Hello, it’s great to meet you! I’m Laura Taylor Founder of EA2VA and Collaborative.
I am an experienced, highly efficient, creative and well organised Virtual Assistant. I offer clients an executive service on a virtual basis. I work in three core areas, which are Business, Events and Lifestyle, with my niche being in Events and Employee engagement.
One of my greatest strengths is being approachable, whilst also being mindful, passionate about people and with an intuitive sense of what needs to be achieved to get the best results for any business.
I believe that people buy from people and that my gift is knowing how to interact with any potential clients in a positive and collaborative way from the offset.
By staying authentic and always being ‘me’ EA2VA will always have a unique USP, and this helps me to drive my business performance and forge long lasting client relationships, always with a smile!
What or who inspired you to become a Virtual Assistant?
One day attending an early breakfast networking event with my friend, I had a chance meeting with Jo Squibb who was already a Virtual Assistant.
Jo was lovely and we chatted as she shared her experiences, and, during that conversation, Jo said she had recently taken a course with a lady called Amanda Johnson, who was apparently a brilliant VA trainer.
From that moment, I thought this must be fate. I found VACT, Amanda’s company. Reached out to Amanda and swiftly looked to getting a place booked on the VA Mastery course to utilise the 22 years of experience and transferable skills I already had in being a PA/EA.
My company at the time very generously paid for my course as a good will gesture and in the August of 2020 after being made redundant, I said goodbye to a corporate office life and hello to being my own boss and launching EA2VA.
How did you go about establishing your business?
I deliberated over a name then bought my domain name and spoke to a friend of mine who owned a graphic design business. I then planned for all the associated costs i.e., the website, hosting, insurances and worked out a plan and the timelines to be able to launch on 1st September 2020.
Set up my social media channels – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and updated my LinkedIn when was appropriate to do so.
Whilst working through the VA Mastery course I decided that the sensible option would be to find a part time remote working opportunity whilst I built up my VA business, so I suddenly didn’t find myself struggling for income.
A fantastic opportunity came long working remotely as the EA to the CEO of a charity and I was lucky enough to be given the role.
Did you have any savings or financial support in order to start your business?
I used part of my redundancy package which I earmarked for helping me with getting the basics in place to enable me to get up and running. I was very fortunate to be able to purchase a laptop, 2 screens, a mouse, keyboard, docking station and webcam from my old company for a very discounted rate!
Was there ever a point when you thought it wouldn’t work out?
I had a wobble a couple of times, but it was just a natural reaction bound to happen after having the security of full time employed roles for so many years, going it alone was a big deal and sometimes it felt scary!
What support did you have around you to set up your VA business (family and friends, Coach or Mentor)?
I was extremely lucky to have such a wonderful support network. My husband, old bosses and work colleagues, close friends, and the constant support of Amanda and the VA Mastery Group.
If you could go back and change one thing that you did when starting out, what would that be?
Having my website created in WordPress not Wix!
What is your best advice for someone who is just starting out or someone who is considering becoming a Virtual Assistant?
Believe in yourself, find a business mentor or coach, have a discovery call with Amanda Johnson, VACT. Don’t ever give up!
How would you describe the good, the bad and ugly of being a Virtual Assistant?
The Good – freedom to choose!
The Bad – the rollercoaster of income!
The Ugly- when your values don’t align with the clients!
What is the best business book you’ve read and how did it impact you and your business?
The 20% Rule by Catherine Gladwyn. This book made me re-evaluate my client base, working pattern and realise that no one client should take up more than 20% of your time or income.
How do you stay on top of your own professional development?
I love to learn and think it’s so important. I am currently revisiting the VA Copy College course, working through a Diploma in Events Management, and will be training to become a Mental Health First Aider with Dorset Mind in May this year.
What do you love to do when you’re not working?
A dog walk along Sandbank’s beach with a chai latte in hand, lunch or dinner out with a bottle of Provence or a holidaying somewhere hot, relaxing with a mojito, oh and my husband of course!
Tell us one thing you can tell us about you that not many people know?
I used to take part in competitive disco dancing when I was younger and was judged once by Chris Tarrant!
What does the future hold for your business?
A website move over to WordPress (!) and refresh, the launch of new EA2VA packages, continued work on the strategy for Collaborative which is a mindful networking event that I launched in December 2021 and applying for the award of Southwest VA of the Year when the time comes!
Website URL: https://www.ea2va.co.uk/
Facebook URL: https://www.facebook.com/ea2va2020/
Twitter ID: https://twitter.com.ea2_va
LinkedIn URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/laura-taylor-ea2va/