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Call Center Agent Noon, Virtual Assistant Ngayon

March 24, 2021
by Jason Dulay 
Jason is the founder and CEO of Work from Home Roadmap and VA Bootcamp. Aside from teaching Filipinos how to succeed working from home, he likes traveling, playing board games, and drinking coffee.
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Each of us has different reasons for doing what we're doing.

But I'm sure our family will always be part of it.

Agree?

Just like our JasSuccess guest who went from being a call center agent to a virtual assistant because...

"My sincere desire to help my family."

She's new to freelancing, 4 months to be exact.

But she's committed to make this work.

And she's generous enough to share her journey and her secret to getting clients.

If you're still looking for your first client or you feel lost on what to do next...

Watch this replay.

Let us find out Grace’s reasons why she resigned from being a call center agent and eventually found satisfaction in freelancing. How she faced and overcame challenges despite her daughter’s situation and in the midst of the pandemic.

NOTABLE QUOTES: 

  • "Tapos nung nakita ko po ung free course, itong yung kailangan ko kasi step by step talaga po siya detailed po talaga siya." 
  • May mga challenges din po hindi mawawala po yun, nasa atin na lang po kung paano natin haharapin yung challenges. 
  • Kailangan laban lang, yun naman po ang challenge ko as a VA, as a freelancer.
  • Parang akala ng ibang tao same ng corporate job na kapag regular kana derederetso kana parang ganun po. Dito po pala sa freelancing na may project based, may one time work lang po hindi po naiintindihan ng ibang tao. 
  • Hesitation ko po noon kasi paano kung hindi ko magawa, paano kung hindi ko nameet yung expectation ni client? May mga client pala na willing silang itrain ka, turuan ka, nandiyan yung mga video tutorials, kaya doon ko napagisip-isip malayong malayo po siya sa corporate job.
  • Unang una po sa time freedom. Puyat ka, gigising ka para lang bumiyahe to work ganun po. Hindi tulad po ngayon na ngtatrabaho ka, nglalaro yung mga anak mo ang saya saya ko. 
  • Tapos yung hawak mo yung oras mo parang anytime pwede kang mgwork as long as matatapos mo yung deadline yun po yung importante. 
  • Tapos pangalawa, sa freelancing na iba ang approach mo sa isang client sa isa pang client parang yun po yung nagustuhan ko. Marami po akong natututunan hindi tulad sa corporate na nakabox ka lang.
  • Unlike dito po sa freelancing na pag may binato si client, bahala kang mghanap ng resources mo. Yun pala matututunan mo, yun pala si error 16. Andiyan po si youtube, nandiyan si google tapos ang dami daming platforms rin po. 
  • Sa freelancing naman po natutulungan mo po sila kung paano lumago yung business po nila. Kumbaga ikaw yung right hand.
  • The biggest advice una po, Pray, magpray po. Ask for God's leading. Ililead ka sa right person, right resources, tsaka right time. 
  • Pangalawa, syempre kapg magpipray, mag take action po. Hindi po pwedeng pray ka lang ng pray pero wla ka ring ginawa. Kailangan kapag gusto mo gagawin, dapat determinado ka. Determinado at Consistent. 
  • Ang freelancing po hindi po madali, may ups and downs. Meron paikot ikot, pero ienjoy lang po natin ang ride, iaccept po natin yung darating. Yung mga failures, mga success, yun po ang bubuo doon po sa pagkatatao mo po. 

GRACE ARGARIN’S JOURNEY TO FREELANCING

  • She was a mother of two children, 7 years old and 2 years old.
  • She worked in the call center for 10 years. Handling financial accounts for 8 years and 2 years as a hotel reservation specialist.
  • When she gave birth to her youngest, she needs to resign because the baby has complications that need to focus on treatment and frequent check-ups. Aside from that, her eldest was also growing up so she needs to watch him over.
  • Even though she was happy with her corporate job, with a heavy heart she resigned.
  • Last year, during the pandemic, she wanted to work to help and support her family. While staying at home, she wanted to find work online until she came across the FB ads of the VA Bootcamp.
  • She first did research on what working online is all about and what is being done. She watches FCC and JSU episodes posted on the VA Bootcamp page so she can get ideas out from there.
  • When she saw the free courses offered by VAB, she realized that was all she wanted. She asked her husband’s approval to enroll and her husband supports her 100%. She finally enrolled last September 2020.
  • Learned the modules in her free time, or when her children get a nap in the afternoon and during at night.
  • When she saw the Guided Hustle Challenge post, she wanted to join but she is not yet finished learning the modules. Eventually, before the deadline ends, she was able to submit the form and be part of the November GHC batch.
  • She felt the support and encouragement of co-hustlers and coaches.
  • During the GHC, she noticed the unpaid internship post of coach Honey. She was hesitant to submit her cover letter first because she is not confident and felt that she can’t able to do the task. But she realized, when you are determined to achieve something, you will always find ways to make it happen.
  • Her freelancing journey started when she became a virtual assistant of coach Honey’s agency as an intern. There were a lot of challenges she encountered in the internship but she learned a lot from it. As of the moment, she is still a virtual assistant handling different clients. For her, helping her clients in their business makes her happy. 
  • According to her, coach Honey is strict when it comes to working but there is always a soft side of her. She considered Ms. Honey a blessing to her. 

Q&A Highlights

Wala bang signs o pangitain na parang nanghihina ang sales, wala ka bang nararamdaman?

Wala po kasi inenjoy ko po. Pero nung nakipagbalikan na si client ay happy uli.

Nadepressed ka nang sinabi ni client na pause muna? Ilang araw ka nglaylo before na bumalik ka?

Opo, sobra po. Mga 5 or 20  ganun po katagal. Ngfocus talaga ako sa mga anak ko.

Was there ever imposition na meron bang ngyayari sa iyo na hindi ka masaya sa freelancing? bukod don sa ngcall off kayo ni client. Meron bang times na hindi ka masaya?

Wala pa naman po.

Did you ever feel lonely here in freelancing? 

Hindi po, kasi kahit virtual lang, kachat mo sila anytime, kahit 1 am,12 am or anytime kahit anong oras po, nandyan lang po sila.

Ano ba ang dahilan mo bakit ka naintimidate galing ka nman na sa va bootcamp?

Ang hesitation ko po noon kasi, paano hindi ko magawa? Paano kung hindi ko nameet yong expectation nung client?Sa freelancing pla parang tuturuan ka nila. May mga client na willing silang itrain at iguide ka. Meron po talagang mga client na napakabait at generous na tulungan ka.

Gaano ka strikto si coach Honey?Do you recommend people to go under internship from Ms. Honey Eduque?

Strikto pero mabait po. Tough po siya pag magaan ang trabaho. Kapag sa lowest point po doon naman siya gentle. I-momotivate, i-iencourage, i-pupush ka po niya. Yun naman po ang kagandahan kay Ms. Honey.

Yung mga words of wisdom niya po hindi mapapantayan. Hindi lamang sa freelancing journey kundi sa life. Napakalawak po ng wisdom niya.

How was your guided hustle challenge experience? Wla ka bang nakuhang client during that time?

Nung time na po nun, nag-internship na po ako kay Ms. Honey. Siya na po ang bumato ng mga clients. Kaya sigurado po ako na isa ako sa mga nabless po talaga ni Lord at kay Ms. Honey.

Ilang oras ang sinakripisyo mo para sa pagaaral para matapos itong kurso mo?

Alam ko po pag nap time na ng mga anak ko, hapon po 2 hours yan po magaaral po ako. Sa gabi po mgaaral po ako mga 3 hours, 4 hours, depende po kung gaano ko naiintidihan yung course. 

Were you ever confident na susuportahan ka talaga nga asawa mo noong  by the time na sinabi mong gusto mo talagang magenroll sa amin sa VAB?

Opo, kasi ever since naman po parang kami yong dalawa ngsusuport sa isa't isa.

Were there any discouraging moments when you were studying wala ka bang naiisip ay ang hirap pala nito, ayoko ko na or ay alam ko eto mga ito bakit ako nagbayad? Wla ka bang niaisip na mga ganun?

Wla po kasi karamihan po hindi ko alam. Parang alam ko lang po yung data entry, pero yung mga schedule management hindi ko alam kaya wala po.

What is the difference between your job before as a call center agent and right now? What are those differences that you notice?

Unang una po sa TIME FREEDOM. Yung hawak mo yung oras mo, anytime pwede kang mgwork as long as matatapos mo yung deadline, yun po ung importante.

Unlike po sa freelancing, iba ang approach mo sa isang client sa isa pang client. So yun po yung nagugustuhan ko marami po akong natututunan hindi tulad sa corporate na parang nkabox ka na lang po.

Naalala ko nasabi mo rin kanina na nung nagaaral ka sa vab marami kang natututunan it means to say na konti lang ang skills na natuututunan mo sa pagiging call center agent? Is that correct?

Thankful naman po ako sa pagiging call center agent ko po. Yun lang po parang limited yung options mo. Unlike dito sa freelancing po, pag may binato si client bahala ka mghanap ng resources mo. Andiyan po si youtube, andiyan si google, parang andaming platforms po yun po ang pinagkaiba. 

What is the difference between helping your customer versus helping your client?

Sa corporate po sa call center kasi tinutulungan mo po sila kung ano po ang problema po nila sa product , sa service. Sa freelancing nman po, natutulungan mo po sila kung paano po lumago ung business po nila. Kung baga ikaw yung right hand ni client.

You had to quit being a call center agent, at that time, ano bang naisip mo na alternative kung hindi mo nakita ang vab, What would have been your alternative?

Babalik po ako. Kaya lang po ako ngresign talaga noon, kasi nga po may complications si baby ko nun. Praise and Glory to God talaga po na ok na po si baby, nagagawa ko po ito po mgfreelancing. Pero kung hindi ko po siguro nakita  to at ito parin si pandemic, mapilitan parin kami ng husband ko na bumalik po diyan sa Baguio para mgcall center.

Let's make forward to the part na sinabi ni client mo na magpause muna kayo and you felt low, Anong pinagggawa mo sa one week nayun na depressed ka?

Nagfocus po talaga ako sa mga bata, nakiglaro po ako sa mga anak ko, inaalagaan ko po sila, modules ng mga bata. Tapos ngnetflix po ako.

Hindi ka ba hinanap, hindi ka ba kinulit ni Ms. Honey?

Hindi po. Yun po ang maganda kay Ms. Honey kasi parang binigyan ng respect yung time na mgisa. Nirespect  po niya yung feelings ko, kapag ok na na nandito lng ako. Ngreach out uli po ako sa kanya. 

But you are doing ok now, so what is your niche Ms. Grace?

Wala pa po akong niche, 4 months palang  po ako sa freelancing. Nung ininvite nga po ako ni Ms. Carmee, hesitant din po akong tanggapin kasi bago lang ako marami pa diyang iba na mas magaling, mas marami nang naachieve. 

Nabanggit mo rin po na hesitant ulit, don't you think that you are self-sabotaging na pag ganyan na ano na hesitate ka na meron kang nkitang potential na pwede mong gawin, pero natatakot  kang gawin you're hesitating. Don't you think that you are self-sabotaging or just a normal thing for you?

Siguro normal thing, with the help of Ms. Honey narin, unti unting tinutulungan niya ibuild ko yung self-confidence ko. Siya rin po ngsabi sa akin na kung hindi mo gagawin yan, kailan? Ipupush ka talaga niya to your limit.

Noong nghehesitate kanang pumasok as Ms. Honey's intern, ngayon na nasubukan mo na, anong masasabi mo sa hesitation part na yon?

Buti na lang pinass ko parin yong cover letter ko. Kaya, I'm one of those chosen few na interns niya, na naging VA niya. Kaya, I’m very blessed. Sabi ko nga isa sya sa mga blessings, guardian angel ko sya, siya talaga ung nggaguide, literal na ng gaguide hindi lang sa freelancing journey ko  kundi pati sa mga buhay buhay. Super bless.

Do you aspire to be like her in the future na magiging influencer ka rin, isa ka sa mga iniidolo ng mga tao?. Would you want to be like that in the future?

Opo, gusto ko po makainspire na matutulungan ko po silang maachieve din po yung gusto at mga goals din po nila sa buhay. Kung God willing at doon po tayo papunta, why not, pero sa ngayon po I still have long way to go.

Of the months that you experience freelancing, what is the biggest advice that you can give to newbies?

Una, po, pray, ask for God's Leading, ililead ka sa right person, right resources, right time, yun po ang pinakauna ko.

Pangalawa, kapag mgpray mgtake action po, hindi po pwdeng pray ka lang ng pray pero wala kang ginagawa. Determinado at consistent. Ang freelancing po hindi po madali, so may ups and downs, meron paikot-ikot, pero enjoy lang po natin ang ride. Accept mo natin ung darating, ung mga failures, mga success, yun po ang bubuo sa pagkatao po natin.

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by Jason Dulay 
Jason is the founder and CEO of Work from Home Roadmap and VA Bootcamp. Aside from teaching Filipinos how to succeed working from home, he likes traveling, playing board games, and drinking coffee.

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69 comments on “Call Center Agent Noon, Virtual Assistant Ngayon”

  1. Salamat sa yo Ms. Honey. So... i've been self sabotaging for four years now.. kaya siguro nafefeel depressed ako minsan because despite knowing that i can do more, naniwala ako sa mga self doubt ko.. i pray that this year is a breakthrough for me. You're an inspiration.

    1. Hi, Amina Saidi Omar. You may sign up for our FREE VA course here -> freevacourse.com
      It's 100% FREE and will give you an overview of working from home and becoming a virtual assistant.

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