Nita Shah, president of Virtual EA, Inc., spoke to members of WashingtonExec’s executive assistant committee on June 7 at the Attain offices.
Shah, who has more than 20 years’ experience in administration, as well as project and event planning, highlighted the benefits of becoming a virtual EA. Those include a flexible schedule and the ability to work in various locations, diversity of those supported, self-sufficiency and the ability to retire with funds.
Virtual EAs, said Shah, are in demand in a variety of fields, including accounting, advertising, finance, marketing, networking, operations and others.
To become a virtual assistant, candidates should have excellent communication skills and be dependable, resilient, flexible, confident, resourceful, organized, understanding, trustworthy, professional, proactive, accessible, approachable and be a self-motivated problem-solver.
Possible challenges to being a virtual assistant include lack of benefits, being available 24/7, working alone, and having to constantly market oneself, said Shah. Shah recommends starting as a virtual assistant while still working a full-time job as a way to reduce any financial risk.
“The EA Committee is the only group in the D.C. metro area that focuses on professional development for executive assistants in government and government contracting,” said Chairwoman Kristin Cuadros. “We currently have more than 60 members and are continually growing.”
Catering for the event was provided by Cafesano.