After much thought and careful consideration, I’ve taken the plunge and retired KL Secretarial Services.
However, fear not – Lummus Virtual Solutions, step forward and take a bow!
It’s nearly five years since I launched KL Secretarial Services, and it’s served me well. However, even pre-pandemic, I was taking the business in a different, less traditional direction. The pandemic, of course, has only accelerated this. When I started out, I sometimes provided cover in my clients’ own office. Now, many of my clients don’t even work from their own premises! ✔ None of the financial or legislative burden associated with employer NIC, pension contributions, etc.
In these times of uncertainty, many businesses are seeing the benefit of a flexible model, such as that provided by a virtual assistant:
✔ No need to commit to the regular, fixed overhead of a member of staff
✔ No need to provide office space, a computer and associated licences
✔ Just pay for what you need when you need it.
This shift in focus has naturally led to a change in my niche services, as I've responded to the business community's new needs.
As face to face events fell by the wayside, the world turned online. However, it’s not easy running a virtual meeting or training session, particularly if you’re not familiar with the technology.
Hence my Zoom hosting support was born.
I did a course during lockdown #1 and became familiar not only with all the ‘bells and whistles’ Zoom has to offer but also with various platforms that can be used alongside Zoom to really give your session the pazazz that keeps the participants engaged.
My role is (optionally) to help with the set up and co-designing the session and providing post-session admin support.
However, what my clients always appreciate is help during the session itself:
✔ Providing technical support to the participants
✔ Managing the waiting room and breakout rooms
✔ Monitoring the chat
✔ Screen sharing
✔ Managing polls and whiteboards
All my clients have to worry about on the day is showing up on top form, building a rapport with the participants and concentrating on their delivery. Almost like old times!
I must have provided over 130 hours of Zoom hosting support to clients by now, and this figure is continually rising. I ‘take my hat off’ to my clients. They’ve stepped outside their comfort zone and handled it tremendously well. The feedback has been fantastic, and many say that online training sessions are here to stay.
Lockdown #1 also allowed me to complete my proofreading qualification. I love my proofreading! It’s rapidly becoming a niche service.
✔ Health and Safety reports
✔ Psychology reports
✔ Web copy
✔ Promotional material
✔ Social media profiles and posts
✔ CVs and covering letters
✔ Works of fiction and non-fiction
Quite a broad spectrum.
However, all authors have in common that they want to ensure they present themselves in the best possible light – that's why they bring in a professional proofreader.
No doubt, we can all think of misspellings and poor grammar leading to an amusing result. However, the outcome may not always be so funny. In material I proofread recently, the author promoted a series of complimentary courses. The courses flowed naturally from one to the next; they were complementary. They certainly weren’t complimentary, far from it. Potentially an embarrassing or expensive error!
Naturally, most of the services that have been my ‘bread and butter’ remain. Namely:
✔ Keeping clients organised and on track - making sure nothing ‘slips through the net’
✔ Business admin
✔ Email and diary management
✔ Internet research
✔ Preparation of documents and materials for meetings or training sessions
✔ Data entry
✔ Lifestyle management (or 'life admin' as I like to call it)
✔ Train and hotel bookings
If you recognise the need to turn your attention back to your fee-earning work and your clients, a virtual assistant could be just the answer. Why not contact me? Let’s just have a chat and see where it takes us!