Episode 068 – Gina Horkey
Welcome to another episode of The HERO Show. I am your host Richard Matthews, (@AKATheAlchemist) and you are listening to episode #68 with Gina Horkey – Helping Entrepreneurs Find Kick-Ass Virtual Assistants!
Gina is a married millennial momma of two precocious kids from Minnesota. She is the founder of the Horkey Handbook – a website geared towards helping others find or become kick-ass virtual assistants.
Her background includes making a living as a professional writer, online business marketing consultant, and a decade of experience in the financial services industry.
Here’s just a taste of what we talked about today:
- Becoming an expert at finding kick-ass virtual assistants.
- Determine which parts of the business you can hand off to your VA so you can focus on your zone of genius.
- Jumping to full-time entrepreneurship from corporate life in a smart manner.
- Entrepreneurship has always been flowing in Gina’s veins.
- Infuse content with a lot of examples and stories so your audience feels like they are learning from a friend.
- Empathy drives really well into being a great teacher.
- Business growth despite letting go of the reigns for a full month.
- If you want to grow your business, you cannot wear all the hats.
- Manage a successful organizational structure even if you only have a single-person staff.
- Fear is a major factor that can hold you back as a business owner.
- Reposition yourself to become the solution for the entrepreneur in need.
- Hire someone and teach them about your business. Take the time to introduce your V.A. to your business.
- Highlight student success stories to motivate the rest of your audience.
- Each student story is important. Be invested in your audience’s success.
- No risk; no reward.
- It’s gold to have a professional who knows how to work remotely.
- Most V.A.s have this inaccurate idea that they need to be available on regular business hours but that is not the case for most clients. Most clients need customer service via email or social media.
- Try to keep things simple. Sometimes your tools can go out of control.
- Building and documenting SOPs is essential for any business.
- Discover which part of your business you can assign a fresh and entry-level VA to handle and which parts should be assigned to a high-level VA.
- The thing that needs to change in American Culture is this idea that work comes first.
- Life is not about money and material things. It’s about people and experiences.
- Comparison kills contentment.
- Hiring help is the best way to scale up.
The HERO Challenge
Today on the show, Gina Horkey challenged Hailey Thomas to be a guest on The HERO Show. Gina thinks that Hailey is a fantastic interview because she is an alumna on Gina’s Virtual Project Management class. Gina believes that Richard and Hailey will geek out on all things process related.
She has started another business that flopped but she learned a lot about positioning from that experience. Hailey is a Virtual Assistant turned podcaster turned course creator! She has some amazing stories to share on The HERO Show.
How To Stay Connected With Gina Horkey
Want to stay connected with Gina? Please check out her social profiles below.
Also, Gina mentioned the following items on the show. Check out each item using the links provided.
Anything You Want: 40 Lessons for a New Kind of Entrepreneur by Derek Sivers Work Less Make More by James Schramko
- Website: HorkeyHandbook.com
With that… let’s get to listening to this week’s episode…
– Heroes are an inspiring group of people. Every one of them from the larger than life comic book heroes that you see on the big silver screen to the every day heroes that let us live the privileged lives we do. Every hero has a story to tell. The doctor saving lives at your local hospital. The war veteran down the street who risked his lives for our freedom. The police officers and firefighters who risk their safety to ensure ours. Every hero is special and every story worth telling. But there is one class of heroes that I think is often ignored. The entrepreneur, the creator, the producer, the ones who look at the problems in this world and think to themselves, you know what? I can fix that. I can help people, and I can make a difference. Then they go out and do exactly that by creating a new product or introducing a new service. Some go on to change the world, others make a world of difference to their customers. Welcome to “The Hero Show”. Join us as we pull back the masks of the world’s finest hero-preneurs, and learn the secrets to their powers, their success, and their influence, so you can use those secrets to attract more sales, make more money, and experience more freedom in your business. I’m your host Richard Matthews, and we are on in three, two, one. Hello, and welcome back to The Hero Show, my name is Richard Matthews and today I’m live on the line with Gina Horkey. Gina, are you there?
– I am here, so excited.
– Yes, glad to have you here, Gina. Let me introduce you real quick on our show. So Gina Horkey is a married millennial momma to two precocious kids from Minnesota. Additionally, she is the founder of Horkey HandBook, a website geared toward helping others find or become kick-ass virtual assistants. Gina’s background includes making a living as a professional writer, an online business marketing consultant, and a decade of experience in the financial services industry. Does that sound about right?
– It’s impressive, isn’t it?
– I know, it sounds really cool, especially the precocious children. So, you know, I’ve got a couple of precocious children myself. They’re a blast. So my first question for you that I wanna just get right out of the way is, what is it that you’re known for? Why do people come to you today? Why do they look you up for? Why do they hire you? What’s the main thing that Gina Horkey is known for?
– It is definitely becoming or finding a kick-ass virtual assistant. So that’s a highlight of that bio that you just read. It’s funny, though, because you can look at the Google My Business results. You know, how you get emailed that on a monthly basis? I was laughing because the last one that I got, they were looking at business checking or something like that, and I’m not at all a bank, so that didn’t match so well, but I do get a lot of hits on the keywords surrounding virtual assistant.
– Awesome. Are you training people to be virtual assistants or training people to hire virtual assistants?
– Both, we have paid online training courses geared towards those that wanna start a new business as a virtual assistant, and then we also have skill specific training. We have lots of free resources as well, especially in-depth blog content, and like 150 plus different services that you can offer as one when you’re getting started so help that brainstorming process. And then we offer a free VA finder service, so that entrepreneurs and small business owners that are looking for help have kind of a go-to resource, which are our graduates and kick-ass VAs that we have trained up. A lot of them are domestic here in the US, but we have a lot of Canadians, and then over in the UK and different parts of Europe, Australia, and New Zealand. We have students from all over the world, though. There’s no kinda location pre-determination.
– Awesome, I may have to hit you up soon, because I’m in the process of needing to expand my team. But yeah, for those of you who are listening, if you have not yet hired a virtual assistant, hiring a virtual assistant dramatically unlocked my business over the last 12 months. Took my company from where I was to, I think, we’ve 4x’ed our revenue this year.
– I brought on one, and ended up, halfway through the year bringing on two more. So, I’ve got a staff of three people now. And it’s glorious, glorious to have someone so you’re not your own bottleneck. I’m curious, what’s the biggest thing that you see entrepreneurs who are bringing on virtual assistants, that it helps them do?
– Well, I think one of the first places that it’s smart to start with is where you find yourself, kinda wasting the most time and for a lot of entrepreneurs, that ends up being their own inbox, or dealing with customer support and customer service inquiries. And that’s great, because you wanna have happy customers for sure, and you wanna field pre-sales questions and things like that. But that’s not necessarily the thing that needs to uniquely be done by you, and often times it becomes a procrastination method for avoiding the things that you do need to get done that will really take your business to the next level. But it’s only one of the things. I would look at the things that you’re not innately good at, the whole Eisenhower matrix. These are things that are important, urgent. We’ve gotten important to non-urgent, those are usually the areas of opportunity that if you get people to help you to take care of the other things, then you can focus there and write that book, or produce a webinar, or launch the next product or service. Yeah, so that’s a good place to start, is with customer service.
– The thing that’s really unlocked it for me was this idea that only I can do, right? And getting things off my plate that weren’t things that required me specifically, right? For instance, hosting this podcast. I can’t have someone else on my staff host this podcast. But, all the things on the other side of it like editing the videos, and publishing, is not stuff that I require my unique skillset. And I think that unlocking that for my business was really big, because it allows you to spend more of your time doing things that require you, and the rest of the stuff can just get done.
– Yeah, that’s the most recent course that we launched, actually. It’s called, “Podcast Assist”, and we have a free kind of service to help pair you with people that can handle the back-end and the production side, ’cause there is a lot that goes into it, from editing the audio, to doing show notes or transcriptions, you know. Repurposing that content is so important. Getting it out there on social, the list goes on and on. So, that’s kind of a fun service–
– Yeah, we actually just launched a service that our team is taking up called “The Push Button Podcast”, that handles all that for podcaster.
– So, we’re actually
– You’re on it.
– Taking our V– Yeah, we’re taking our VAs and turning it into a service. So that’s another thing that bringing people on, has sort of unlocked, is the ability to add more services to our agency.
– So yeah. Super cool. So, next question for you, is your origin story, right. Every super hero has their origin story. It’s where you started to realize where you were different. That maybe you had superpowers and maybe you could use them to help other people. How did you, sort of, start to develop on this entrepreneur’s journey?
– Well, I turned to my BFF Google. I was actually pretty unfulfilled at work. I had about a decade in the financial services realm. I started as a full-fledged advisor, and then when we started our family, I kinda took a step back and started, or continued to service a small pool of clients, but then did a lot of support work for a local office so I could work closer to home, and I actually ended up negotiating four days a week and things like that. So on paper I had this amazing thing going with a lot of future potential and I got paid well, and I worked close to home, and I worked with this family that treated me like one of their own, but unfortunately it wasn’t the work that I was passionate about, at least the work that consumed that 80% of my time. And so I figured at 29, it’s a little too early to lock myself into something until retirement, right? And I started looking at alternative options. Took me a long time to give myself permission to even consider anything else, because I had taken on these clients in good faith, that I would see them to their retirement, and I just had an internal struggle with it. But, when I gave myself that permission, I found that freelance writing for the web was a thing and even though I didn’t have a journalism background, or hadn’t published any books at that point, I thought, this is something that I can do. I can write blog posts and copy, and thinks like that for other small business owners. And so, I jumped in, kind of, with two feet, but I did it, I would consider it the smart way. So, I had my full-time job. My husband actually was a stay at home dad. We had two babies at that time, like 10 months and two-years-old, and I would just wake up super early, at like four o’clock in the morning, put in a couple of hours building my freelance writing business, hop in the shower, nurse the baby, and then I was off to work for the day job. But I was able to do that and grow my client base. I added a virtual assistant client in September of that year, and that’s when I got to that, like, tipping point, that, hey I can probably put in my notice and start doing this full time. And so it was about eight months end-to-end of looking into it in the first place, and actually putting in my notice, that I went full time, so.
– Yeah, so, how did you find that transition? I know it’s something that we see a lot on this show. People like me are rare. I started off as an entrepreneur when I was 13. And I was like, what is my life? But far more people are in your situation, where they’ve gotten into a job, they’re doing something, and even something they might enjoy actually, and decided they get the bug to be an entrepreneur. And, sort of, how did that transition, Was it something you knew? You weren’t like, excited to be an employee anymore? And like, how was it making the skill sets of being an employee, how about transition into being someone has to run your own business and is in charge of everything?
– Yeah. So I think I’ve technically been self-employed since like 2009. So even in that position, when I made the transition from full fledged, I was an employee advisor, but I was still only paid on commission. And then when I repurpose myself there closer to home, I was self-employed. So I’ve always had an entrepreneurial mindset. I’ve always been in sales. I mean, I went from babysitting to dishwashing. And then very quickly after that dishwashing at 13, I knew to being a waitress, and you know, that’s so much better to be able to impact kind of the effective hourly rate, if you will, when you’re working on commission or tips or something like that. And then when I was in college, I worked in sales jobs too, and that was my first career job out of college. So I would say that it’s always been in me and I think I can credit probably my dad, even though he wasn’t so successful as an entrepreneur. But I think that’s kind of where the the bug came from, and that I knew that you could do it, where some people aren’t raised that way. One of. And don’t tell my kids. But one of the Christmas gifts that we’re giving them is called the CEO, Ken Box and Course. I don’t know if you’ve heard of it.
– I don’t know I’ve heard of it. No.
– Yeah. So they’ve kind of paired the idea with an online course and then like a subscription box. But it’s just a one time thing. And it basically teaches them on their level how to become an entrepreneur at a young age. And so I’m super excited because another thing that we do every year is we go down to South Padre Island, Texas. I live here, Minnesota. And if you could see out there, there’s a few feet of snow. It’s been snowing regularly already this winter, and it’s cold. But we’ve been traveling down south. We’re kind of snowbirds, even though we’re not retired technically, for the last five years and we actually unenrolled kids from public school and then we homeschool them and then we bring them back into the public education system in the spring when we return. And this year, in addition to the home school curriculum, that we have, we’re gonna teach them how to be entrepreneurs. And I’m super excited to, like, be there, but not be the one to teach them, but be able to, like, convey or dissect that information so they can really understand it on their own terms. They might not want to be entrepreneurs but–
– How old are, How old are your kids?
– Right now, six and eight. So it’s kind of early, but they know that I’ve been working for myself for a long time ’cause I’m almost six years in doing this online.
– Yeah, my oldest is 10, and I work my last job when he was an infant. And so he’s never known me anything but at home. Working from home and running my business. Anyway, there’s like three and almost one for ours. But yeah, my oldest is just gonna the point where he’s started to make that connection that like the lifestyle we have and the freedom and stuff that we enjoy. We actually travel full time. We were in South Padre Island springtime last year. But he tries to make
– Oh, awesome.
– That connection, that the reason we have some of these freedom is because of entrepreneurship. So he’s starting to really want to be interested in it, which is cool.
– Yeah, it is really neat. And I think it’s really important too, for us to have that privileged, to be able to expose them to a different way of life.
– Yeah, differently thinking. So my next question for you has to do with your super powers, right? Super powers are the one thing that you do or build or offer this world that you think helps solve problems for people. And the way I like to think about it, is in your business, what’s the one thing you absolutely know, you bring to the table that energizes everything else that you do?
– The one thing. That’s a hard one. I mean, I think that I’m naturally gifted and I’ve taken some assessments that have also proved this in teaching and encouragement. So those are two. But I think they go hand-in-hand with what it is that I do.
– They do.
– So I’m able to kind of see things from a student’s perspective, even though it’s been a while since I’ve been in their shoes. And my whole goal is how to shortcut that success, right of getting from point A to point B. But the way that we go about it, too, is I try to infuse as much as I can with examples, concrete, real life examples and then story to keep it kind of entertaining as you’re making your way through the content. What was the other thing that I was gonna say? Definitely. Oh, another thing is, like most people will say that they feel like they’re learning from a friend rather than going to a class. And that’s always nice to hear, right. Like you can enjoy learning something new and short cutting that success that I’m really invested in their success, honestly, like I love to share with them about landing their first client or raising their rates or whatever the case may be. So, kind of fun.
– Yeah, it strikes me that your superpower is probably something along the lines of empathy, because empathy really drives well into being a good teacher and being a good encourager and being able to see things from the other person’s perspective and really be there like learning from a friend. All those things sort of speak back to being someone who has that empathy as a superpower. And it’s just showing itself. Showing itself really in interesting ways for you.
– Thanks. Yeah, we’re trying to spread the message, you know, along the parenting lines, but just leading by example for the fact that you don’t ever know anybody’s story. And so trying not to, you know, have preconceived notions or judgments of others is really important when we talk with our kids and stuff too.
– Yeah. That’s awesome. So the other side of your superpower is your fatal flaw. Right. Fatal flaw, like Superman has his kryptonite. And it’s the thing that you’ve had to struggle with in running your own business and being your own boss and running and, you know, being an entrepreneur. Somebody who has held your business back. And I think more importantly than what it is, is how have you helped to deal with it or overcome it, for other people who are listening and struggle or something similar? How have you how do you sort of dealt with your own fatal flaw?
– Yeah, I think for me, I’m like a lot of others. And then I’m a perfectionist and it’s hard to delegate and give up control when it comes to different aspects of my business except, especially things that are, you know, customer facing. So writing is a strong point of mine. That’s how I broke into kind of online business in the first place. And so, when it comes to producing content for course or sales material or writing a weekly newsletter or any of those things like I want to have the final say. I want to make sure that I’m copy ending all the things and have my hands in it. And yes, that makes a Gina final product. And it’s usually a good one, but it’s not always 100% necessary. And oftentimes then I have more on my plate than, A, I need to. And B, that is probably feasible for maintaining that balance of wealth, of wellness, is what I meant to say. So earlier this year, things kind of came to a major head, both personally and business wise. But I found myself coping in unhealthy ways with stress, and that included over consumption of alcohol. And so that was one of the things that I took care of earlier this year. I actually went to rehab for a couple of weeks and it was an amazing experience in many different ways. One of the things that I came out of it with though, from a business perspective, is that I had to completely let go for about a month and I wasn’t really able to be in the business as I had normally been able to. And it ran and it grew without me. So that was an amazing lesson and testament to the team that I had built as well. It was a real big blessing.
– Yeah, yeah. That’s always. That was a sobering moment for myself as well, to realize that one of the things that I was holding onto and being myself when I let him go, and let someone else do them and they still got done. And then half the time I got done better and faster. And you’re like, oh, well, I guess I should have let go of that sooner.
– Exactly. Yeah. But if you wait too long and I think that burnout and, you know, the snowball effect of trying to do all the things which we all know isn’t necessary, especially if you apply that 80/20 rule, right. Prado’s principle.
– Yeah. And to to the point earlier of talking about your superpowers, one of the things that I have learned is that your super high powered CEOs that are running big companies in the Fortune 5000 list, stuff like that, or Fast Company 5000 lists are they generally have the one thing that they focus on and they always bring in other people to shore up everything else, right. And it’s just, they do their thing. And realizing that I need to do the same thing in my business. If I want to grow, I can’t wear all the hats. I mean, in beginning you have to start wearing all the hats. But as soon as you can get it, all the other hats off to other people so you can focus on doing to uniquely you, because that’s what really where the rocket fuel comes from in your business, is that uniqueness that you bring to the table?
– Yeah, I agree with that. And I think something else kind of on the other side of the coin, though, is kind of knowing what enough looks like for you, because not everybody wants to become a Fortune 500 or Fortune 5000 company. And you know, a lot of times we start out with a goal of just being self-employed and being able to provide for our families. But in the culture that we’re in and you can agree or disagree, it seems like we’re always striving for more, more, more. And it’s not always a financial thing, although measuring success, the revenue is the easiest metric. And I know that I’ve gotten caught up in that a little bit. And so I’ve had to take a few steps back, especially this year, and think about, okay. well, yeah, I want to be a seven figure business, but the speed that I get there doesn’t really matter because I have met the basic needs for my family. And, you know, my students are succeeding and we’re accomplishing the goals that we had set out for ourselves originally. So I don’t know. If you’ve struggled with that or not, but it’s something that I’ve come to terms–
– Actually I think. I think the same thing, actually. The way I’ve always framed it for people on the show and people that I talked to is you have to know the type of monster you want to build, right. Because not everyone wants to build an Apple or Google. Right. Like, that’s just not what everyone’s goal is. But what I find what I find interesting is like, what can you learn from people who, If you want to get beyond like, generally beyond like a small six figure income, you’re gonna have to bring on another person, right. Even if it’s just one other person, like you talked about. Now you’ve got a team, right. You have to think in ways, or like the way a CEO would think, right. Where does where does my stuff end, and the other person stuff start? Even if it’s just you and one other person. So it’s like how do you manage that? That thinking in terms of like, how do I bring successful organizational structures and thinking to my business, regardless of how big I want it to be? ‘Cause to your point, right, I don’t want to have, in my business, I don’t want to have 100,000 employees and a multinational corporation kind of thing. That’s just not my goal. And I don’t know a lot of entrepreneurs that are gonna be looking to hire VAs. It’s not their goal either. But at the same time, knowing exactly where you are best used is gonna be a huge benefit to your business. So my next question for you has to do with your common enemy. And common enemy. And so you serve two different markets. You serve the entrepreneur or hiring VAs, and you serve the VAs, or people who want to become VAs. So I’m more curious on the people who want to become VA side is when you bring someone in as a new client, what is something that you wish you could just remove from their life, from their mindset? You know, it’s holding them back from taking the next steps? Something that you see all the time as a common enemy, you have to fight on that side of your client base.
– Yeah, I think it’s fear. Fear of failure, fear of not being good enough. You know, my market ends up being more dominated by females than males. And I have a couple of theories on that. One, I’m a female and we tend to use feminine colors in our branding, like pink. So that could be a part of it. The other part of it is that men, and this is statistically research proven, you know, they tend to specialize a lot sooner and they only need to feel like 60% confident that they can deliver or be eligible for a job to go after, apply for it and get that interview, whereas as women, we need to feel like 90% confident that our skills and experience matches the gig that we’re applying for. So I would say that that is a big one. And it just, you know, that lack of self-belief or self-esteem really holds people back from just putting themselves out there. I think they don’t want to come across as salesy. And that’s one of the things that I feel like our training really helps reposition and somebodies mind is that it’s all about finding somebody that needs help and being the best solution to help them with whatever their pain points are, or their businesses needs, right. So I just got an email from somebody today, and she was like, I’m so scared. I’m scared of wasting money. I’m scared of, you know, putting myself out there because I’m not, that’s not my background or my experience. And so I talked her through a couple of small wins and steps that she could take without an investment, monetarily. And then I said, you know, it’s really not about being salesy. It’s more about just positioning yourself that person that you can meet the needs of that business owner. And really, that’s all it is, is you’re offering a service, you’re offering your time for somebody that doesn’t have that service or that time on their hands. So they they can be doing their unique thing like we’ve been talking about all along. And she replied, I think I’m gonna do it. So I was excited.
– Yeah, and that’s
– No worries either way. Like you do you, of course. But you can do it.
– It’s a hard, hard conversation to have too. And I totally get you. Like the women feeling like they need to be more prepared ’cause, I’m definitely on the other side where it’s like if I feel like I know enough to get myself in trouble, I can learn anything else I need to do on the job. Like, that’s totally fine with me. My wife would never do that. She’d be like, I want to know 110% that I can do everything and every contingency that might possibly happen along the way, which can be paralyzing ’cause you don’t know if those things are.
– So having to. I like the way that you sort of reframe it, right, in terms of like you don’t have to to sell yourself as the perfect, you know, I know everything you need to know, but you’re like I can help solve the problem of you not having enough time, right. Of not needing to get more things done in your business. So anyway, it’s a good reframe for both the person who’s selling it, and also I would assume even for the buyers. People who are looking to hire someone and bring someone on, is, you know, one of the mistakes I see on the other side. People who are hiring VAs, is they’re looking for someone who knows everything about their business. And that’s just not who you’re gonna hire. You’re gonna hire someone and then teach them your business and teach them the things that they need to know about your business. So there’s like, There’s a lot on both sides of that, you’ve got the business owners who are looking like, I need to hire someone who can just do all the things perfectly already and someone else like I need to know all the things perfectly already. And then they never meet, which is hard.
– Yep. And I think that type of client, you know, they typically have gotten too busy. So they’re not in a place to be able to properly onboard a virtual assistant and take the time to introduce them to your best to their business, like you said. The virtual assistant can be extremely specialized in what it is that they do. Like a copywriter, for example. Right. They could have worked with tens or 20 different clients. And your brand, your business, your voice is gonna be different. And so they still need to learn. For example, I’m working with a copywriter now. I gave up control at the meeting. His name is Erickson and he just did a sequence for me and it talked about picturing your kid sick at school and the husband’s working and this, that and the other thing? Well, my husband’s been a stay at home dad since our second was born. So that’s not a real situation for our family. I was able to adapt it and make it so it was honest and a story that had happened in our lives. But he didn’t he doesn’t know everything about me yet, because we’re just starting our working relationship. So it would be unfair of me to be like, oh, well, you don’t know everything about my personal history. And so therefore, you’re not qualified to work with me, because you’ve got great skills. You’ve got great writing chops. It’s just that we need to work together long enough for him to really have that 360 foot view.
– Yeah, and especially with something like copyrighting. Copywriting is one of the things that you’ll learn to pick up someone else’s voice. As someone who’s written copy for other people before, you have to spend a lot of time reading their stuff and then writing stuff for them and getting their feedback before you really get a handle on what their voice sounds like. Because like that kind of copywriter, you have to be able to take your own voice out and stick someone else’s vote the way you said and write like them, which is, that’s a unique skill, right. You have to you have to have a chops to be able to do that. And if he’s got the chops, you know, it’ll take a little while. But once he does, he’ll be irreplaceable in the business.
– Exactly. Yeah, he’s great. We’ll keep him for awhile.
– Awesome. So I want to talk a little bit about your driving force. So you’re driving force, just like Spider-Man fight to save New York or Batman fights to save Gotham or Google fights to index and categorize all the world’s information, what is it that you guys fight for at the Horkey Handbook and creating kickass VAs?
– Yeah. I mean, I’m a Christian and we go to a local Baptist church that seems more non-denominational in feel. But part of their tag line is like everyone has a story and it’s kind of the one by one approach, like your story matters. You matter to God. And I’m not gonna get all preachy or anything like that. But I feel the same way towards our students. Like, it’s not just about a number of people that are enrolling in our programs. It’s about that one life that is being impacted by what they’re learning. And I don’t like to take credit for other people’s success because, yes, we have this roadmap for you to follow. And I’ve had these experiences and these templates and all this stuff for you to pull from. But if you don’t take an action, if you don’t move forward with any of it, none of it’s gonna work, right. So when you’re realizing those results, even if you have that kind of shortcut to your advantage, you’re still putting yourself out there. You’re still doing kind of scary stuff or the hard work. And that’s probably my favorite part is we put a huge emphasis on like student success story. So basically case studies chronicling our students. The most recent thing that we launched, is a student income report series. So I’m sure being an online business, you’ve seen the income report things of bloggers go by over time. And it’s super interesting because we’re all voyeurs of each other’s lives. It’s why social media even exists, is because everybody wants a peek behind the curtain. So anyways, I used to share mine really early on. I think I did so just for a couple of years. And then as I grew from being a service provider, more into being like the CEO of Horkey Handbook and more of a course creator and other things that I was getting compensated for, it was less relatable and relative to the students or prospects that we were speaking to on the block. And so I retired it a long time ago. And then we decided to follow three different students earlier this year. So we have a beginner and intermediate and advance, and we chronicle kind of their stories. And that’s really fun because you can see month to month, here’s their goals. Here’s the things that they had as far as wins. Here were their challenges. Here is how they’re progressing along the way. All of that to say that I do believe that each student’s story is important and I really do want to see them to realize their dreams of becoming a virtual assistant, but more so what that means in their life, which oftentimes is freedom, flexibility, more control when it comes to their income or what they’re really just doing, where they’re feeling that passion and that excitement of learning new things and being able to impact a small business owner rather than a nameless, faceless kind of nine to five position.
– Yeah, it makes less sense. And to to your point, one of the things we talk about all the time on this show is that we’re a story-born people. Right. And your relationships are built and measured by the stories we know from other people. So being able to lift up and share the stories of your students and help them really come into their own story I think it’s a powerful message you guys have for what you’re doing.
– Yeah, it’s fun. And people have gotten hired off of it too. Like we have a couple of case studies in particular where Rachel has gotten clients just from sharing her story on the blog, and that’s always fun.
– Yeah, yeah. So do you ever. Just curious, do you ever have people who end up getting hired full time as virtual assistance for particular companies?
– Yeah. There is one. And I’m not gonna be able to think of her name right now. But I could go and find her testimonial pretty quickly. And that’s what happened is she got taken out as a virtual assistant. They just fell in love with her and her work style and they offered her a full time gig, and she took it and she’s really happy.
– Yeah. And that’s just a selfish question, ’cause I’m gonna be needing to hire some more full time people as we grow this next year, so I may be hitting up some of your case studies and stories and finding some people.
– Go for it. No risk, right.
– Which is cool. No risk, no reward, right. That’s the way it goes. But yeah, it’s just, you know, I’m hitting that point in my business where I’m like, I’m gonna need to bring on a full time English person to help do like customer onboarding and working with those kind of things. I’d probably need to bring on a writer at some point. Probably need to bring on a salesperson. So like to hit some of our goals. we got some really aggressive goals this next year. I’m gonna need quite a few new people. And for me, having a good source of people I know who are trained well, I know you think that’s a huge win. So for anyone who’s watching this and is going through your stuff for business on the other side, it’s gold to know someone knows how to work remotely and communicate remotely and handle those kind of things. It really helps business. I get that a lot.
– Yeah. We can help shortcut kind of that transition, ’cause if you, a lot of times you want to hire like a friend or a family member in order to help them out and help you out. Like that’s the dream for some people. Some others have had bad experiences and won’t touch that with a ten foot pole. And I totally understand that as well. But our training helps it kind of take a shortcut for those individuals that have never worked online before, because there are a lot of things, foundationally, that you kind of need to learn. I mean, simple things as far as what is an email newsletter opt in? This whole subscription side of things? What’s a lead? What is conversion optimization? What’s a sales funnel? All of those are terms that people don’t know.
– Do you guys cover and teach things like, I don’t what you’d call it. Like family management, time management kind of stuff like if you’re working for someone? How do you handle children in your home office and being able to have a silent workplace? That kind of stuff, that it’s gonna be important for the business owner, for the people who might be handling phone calls or other things for them or need to have specific hours or they need customer service, covered or things like that. Do you guys teach how they handle and set up those things for virtual assistants?
– Yeah. I mean, we talk about working with clients quite a bit. There’s a whole module that goes specifically into that, and we talk about, you know, different layers of professionalism. So obviously making sure that your workspaces uncluttered and clean. We talk about how to utilize different platforms as far as video conferencing and things like that. For the most part, the virtual assistant they have clients, or kids at home aren’t probably gonna want to be in like a customer service role where they’re taking calls. And honestly, I haven’t run into that many people that need that service. It’s more customer service base via email or social media often used as that for medium too–
– Your primary customer service stuff now.
– Yep, but that’s a big concern for people that are working full time and they want to become virtual assistants. They have, I think an untrue kind of conception in their mind that they have to be available during normal business hours and for the majority of clients and projects and things like that, that’s not the case unless you’re manning a chat.
– So it’s like, I know there are some specific things where you have you have hours that you need to be able available for. But like for most of my assistants that we have on our team, it’s like, hey, you have your your schedule, you can set it up however you want. I just need to get these things done during the week. And as long as you get those things done, I really don’t care when you work. So I know that might make it seems sort of like meshing their own schedules together so they have, now that there’s more than one of them, they sort of work at the same time so they can talk, communicate and have fun and that kind of stuff. But, you know, we’ve got a virtual water cooler thing going on with Slack now, which is kind of fun. But other than that, you know, unless you’re specifically, like you said, manning a chat or doing some hours, which is to your point, freedom, right. Freedom to set your own schedule, so you can take your kids to the gym class or take them to their right now. That’s a thing he’s really enjoying.
– And the practical question is your hero’s tool belt. Maybe you’ve got a big magical hammer like Thor or bulletproof vest like your neighborhood police officer. Or maybe you just really like how Evernote lets you organize everything. What is one or two of the most important tools you run into for making sure your business runs day to day, whether that’s calendaring or the things you use to onboard clients or take keep track of your courses run at. What’s something that you just know you couldn’t live without?
– That’s a great question. I am a huge fan of honestly, the Google Google Tools Suite, which is free with the exception of like Google for work with your, you know, email and all of that good stuff. But I utilize Gmail. I preach against it, but I still do it as far as like my home center, right. And so my email is almost like my rolling to do list, although I also have a Google doc for that too. But I fully utilized calendar, G-mail, Drive. I’m using spreadsheets and Google Docs and slide presentations and Google Meet. I use the Google chat thing. So like I’m all over all of the free tools that they’re offering for me. Google Alerts is amazing too, if you’re trying to keep up on different things that are going on in your client’s industries, for example. But then also we use Slack as a team, and that’s really helpful to keep a lot of that noise out of my inbox. But probably my favorite tool is Help Scout right now, and we utilize that for customer service. So I have a customer service person. Her name is Davey. And then there’s a couple others of us that are in there. So obviously there are certain things that I need to respond to when it comes to like partnerships or maybe something that needs to be expedited from a customer service perspective. And then we have the course and then we have something called the VA leads community, which is where we put those entrepreneurs in touch with our community of Vas, and it’s also where we can offer some support and office hours and all those things. But we offer free hosting through Fly Wheel as well. If you’re a community member, which is great for VAs that want to start a website, it’s not necessary, but a lot of people will for a long term business. And, so we use Help Scout for all of our solutions there too. So Darren will help them to facilitate their website and hosting set up and have conversations as needed. A lot of what we do is automated and Help Scout and Zpier and all of these platforms allow us to do it fairly seamlessly. Technology always comes with some hurdles ’cause it doesn’t work perfectly, but we’ve used a lot of it to our advantage, especially with onboarding. Making onboarding automated, amazing.
– Yeah, that’s one of the things that I’ve actually I’m in the process right now of building a another service on my business called, Push Button Processes, which is a very similar like we’re actually teaching people how you build workflows and systems in your business and how you can setup things like customer onboarding and customer service and other things to be automated processes. And when I say automated, I mean that the CEO is not the one doing them. So certain actions that your customers take or that happen when your business triggers things that sometimes it’s human beings that handle the process or sometimes it’s a robot to handle the process. But the process is set out and it happens the same way every time. And it’s documented and stuff like that’s where we’re teaching some of those things. And yeah, it’s amazing some of the tools that you mentioned right away. We use Google Drive and watched Google Drive folders. So like a client, I’ll upload a new episode for their podcast and it’ll hit a Google Drive folder. And then all these things will happen because of that action happening, right. The tools that we have available today make it really, really cool to to be running a business today versus running a business 20 years ago.
– My best advice is to try new things, simple anyways, because sometimes the tools can grow under control, especially if you’re trying to split test things or whatever the case may be. And so you forget why you have something set up or even that you have it set up in the first place. So make sure that you use them dummy proof testing every once in a while. Sign up to be a customer of yours or a lead and see what happens.
– Some of the things that I do on all of my processes is so like, we keep track of all of our work flows. And at the top of every list for the trial for each step, there’s a little sticky note that’s a sticky and it’s like notes and automations and it outlines all the things that should be happening automatically and which ones should be happening with humans. So like each step of the process, there’s notes and there is there’s documentation about the documentation, like what’s happening because it can. Absolutely. Like if you don’t remember what you set up or why you set it up or what’s going on, you’ll like, Especially if you got automation as any part of anything. Six weeks down the road, you won’t remember what rules you set up. So you’ll do something and all these things will happen. You’re like, wait a second, what’s going on? So we don’t take them all. So we know what’s what’s happening, because that could absolutely be a problem.
– Yep. When we pride ourselves on offering pretty decent customer service. So that’s also one of the things that we teach our students because it’s way less expensive and time intensive to keep our current client or to increase the scope of work that you’re doing with them than to find somebody new. Right. And so SOPs is actually something that we teach within the course material too. What is a standard operating procedure and how can you develop these processes for your clients? Because most entrepreneurs don’t want anything to do with–
– Don’t have ’em.
– You’re gonna be rare. You’re a unicorn. And I love the sea under the curtain of what you got going on over there. You’re supremely helpful. But we teach them how to step in and coach their clients and how to almost train them, because if you do a screen cast of something that you’re repeatedly doing for your business, you can share that with your virtual assistant and your virtual assistant can then take that and make it into an SOP. So maybe it’s a video to start and then the process changes over time. So they’re transitioning it into text and then they’re just modifying the text with screenshots and things like that going forward. Well, that virtual assistant might get promoted to another place within your business. Or maybe you part ways for one reason or another on either side of that relationship, and you can easily train in somebody else using what that VA has built for you. And so it’s a great parting gift from the virtual assistant. And honestly, that’s how I was with my previous position. I found and trained my replacement like before I got into online business. And then when I left my clients behind, that was something that I did as well. And I know that it was super valuable for them, because it could have been a mess. the customer service department for these very rapidly growing companies. So.
– That is huge. And it’s a my point earlier. I said, you know, hiring a VA really unlocked our business because we spent an inordinate amount of time over the first six months of this last year documenting processes and doing exactly that that process where it’s like we would video things that we were doing over and over again and I would turn it into written documents or actually build a the whole documentation site. And have all that stuff documented now, which means now we can bring on new staff members more readily. We can bring on new clients more readily. We can get work done faster. And so it’s definitely a huge, huge thing to get your SOPs done right in your business.
– But if you’re an entrepreneur and you haven’t touched this part of your business, don’t think that it’s so overwhelming that you can’t get started and have any success with it right now. So what I would do is just the next thing that you do that’s like a normal, repetitive thing you can do every day could be once a week, it could be once a month, then just start with that and then try and finagle that. And again, it’s as easy as using like Loom to screencast yourself.
– And then maybe once a week you try and do something like that. And over the period of six to twelve months, you’ll have everything documented in your business.
– Yeah, it’s really cool. I have a friend of mine who runs a podcast called, “Five Minutes of Freedom”. He talks about that. He’s like, if you take five minutes and record a process that you do over and over again and then get it turned into documentation, that’s something that you were and then free from in your business, right, because you can have someone else do it.
– That’s awesome.
– Yeah, I like it.
– And I was like, that’s a good way to think about it. Right. Maybe you five minutes. You can record it and you can get it documented. And then it’s something that you are no longer have to worry about in your business. And I just took that ran with it. So we did like, I don’t know, maybe like two or 300 processes document our business because I’m crazy. But anyways, yeah. It definitely unlocks a lot for people, which is super cool. So I am super blown away that you’re teaching VAs to do that, because personally, I think every business should be doing that for themselves, even though they don’t think they should be. So that makes me really happy.
– And honestly, why we’re doing it, is we’re anticipating all of the pushback from entrepreneurs, right. Which a lot of it has to do with, I don’t have time. They’re either gonna have time or they’re gonna have money. And if they have more money, they’re gonna hire a specialist, somebody that’s a little bit more plug and play. But that’s still gonna have to learn what their business is all about of our beginning conversation or they’re gonna have more time on their hands. And maybe they’re willing to train a new or virtual assistant that doesn’t have a ton of skills and services that they’re already offering. And so it makes sense from a win-win perspective that, hey, I can pay you a little bit less, but you’re gonna leave this relationship with more skills and experience than you had before we started working together. And I always tell virtual assistants if they don’t got no money or no time, you go in the other direction because there’s nothing really in it for you.
– Yeah. And that’s actually a conversation that me and a couple of my mastermind people were having over the last couple of weeks, is discovering in our businesses which systems are are worth hiring someone to, like hiring a lower level person, someone who’s newer and fresher and teaching them and getting them to build SOP and then bring, Then those systems are in-house, right. Whereas like I’ve got someone here who’s got, and it’s worth having in-house in my business versus which services in which things in our business are not worth that, right, and are worth hiring a highly specialized someone who can you can just plug in and be like they’ll just handle this part of our business, the end. Right. ‘Cause that’s gonna be more expensive. And but it’s also something that you don’t have to. You don’t have the headache for your business anymore, right, ’cause it’s just. You’ve plugged out and someone else is taking care of it. And like there’s two levels to that. And it’s not the answer that you do one for the other. It’s just some things are gonna be better to bring in-house and hire and train and have inside your business, and some things aren’t, right. And actually, we just ran into that with our podcasting service. Is we were building all the stuff to hire and train and have transcriptionists on staff and realized that we’re only saving like 20% over using some of the services that do that automatically. And I was like 20% just isn’t worth it. It isn’t worth the overhead for hiring and training and client onboarding and hiring processes and HR and all those things to handle and scaling up a transcription team went something like Rev, for instance, already exists and has all that stuff done. I mean, we pay a 20% premium to them, but we paid a 20% premium because they got all the system stuff.
– So what’s the price on the people that work with you that don’t have to do that mind numbing tasks that probably is not enjoyable for 99.9% of the population? You can’t put a price on that enjoyment of work factor which helps them, I think, to increased loyalty in your business and passion for the work that they do too.
– Yeah. So it’s like we’ve outsourced. I say outsource, but we’ve got something else taking care of that. We did the same thing with like the graphic design work that we do. It’s like we could hire and train and bring graphic designers on. But we actually we found a company that offers graphic design work and they like they’ve got designers available on staff all the time and they may help you build your brand profiles and whatnot so you can get design work done really quickly. And that means I don’t have to build those services in our business. So like, those ones are like you’d hire someone else who’s got it all taken care of, versus some of the processes we’re hiring and bringing in VAs and having them actually building out some of our own customer support systems. And some of the things that were definitely worth having in-house. And I think that’s that’s to your point. Which ones are worth it, which ones aren’t? And you can’t know until you actually start getting some of your stuff documented and moving forward and actually implementing a little bit.
– I think there’s a third choice there too. And this is great for both clients and for virtual assistants. And that’s with our own graphic designer. Your story made me think of her. Her name is Erika and we don’t have her on my payroll, where we have re-occurring agreements for compensation. But she does all of our design and we had a lot of it this year, but it might not always be that way. And so we’re just paying her per project rather than–
– So like a like a project based.
– Yep, for anything else, and she holds a spot for us as long as we have that work coming in, in a consistent volume. If we started to decrease that and didn’t trickle down into next to nothing, well, she probably wouldn’t hold a place for us open so readily where she could fit in projects with a short turnaround time. And I would expect that as a business owner, that does not have her on retainer, right. So I think that there’s kind of three options for that. But it’s great for that client. And then I don’t have to pay her whether or not I have projects for her. It’s also great for her because maybe she has other re-occurring clients already built in and then she can just fit an extra one off work when she wants to. So maybe she has a certain financial goal in her life, a trip that she’s planning or something else. Or maybe she’ll take on a lot of one-time project work so that she can, you know, see that goal and then work less afterwards.
– Yeah, I just found that I got to $8000 repair we gotta do on our RV. It’s like, oh man, I guess we’ll take on a couple of small projects and get that taken care of. But you know, to your point, sometimes you just gotta do a little bit extra hard work.
– Right. So do you have a house then too, or is it the RV your main–
– We have been traveling full-time in the RV for two and a half years. So we are full-time in the RV. We will be until we get at least all lower 48 states. So we got 22 down. We got another, what is it, 24. We’re going over to the east coast this next year, and we’re gonna go all the way up from Florida to New York and all the little states. So, I mean, I think that’ll only leave some of the northern states that we won’t have seen yet. Yeah. When we initially started, we figured we could see all 50 states in a year. That is way too much work.
– Well, especially a little–
– We wen’t a lot slower. Yeah.
– So you have an actual RV, where it drives and your housing is included or is that–
– Yeah. Here. This is an actual RV that we drive here, behind scenes, right. There’s our actual closet in our RV. And I don’t know if you can see all that, but it’s a I’m in a fake studio here that I have set up in my RV. I mean, lighting and whatnot and other stuff for it.
– I mean, I think that’s pretty impressive that you have an audio studio within like your tiny home of an RV. So, go you.
– Yeah, It’s by my side geek stuff, is I really love photography and videographer stuff. So it’s just a hobby of mine. And so I was like, I can set up a whole little miniature studio in here and make it look cooler than it actually is. So that’s the peek behind the curtain there. Back to our hour interview. I got one more question, and it’s pretty simple. It’s your guiding principles. Actually, no. I forgot one. Two more questions. Let me back up one. I almost, This is one of my favorite questions, of your own personal heroes. Just like Frodo had Gandalf or Luke at Obi-Wan or Robert Kiyosaka had his rich dad. Who were some of your heroes? Were they real life mentors or speakers or authors? Maybe peers were just a few years ahead of you. And how important were they to what you’ve accomplished so far in growing Hokery Handbook?
– That’s a great question. So one of the people that I followed early on was a guy by the name of Jon Acuff. So I believe he’s in the Nashville area. He’s put out a bunch of books, “Quitter”, “Start” and “Do Over”, I think is one of his more recent ones. But he’s very talented and motivational writer. He was actually on Dave Ramsey’s team for a hot minute doing content creation and speaking. And he just was able to put things in a certain perspective at that time that I needed it. Like I’m still a subscriber to his newsletter, six years later, seven years later, whatever the case may be. So there’s only a few people that make my little list of who I will let into my inbox on a regular basis. And he is one. And so he was just great with the mindset that I needed that shift at that time to start my journey in the first place. And then another person would be Derek Sivers. Have you ever heard of him?
– I have not.
– Okay, well, he has an amazing book. And I like the audio version personally, called “Anything You Want”. I think it’s 40 lessons from an entrepreneur to kinda like, do your business your way. And he was the founder and creator of CD Baby before he sold that for 20 million dollars 20 years ago. And so he just travels full time now. But if you follow his blog, he writes the shortest blog post that you will ever read. And they are so thought provoking at the same time. I just really enjoyed him. And we’ve had some some dialogue back and forth. And that always impresses me too, because people that you think are kind of a really big deal, when they actually personally return an e-mail, it just means a lot to me personally. Then lastly, and it’s funny that these are all kind of men. I’ll have to come up with some women on my list. But I’m working with James Franco, and he is a business coach that I’ve been working with for a year. He’s over in Australia. He’s got a great book as well called, “Work Less, Make More”. And talks a lot about that effective hourly rate and charging what you’re worth and things like that. But he helps me to really just see things differently. And his focus is very much on enjoying your life and getting your business to fit around your life rather than your life to fit around your business. And personally, one of the things that I don’t like about our American culture is that work comes first for the most part, right. Like we’re just trained up from an early age on average for, you know, a school and then sports to be like our full time jobs and then, you know, your nine to five and then your family life and your friends and enjoyment and passion, which if you are married and have small children, the passion and friend thing doesn’t come up all that often because there’s just not enough time to go around. Passion comes last. And so when you start with something that you are passionate about, and that can be, you know, for him in surfing. I’m really into fitness too. So I would probably position it there for my passion besides work and family. It’s just that lifestyle independence message that I feel like is really taking a firm hold these days. Life is not about money or material things, it’s about people with experiences, and I think the sooner that you can kind of figure that out, the happier you’re gonna be.
– That’s actually one of the reasons we travel full time, is for that exact reason. And I know my running partner in business and over the last I’ve started and stopped a lot of businesses, because they weren’t allowing us to have the lifestyle freedom we were looking for. And as soon as we find out that this business is gonna allow us to have, like it’s gonna take control. As soon as it’s taking control here, that’s not the way I want it to be. So a business that allowed us to do the things. I think it’s like you said, it’s a tiny message, especially in America, because I think the American dream is still alive and well. And it’s just in a time of shift, right. It’s shifting where it’s like it’s everyone wants, you know, dream job, and a big house and a big boat or whatever that is, and keep up with the Joneses to be more like how we experience the life that we have. And I think that, you know, I think that’s where the American dream is shifting towards and the opportunities are just catching up with that shift.
– Yeah. Derek Sivers has a great chapter and one of his books. It’s basically if it’s not a hell yes, then it’s a no. And I think it goes along that same theory. Like we oftentimes will take on too many responsibilities or say yes to too many things, ’cause everybody’s asking these days whether it’s you’re in giving or volunteering at your children’s school or whatever the case may be, like everybody needs some help and there’s nothing wrong with giving help. But I think when you are able to kind of think about what you’re passionate about and what your value system is, then you can say yes to more of the right things and no to more of the things that won’t make as big of an impact for people or in your personal life. So I’m a huge fan of that, too. And, I don’t know. I think I think we’re turning, making a turn for the better. But yeah, our goal financially ourselves is to pay off our mortgage in the next two years. It’s not to keep upgrading our lifestyle, but to keep becoming more and more free. And once that’s paid off and we don’t owe anybody anything. That’ll be great.
– Yeah. That’s the sort of we’re where we’re almost at. We’re almost at the point where we don’t owe no one for anything, which will be a cool place to be. And then it’s all, for me at least we have some growth of things we want to hit. because I’ve got some big things I want to be able to help people with. But that’s, you know. Gotta have some revenue to back that up. So anyways, we’re working towards those things. But what I want to do is just sort of bring it home for our listeners and talk about some of your guiding principles, right. Top one or two principles or actions that you use regularly today that you think contribute to the success and influence that you enjoy. Maybe something you wish you had when you started out on this entrepreneurial journey.
– So I think it goes hand-in-hand with kind of a conversation that we’ve had this entire time as well as my parenting philosophy. So for my own children, my goal is not that they’re the smartest or the best at whatever sport they decide to play or musical instrument or whatever hobby interests them, but instead that they’re known for being kind and for being generous. And as a business owner, those are things those are traits that I want to be known for as well as being kind and being generous. And I think it goes back to realizing that everybody has a story to try and not make judgments. Comparison kills contentment. So when you find yourself getting caught up in the competition, like it’s smart to keep an eye on what other people are doing, especially your competition. But to get jealous or in a tizzy over maybe them doing better than you at certain things or that perceived notion that they are it’s not always reality either, just doesn’t make sense and it will kill that contentment, that happiness factor. My life is nowhere near perfect. I’ve told some of the stories of that already. But you know what? I’m getting closer every day to figuring it out.
– I know a lot of the things that really stuck with me. So I mentioned that the whole comparison game, what you’re comparing is you’re comparing your insides to everyone else’s outsides. And that’s a hard comparison to make because they’re gonna put on best view of their outside. You’re never actually comparing apples to apples when you do that, right. Because, you know, if you’re looking at someone else’s Instagram or whatever it is that you’re comparing to your revenue to their revenue numbers, you don’t see everything else. You’re just seeing outward indicators.
– Right. And a thing though, there’s so many vanity metrics out there. And, you know, there’s personal vanity metrics like your Facebook family profile photo where one minute everybody is yelling and hitting each other and then they smile pretty for the camera and then they go back to doing that again. Or there’s the number of followers that you have an Instagram or Facebook or whatever. That doesn’t mean that a company is successful. It doesn’t even mean that they’re generating any revenue whatsoever. My mantra rounded out as I got started, I came across online, I think somewhere. And it was why not me? Why not now? And it was like, why can’t I be the one to kind of forge into what I consider my destiny and be a successful entrepreneur? And why not now? Why can’t this be the time that I start and succeed at this journey? And so that’s something that we talk with our students a lot too. Why not you? Why not now? So we’ll use that a lot. And it’s empowering to me, at least.
– I agree. It’s a great question too. Talks about this lot. If you want to get better answers in your life, you have to start by asking yourself better questions.
– But one of those, as an example, one of those is a good question because it leads you down to better answers. Last word of the show, something I call The Hero’s Challenge. It’s something I do in every show. It’s called, The Hero Challenge. Basically this. Do you have someone in your life or your network that you think has a cool entrepreneurial story? Who are they? First names are fine. And why do you think they should come share their story here on our show?
– Great question. And I was wholly prepared, thank goodness. Because this is how I was elected to be a lucky guest on your show. Thank you so much, Laura. I appreciate the shout out. For me, I’d like to recommend Hayley Thomas. And she is actually a previous kind of alumni of our curse, somebody I partnered with on another course on virtual project management, because that’s what she specialized in. And I think that you guys would geek out when it comes to all things processes and workflows. So you’ll have a fun conversation there. The other part that I think would make her a good guest is the fact that she had started another business prior to this that totally flapped and she realized a lot about positioning at that time. So she went from corporate career to having a child, to starting another side business that didn’t work out, to then becoming a successful virtual assistant turned podcaster turned course creator as well. So I think you’ll have fun talking together.
– Awesome, thank you so much for that. I look forward to connecting with her so we get her on the show. Last thing here. Thank you so much for coming on the show, Gina. It’s been a pleasure speaking with you. Where can people find you if they are a looking to hire a virtual assistant or be looking to become a virtual assistant? And who are sort of your ideal candidates for people who are thinking to themselves, you know, maybe I want to make a transition, who are the ideal people to reach out to you guys?
– Awesome. Well, thank you for the opportunity for me to share. So I am a one of a kind, Gina Horkey. Horkey is a married into name that is German. So it’s H-O-R-K-E-Y, and then HandBook dot com is where you can find all things virtual assistants. You know, like you said earlier, we have kind of two sides the market, but we only really charge on one. And so if you are an entrepreneur that is too busy or knows that you’re gonna be too busy soon, hiring help is the easiest way to scale. And you can come to us to find that kick ass virtual assistant. If you’re looking to start a side hustle or maybe even change careers and you want to work virtually offering services to small business owners, we have a lot of people that stay at home with their kids. We have a lot of people that want to change careers. We have some tech savvy retirees that are great candidates for us as well as military spouses, because you’re on the move all the time. So why not build a career you can take with you?
– Awesome. That’s really, really cool. So it’s HorkeyHandbook.com. H-O-R-K-E-Y, Handbook.com. And if you’re like me and you are an entrepreneur and you haven’t hired a virtual assistant yet, it’s one of my bigger messages that I’m gonna start incorporating into this show, incorporating a lot of things that I do. You absolutely should be hiring a virtual assistant. And I’ll be looking into working Handbook myself for some of this stuff we’ll be going on over this next year. So definitely take a chance to look out for it. And if you’re on the other side, and you’re looking to make a career change, I would definitely. You’ve heard Gina talk. Obviously, she knows what she’s doing here. She’s got some some really well laid out thoughts on this side. So take a look at her, her stuff there. Maybe you could make a good positive change in your life and your career. So, again, Gina, thank you so much for coming on the show. Do you have any final words of wisdom before we part and hit the little stop record button here?
– Sure. Yeah, the only thing that I would say to follow up on what you just mentioned is that for every entrepreneur or small business owner, they have needs for, you know, half a dozen to a dozen or more virtual assistants, potentially. So for those of you that are questioning, is that really a viable option for me? You only need a handful of clients and most small businesses are working with at least a handful of virtual assistants. So, why not you and why not now?
– Absolutely. So, again, thanks so much for joining the show, Gina. And if you’re watching the show, check it out. HorkeyHandbook.com
– For having me.
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The HERO Show
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