Be the Lion… Business survival skills

When you are starting a business, any business, it is imperative that you go into the business with the ferociousness of a lion. You have to give it all you have to get your business going, to just get it off the ground. The momentum you have in the beginning will set the tone and really let people know how bad you really want it. It will let them know how passionate you are, and therefore how successful you will be. The two go hand in hand. Without the passion it is just a job. Something for you to do to occupy your time. With the passion it is your creation, your dream. You will work hard and do whatever it takes to make sure you succeed. These are the people whose businesses grow and thrive. These are the people that make it happen!

There are three thoughts that people start a business with. There are the “I really think this will be successful”. If you only “think” it will then it won’t. Then there are the “I am going to do my best to make this business successful” Your best isn’t always good enough. You have to really want it. You have to go the extra mile . Finally there are the ” How soon will I need to start hiring people”. Failure does not even enter their mind. They do not think they will succeed. They know they will. They have no doubt. They start their business like a lion, with spirit, dedication and fervor. That kind of passion will take their business to amazing heights.

The only way to get to this point is to want it…go after it. It’s not going to just happen. When I started my business I had a million ideas before I opened for business. I had researched and studied what others in my industry had done and what tools they used. I studied their websites and blogs. Then I took all of that information, tweaked and improved what I saw, and made my own way of doing things.  I learned how to market my business. I learned how to make people want what services I could give them. I went to networking meetings to make business to business connections. Sometimes 2-3 a day for weeks. Even though I had never done it before, I created my own website and started blogging. Every time I got up and spoke about my business at a meeting I gave the other business owners a new idea or thought that would make them think about their own business and how what I just said could apply to them. I made the wheels turn and start thinking about how my business could benefit them.

After I had started doing work for some of them I began to earn their respect. A person can talk all they want but if they do not have the actions to back up what they are saying it doesn’t mean anything. After I had gained respect I started talking to them individually, suggesting creative ways I could help them with different aspect of their business. If I was hired to do one particular task, after completing it I was always able to suggest some other service that I believe they would benefit from. If I just did what I was paid to do and told them thank you for your business I wouldn’t get their repeat business. I got repeat business from these companies because I made it happen. If you don’t ask for it, you won’t get it. That statement is true with just about anything you want in life. If you want more work then go ask for it.  If you want more people to buy your merchandise then ask them what they want.

The moral of this story of this story is be the lion. Have the passion, the fury, and the spirit to get what you need to survive…for your business to survive.

How to start over… in the middle

I guess you could say I am in the middle of my working life… maybe a little further. We won’t discuss actual numbers. The job I have had almost my entire adult life has ended and I am the sole owner of a new company. It is all up to me to make it happen. So…… where to start?

It was almost instinctual for me to just get things going. The thought of it not happening was not even a possibility in my mind. It never occurred to me that what I was doing might not succeed. Looking back I knew that if I had even started to think that way it would have never worked. It’s like when you are doing something that you have done a million times and you know what you are doing… you know you will get it done. You have done it so many times the possibility of it not getting done doesn’t even enter your mind. It’s like washing clothes, checking and returning email, going to the grocery store. These are all every day tasks that we don’t even think about. That’s how I was when I was setting up and starting my business. I had done these kinds of jobs for so many years, done them so many times, that all I could think about was “how many clients I could handle” at once. I didn’t think “if” I would get any clients. I didn’t think “when” would the clients start calling. As I set up my phone service, my thoughts were making sure I didn’t miss any phone calls from “all” of the clients that would be calling. As I set up my post office box I wondered if it would be big enough to hold all of the mail I would get… like checks from clients, etc.

It was this way of thinking that kept me driven to keep going until what I considered success was reached. I didn’t slow down. I didn’t get nervous if I didn’t get any calls for a few days. I knew if I kept pushing hard enough I would be making money in no time. Every day I thought of new ideas to get new business. I decided to improve my website, go to networking meetings with other businesses, create a presence on social media like Facebook , LinkedIn, and Twitter. I worked hard and I worked fast because I couldn’t afford to just sit around without any income.

Now my perseverance in finally paying off. I have several clients, some on a regular basis. I am generating income. I am still…and probably always will be… thinking of new ways to help my business as well as my client’s business grow . It’s solely up to me now to make it happen. There can’t be any excuses. There is no one else to help. It wasn’t easy, but despite what could have happened I was able to start over…in the middle.



Since I am just starting this ritual of blogging please feel free to leave a comment at the bottom of this page. I would appreciate any feedback anyone has.

Thank you!


Start…. to Start Over

Twenty four years ago I started my job as a receptionist. I answered phones, filed, and other basic office tasks. I took the job because I needed to make money for my new family. I was 21 years old and I had just had a daughter. Things got expensive real quick!

It’s in my nature when I am in a situation to listen, learn what I can, and try to improve things. It doesn’t matter if it is considered my “job” or not I still do what is best for the situation and get the job done the absolute best that I can do it. I am a bit OCD about getting things finished. This philosophy is how I moved from receptionist to service manager to warehouse manager to office manager to operations manager/executive assistant. For 24 years I have held all of these positions… at the same company….and now the company is closing.

A person might think that if after 24 years of being with a company and they are faced with losing their job that things would be pretty bad. After all, 24 years is close to half a person’s career life span. Somehow, however, I managed to look at it in an entirely different way. I had 24 years of experience that I could put into action. All of that knowledge just couldn’t go to waste so I decided take the chance and ….. START OVER.

I didn’t think of it immediately. While my company was closing I sent out some resume’s. I got some responses but in the end I wasn’t willing to just start a job at a new place doing the same thing. Same job, same work, different company, and less pay. This did NOT sound appealing to me. I needed to do something I WANTED to do, not that I had to settle for. You know as you get older you want nicer things, maybe a nice car or house. If your lucky you might be able to afford to pay people to do the things that you once busted your but to do yourself. Well that is how I decided I would be with my career choice. When I started 24 years ago it wasn’t a “career choice”. It was a paycheck. Now I am making the decision to start my career. That is why I started my company Virtual Office Assist, LLC. I love the behind the scenes action that makes a business prosper. Since that was my passion and I had 24 years of experience doing just that I took the leap and started my own company.

I couldn’t be happier that I made that decision! I went from knowing my job of 24 years was ending to starting a new, exciting chapter of my life. One I CHOOSE to start. Not one that I have to because I am just starting out in life.

I went from START….. TO START OVER and I am so glad that I did!!