These past few months, I’ve been hit by many requests for one-on-one VA training by friends. Of course, I’m happy with the fact they are interested, but slightly saddened at the lack of time. So then I refer them to sites where they could learn and practice basic VA skills, even lead them to job sites for their first gig. Such interest makes me want to finish the ebook really fast. After all, it’s gonna have all the essential information, training and ideas on becoming a virtual assistant. That and actual steps to being a whiz as a social media VA.
Looking back, it is fulfilling to know how I’ve actually trained – errr, push? – myself to become a virtual assistant. Mind you, the passionate writer and experienced journalist cum IEC person that I am had to crawl my way to mastering various aspects of being a VA. To cut it short, I didn’t get to where I am right now that easy. But the point is, I trained myself and this is possible for you as well.
So allow me to share these ideas on how I became a virtual assistant with my own efforts. Gloating! Gloating! But really, this would be a sort-of prelude to that ebook. Here are my ideas on self-training to become a VA:
1. It’s all about attitude. There are many techniques to make work fast, many ideas on how to get the best gigs and so many more tricks to learning the ropes of being a VA. But if you ain’t got the right attitude, there’s no way you’re making it good at this career. What makes a difference between yourself and the next would-be VA should be the commitment and care you put to learning. A good VA would take a new skill and aspire to master it; a bad one would choose to be intimidated and decide it’s difficult. See? It’s all about attitude.
2. It doesn’t have to drain your budget. Learning costs money and you should shell out some if you intend to learn. But of course, there are many ways you could educate yourself at the VA basics. I’ve purchased costly options to earn money online and I’ve spent meager amounts on programs. Sure, I did reap so much information, most of which I employ at work right now. But if you’re really dedicated to learn, you’ll discover that being a good VA doesn’t have to drain your purse!
3. Don’t categorize yourself. Apart from declaring you’re a newbie, don’t go believing you are a fast-learner or an average one. Such categorizations are a big block to what’s coming. These self-imposed tags will only complicate your efforts to find information and guides. Just read and learn what comes along, take it by heart.
4. Watch out for the resources. There are so many materials online that offer courses, guides and trainings for online service providers. For VAs, watch out for those resources that claim “miracle results” but contain information you could simply Google; there are some that says they’re an “idiot’s guide” but the contents are far too complex for newbies. Again, read and learn what comes along.
5. Research the basics of VA work. Most virtual assistants would be required to communicate with the client and their clients or followers all the time. So hone your skills at communicating, whether it’s via email, social network sites or doing customer support. Then speed up your typing/encoding skills as this is needed for filing systems and data entry. Also, social media VAs are now in demand. So learn more on what this entails. Then practice, practice, practice.
6. Master one or two VA tasks. While it’s possible to master more than two skills, it is important to focus on one or two VA tasks at one time. Learning SEO and content writing would sure work well. My Angels have learned social media marketing and interaction at the same time, claiming it’s like three different tasks with just one target. Once you’ve mastered one or two, you can then focus on a niche where you’d like to acquire gigs. All other skills will be plus points for you.
7. Continue learning all the time. Doing just one or two thing for many months would result to a burn-out. This happens to a lot of VAs because they stopped learning new things. Thus, instead of landing on better opportunities, they stay stuck and faced waning motivation and interest on what they do. But the VAs who seek to know more and take risks of learning-while-getting-paid, they’re the ones who are considered well-trained.
8. Keep track of how you’re doing. When you have high awareness of what you did six months ago and what you’re doing now, there’s a cause to pause and decide what comes next. This is not so for those who just works on and on and on, without evaluating their productivity. When you keep track of your efforts and output, you’d find fulfillment and reasons to celebrate. Take a day off to determine whether you’ve learned, know what area you need to put more time with and then celebrate the successes for the past week. This makes your learning process more meaningful.
OK, so that’s it for now. I hope you’ve gained an idea or two on how you could become a virtual assistant in your own pace and time. Hit me up with questions if you have any. Better yet, do watch out for that ebook that’s all about becoming a virtual assistant and working at home. See you!