Do You Think Like The CEO Of Your Life?
I’m currently reading an amazing book, The CEO Next Door by Elena L. Botelho and Kim R. Powell. It got me thinking. If great CEOs can be the man or women next door to us then I am the CEO next door to someone too.
No matter what you do or who you are, you are the CEO of your life. Even if you’re married or have a partner you are still the CEO. That’s because real leaders don’t bark down orders but instead are great listeners and gather all the necessary information to make good decisions. The decisions made are for the betterment of their company. They are able to get others on board, striving to achieve the same goal and mission. A great CEO has a group of excited followers.
Now, I really am the CEO of my business and before I was ever a business owner I was the CEO of my household. I didn’t necessarily see it that way. That didn’t make it any less true. One of the things that has really hit home for me in the book so far is that great CEOs are adaptable. As a former executive assistant turned virtual assistant I’ve certainly adapted to the changing times. However, when I was making the transition it wasn’t based on adaptability. Or at least I didn’t think so.
When I made the switch from an in-office executive assistant to remote working executive assistant I was doing what was best for my family. I would never have called it adapting to the situation. Yet without going remote, my family was at risk of falling apart, much like a company in crisis. The conscious adaptability came after I made the switch.
I was used to assisting. That wasn’t the issue. My new problem was how to perform at the same level and have my presence felt in an office where I was the only remote employee. I adapted successfully. So much so I decided to go out on my own and start my own company. Yet another problem arose. I had to adapt to a new business owner mindset instead of an employee mindset. I’ve been adapting on what seems like a daily basis ever since.
If you asked me how I’m still in business with each year being more successful than the last I would say it’s due to constantly adapting. What is the biggest challenge I’m facing regarding adapting now? The biggest challenge is to help others see the need to adapt.
For current virtual assistants, the hardest audience is those that have been doing it the longest. For years, there wasn’t much competition which meant they didn’t have to consistently and quickly level up their game before they needed to. The use of technology alone is also no longer on their side as the world is adapting very quickly and the average client is pretty tech savvy these days.
Many executive assistants are of the mindset that their positions will never change. Even though statistically our profession is not growing, in fact, it’s predicted to continue to decline by 5 percent through 2026. Some will say that title changes are the reason it appears the field is declining and state that the office could never run without an assistant. This could be true. However, if 50 percent of the workforce is predicted to be remote by 2020 (which is just around the corner!) how many offices will be left?
I don’t see a world without assistants. I do see a world where assisting won’t be done by executive assistants as it is now. Home movie night hasn’t gone away. How we have home movie night has changed drastically. See any video rental stores lately?
The real key is adapt before you need to. If you are a VA and don’t work with speakers or those who conduct online courses you are way behind. If you are an EA and don’t have a side gig as a VA you are also way behind.
In my case, it was easy because the problem wasn’t my job or income. I saw my family in the future and knew if I didn’t make a change now that reversing the past was impossible. With it came the fortunate blessing of redefining my career for the future of work – remote.
As you think about your life and being the CEO of it, what brands have been staples to you? What are your favorite household names? Now try to think of what you used to have or use that has since become obsolete. Can you even remember? Times are changing that quickly and major corporations that used to have a lifespan of 61 years now have a lifespan of 18! This means if you think working for a big company is a safe bet or because you’ve already been a virtual assistant for many years you don’t have to adapt you’re wrong.
There are many things it takes to be a CEO of your life and your business. However, if you think what you have now will serve you in the future you are mistaken. It’s a mistake that could cost you your livelihood. How can you look into your future and adapt now?
For me, it’s expanding my practice, automating my processes even further, offering more services, and not only serving the virtual assistant community but the remote working community as well. I’m learning another language and testing new things out now so they can be refined by the time clients realize they are needed. Most importantly, I’m getting rid of things that used to serve me very well. Those services may have brought me to where I am but they can’t take me to where I’m going.
Being the CEO of your life might not come with the same fame and fortune of companies you read about. It doesn’t make your life and/or business any less important. How will you adapt now not to just survive but thrive in the future?
Melissa is the bestselling author of Hire the Right Virtual Assistant and Become A Successful Virtual Assistant. To learn more about becoming a successful VA or be matched with a client looking for a VA just like you, contact Melissa here.
She has gained international recognition and has been featured in CareerBuilder, The Muse, Spark Hire, Thinkific & Woman’s World.