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HELP! I’m an Entrepreneur

Hello and thanks so much for visiting “Help! I’m and Entrepreneur.”

Whether you’re investigating the possibilities of an entrepreneurial opportunity, launching a startup company, or have established yourself as an entrepreneur, this blog is intended to build a community where we can discuss the issues we all face with running a small business.

My name is Jackie de Boer. I launched my SOHO, Accredited Virtual Assistance (AVA) in 2005, to provide more flexible office support services for solopreneurs, entrepreneurs and small business owners who require administrative support, but perhaps didn’t have the need, or resources, to pay a full-time, in-house Executive or Administrative Assistant a salary and benefits. As a virtual assistant, my clients pay only for the time spent on their projects and tasks; all work is performed from my home based office.

Virtual Assistant Home Office

AVA’s home based office

In recent years, I became fascinated with social media and how LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and other social networking platforms could be used as a marketing tool in business. In 2009, following certification by VAClassroom as a Social Media Specialist, and requests from several clients, I added social media marketing to my service offerings.

AVA is a home-based business, which comes with its’ own set of challenges, as I’m sure many of you have discovered. My goal for this blog is to create a relevant and helpful community for all varieties of entrepreneur and small business owner; a place where we can discuss the issues we face with running a small business.

Each week I’ll be writing blog posts, or creating videos focused on the needs, questions and concerns of entrepreneurs, solopreneurs and small business owners, at whatever stage they may be in their entrepreneurial journey.

What is your biggest business challenge right now? Enter you challenge in the comment box below, and I’ll feature some of those challenges with possible solutions in future posts.

Entrepreneurship is neither a science nor an art. It is a practice.
~ Peter Drucker

Thanks again for visiting

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Jackie de Boer founded Accredited Virtual Assistance to help the busy entrepreneur, solopreneur and small business owner with business tasks they have no time, patience or skills to perform. As a Virtual Assistant (VA) Jackie takes care of administrative, executive & social media marketing strategy, setup & management for coaches, consultants, speakers, voiceover talent and business professionals remotely from her home office based in Massachusetts, USA.

{ 14 comments… add one }

  • hi Jackie.. time management and staying on task is huge for me.. U can’t seem to finish one job for worry about what I have to do next.

    • Jackie

      Thanks for sharing Elizabeth — I see time management as a major challenge for entrepreneurs.

  • With a declining economy wrecking havoc on our traditional business we find limited to no dollars to hire a virtual assistant for our home based business. We recognize the need, just not the how to fulfill it. Any suggestions. There truly is not enough time in the day to keep up with ALL of the tasks needing done. Help!

    • Jackie

      I understand completely Carla, I find a lot of entrepreneurs get caught up in this Catch 22 situation. They try and do it all themselves and think they are saving money by doing so. The problem with this is, they generally spend too much time working on the administrative side of their business and don’t have enough time to spend on the profitable side of their business. So, while they think they’re saving money by doing it all themselves, they are doing so at the expense of growing their business. My suggestion would be to focus on the money making opportunities and delegate the tasks you don’t have the time, skills or desire to do; that’s the way to build a business. Thanks for your great question Carla, I’m going to write a blog post on this in the future.

  • This is a great idea Jackie – can’t wait to follow your series. I find it hard to balance my need for ‘think time’ against all the activity needed to participate in social media.

    • Jackie

      Thanks Dawn, social media tends to perpetuate our need to be constantly connected, when what we really need to do is unplug, filter out the ‘noise’ and take some time away to think, focus and make plans for our businesses. It’s a fine balancing act particularly for entrepreneurs trying to do it all themselves.

  • Time management is a huge task for many many business owners, great read!

    • Jackie

      Thank you Anita, I’m finding time management to be the biggest issue for entrepreneurs.

  • For me right now the biggest challenge is trying to learn and incorporate the various SM avenues “needed” to be a successful online business. It is very time consuming and I am afraid that if everything is not tied in to each other just so the benefit is lost.
    Many experts talk about finding your niche, I sell outdoor furniture, my niche is customers, is that a niche?
    thanks for this venue Jackie look forward to reading more from you.

    • Jackie

      Thank you for your comments Jerry, getting all your social media platforms set-up and in alignment is a challenge isn’t it :-).
      I understand a niche market to be a smaller targetable group, within an established market. Niche markets can present great opportunities for us small business owners as, generally speaking, the market is too small for the ‘Big Guys.’ For example, many small independent bookstores had to develop a niche in order to survive against the mega Barnes and Noble type stores and Amazon. Their particular niche/specialty could be to sell rare collector books unavailable through the mass markets.
      To find your niche within the outdoor furniture market, you could look for the customer needs that are not being addressed, or addressed well, by your competitors, ie green construction, sustainability, affordable shipping etc. Then figure out a way to fill that need and boom, you have a niche. Hope that helps Jerry.

  • Vicky

    Great idea! Time management as well. Thanks.

    • Jackie

      Thanks for your comment Vicky, time management is our big “winner” 🙂

  • I agree that time management is crucial to any business. With so much work to do on a daily basis, managing the priority of different items is crucial. Thanks for sharing Jackie! =)

    • Jackie

      Thanks for your comment Edmund, I agree prioritizing tasks is crucial.

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