While I have a fairly comprehensive FAQ section, a full CV available for download and an up to date LinkedIn profile, some questions that I’m sure MANY prospective clients wish they were brave enough to ask just can’t be answered in a formal manner. So, here goes- my answers to the slightly more awkward prospective client questions that may be crossing your mind when looking for a VA:
Do you look after children while you work?
In short, no.
I have a two year old daughter who (while we’re not in the midst of a global pandemic) spends my working hours with our amazing childminder. If you’re reading this during the pandemic, then rest assured that my furloughed husband is on full Dad duty while I’m working and we keep to separate rooms for all of our sakes!
Side note: I have the utmost respect for those who are capable of working alongside their children including those that choose to do so and those that have little choice and so simply make it work!
Is being a VA your ‘side-hustle’ to another job?
Again, in short, no.
I work as a virtual assistant Monday to Thursday, 09:00 to 17:30 and this generates my full income. In fact, my ‘side-hustle’ is actually singing, but more on that a bit later…
Will you be in your PJs watching Friends while working for me?
Friends or other daytime TV nonsense: No
I’ll admit that sometimes, after dropping my daughter off wearing what ever vaguely socially acceptable attire I can find, I do get back in to my PJs for the working day- and why not?! Comfort is one of the perks of working from home! Never fear though- I spruce up well for onsite visits and video chats.
RE the distractions of home; I really don’t find this to be an issue. I’ve always been able to simply get my head down and work. I don’t have the TV or music on- I have a built in lunch break to allow for a bit of social media scrolling and a raid of the fridge, a dog walk or a bath! I found office environments far more distracting what with salaried employees fancying a chat every five minutes!
Will you be ‘learning on the job’?
Probably, but not on your time.
I don’t know anyone in any profession who doesn’t sometimes need to Google something or study a YouTube video to keep their skills up to date. I’m no different- but I track my time and only charge for time spent completing your tasks.
Is your hourly rate in line with the industry standard?
I did my research when I decided to go freelance- I wanted to charge a fair rate for a great service and, after lots of snooping at other VA websites and a check through lots of mentoring blogs, I came to the obvious conclusion that the industry norm is £25 per hour. The reasons for this I won’t bore you with here but if you’d like to know the ins and outs you can head to Joanne Munro’s fantastic blog on the subject here.
Do you have a contingency plan in place for equipment failure?
I work on cloud-based systems for all client work and have another Mac in the house (my husband’s- but barely used other than for Netflix!) which I would commandeer if my laptop bit the dust. I look after my machine and have an excellent internet service with high speeds and great reliability.
Who are you as a human?
Many clients don’t feel they can ask about my personality, lifestyle and hobbies as they may be assumed to be unrelated to a potential working relationship- I disagree. I think most people can work with most people but it’s always nice to know if you’re on a similar wavelength!
A summary of me:
- I’m a mum to a mad 2 year old and wife to an amazing musician/carpenter
- I’m a singer and have been performing professionally for about 12 years (I love country- don’t judge!)
- I have a dog called Django who was my first baby and is still getting used to coming second…
- I love my work and helping my clients brings me great satisfaction. I have a great work ethic and also like to enjoy my client relationships- if we can have a giggle while getting the job done efficiently then that’s awesome
- I am extremely supportive and understanding but also have a ‘no nonsense’ side that means I can deliver a kick up the bum when needed
If you have any slightly awkward prospective client questions that aren’t answered here then please don’t be shy- ask away!
Head to my contact page for a plethora of ways to get in touch.