Off Topic: Mothers working from home - six great tips on finding a legit job!

This "Seriously, Suzanne" post has nothing to do with homeschooling, except that you're likely a homeschooler.

In the new year, many families are looking for ways to decrease out go or increase income or a bit of both. Flip Flop Spanish came out of this very need back in 2002 when I began my small Spanish classes at a local educational toy store in Bryan, Texas.

It was a side gig that helped with grocery bills, piano lessons, and eventually all five of the kids' sports and educational desires from football, art, and beekeeping to speech and debate tournaments, and travel. VERY slowly we got here.... The company (Flip Flop Spanish and Spanish Geniuses) is now our sole income - my awesome husband encouraged me all along the way, and now he gets to work from home with me on the family business! What a blessing for us both!

Now, to you: How can you help with income, how can you start your own "side gig?" One of the biggest needs in my own network is VA's. A VA is a virtual assistant. I saw a post in one mom group asking about where to find work for VA's, posted that question in another group, and BOOM, a WEALTH of information was there. Here are some tips about becoming a VA, how to find your actual paying jobs, what to avoid, and where to look, all from ACTUAL virtual assistants, those who help them, hire them, and train them. I hope it helps you!

TIP #1: Make sure you have the skill set: One of the recurring themes in thread was frustration from business owners who "hate chasing my paid staff down for deliverables." Your skills need to be up to date and transferable. What does that mean exactly? It means you may want to invest some time in training yourself on the options that the businesses need: The basics of marketing, graphics designing, blog writing, reading analytics... Here's a channel that has a free VA course I found on Youtube with just a quick search. I know there are MANY more (I have no affiliation with this lady, just wanted to give you a spot to start.) If you want to pay for the training, one of the women in the thread mentioned Priority VA, which also calls them Executive Assistants or EA's.


TIP #2: Start local: Another recurring theme for those hiring a VA was knowing your staff. Some business owners simply use their current clients or students to help them, so they "hire from within." The idea here is to look around you - what businesses or classes or organizations do you use as a consumer? Perhaps they need some paid help?  Can you staff the welcome desk at dance class, or proof read emails for a paid book club? Does the gym need some social graphics designed for them? Post on your OWN facebook page that you have skills to offer and see who bites!


TIP #3: Search Facebook: If you aren't on Facebook, I'm sorry.... You need to be. I know many of us are aware that social media isn't great for mental health and can pose as an addiction risk for us. But that's where all the homeschool businesses are, mostly. So make a search and see what you come up with! Here are some of the group names that came from the post in my networking group, which ALSO invited YOU TO JOIN US? Isn't that great? Take a look at all these facebook group:

Homeschool CEO Community for entrepreneurs & business owners who homeschool
The VA Homeschool Mom: Community + Strategy for the VA Industry

VA for Hire - Content for Bloggers

TIP #4: Be competitive. Can you offer what is needed? What IS needed, even? Well, read the websites and pretend you're a business owner. Educate yourself with what OTHER VA's are offering.

Here are a few websites mentioned in the thread, but there are plenty more:
Virtual Vocations
Flex Jobs


TIP #5: Be well-read: Get off the computer screens, and purchase or borrow a few books on becoming a virtual/executive assistant for reference. Did you know that if you've read SIX books on a single topic, you're considered an expert? So - become an expert on it! Here is one of the books mentioned in the networking group- the co-author is in the group! (I did use an affiliate link on this one - so I'll make a few pennies if you buy it through this link.)

Your World-Class Assistant: Hiring, training, and leveraging an Executive Assistant

Here's a podcast, too: The Live Free Podcast with Micala Quinn

Tip #6: Be relational. I think , after reading through the thread and comments and posts various times, the main point that came through is that we business owners LOVE our Virtual Assistants. Our VA's are not just a "contractor." They become quick friends, co-workers, sisters... We share our work projects and goals, our hopes, and failures, and they work alongside us helping us to achieve! We are SUPER happy to pay for their skills and time. When you are easy to reach, deliver quality work on time, and over-deliver on expectations, you become irreplaceable because we trust you. So, at the beginning, please do not over promise. Many of us went through three or four VA's before we got to the one we now adore. Be honest and open. If you aren't the quickest at the beginning, don't charge for your inexperience. If you have a project that "should" take an hour, but you're not real familiar with the software yet, work that extra 15 minutes and charge only for the hour. Your client (the business owner who hired you) should not have to pay to train you. But once you're trained, we want to keep hiring you. Remember, we're mommas too... making our way giving it our all, and are super excited to share the journey. We are grateful to share the load and the joy!


I hope this helped you! Feel free to share in your groups and help others. That's what I'll be doing! Comment below if you're a VA and share how you got started! Do I need to add any more quick tips?


*EDITED TO ADD* I just found a BIG TIP I needed to add: - It's a DON'T

Here's a BIG NO-NO - Do NOT "spam" other posts or networking threads with irrelevant mumbo jumbo. If you have a way to help them, or they're ASKING for something you can help with, of course offer! But if they are complaining about a website glitch, or some email issue, do not become someone they want to block with incessant "I can help you with your graphic design," when they have said nothing about graphic design. This goes back to Tip #6 - be relational. No one likes salesy posts and people who over-post on a single topic. Don't accidentally become one. 😁

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