Kick start after a long weekend

coffee and weekend

Labor Day lag.

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Windows 10 upgrade available until July 29, 2016

windows 10

Hi Everyone,

I hope you’re all having a great Sunday and Happy Father’s Day to all the fathers out there. I just want to remind all the users of Windows 7 & 8 that the free windows 10 update is still available until June 29. So you have 10 days to get your laptops or PCs updated for free.

By now you should have received a notification in your update ready section telling you that you can update your windows product, but if not you can click on the link and get the download from Microsoft. This link will become inactive after July 29. Link courtesy of Microsoft.com

Windows 10 upgrade – FREE

I’ve had windows 10 for almost a year now on the free upgrade and it’s great to work with. Now all my laptops and computers have it on.

Happy updating.

Althea – VYPA

 

 

 

Happy 2011

As we begin the new year you should be mindful of the contacts and progress that you made during the past year.  In order to move forward with 2011 and continue to be productive, remember to follow-up and follow through with your contacts in 2011.

During the past year as a small business owner, entrepreneur, virtual assistant or other professional, we have all made numerous contacts, leads or come across opportunities that are just sitting on our to do pile, on our desk, or in our in-boxes.  For the start of this new year, my suggestion to everyone reading this, is to follow-up on those leads.  Send out New Year’s messages with a link back to your site, a new year offer, or attachment of your professional expertise.  Remind those contacts why they got in touch with you in the first place.  Re-engage a would be client into being a client.

Before the end of the January, follow through on your efforts by updating your business or professional profiles, update your website or business information.  If you’re a virtual assistant this could be as simple as a list of the services you provide sent out by email to those clients that you worked with in 2010, or send out a New Year newsletter.

Following through with your plans to make contact with those names on your to do pile, look at the opportunities that you have put aside for a later date.  Following up and following through will keep you fresh in your contacts mind and if they forget what you did or how the link was made with you, then this follow-up and follow through is a great way to bring you and your services, or company to the forefront of their mind, and maybe they just might be able to use your services in this new year.

January is a time for planning and many entrepreneurs and small business owners are usually looking at planning their next step to move forward.  So do your follow-up and follow through in January you might be surprised at the positive responses you receive for this New Year.

Good luck and be productive in 2011

Althea – VYPA

Deadlines – Why are they important?

As virtual assistants we all work for more than one client, or on more than one project or task simultaneously. Virtual assistants are commonly known for their ability to organize and prioritize their workload. But if all else fails and your organization skills are a bit over whelmed than it is best to get clear deadlines.

Don't get stressed make a deadline

As virtual assistants we all work for more than one client, or on more than one project or task simultaneously.  Virtual assistants are commonly known for their ability to organize and prioritize their workload.  But if all else fails and your organization skills are a bit over whelmed than it is best to get clear deadlines.

As VA’s we organize our workload according to which project came in first or has been in our inbox the longest.  In some cases a VA might look at a project and use their own judgment to priorities projects based on the initial discussion they had with their client.  However nothing works better than having a deadline.

Deadlines or project delivery dates, are great to establish with clients either your expected completion date or when the client would like their work completed.  Setting clear end dates gives you the VA the ability to priorities your work schedule more efficiently and increase your productivity.  Having a deadline is also good for planning weekly ongoing tasks that you do regularly.

Productivity can be greatly increased by having clear deadlines.  Many people work better when they see an end to the task they are doing, psychologically knowing that something has to be completed by a certain time makes us focus, and for those of us who work best under pressure then deadlines are great for them too.  Being focused therefore increased your production and therefore increases your business goals also, as you can effectively do more with your available time, you become better at managing your projects.

Another aspect of setting deadlines is that it helps in making realistic priorities.  Being able to prioritize your work schedule according to deadlines makes it easier for a VA to schedule and manage their time with the projects that they have on hand.  Deadlines also helps in making advanced plans for the coming week. If you have your work schedule for the coming week, making deadlines will inevitably make it easier for you the VA to see what time you have available to work through your schedule or if you are able to take on any new projects for that week.

Deadlines and setting priorities makes a VA more organise, and makes an organised VA extremely efficient. Deadlines are important because they make a VA efficient, focused and proactive in planning. These properties will then help you the VA to efficiently serve your clients and build your client base.

Set deadlines with any project your working on, even if it’s just for your own personal peace of mind, or your client hasn’t specifically requested one. This will help you to plan your work load and schedule your week or day more effectively so that you can be more efficient with your time.

Deadlines are important but are also flexible. In the first instant they are the time that either the client would like to have the finished back by, or when the VA would like to complete the project and take it off their list. If you do, which does happen, need to reschedule a deadline just make your client aware of the change and renegotiate a new date or time. Most clients can be flexible with deadlines that they give as the have a prefered time and then their absolute latest deadline, which is usually the latest that they are able to get their completed project back by.  The flexibility of a deadline is what helps with scheduling, but if you set clear deadlines and can stick to them then that is half the battle won.

So remember set a deadline either for yourself or for your clients so that you can effectively organize your time.

Transcriptions – are the costs too low!

As Virtual Assistants there are many areas of work that our duties cover, one such area that seems to get overlooked or abused is providing transcription services. Are the cost of transcription services soo low that VAs are giving away their services.

TranscriptionAs Virtual Assistants there are many areas of work that our duties cover, one such area that seems to get overlooked or abused is providing transcription services.  Are the cost of transcription services  low that VAs are giving away their services.

I personally do a  lot of transcriptions and enjoy doing them. Some of the topics can be very informative and interesting and at times quite fun to just listen to. I have transcribed for meetings, Ebooks, seminars, and teleconferences. However not all jobs come from my current client list so I have to go out in search of work, which brings me to the topic of this post.

Very recently while going through a freelance sites, which is one of the many places or ways that VAs get their projects, I came upon a startling trend, buyers requesting VAs to transcribe 60 minutes of audio for $5.  Another I saw stated “a premium of $10”.  Now as an experienced transcriber of more than 5 years this rate is unacceptable. Do prospective clients or buyers really know what goes into creating their transcripts? The time, research, and skill that an experienced transcriber brings to the table to ensure that their files are created as required.  Clients who request the services of a transcriber should be made aware that although this service can be found for those prices in some places, to have an experienced english speaking, experienced transcriber will require more of an incentive than $10 per hour.

In addition to the low service cost they seek, they also want a VA to provide the files within a certain time frame, which was unrealistic.  VAs please when using freelance sites try your best to vet your prospective clients and check out if they have used the site before, or worked with other provides and read the comments left, they are always good indicators to show if  you can or are willing to work with that client.

Remember transcriptions come in many forms and grades and if you can provide your service for $5 or $10 then that’s great for you but be realistic about the resources you used to provide that transcript and weigh the costs then.

Happy prospecting and enjoy the weekend.

Althea  @ VYPA

 

Thank you for your comments. I feel that as VAs we should sometimes just make these buyers aware that such rates are simply not acceptable.  I’m pleased to see that I’m not alone in feeling this way about some of the rates being offered.
Thank you for reading.