Written by: Laurissa Makings, Executive Contributor
Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.
Take a peek behind the scenes of my entrepreneurial adventure! I'm lifting the curtain on my experience thus far, eager to share seven nuggets of wisdom I've picked up along the way.
Some of these insights were a breeze to grasp, while others required a bit more chewing. Here's to hoping your own entrepreneurial escapade gets a sprinkle of smoothness with these shared lessons!
1. It is a lot harder than it looks
Owning a business is much more challenging than it appears. Having no prior experience in running my own business, I underestimated the difficulty involved. Beyond completing client work, the business demands constant attention, with an ever-present stream of tasks, such as creating content for social media. There's no real switch-off point as thoughts about the business persist. Despite the undeniable hard work, the journey is undeniably rewarding.
2. Don’t underestimate the value of investing in a mentoring/coaching group
Some view it as a significant expense, but the value it brings is immeasurable. The community support is invaluable, offering not only coaching and mentoring but also access to job leads. The camaraderie among peers is exceptional, providing a crucial pillar of support. Whether facing challenges with a demanding client or seeking advice on pricing for a new service, being part of a group like the VA Mastermind was instrumental in steering my journey from the outset.
3. It takes longer than you think to establish your brand and business
I entered this journey with overly optimistic expectations, assuming that choosing a name and setting up my social media and website would magically attract clients. Reality hit, and I've learned it doesn't work that way. Building your presence takes time, but once you secure that first client, everything begins to fall into place.
4. Be consistent with posting on and engaging with social media
Many coaches and mentors advise against posting on social media "just because," but I hold a somewhat different view. I think maintaining an active presence on social media is crucial for staying "out there" and visible. While it's essential to share content relevant to your business, I also advocate for sharing aspects of your personal life. Clients appreciate being reminded that there's a real person behind the brand.
5. Make sure you understand your why
We all have our own reasons as to why we have decided to take this road; make sure you understand your why for both your professional life and personal life. Understanding your why will help you to stay on task.
6. Be sure to do your research on necessary expenses and programs
As a VA, you will need Public and Professional Indemnity Insurance and Cyber Insurance. Do your research and due diligence with regard to getting quotes, along with other expenses like your website and programs, systems and subscriptions.
7. Most importantly, be kind to yourself
Deciding to open your own business is a HUGE deal, and it's okay to feel scared by that. You will continue to have feelings of “imposter syndrome” throughout the process, acknowledge that and try your best to believe in yourself and your abilities.
Laurissa Makings, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine
Laurissa Makings, a seasoned professional with 17 years of administration and allied healthcare experience, is the visionary founder behind a thriving virtual assistant business, Assistantly, dedicated to making a meaningful impact on people's lives. Biography: Laurissa Makings, a seasoned professional with 17 years of administration and allied healthcare experience, is the visionary founder behind a thriving virtual assistant business dedicated to making a meaningful impact on people's lives. Driven by a personal journey shaped by her own experience with chronic illness, specifically antiphospholipid syndrome, Laurissa embarked on the entrepreneurial path to create a service that goes above and beyond.