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 5 Signs It’s Time to Scale Up Your Small Business

Being busy is tough, but it’s also exciting. Being busy means you have created a product or service that people love. Well done! You should be proud. 

One of the biggest downfalls with being busy is the inability to keep up with the demand. As a result, you could lose customers or your reputation. Obviously, you don’t want all your hard work going down the drain. 

So, how do you know if it’s time to expand your business or hire help? There are signs that just might be telling you it’s time to scale up your business!

What is scalability?

Scalability is the process of maximizing the resources your business already has and creating exponential growth and leverage. It means more business and more profits.

Here are 5 signs to look out for when deciding whether to scale your business.

  1. Repeat Clients: The first sign is that your business already has a steady stream of clients and new clients might be waiting in the wings. A steady stream of clients means that you provide a good service or good product and that you are doing that consistently. Also, a steady stream of clients means that you are bringing in stable revenue. 
  1. Turning Down Business: This is a big one! If you are turning down business or potential clients because you don’t have enough time in the day, inventory or staff, then it’s time to scale up. You don’t want to turn down business opportunities that can affect your reputation. You just need to focus on creating the systems to scale up your business. 
  1. Steady Revenue: Take a look at your expenses. Are most of your expenses predictable?  Are they mostly used for maintaining your operations? Do you have regular money coming in that covers all your bills and your salary? Then it might be time to scale up.
  1. Strong Team: Do you have a GREAT team? Awesome! But at times it feels a little graceless? This could be a great sign that it is time to scale up. You are proud of your team and all they can accomplish, but now is the time to set up systems so your strong team can be even more efficient and successful. Once you get the right systems and procedures in place, you can have full confidence in your team and delegate more smoothly. 
  1. Clear Goals: You know what your goals are. The last sign to help you decide whether it’s time to scale up is that you have a clear idea of where you want your company to go. What are your ultimate dreams?  If you are still focusing on the day-to-day, the “just get through today” mindset, you might not be ready yet. But, if you have your sights set on the future and where your company could go…..then it’s time to scale!

This can be a crazy time in your small business. Taking the next step can be daunting. But with the help of a great Virtual Assistant team, like Life By Design Virtual Solutions, you can achieve your dreams. Virtual assistants can take some of the load off your shoulders and allow you to focus on how and when to scale your small business. 

Live your life by design, not by default!

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Thinking of Joining the Great Resignation?

The topic of the Great Resignation is all over the place. People are talking about it on social media, on the news and with their friends and colleagues.

The global pandemic has influenced how people work and has allowed them to reassess the joy they may or may not find in their work. Many people have been rethinking their careers and that is forcing companies to adapt and rethink how they operate. 

After nearly two years of many people working from home, many have figured out that it works better for their lives. People are discovering they don’t have to tolerate a long commute, can spend more time with their families and now have time for themselves.

Many companies are finding out that forcing their employees to return to the office has caused backlash and people are quitting in droves to fulfill their passions, or continue working from home. 

Are you considering leaving your job to work from home? Here are some things to consider

Flexibility and work life balance: What are your priorities in life?

Think about what matters most to you and how work fits in with the rest of your responsibilities.

For example, you might be more productive early in the morning and wish to work early hours and have afternoons free to pursue a hobby or spend time with your children. 

Do you still want to work in the same industry?

Many people are rethinking their whole career. People are not being fulfilled with long hours and low pay. Doing something you are passionate about has become increasingly appealing.

Although the prospect of changing industries can be daunting, many of your skills can be transferable. By switching industries you can learn new skills which can be very valuable long-term. 

Could Self-Employment be right for you?

Something worth considering is working for yourself. The Great Resignation has shown a boom in entrepreneurship as many people prefer working for themselves rather than for someone else.

People are moving in droves into the entrepreneurial sphere. Finding their passions, living their dreams, making their own rules and hours is very enticing right now. Before deciding whether to become a contractor and work independently, you need to consider:

  1. Do you enjoy having the structure and rules of a company?
  2. Do you enjoy working as part of a team?
  3. Do you enjoy being independent and making your own decisions?
  4. Are you a risk-taker or do you prefer more job security?

Depending on your answers to these questions, being self-employed may or may not be the best fit for you. 

Are you interested in being part of the Great Resignation? Or perhaps you have already joined the Work Revolution!

We can help!

We are a team of entrepreneurs living our lives by design.  We specialize in helping small businesses and entrepreneurs with day-to-day tasks designed to help you do the things you love.

The team at Life By Design Virtual Solutions can help you with social media to boost your product or business, with general administrative duties to make your life easier, and email marketing to get the word out about you and your business!

Reach out today and ask about our packages: http://www.lifebydesignvs.com.

If you are still considering a career change or just want to continue working from home, you can sign up for our course The 6 Figure VA (http://www.geneanroberts.com/) and learn from the pro’s how to start your own business as a Virtual Assistant.

Live Life by Design, not by Default!

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Organizing Your Home Office

When you work from home, your office space is sacred as it is where all of your important documents and information are kept. With all the paperwork and office items you have on your desk, it can start to feel overwhelming. Clutter can take a toll on your health by increasing stress levels, you may not even be aware that it is happening. One way you can help to reduce this stress is by decluttering. By cleaning up your office space and truly decluttering, you can not only decrease stress, you can also increase productivity especially while working from home. If you want to live your workdays stress-free, you need to GET ORGANIZED! 

Here are a few steps to help you get started with the process:

1. Purge Paper 

If you struggle with desk organization, odds are you have too many papers and documents taking up space both in and on your desk. First things first, as time-consuming as it may be, take the time to go through every single piece of paper on your desk and throw out, shred, or file each one. A lot of times, many of us are more visual when it comes to work and documents, however, for the sake of the environment and your mental peace, you might want to consider making everything digital. There are so many great tools you can use on your desktop and smartphone that will allow you to keep all your important documents and files organized and easily accessible. If it is not absolutely essential for you to print out certain documents, don’t do it! 

2. Color Coding 

Color coding is an easy way to organize all your files and notes. To organize, separate the filing system into five color-coded categories, and label each hanging folder according to your needs. 

GREEN: Financial 

RED: Client Work 

ORANGE: Personal 

YELLOW: Insurance 

BLUE: Meetings 

3. Keep Only What You Need 

Many people like to keep special items on their desk space such as family photos, decor, and other accessories. Maybe you’re like Angela from The Office who fills her deskspace with cat figures and photos of cats. While it is a nice touch to add something personal to your desk space, you don’t need the extra clutter and it would be helpful to try and remove anything you 

don’t absolutely need. This does not mean you need to remove all your personal touches, but your desk space should be oriented around your work, this is #1 priority, and it can’t be a priority if your work gets lost in your decor.

If you spend the majority of your workday at your desk, having it look nice and tidy can really make your workdays more enjoyable. If your desk is a mess, your mind will be a mess as well. This year, prioritize setting aside at least 1-2 hours per week dedicated to organizing your space. You will slowly start to see the effects on your productivity and mental health. If you still find yourself feeling overwhelmed by online documents and work, that’s what our virtual assistants are for! Reach out today and ask about our packages. http://www.lifebydesignvs.com

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Invest in Your Business, You’re Worth It!

If you’re looking to grow or expand your business, there’s only one way to get yourself there, you need to invest in your business. Many small businesses, such as a virtual assistant business, can be started at a fairly low price, as there are plenty of free resources available. However, when you’re ready to level up and grow, you will need to invest your time and money. So why is investing in your business a good idea and in what ways can you invest in your business? We’ve gathered a few ideas. 

In order for you to make more money, you’re going to need to learn to spend it too. Once your business starts to pick up, you’ll find it hard to manage all the programs and workloads that you’ll start to encounter. For example, you can easily start a Virtual Assistant business with as little as a cellphone, desk space, and a laptop. However, once you start to gain a few clients, you’ll find it hard to manage so many tasks. You’ll want to invest in management programs and possibly think about onboarding some staff to help you manage the workload.

You work hard for your business, and once you begin to spend your hard-earned money on outsourcing tasks, you’ll be working smarter, not harder. You’ll slowly begin to see your return on that investment as you’re able to work more efficiently without the stress of being overwhelmed by the workloads. Handing over those tasks you simply don’t enjoy will allow you to continue seeing results while being able to focus on what you most enjoy in your business. 

One of the greatest investments you can make in your business is in marketing. Without a solid marketing strategy, your business’s progress and growth will be protracted. Having a strong marketing strategy can allow you to grab your current customers’ attention and aid you in finding new ones as well. 

Lastly, you should prioritize investing in your staff or employees. Your team is your foundation for success in your business. Delegating down allows your business to grow and prosper. Investing in your team is also just as important. You want to make sure you provide the proper resources and training for your team in order to increase productivity and reduce turnover. There should be clear guidelines and values for each team member to follow to save costs and increase profitability. 

It can be confusing trying to decipher what the correct investments for your business are. It’s important however to remember that to earn money you’ve got to spend money. If you’re looking to delegate down and start to grow your business, we may be just the perfect fit for you. If you’re ready to increase productivity and create Standardized Operating Procedures, we can get you started so your whole team can work more efficiently and help you grow your business. 

Visit us at http://www.geneanroberts.com

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3 Tools to Master as a VA

As a virtual assistant, you may be given a variety of responsibilities by clients. Sometimes, it becomes difficult to manage so many different tasks. As my business grew, and I started to receive more clients, I started to realize that I didn’t just need to manage client work, I needed to manage my own time and work. 

How can you juggle it all? 

So, from experience, I know that clients expect quality work, timeliness, organization and efficiency. Below are 3 tools I have found were needed the most, especially when first starting my virtual assistant business. 

Microsoft Office- Creating Documents, PowerPoints, Spreadsheets, etc. 

It’s no secret that Microsoft Office is a user-friendly software. As a virtual assistant, I have been responsible for creating documents, contracts, content calendars, and a variety of other tasks for my clients.

Powerpoint, Excel, and Word are ones I use most, but there are other Microsoft Office programs as well. Microsoft Word is one of the most basic tools to use when connecting with people online. Regardless of the type of documents you will create, Microsoft Word is one of the biggest need-to-know programs. 

Google Calendar/Outlook Calendar- Managing Multiple Calendars

Your clients are busy business professionals. As a result, they are typically unorganized. They rely on you to keep them on track. They will have a variety of events, campaigns, meetings, and calls that need to be scheduled. Knowing how to use both calendars in your VA business is a must. And these are the most common. Google and Outlook both provide a variety of different tools to help you keep your clients on track. Both provide similar, easy-to-use features which can help you. It also will help your clients stay more organized. 

Gmail/Outlook Email-Email Organization and Filtering 

One job you may have  as a virtual assistant is helping organize and maintain your client’s email. Sorting through 9,000 emails, most of which are junk, is the last thing a business owner wants to do. They have a business to run.

Learning to master the different tools within Gmail or Outlook Calendar have benefited me as a virtual assistant many times over. Many business owners are in need of Email Organization. They need VAs like you to help them filter out the trash from the important emails. Gmail and Outlook Email are free. If you don’t know how to use them, Youtube has tutorials available to train you.

These are just a few things I needed most when first starting out as a virtual assistant. As you grow, you can expand your knowledge and learn more skills along the way.  But these are a good start.

We started at zero a year ago. It was just me and a crazy decision to start my own virtual assistant business. As a result, I hit 6 figures in 10 months.

Do you want to learn the skills needed to start your own virtual assistant business and turn it into a 6 Figure company? Check out our brand new 6 Figure Virtual Assistant course where we dive into all of our tips and tricks for becoming a 6 Figure VA. Here is another post we did called Launch Your Business With the 6 Figure Virtual Assistant Course

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Why You Need A Blog For Your Business

With the ever-changing styles of marketing methods, it is hard to keep up with what the best techniques are for growing your business.  Blogging can be one of the most effective ways to increase brand awareness while simultaneously providing useful information to your target audience.

Now more than ever it is important for small businesses to have an online presence. Being a consistent blogger can take your business further than you thought possible. Content is still king when it comes to online business building. Consistent content on your social media channels, through email marketing, and through blogging can greatly increase your visibility online. Here are a few reasons why you may want to consider adding a blog to your business’ website.

1. It helps your audience know what is going on in your business: If you want to build customer loyalty and keep happy customers coming back, you’re going to need to keep them updated. Having a blog can work as a great tool to keep your customers in the loop. A blog will help also your customers relate to you on a more personal level, as they are able to give you feedback and have direct communication with you. You’ll keep the old customers coming back and new customers eager to learn more.

2. SEO boost: A great boost to SEO is increasing the outflow of fresh content, relevant topics and engagement. When you write blog posts consistently, this will generate traffic to your business. By utilizing relevant key words and creating new content, you are heightening your chances of appearing more frequently in search engines. Blogging is one of the most inexpensive ways you can increase SEO.

3. Build an email database: Email marketing is still a very important tool you can utilize to keep new and old customers updated. However, many customers are reluctant to sign up because they don’t enjoy spam mail. A blog, however, can build credibility and likability for your brand. If people enjoy your content, they are more likely to sign up for your newsletters. The main goal is to build trust between you and your consumers.

4. Pass Along Effect: If you are releasing valuable information that people enjoy reading, odds are they will want to share this information with others. A blog can highlight valuable information that relates to your niche. Once one person enjoys it, they are more likely to pass it on to others who share the same interests, therefore bringing attention to your business.  

If you haven’t yet, I encourage you to add a blog to your website today and start posting. If you don’t have the time, or the desire to, we can help! That’s one of the services Life By Design Virtual Services offers to business owners. We can write and schedule content as often as you’d like. Reach out and schedule your free consultation today to see if we are a good fit!

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Common Mistakes Business Owners Make

Running a business, large or small is hard work. You plan and schedule your time to the best of your ability yet find yourself working more than you would at a typical 9-5 job. You ask yourself why you now have less time for the things you love. So many of us put our energy into the wrong things and miss the right opportunities. Here are a few common mistakes business owners make during the first 5 years, and how you can avoid them:

  • You do not set a clear plan and/or vision for your business. While you may have the next million dollar idea, if you do not have a clear, thought out, plan that you can easily relay to your clients it will be hard to find them. This is best done by taking the time necessary and not rushing the process. While there are always exceptions, business longevity requires a lot of nurturing. 
  • Find your target demographic. This will take time as well as trial and error. Initially, you will want to broadly market your products/services. As you go through the paces you will find a specific niche of clients you prefer to work with and can narrow your focus. This will not only help you focus on the things you enjoy doing, you will also be using your resources in the most efficient way.
  • Building a significant Social Media presence. The average length of time a person  spends per day on social media is 2 hours and 24 minutes. In that short window, you are literally competing with millions of influencers and small businesses to make your product or service known. You can expedite this process by reaching out to friends and family, finding influencers to promote your products and/or creating paid ads (not recommended until well established-utilize what is free until you begin bringing in a profit).
  • Have Patience. Finally, whether you are building a million dollar business or a coffee shop on the corner, please remember that everything worthwhile takes time. Setting the building blocks to success and nurturing your business through the growth stages is the most important thing you can do. 

Deciding to start your own business and pursue your passion is a huge, life changing decision and one you should always be proud of. Perfecting these key points will eventually make your business drive itself to success.  Life by Design VA Services can help during those times when you find the need for navigating through your unique business journey. 

A few things our Virtual Assistants can help you with:

  • Social Media – We can create graphics/captions and schedule posts. Consistency is key!
  • Website Management – Updating content, photos and links can take a lot of time that you don’t have. A VA can edit and update your website as needed.
  • Blog Posts and Other Content Creation – Creating eye-catching, aesthetically pleasing, and thought provoking captions, blog posts, articles, newsletter and info on your website is so important. 
  • Online File Organization – Whether you need help with organizing your emails and creating filters, or organizing your Google Drive or OneDrive files, we can help!
  • Email and Calendar Management – Keeping up with your email and calendar can take time you just don’t have. Our VA’s can help by replying to and sending emails, creating and sending calendar invites, schedule meetings, add appointments to your calendar, set reminders, and more. 

These are just a few ways Life By Design Virtual Services can help you grow your business in 2021. If you are to the point of not enough hours in the day, let us help!  Schedule your free 15 minute consultation HERE.

Let’s see if what we do is a good fit for you!

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The Importance of Branding Yourself

Whether you are an entrepreneur, or someone looking to get employed by others, branding yourself is one item in your personal portfolio that can make or break you.

Why Is It Important?
Over 70% of employers say they check social media accounts to see who “you really are”. They want to see if how you present yourself online aligns with the company’s beliefs. If you’re an entrepreneur/ small business owner, many people will probably Google your name and see what populates. We’ve all “googled” someone at some point. You want people to see positive things but also relate to you as a human being.

Where Do You Start?
Branding yourself normally starts with social media. As I’ve said before, you will probably be searched at some point and the first thing that will pop up is ALL of the social media accounts with your name attached to them. Make sure you’re posting appropriate content that speaks to who you are as a person. Social media is like a peek into what you do in your free time and/or your personal accomplishments. People want to know how you are spending your time and what you have to say about it.

Oprah Winfrey
Oprah has proven to be one of the best at personal branding, almost anyone in the world knows her name. With an estimated net worth over $2 billion, she (I am sure she has a social media manager) always is posting content that revolves around staying true to yourself and your passions. This kind of content brings people in and also empowers them- while benefiting her personal image and growing her following.

Outcomes of Personal Branding
Not only will you have a solid foundation of who you are as a person and your values on display for people to connect to, but also your brand will be able to evolve/adapt to the changing world. You may start a small business and the product is slowly going out of style- if you are attaching your name to that business and bringing your customers to your own personal image then they will be attached to not your business, but you. They have the potential to follow you around on your next business endeavor because people like to support like minded or positive people.


Personal branding is growing in importance now thanks to social media, and your entire life story can be just a click away. Most importantly, make sure you are portraying yourself in a connecting, encouraging, and honest way.

blogging, businessbuildingstrategies, process management

Small Business Start-Up Tips

So, you’re wanting to start a small business? Here are a few tips when it comes to figuring out the type of company you want to start and other important details. 

Figure Out What Interests You 

Identify how you’re spending your free time and what gets you excited to learn more. Maybe it’s a hobby you spend a lot of time doing, books you read, magazines you subscribe to, clubs/groups you’re a part of, or places you travel to. 

Identity a Problem 

Some of the most successful businesses are the result of finding the solution to a problem many people are facing in everyday life. These can make the best kind of products and/or services because everyone loves a solution that makes their quality of life better. 

Research Your Market

A lot of markets are becoming oversaturated as time goes on and people make knock offs/ the same product with another brand name. Doing research in your selected target market is a huge factor in determining your possible success. 

Build A Team

In order to run a business smoothly and deliver the best consumer experience, you may want to look into building a small team. During the start-up process cost is normally very important, so virtual assistants are your best bet. They handle most of the busy work while you can focus on making your product and/or service as great as possible. 

Life by Design has numerous VA’s on standby to truly help you with the crazy journey of running a small business. Schedule your free consultation today!