Name of Business: Get Ahead VA
Your Name and Age: Rebecca Newenham, 45
Tell us about your family: I live with my husband Martin in Guildford and our three daughters who are 16, 13 and 11.
What did you do before coming up with your business idea and how was it making the transition?
I was a buyer in London for retail giants Superdrug and Sainsburys. I loved the fast pace of the job and the thrill of seeing new products I had developed hit the shelves. But for me, the job and the commute wasn’t compatible with being there for my children. When my youngest daughter started school I knew it was time to do something for me.
When did you launch? 2010
How did you get started?
I researched various options and after coming across the term virtual assistant I knew it was the right choice for me. I attended a one day course which covered all the basics and Get Ahead VA was launched. I knew the business could offer the flexible working solution I was looking for and that I could employ other mothers so they could benefit as well.
What has been your biggest challenge so far? How have you dealt with it?
Running your own business isn’t easy and there have been many challenges along the way. Knowing what to invest in and when has been key. Having a supportive network of both personal and professional contacts that you can trust really helps. I also work with a business coach which I can highly recommend. She helps me work through challenges and concentrate on the bigger picture.
How do you fit in work with the family?
I have always tried to maintain a sense of separation between work and family life, which isn’t easy when you work from home. However, I work from a separate home office and ensure I shut the door and don’t look at my emails once the family are home. Exercise is also key for me. It gives me the headspace to maintain perspective and the balance of business and family. I am lucky to work with a fantastic team of virtual assistants so I always delegate to them and ensure I have time off over the holidays to spend with my girls. They are, after all, the reason I started the business all those years ago.
What advice would you give to someone else wanting to work in this area?
Don’t be afraid to follow your dreams. Do your research up front and then just get on with it. If things don’t turn out quite as you thought first time don’t panic – just think about how you could do it differently. Keep evolving until you get it right.
If you have a flexible working business opportunity, please explain briefly what you offer and how to
find out more:
Get Ahead VA has franchise opportunities available across the UK. Starting a business can be lonely and expensive, but as a Get Ahead franchisee, you’re part of something bigger. You have the support and security of being part of an established award-winning and profitable brand, the tools to hit the ground running and the opportunity to build a business that works for you. Please contact Rebecca for a copy of our franchise prospectus to find out more.
Your website link. www.getaheadva.com