Our Top 5 Working from Home Tips for Maximum Productivity

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With the current situation many of us are now finding ourselves working from home for the first time. We are very lucky to have great flexibility and many of our team are working from home at least one day a week so we wanted to share some of our tips with you.

1 – Have a workstation

 If you are able to, then try to set up a workstation within your home. This could be a desk in a spare room, the dining room table or we have even seen people selling “isolation stations” for those who need their office on their lap!

With many people having to juggle work and childcare you may need to work in the lounge to keep an eye on the kids. If this is the case, then try to make sure you have your allocated spot on the sofa with all your essential items around you.

Explain to your children that you are working and set boundaries for when they can ask questions so you are not being interrupted too much.

2 – “Walk” to work

So with home working our commute has gone out the window (we love the photos of Londoners using their shower rails as pretend handrails for the tube!) but we should still make sure we are being active! Perhaps in your usual commute time you can go for a walk (if you are able to). If this is not an option you could do some yoga or a fitness video from YouTube; Joe Wicks is currently being P.E teacher to the nation at 9am Monday – Friday and we have been joining in with our children!

This allows you time to do some exercise and get yourself motivated for the day.

3 – Make sure to take a break

When working from home it is essential that you still take regular breaks and move from your “desk”. Perhaps set an alarm for certain times of the day for a coffee break and lunch. Make sure you are drinking plenty of fluids throughout the day and try to stick to normal routines in terms of the food you eat for lunch. Snacking at home can become a bad habit so if you used to take a packed lunch to work, try to have the same things when at home. Have some healthy snacks near your desk for when temptation hits.

4 – Stay in touch

Although we are social distancing we can all still stay in touch. We use Slack for team messages and for sharing questions, updates and general chat. We also have a Google Hangouts call with everyone on a Wednesday morning so we can run through our week so far and discuss things on a group call.

Staying in touch doesn’t have to be all business either. We have a weekly “game” slot to play a quiz together. Other companies have been doing their own MTV Cribs and virtual pub on a Friday. It’s a great time to get creative with how to have fun on a virtual basis.

5 – Switch off

Sometimes the problem with working from home is that people struggle to switch off once their working day is over.

In a report from Buffer and AngelList on The 2020 State of Remote Work, 18% of people said they couldn’t unplug. It is important to still have the distinction of work and home life. The workstation in point 1 will help here as well as communication. Say goodbye to your work colleagues on work messages when you are logging off like you would in the office. They then know you have finished and your workday has ended.

We hope this will help with working from home. As with all new things, find what works best for you and don’t be afraid to adapt if you need to but just remember to cover the key basics.

Ada ObiOur Top 5 Working from Home Tips for Maximum Productivity
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ADAVIRTUAL Does Sport Relief!

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On your marks, get set…go! Staff at ADAVIRTUAL Business Support has raised £112.00 for Sport Relief!

The money raised will help to take on some of the biggest issues right here in the UK and around the world, from tackling homelessness to championing mental health.

On Tuesday 10th March, the staff from ADAVIRTUAL Business Support joined thousands of fundraisers across the nation in kick-starting their support for Sport Relief.

As a small local company based at Worth Corner Business Centre they were keen to get involved and raise funds. The staff decided to host a lunch break quiz and invite other companies to join them whilst dressed in their best sporty outfits. Cakes and entry to the sweepstake were also on sale to boost the funds raised.

Ada Obi, Managing Director of ADAVIRTUAL, says:

“We are a small business but we are always keen to expand our support for good causes. This is our first time supporting Sport Relief but last year we helped raise money for Children In Need and local charity Chailey Heritage Foundation. The plan is to continue supporting such great causes wherever we can”.

Speaking of their efforts, Sian Curtis-Golds, Business Development Executive said: 

“It’s so exciting to be involved in this year’s Sport Relief campaign and a fantastic opportunity for companies in our building to get-together and raise money for such a brilliant cause. We would like to say a huge thank you to all those who came along! It was great fun and knowing that we’ve made difference is a fantastic feeling.”

This year, Sport Relief is encouraging the nation to get their kit on to tackle issues such as child poverty, homelessness, domestic abuse and mental health stigma. Sport Relief week will culminate in an unmissable night of live TV from Salford on Friday 13th March on BBC One.

Ada ObiADAVIRTUAL Does Sport Relief!
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Why We Are More Than A Virtual Assistant

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When asked what we do as a business, the answer can be hard to give. Not because it is complicated but because we cover a huge range of options and help in so many areas it is difficult to put succinctly.

We call ourselves a business support company rather than a virtual assistant for many reasons. Yes, we work remotely from your business in terms of location (our office is based in Crawley) but not in terms of service.

The business was started because we wanted to help support startups and small businesses to grow by offering support for the daily admin and operations that are essential for a business but were not necessarily money making tasks.

By giving back time we have seen our clients grow and thrive as well as our own team in order to meet the demand. 

We pride ourselves on being a bit different from the norm and so, here are 3 reasons why we are more than a virtual assistant!

We Are a Team!

One the main reasons ADAVIRTUAL are a business support company rather than a VA is the fact that we are a team. As a client you will still have a dedicated assistant to support your business needs and to integrate with the existing team but if one of us has annual leave planned or is unwell, you have other members of the team to assist instead. Thus, giving you unbroken support which means less stress and worry for yourself. The team also has a range of experience and expertise so we can help with a huge variety of tasks.

Virtual Doesn’t Mean Impersonal

We know how hard it can be when running your own business and also how hard it is to relinquish some tasks to someone else. That is why we get to know you and your business so we can integrate ourselves and work to the absolute best for YOU.

We meet many of our clients in person and are the friendly extended arm of your business. Should you need to discuss ideas or processes that will help your business grow then we are here to help!

Every business and their needs are different so we make sure we know what is important for you and support you along the way. Therefore, if your needs change then we can adapt too. Flexibility is key when starting up and we understand this.

Operational Expertise

Although we handle a huge range of tasks including back-office administration, our expertise lies in the operational support for onboarding clients for Service as a Software (SaaS) businesses. The first in-app experience your customer has with your product sets the tone for your relationship, so we’ll work with you to deliver your implementation strategy and ensure that your customer onboarding process is successful. 

Can Your Virtual Assistant Do That?

So, if you are considering outsourcing then just remember that your “virtual assistant” may be able to help you with many more things than you first realised!

Ada ObiWhy We Are More Than A Virtual Assistant
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Things to Consider When Expanding Your Team as a Startup

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Expanding your team as a startup or small business is not an easy job. According to a recent CB Insights study, 23% of startups fail because they do not have the ideal team to run a business. If growth is your business’s objective, it is vital that you choose the right people for it. A startup should be aware of the critical areas of their business. For a startup’s growth, the strategy, finance, human resource, product/brand design and development, research and development, and operations are essential.

Build a strong team

Growth is possible only if you have a good team to back you up. Hiring people that can help bring creativity and ideas to the table is always a good idea. Hiring people who also get the job done and are willing to be flexible in their role is essential for the early stages of growth of your business.

If you are considering fast paced growth within the business and team then it is worth considering hiring someone senior with experience to help like a Finance or Operations Director. They can help then support you with business decisions and plans.

Retention is then also key. It is all well and good expanding your team and getting the best people but useless if you then can’t keep hold of them. Help build a company culture from the early days. Show that you care and offer perks. These don’t necessarily have to be monetary; it could be flexibility with working hours or location for example.

Focus on your business functions

When expanding your team, your strategists should always determine whether that particular time is ideal for you to grow.  Performing a SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) will allow you to understand your ideas better. Moreover, financing is integral to the growth of your business. Since your business is relatively small in size, you might need loans. On top of that, finance is important for forecasting and budgeting purposes too. When hiring people, you need to make sure that they possess sufficient knowledge regarding business.

Most people tend to ignore the area of research and development when expanding their startups. Your startups and small business will only grow if you work on your ideas well.

Think of your future roles

Expanding your business might be a good idea, but you need to see whether it is even in line with your business objective. There is no point in growth if your strategy fails to help you reach your ultimate goal. For this purpose, you need to know what your organisation chart must look like in the future. Thinking long-term is, therefore, the key. Always check whether your decisions blend well with the structure of the organisation as well as the relative ranks of its departments.

Is it best to hire or outsource?

You need to consider whether hiring employees of your own would benefit your business’s growth or outsourcing would be a better idea.

If you are finding you have too much work but not sure if you are in a position to hire then companies such as ADAVIRTUAL Business Support could be an option. By offering hourly rates as well as monthly retainer packages businesses can utilise the expertise and time of the team with the flexibility of increasing or decreasing the workload as business needs demand.

In most cases, small businesses or startups prefer to outsource during growth because they tend to avoid issues like sick pays, workplace pensions, holidays, etc.

However, it is for you to choose what option is the least costly for your business.

Ada ObiThings to Consider When Expanding Your Team as a Startup
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The 80/20 Percent Rule and Why You Need to Know It

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You might have heard of the 80/20 percent rule in your lives. But what is it? Even though it sounds like a statistical term that is boring, the 80/20 percent rule is essential for everyone, especially every entrepreneur. The good news is that you don’t have to understand its statistical implications to be a follower. In this article, we will tell you about the 80/20 percent rule and how using it can change your lives! So read this article and grasp the most that you can to increase your key clients and your sales. 


What is the 80/20 percent rule?

The 80/20 percent rule is also known as the Pareto principle. According to the Pareto principle, 80 percent of your outcome is from 20 percent of your inputs. It doesn’t make a difference what numbers you pick. There are few activities you perform (20 percent) that result in the majority (80 percent) of your satisfaction and outputs. You might have expected the numbers to be the other way round (20 percent of your activities produce 80 percent of rewards) which, too, is true because there are many activities you perform that generate your income.


Why is it key to know for my business?

If you’re an entrepreneur seeking to increase your sales and key clients, you must know the Pareto principle. According to the Pareto principle, 80% of sales come from 20% of clients. When operating a business, keep in mind to focus on key clients who make up the most of your income. You should regard them as valuable customers since they contribute to your incomes majorly.  Therefore, your business should organise sales in a way where your key clients are attracted to your products and services more. 

The Pareto principle also applies to your employees.  You should work hard on workers who work hard for your business and remove the worst ones. Similarly, forget the bad clients and narrow down your focus to key clients. Make sure that they are happy, and your business will thrive! 

Apply the 80/20 percent rule to your personal lives

Even though the Pareto principle is helpful for many businesses, you shouldn’t restrict its use there. Every individual seeking a healthy lifestyle should adopt this strategy. In life, one should focus on tasks that generate the best results. Before doing anything else, you must decide what your passion is. Once you’ve selected your passion, your path to long-term success will be easy and fun. However, remember to focus on getting the maximum satisfaction from it regularly rather than claiming that you’re still working on it. That is what the Pareto principle talks about! Remember, your satisfaction matters a lot more than your profession. Analyse your lives, and you’ll see how the 80/20 percent rule can help you. Identify your main happiness determinants and manage those to make your daily activities happen in a flow. You won’t waste time on 80 percent of activities that don’t satisfy you. 

Ada ObiThe 80/20 Percent Rule and Why You Need to Know It
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Children In Need: Pudsey’s Big Quiz

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ADAVIRTUAL Business Support Team raise over £50.00 for Children In Need 2019!

Employees at ADAVIRTUAL Business Support have successfully raised over £50.00 for BBC Children in Need after completing their Pudsey’s Big Quiz and cake sale to support the 2019 Appeal.  The money raised will go on to help transform the lives of disadvantaged children and young people across the UK. 

This year BBC Children in Need have asked the nation to Get Together and fundraise to help make a positive impact on the lives of disadvantaged children and young people across the UK. From rambles to three-legged races, knit-a-thons to quizzes and once in a lifetime challenges to bake sales, thousands of people across the UK have Got Together to raise money for BBC Children in Need.

As a small business they were not sure how best to fundraise for the good cause but once they saw the Big Quiz online they were keen to host. The company is based at Worth Corner Business Centre and so ADAVIRTUAL invited other companies and offices to join them in the main meeting room on Tuesday 12th November 2019 over the lunch period.

Ada Obi, Managing Director of ADAVIRTUAL, says: “We are a small business that provides remote administration, operations and general virtual support for fast growing small businesses and start-ups who need to effectively manage their time, costs & business operations in order to evolve, scale & succeed. We decided that we also wanted to expand this support to charities and worthy causes.  This is the first time we have supported Children In Need but we held a cake sale for Chailey Heritage Foundation earlier in the year and are keen to continue supporting such great causes”.

Speaking of their efforts, Sian Curtis-Golds, Business Development Executive said: “We would like to say a huge thank you to all those who came along! It was great fun supporting BBC Children in Need and to know that we’ve raised over £50.00 when we are only a small business is a fantastic feeling.”

BBC Children in Need works throughout the year to ensure that every child in the UK has a safe, happy and secure childhood, and the chance to reach their full potential. It relies on the energy and commitment of thousands of fundraisers and supporters across the UK, who donate their time and money to put on events in support of the Appeal.  

Ada ObiChildren In Need: Pudsey’s Big Quiz
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Top Tips On Operational Processes for your SaaS Business

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ADAVIRTUAL Business Support work with many different clients and aim to give them back their time so they can focus on the key elements of the business to help it succeed and grow.

If you’re just starting up a business in the SaaS (Software as a Service) industry, then you probably have a list of administrative, sales, and operational tasks that need to be completed. We recently wrote a new blog post for Women On Business called: Top Tips On Operational Processes for your SaaS Business, which lists our top tips on the best programs and processes that work for the operational side of the business that you may find useful.

Ada ObiTop Tips On Operational Processes for your SaaS Business
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Tips on Conducting a Job Interview

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Conducting a job interview can be a tricky process for a business, especially when you want to expand. Hiring the right people is a must for your business’s success.

Remember that your candidates are assessing your office’s professional environment as much as you’re deciding whether hiring them is an option or not. Potential candidates, therefore, will also determine whether working for you is the best option for them or not during an interview. In this article, we will provide you with a few practical tips regarding conducting a job interview so that your interview processes run as smoothly as they possibly can!

Preparation

If you think getting a date in the diary for the interview and a piece of paper with 2 or 3 questions will get you through the hiring process, you’re wrong. Organise yourself before getting started. You should have a list of key questions for your candidates, which you can also expand more during the interview process. What does your ideal candidate look like? Not just in terms of qualifications but also as a fit for your business and the existing team. Moreover, make sure you have all the CV’s and cover letters with you to refer back to.

Interview Location

It is imperative to have a professional environment when conducting interviews. Make sure you carry it out in a quiet place that is free of distractions. This will also help you in the decision making process as your head will be clear, and you’ll be more focused.

Overview

When conducting interviews, most candidates do not know exactly what the business expects from them. So, ensure that you provide the candidates with an overview of your business, the team, their role in the company, and what an ideal candidate looks like to you. The candidates will then become clear about the interview process and what will be expected from them should they be successful in getting the role.

Designing questions

You need to think carefully about the questions you ask. Asking questions that will give you one-word answers will not get you anywhere. Even hiring your ideal candidates out of such interviews may not get you the best candidates. The key is to ask open-ended questions. It will make candidates talk more about themselves and enable you to explore their personality in more detail. At the same time, you will understand their thought process and know where they stand in terms of their capability. Also remember that interviews are not just about you asking the candidates questions. Allow the candidates to pose their own questions to you too. At the same time, make sure you fully address all the queries they have, either during the interview or at a specified later date if it needs exploring further.

Follow up

Candidates perceive your business as professional if you inform them about the upcoming steps (for instance, a second interview) as well as when you will be making hiring decisions. Therefore, make sure that you have assigned proper dates for decisions to be made. If you continue to lag and keep your candidates uninformed, they become less interested in joining you and an ideal candidate may slip through your fingers.

Conclusion

Prepare yourself! Book a quiet room away from distractions for the interview. Prepare open-ended questions that bring out your candidates personality as well as discusses their skills for the role. Then, make sure you act timely! Your ideal candidate may be someone else’s too and if you delay too long they may find an opportunity elsewhere.

 

Ada ObiTips on Conducting a Job Interview
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The Importance of Testimonials

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Testimonials are statements that are issued by customers or clients that you have had contact with. They can include the type of experience they had with your business and can be used to improve the credibility and trustworthiness of your business. Testimonials are basically a proof of the promises you make to your perspective clients.

In the business world, word of mouth is the strongest tool. One bad review from client or a customer can completely shatter the entire years-long built up reputation of a business. Whether you’re a start-up or a fully established business operating for years; word of mouth is what your success depends on. Therefore, it is important for business owners and managers to pay special attention to the generation and use of testimonials. If used effectively, they can be one do the most powerful tools that you can use to strengthen your business’s brand image.

Testimonials and Marketing

Testimonials and product reviews may not seem like an important marketing tool to many people, but once they are out to the use that they were invented for, they can work miracles. A good product review can help build credibility and trust in the minds of your potential customer base. The customer journey comprises of many steps before the final purchase is made and whether a customer makes it through the whole journey or not depends on the level of trust they have on the business. Customers that have experienced your product or service and have been satisfied can help with the building of that trust through testimonials. When potential buyers go through the product reviews and know that other people like them have been satisfied by doing business with your company, they are more likely to then go ahead with the purchase.

On the other hand, testimonials are also used by most businesses to connect with their audience on an emotional level. Research has shown that while making buying decisions, customers are more likely to be driven by emotion than by reason. Companies use this tool to be in a better position to persuade potential customers to buy their product through the use of happiness, laughter, excitement, or sadness.

Stories

Similarly, when we talk about connecting with the potential customer, there is another way that businesses use testimonials effectively. The buyers that have done business with a company have particular stories; about how they came to know about the product, how they bought it, how they started using it, etc. These stories are what the testimonials are built upon and these are what make them even more relatable for your potential customers. Narrative stories are, in fact, one of the most influential factors that affect the human mind and the use of them in testimonials is what makes them so effective.

Conclusion

The use of testimonials and/or product reviews is highly efficient tool in the marketing process which, if used properly, can help a business garner great success. Make sure to make the review posting process for your customers as easy and convenient and possible and you will be surprised at how easily your branding efforts can reap rewards.

Ada ObiThe Importance of Testimonials
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Fundraising Event Hosted By ADAVIRTUAL raises £92.00

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ADAVIRTUAL Business Support, a small business based in Pound Hill Crawley, held a fundraising event on Tuesday 13th August 2019 to help raise funds for Chailey Heritage Foundation. Chailey’s mission is to give disabled children and young people every opportunity to pursue their fullest potential.

 

The event was an indoor Big Chailey Picnic where ADAVIRTUAL Business Support invited other businesses within Worth Corner Business Centre to visit the main meeting room during lunchtime for some sweet treats and fun games. With help from supporters, ADAVIRTUAL Business Support raised £92.00. This was achieved through selling cakes, sweet treats and games such as “Guess How Many Sweets in a Jar”.

 

Ada Obi, Managing Director of ADAVIRTUAL, says:

“We are a small business that provides remote administration, operations and general virtual support for fast growing small businesses and start-ups who need to effectively manage their time, costs & business operations in order to evolve, scale & succeed. We decided that we also wanted to expand this support to charities and worthy causes. We met a member of the Chailey fundraising team during a networking event and thought the work they did was fantastic. We looked at the fundraising suggestions and saw the opportunity to host a Big Chailey Picnic. We have also pledged money to their Big Christmas Give and are keen to support them in other ways in the future”.

 

About Chailey Heritage Foundation

Based in Sussex, Chailey Heritage Foundation have a national reputation for their work around communication and developing independence through powered mobility. Every year they support hundreds of children, young people and their families, by providing a range of world-class services, especially catering for those with a neurological motor impairment, such as cerebral palsy.

 

Should you wish to find out more information on Chailey Heritage Foundation and discover ways you can also help with fundraising, then please look at their website:

Chailey Heritage Foundation

 

 

Ada ObiFundraising Event Hosted By ADAVIRTUAL raises £92.00
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