Why Rejections and Scams Did Not Stop Her From Freelancing – Interview with Bethia Llave

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Why Rejections and Scams Did Not Stop Her From Freelancing – Interview with Bethia Llave

Since childhood, Maribeth (a.k.a. Beth or Bethia) has known the value and meaning of hard work. She was a working student in high school, re-packing snack foods from a nearby factory. Then she became a saleslady at a grocery store after graduation.

She also tried working as a Service Crew at Jollibee before working in different factories as a production operator. In March 2018, her life took a different turn when she was introduced to the world of online freelancing.

Beth never went to college. She got married to a loving husband who is currently working abroad. In the past few years, they have been trying to have a baby. She got pregnant in 2017, but it ended in a tragic miscarriage that left her feeling depressed. She wanted to keep herself busy with work but she couldn’t go outside alone. She was in a foreign country and she was often left in the house in isolation.

How did she find out about the VA Bootcamp and what changes took place in her life after she started working online? What lessons can we learn from her story that we can use in our own freelancing journey?

Watch this replay of JAS SUCCESS with Bethia Llave here.

Notable Quotes:

  • Di ba andami kong heartbreak, andami kong scam, andami kong rejection sa interview, ‘yon pala ang magdadala sa’kin na malagay dito sa (long-term) client (ko) na ‘to.
  • Para makadagdag din sa skill ko na E-commerce VA, ang ginagawa ko pag may job post sa Upwork, sa OnlineJobs tapos may nakalagay na instructions or kung papaano gawin dina-download ko talaga s’ya ta’s ginagawa ko. Ma-hired man ako o hindi at least na-practice ko s’ya ng actual. ‘Yon malaking bagay din na dagdag portfolio pati.
  • Isipin mo na lang na kung ni-reject ka ng client hindi naman nya alam ang pinagdadaanan mo. Gawin mo na lang na motivation ‘yung pag-reject n’ya sa’yo. ‘Yung i-check mo kung anong mali. Mas mag-i-improve ka talaga sa mga interview.
  • Ang success naman is hindi mo masasabi na maaga kang na-hired, kung late ka na-hired, kumbaga parang success kahit gaano ka katagal ma-hired. Ang mahalaga hindi ka nag-stop. Kasi kung mag-stop ka, eh wala na, wala kang dollar, ‘di ba?
  • (Kapag) dumating ‘yung the one mo na client mo is ipakita mo talaga ‘yung the best mo na, na para ka talaga do’n sa task na yon. Na kahit (nahihirapan ka) gumawa ka ng motivation. Kasi ang ginawa ko talaga is naglagay ako ng sticky notes sa harap ko tapos nilagay ko kung monthly ‘yung sahod ko na hindi ako susuko. Ganito ‘yung makukuha ko monthly, ayon motivating.
  • Experienced in anything was once a beginner. So ngayon ‘di ba, ilang months, ilang years, magiging experienced ka rin, magiging expert ka rin. Lahat tayo talaga ay magsisimula sa beginner.

Bethia's Journey to Freelancing: 

  • Beth is a high school grad and one of her questions to herself before she became a freelancer is if she can do it because she’s not good in English. 
  • Her friends motivated her that she did not need any course in school for as long as she’s dedicated to her task.
  • Before she became a freelancer, she’s working. She was a working student when she was in high school so she could help her mother. Her parents were separated. Their job as a family is they pack snacks. They sleep in the factory under the table. They work till dawn to sustain their needs as a family.
  • After she graduated from high school, she worked as a saleslady in Santa Cruz (Brazil Store) owned by a Chinese so she could help her family.
  • After that, she also worked at Jollibee as a crew. But after the six-month contract, she needed to find another job.
  • She then worked in a manufacturing company.
  • Beth wanted to go to college. Unfortunately, they can’t afford it because she still has younger brothers to support.
  • She worked in a noodle company as a packer. They pack the noodles into the box. Sometimes when the conveyor has a technical problem, they do the manual packing.
  • She also worked in EPSON in Lipa where she was a production operator. They assembled the printer. Beth is in charge of putting a screw in the printer.
  • Her next job is in SOBIE. Beth checked if the small materials of the TV frame had dents or scratches and she separated it. 
  • Another experience is in TRC. They are the supplier of TF Roller in EPSON.
  • Another company is HYSONIC. They are all thankful and proud of Beth because she could share her freelancing career with aspiring freelancers. After a year, Beth became a line leader where she handled the final visual. HYSONIC produces a cellphone camera.
  • Her last job is when Mr. Edwin gets her as a production office staff. It is where she faces all the challenges because Beth has no background in computer and excel applications. But Mr. Edwin trusted her during that time. That’s where Beth’s career escalates from production operator to office staff.
  • After she resigned from HYSONIC in 2014, her husband petitioned her in the Middle East for them to have a baby.
  • Madison, her friend, introduced her to freelancing. During that time, Madison brought her laptop. Since Beth is curious, she asked about the work of Madison.
  • “I’m working on a laptop.” It shocked Beth when she saw her friend's work. That’s when Beth became happy because she can work anywhere for as long as she has an internet and laptop. Also, Madison shows her salary to Beth, and it makes Beth more shocked because she knew that she could not earn that amount in the Philippines even though she worked for eight hours.
  • Beth asks her friend if she can be a freelancer even though she’s only a high school graduate and she’s not good in English. Madison shared VA Bootcamp to her. According to Madison, “It’s hard to start freelancing alone if you do not know where to start.”
  • It was Beth’s birthday when she asked her husband that she would enroll in a VA Bootcamp course because she wanted to learn.
  • That’s when Beth finds her niche as E-commerce because she loves to do the shopping and she wants a job that will make her happy.
  • In April, she enrolled in the VA Bootcamp course. Come December, despite her hesitation, because she did not want to be pressured, Beth joined the Hustle Challenge, grabbing one of the seven slots remaining.
  • Her first client is Ms. Bong, where she’s given a chance to transcribe the JSU.
  • Then Ms. Honey, where she’s also given a chance to be a Slack moderator intern.
  • She has a client before she joined the Hustle Challenge. Madison gave her a client which gave Beth the hands-on training.
  • In December, Beth got another client, but she cannot share it with VA Bootcamp because she wants to make sure it is not a scam. At first, she was allowed to use the manual time but later on the client disallowed it. It was the Christmas season, and this break Beth’s heart. The client also uses Beth’s email for Shopify billing. Good thing that Beth did not disclose her sensitive information, like her PayPal account. The client paused her contract in Upwork. And Beth received a message from Upwork that maybe there’s a problem with the credit card. Beth did not complain about this client.
  • In January she was hired again in Upwork. She called her client “bedroom voice” because of his pleasing voice. Beth was hired right away. She’s given a contract. And according to his client, she will undergo training. Another week passed, and the client did not show up. Then one of her friends invited her to a new job as VA E-commerce. She was hesitant to accept the responsibility because she knew that she had her first client. So, Beth decided that whoever comes first, she will take the offer.     

Q&A Highlights:

Where to apply as VA E-commerce?

There are a lot of online platforms like Upwork, OnlineJobs, Freelancer, Hubstaff, Guru, LinkedIn, and many others that are looking for a Va E-commerce.

How to join the Hustle Challenge?

There is an announcement when is the start of the hustle challenge and the last day of submission of the requirements. Students of VA Bootcamp only can join the Hustle Challenge.

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Jason Dulay

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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