundation for being a virtual assistant. I just took the long way around, I think, by doing those other things beforehand.

So, there you go. You could be a virtual assistant no matter what. There are no age restrictions. There’s no qualification restrictions, just do what you love doing, develop a skill set which you can work with and that people want to buy from you and, “bham,” you’ve got your Virtual Assistant business.

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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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