If you know a bit about me, you’ll probably say I help VA’s in two main ways.
The first way is through my training sessions, events, presentations and range of online courses in MS Office and Microsoft 365.
I’m on a bit of a mission, to help VA’s become superheroes for their clients.
I hate to see hard-working and determined administrative professionals paying for shoddy or lazy training. Paying for something that’s ‘padded out’ with stuff you’re never going to use.
Practical and Independently Approved
That’s why I create courses and sessions which are practical, step-by-step and all about quality. As a Fellow of the Learning & Performance Institute, my training standards are assessed regularly. The LPI has approved me as a Certified Online Learning Facilitator (COLF) and a Certified Designer of Online Learning (CDOL). To me, these are not just letters after my name. They are a symbol of my desire to deliver the very best for my clients. The second way people know me is through my support to help VA’s, EA’s and PA’s create, start, build, develop and grow their business.
Broadcasting to the World
That’s one of the reasons I set up Virtually Amazing – The Podcast. It’s a way for me to bring in a treasure trove of experts in business building, networking, marketing, copywriting, websites, social media and the admin side of going it alone. Each week, tips and insights are shared to help VA’s make a success of starting out and developing something sustainable around their life, family and other stuff going on. People around the globe can check into the podcast recordings whenever they like on all the usual platforms – and even catch the visual version on YouTube. But I’m not just an IT trainer, podcaster, writer, entrepreneur and business owner.
I Understand What It Can Be Like for You because…
I’m also a mother, a grandmother and wife. Family is important to me and I know what it’s like to juggle work and kids. And part of running a business – especially if you’re the only one in it – is making sure you look after your health and wellbeing. Some of my coaching friends use a tool to help their clients check in with how things are on any day of the year. Not just about the person’s health, but all aspects of their life. If you’ve used a coach before you may have used the tool and done this exercise.
It’s called the Wheel of Life
You can do this exercise easily on your own. Just grab a notebook or sheet of paper, and a pen or pencil. Draw a large circle in the centre of the paper. Divide it into quarters by drawing one line down the middle of the circle (if you imagine a clock face, from 12 O’clock down to six O’clock) and another one horizontally through the centre, from the nine to the three. Now divide each quarter in half, with diagonal lines running through the centre from top left to bottom right and bottom left to top right. Your circle should now show EIGHT equal segments (that look like flat versions of the pieces from the game Trivial Pursuit).
Label these as follows:
- Friends and Family
- Personal Growth
- Friends and Family
Now you’re going to give yourself a score, between 0 and 10, for each category. Zero means rock bottom and 10 means everything is fantastic. Be honest with yourself. Pick the number that most closely resembles how you feel things are going in a category. Do the same as you go around the ‘wheel’.
Here’s the Fun Part
Next, you’ll want to look at the distance between the centre spot and along one of the lines out to the circumference, or edge, of the circle. The centre represents zero. The outer rim of the circle represents 10. For each category, you’ll take the score you give it and represent that on the ‘Wheel’ by drawing an arc proportionate to that score. For example, a score of five would be halfway up the line and you would draw an arc – or curved line – in that category segment. When you do this for all eight categories, you will have a new outer edge to your circle and the ‘wheel’ might look a little smaller, perhaps bent out of shape. If it does, don’t worry. That’s actually how it usually looks when people do the exercise.
You Now Have Your ‘Wheel of Life’ Picture
When you look at the wheel, it gives you a visual summary of how things are going; things that are going really well, things that are going well or OK, and things where it may feel a little low. You can then look at ways to improve your score in the different categories, prioritising according to what’s most important to you. The great thing about this exercise is you can do it whenever you wish, and as frequently as you like. It could be done weekly or monthly, for example. You can see how things progress each time you check-in. It takes into account different aspects of your life, all of which may have an impact on your VA business.
It’s Time to Check-In on Yourself
Check-in on health and you rank it lower than a 7 and you may want to make some changes, take a break or look at how you can make it 8 or higher. Check-in on money and you get a sense of how you’re doing, professionally and personally, with running a business. If it’s a strong ranking score, you’re probably doing a lot right. If it’s a low score, you may want to explore what’s behind that. Check-in on friends and family. It’s good to have a support and social network, especially in these times of restrictions and rapid change. Are people checking in with you? Are you keeping in touch with people – and not just via social media? Check-in on personal growth. Are there any areas of development or learning that you know you need or would love to follow? If so, when are you going to get started on that? Check-in on fun and recreation. Running a business can mean long hours and long days. Remember to build in time for a holiday, short breaks and time-out each week. To adapt the saying, “All work and no play makes Jill a dull girl”. Check-in on your physical environment. This covers indoors and outdoors. It includes your workspace – which might be an office, a bedroom, a study or dining room table. It includes your neighbourhood and surroundings. It includes how often you’re getting out of the house or flat – if fresh air, walking or exercise is particularly important to you. Check-in on your relationship with your significant other. The score you give here may reflect how other aspects of your life and business are going. I know how important it is to have a supportive partner – and be supportive of them in return. Check-in with your career and business. What’s your score out of 10? How does that make you feel? What’s needed to bring it up by one or two points?
Check-In with Your Business Wheel
If you like, you can take the ‘wheel of life’ idea and create a different circle, one with entirely a business focus. Your eight categories could reflect the different aspects of your venture: lead generation, sales, marketing, client service, finance, human resources, continuing professional development and administration. Do a monthly check-in on these and you’ll see where your strengths and areas for improvement in your business are. How’s your wheel looking right now? Does it look like it’s giving you a smooth ride or do things appear a little bumpy? If there’s an area I can help you with, do let me know or check out my online courses and the podcast.