Being behind a computer screen can connect you to the world, but it also can be isolating if you do not continue to create new connections. One thing that can get a bit harder as a virtual assistant is networking opportunities. You are not meeting people daily and not able to really speak with others about your capabilities and how you can help their company attain its goal as a virtual assistant.
While it may be harder, virtual assistant networking is not impossible and here are some options on how to network digitally:
Online forums allow for you to involve yourself in conversations with other virtual assistants around the globe. You can share stories, offer and ask for advice, or simply create lasting virtual friendships with those who work in the same field as yourself.
Forums are a great place to get answers to most of your virtual assisting questions as well because more likely than not, someone has already asked the question you have asked–which can be reassuring that someone else struggled with a similar situation so you feel less alone.
A good start is virtualassistantforums.com which is a very robust and engaging community of virtual assistants to answer questions and potentially find work.
Social media have paved the way for people of similar backgrounds to connect and discuss their questions and concerns online. Facebook is a great place for a more casual conversation with other virtual assistants. You can find groups–both public and private–that can allow you to reach out to other virtual assistants for help or even networking opportunities. Some platforms even allow businesses to post open virtual assistant positions for members to see.
Meadows VA School offers their own Facebook group to those who have been a part of Meadows VA School to connect and discuss opportunities and give continued support to their community of virtual assistants.
An alternative and more professional place to network for virtual assistants is definitely Linkedin. While Facebook can connect people to other people, Linkedin connects virtual assistants to others in the professional sphere that can help them attain work and connections.
Linkedin’s sole purpose is a professional platform, so social networking is not a factor. Virtual assistants can add professional connections to their page, create posts about their virtual assistant work and find groups that encompass virtual assisting a whole or even find more localized groups which can then lead to in-person meetings and networking.
Meadows Resources has a professional LinkedIn Group for all members to join.
In-Person Meetings & Networking Events
Although some opt for virtual assisting because they do not need to meet face to face with individuals, sometimes it is still a good idea when the opportunity presents itself. Larger cities sometimes offer meet-ups for virtual assistants to meet and speak about their own work.
Sometimes, in conversation, you can find that someone may have an opportunity you may align with or you may be able to offer another virtual assistant a connection to a client you know.
You don’t have to feel so alone as a virtual assistant as long as you make the effort to put yourself out there, whether it be online or in-person. You may find new opportunities just by putting yourself out there.