Since working as a Virtual Assistant (VA), I normally get the reactions (when I say I am working from home) “Ang swerte mo naman, nasa bahay ka lang. Ang dali ng work mo.” blah blah blah.
Unfortunately, it is not easy. More so, what others don’t know is that – being a Virtual Assistant is not for everyone… or let’s say, being an online freelancer is not for everyone. How is that so?
First, working from home would mean that you will be working independently (if not virtually side by side with your boss), and if you are not into that kind of set-up, then it will not work. It is rewarding – yes, for you will work on your own time, on your own place and your own pace. However, others may find it somewhat lazy-ish (the ambiance, the environment, the setup); just seeing your bed beside you might cause you to just sleep instead of you – working.
Second, being a VA would mean that you need to have the tools. Laptop, mobile phones which can connect to specific apps, a spare laptop that you can use in such case the main laptop would have issues, and of course – a reliable internet connection with a speed of at least 3mbps and capping of not less than 10gb.
Most of the time, the client is the one who provides the task-related tools (CRM tracking system, cloud platforms, etc.) However, if you are a graphic designer (like me), there are tools which you need to purchase (yes, from your own pocket) – one of which is Adobe.
Third, since you are working at home and on your own, commonsense and resourcefulness are a must. I think I need not to elaborate further 🙂
Lastly, being an online freelancer would mean that you have to market yourself and be visible. You will be the employee looking for a job, and at the same time, the marketer who will look for clients and opportunities to grab.
Being a VA would most of the time mean that you have no definite work schedule; it can be in the evening, morning or in the afternoon – depending on the duties assigned or on the client who hired. It can also mean unstable income especially for contract-based jobs. Once the contract ends, you will go back to step 1 – finding clients and marketing yourself.
Serving as a Virtual Assistant is not an easy money. It is a serious career choice and you got to be committed, goal-oriented and hardworking in order to succeed. It means continuous learning and studying… for the internet; including its ways, methods and processes are fast-changing. A Virtual Assistant should be fully equipped with all the needed skills and knowledge, flexible, willing to be trained, dedicated and most of all, trustworthy.