I’ve been a virtual assistant now since 2015 and have had a brilliant time – it’s not something I ever planned to do but am SO glad I took the plunge.
I started my working life with various admin roles over the years. It wasn’t until 2003 that I started working at a small pharmaceutical company in an admin role did I really start my career. I worked there for over 10 years and was among a handful of people that had been there for that long I was often called up for ‘do you remember when’ or ‘who was that company we did XYZ with’.
Starting as an administrator, I worked up to senior administrator and then took a complete change and moved to the Clinical Team where I was quickly promoted to a Clinical Trial Assistant. I travelled around the UK and Europe going to hospitals helping recruitment onto clinic trials and to train the hospital staff on our inhalers. Sounds very glamorous but it really wasn’t!
Whilst in this role, I did a post grad diploma in clinical research which was probably the hardest thing I’ve ever done as I didn’t do A levels…!
I really enjoyed this role and felt fulfilled and part of a team – my opinions were listened to and taken onboard. I really loved my job. I had to deal with some workplace bullying by a colleague who on reflection I feel felt threatened by me, but we’ll gloss over that part.
A change of management which was the beginning of the end in all honesty. It was deemed that because I didn’t have a degree, there was no role for me despite my post grad diploma which was specially in clinical research…paid for by the company.
I sat at my desk for 4-6 months having no direction, no line manager and little on my to do list. When the Project Managers did try and get my involved, they were asked not to. Needless to say, I felt worthless, wasn’t good enough and not challenged.
My husband is financial adviser and been in business for 25 years and decided that it might be a good idea for us to work together as he’s not the biggest fan of admin! I bite the bullet and handed in my notice!!
I started doing John’s admin and then our accountant needed a little bit of help. She started to recommend me to a few of her clients, and the rest is history!
It wasn’t until 2018 that I started networking – for those of you who might know me in ‘real life’ will know that I’m such an introvert. I didn’t enjoy going and hated doing the self promotion pieces. Over time I’ve gained some great friends and clients.
The business now has a team of 4 amazing associates who help me with our ever growing customer base. By taking on associates, we’ve been able to expand the services we offer.
There have also been several awards landing at our door which is always unexpected and still takes me by suprise.
I’m super organised, love a notebook, a list and a cup of tea. The busier I am the more I get done. I love supporting small businesses and seeing them grow and achieve more.
If you have any questions about becoming a Virtual Assistant, there is a new programme coming called ActiVAte which will provide a culmination of all the things I’ve learnt over the years.