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Five Tips for Hosting a Virtual Holiday Party

Five Tips for Hosting a Virtual Holiday PartyBy Christy Schutz

As hard as it is for all of us to believe, the Holiday season is well underway. In fact, when this article is published, it will be the first day of Hanukah and about 9 days until Christmas. As if the pressure of those facts is not enough, please let me remind you that you have about 5 days left to host a holiday party with your virtual colleagues.

Now, before you convince yourself that such a feat simply can’t be done, read on. I’ve compiled the following 5 easy steps to help you make a Holiday get together more than a remote possibility (pun intended … see what I did there … remote).

Consider the timing.

When scheduling your Virtual Holiday Party, remember to consider that your employees may be in different time zones. Depending on where everyone is, it may not be the most ideal time for everyone, but, try to be creative. For example, your party could be a festive lunch on the East Coast while simultaneously a fun breakfast on the West Coast. Once you nail down a time, use a popular e-card site to send everyone invitations. (more…)

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What Do You Do When Your Direct Sales Company Closes its Doors?

What Do You Do When Your Direct Sales Company Closes its Doors? By Holly Reisem Hanna

This month the popular direct sales company, Lia Sophia shut its doors after 28 years of being in business. It’s estimated that Lia Sophia employed more than 27,000 independent direct sales consultants who collectively sold more than $100 million worth of jewelry this past year.

This isn’t the first time that a direct sales company has abruptly closed its doors; but sadly, Lia Sophia’s consultants are now left with picking up the pieces during the busiest time of year.

If this scenario should happen to you or if you’re one of the 27,000+ Lia Sophia consultants, here are some steps to take to alleviate some of the stress and financial burden you’ve been thrown into.

Give Yourself Time to Grieve:

You’ve just lost your business and your income — it’s okay to give yourself some time to absorb the shock and reality of the situation. While it’s good to take a break, acknowledge your feelings, and prioritize self care during this time, don’t let the circumstances define you. When you fixate on the negative you perpetuate a cycle of destructive emotions that will only dig you deeper into a hole. If you feel like your sadness is becoming overwhelming, try surrounding yourself with positive people or talk to a healthcare professional to get you back on track. Also remember the basics, getting 8 hours of sleep, eating right, and exercising — these go along way in reducing stress! (more…)

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On Being a Virtual Assistant

On Being a Virtual Assistant By Becky Flansburg

I get asked often what it’s like being a Virtual Assistant. When this question pops up, I am more than happy to share because I know there are a plethora of moms/women who are feeling “stuck” in less-than-gratifying jobs. These same women also think they have no options when it comes to earning a decent living while working from home. I think they also secretly want to know if I am starving to death or ready to fade away from boredom since leaving my “9-5” over three years ago.

Since these inquiries are happening more frequently, I thought I’d share some of the more common questions that come up from those who are curious about what I do and those who are considering being a VA as well.

What is a virtual assistant?

A virtual assistant {VA} is a self-employed, home-based entrepreneur and independent contractor who assists other professionals in the tasks necessary to run a business. These tasks can be many things include administrative work, bookkeeping, social media and project management. In other words, a VA is an office assistant who never has to step into her client’s office and can work from virtually any remote location. (more…)

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From Employee to Freelancer: How to Cautiously Make the Leap

From Employee to Freelancer: How to Cautiously Make the LeapBy Holly Reisem Hanna

Hi Holly,

At the beginning of the year I will be making a huge switch from my full time position to freelance in order to get rid of my long commute and be closer to home and my two year old. To say I am nervous for the transition is an understatement. Do you or your readers have any tips? Freelance is a new venture for me and brings tons of anxieties around benefits, 401K, how to withhold for taxes, ahhh!

Thank you in advance for any suggestions, Rebecca

Hi Rebecca,

I know what you mean about anxiety and fear! It took me many months to get all my ducks in a row, before I felt confident launching my business. Even then I still made mistakes along the way. But with a little pre-planning and the right tools you’ll prepared to handle whatever comes your way.

Health Insurance:

Before you give up your existing coverage, you’ll need to have a plan for getting coverage, whether it’s through your spouse’s plan, COBRA, or another provider. This is one area where I was lucky, because I was able to get on my husband’s insurance plan without any wait or issues. (more…)

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20 Work at Home Companies with an A+ Rating on the BBB Website

20 Work at Home Companies with an A+ Rating on the BBB Website By Holly Reisem Hanna

When you’re searching for a work at home job you’re bombarded with information, that often it’s difficult to decipher what’s legit and what’s not. While I can offer advice on scam prevention and where to find  legitimate work at home jobs postings, there is still an element of uncertainty.

To help take some of this uncertainty out of your job search, I’ve put together a list of 20 work at home companies that have an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau.

1. Appen Butler Hill

Hires search engine evaluators to provide feedback on Internet search results. This part-time telecommuting opportunity is open to both US and International residents. Average pay is $14 an hour.

2. Atena

Hires nurses to work from home (telework) in case management, pre-certification, and as nurse consultants. Candidates must have their RN license.

3. Computer Assistant

Hires remote technicians to provide tech support for a variety of companies. (more…)

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