There was a time when people would never consider partnering with their ‘competition’; that was just crazy-speak! With the ability of the internet to interconnect people and create so many opportunities, some people now refer to people who do similar business to you as ‘co-opetition’.
Funny, I never saw the others in my profession as competition. I just thought of the other ezine owners, for example, as my peers. When I started my office services business both off and on the net, I was always sending referrals to other providers who did things I did not do and they sent me clients and customers, as well.
Cooperating with other virtual assistants to help build your business is smart marketing. The truth is, not every client is going to want to work with you, and you are not going to want to work with every client. There could be many reasons for this, including a mismatch of skills to needs, a disconnect in working habits or maybe a difference of opinion in how things should be done. No matter the reason, you simply can’t work with everyone.
What you can do is work with a team of virtual assistants of varying skills that as a collaborative have more power than any one individual. Your weaknesses and strengths combined will be stronger than one VA on her own.
Not to mention how much you will learn by working with other virtual assistants, especially if you are new to the field.
I, myself, am a happy team member of Sophie Zollmann’s – SophieZo Virtually There For You.
We have worked well together for years. I also fill in for occasional specialty tasks for a couple of other VA’s and have two buddy VA’s help me from time to time.
Here are a few ways to work with and benefit from relationships with virtual assistants:
Some virtual assistants work solo, others work as a large team.
A multi-VA team usually starts as a single VA who then decides to expand. She gets too busy to handle all the work on her own (or simply doesn’t want to) and decides to hire on other virtual assistants to help grow her business. This is where you come in. You are called a sub-contracting VA. Generally, when you do sub-contracting as a virtual assistant, you work with the client but you get paid by the multi-VA company who hired you.
Another way to work with virtual assistants is to set up a group where you have a number of complimentary services. This is different from the sub-contracting model because you all work independently and refer off to others when it’s not your skill-set.
No matter how you do it, working with other virtual assistants to build your businesses side by side can be a profitable venture. Always be open to the opportunities around you and you’ll start seeing more of them available than you can ever have time for. Then show those clients how well you can get the job done while continuing to build your thriving virtual assistant practice.
All the best in your efforts to build a long-term, sustainable business!
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