Thank you to Clark Virtual Business Solutions for answering a few of our questions.
Congratulations on being named a finalist for Virtual Business of the Year!
The 24th Annual Loudoun Small Business Awards will be on November 1, 2018 – Tickets/More Info Here
1. Tell us your story of how your company got to where it is today?
I always knew I wanted to be in the administrative field and I have always been in administrative roles throughout my whole career. I heard about the Virtual Assistant industry many years ago and always thought that it would be kind of cool to work from home part-time, but never pursued it.
At the end of 2012, the contract for the company I worked for ended, and instead of staying on with the incoming company, I decided to take a sabbatical. During that time, I realized I really liked the freedom. I knew I still wanted to work, but wanted to have the flexibility to enjoy life. That’s when I started Clark Virtual Business Solutions, LLC (CVBS).
Fast forward and here we are 5 years later! Over the years, CVBS has evolved and now has three strong legs of service: general administrative services, social media management, and SendOutCards distribution and management.
All my business has been through networking and referrals from my networking circles. Most of CVBS business is on an as-needed project basis, with clients returning time and time again.
2. What would it mean to you and your company to win a Small Business Award?
Just being recognized as a finalist is a BIG achievement for me! Being a finalist was a goal of mine for the business this year. To win…that would be the icing on the cake!
I am so thankful for the opportunity to get word about Clark Virtual out there to the entrepreneurs in Loudoun who need help.
I have been planning for this goal the whole year and know that business can boom from the publicity and I am ready for it!
3. If you weren’t running your own business/working at this business, what would you be doing?
Working a J-O-B – probably in commercial property management which was what I was doing at the last company I worked for. I really enjoyed it. However, my dream job would be working for the Washington Capitals or for a local animal rescue.
4. What book are you reading right now? / What is your favorite book?
I am just starting “The Power of Human Connection” by Kody Bateman. He is the founder of SendOutCards, which is a service that I provide.
My favorite personal development book is “Hanging Out for a Living” by Mark Herdering and my favorite classic is “Anna Karenina” by Leo Tolstoy.
5. If you have 24-hours off, and your family was out of town, what would you do?
I would probably clean and organize the house – it’s something I enjoy doing! I would probably work on the business a little too. There are so many little things in the business – like updating procedure manuals, figuring out a new process, etc.) that get put off just because they are on the “someday” list.
6. What is the smallest thing that has made the largest impact on your business?
Creating a schedule and sticking to it.
With so many business networking events in Loudoun County, you can easily network every single day – at one point, I was networking like 3 times a week. Now, I limit any networking events and in-person meetings to Tuesdays and Thursdays. Doing this has grown my business since I make money when I am in front of the computer!
7. What did you want to be when you grew up as a child?
I always knew I wanted to be in the administrative field…seriously. I would “play” on my Aunt Helen’s manual typewriter and “do” paperwork. I was pretty good at two-finger typing before I took an actual typewriting class in high school!
I think I am one of the few people who went into the field that they went to school for. I have an Associate in Applied Science degree in Executive Secretarial Science from S.U.N.Y. Alfred.
8. Who is the one person that has influenced you the most in your career?
My Aunt Helen. She was the church treasurer for many, many years. I would see her do the paperwork and always wanted to help. Every Sunday, I would help her with counting the offering, and I would go to the bank with her when she made deposits.
Because of her and her connections in the city I grew up in, I was able to connect with the local Professional Secretaries International (now International Association of Administrative Professionals) chapter and apply and win a scholarship for college. I was also able to interview with a legal secretary for a college project.
Throughout my work career, I was very lucky to have bosses as mentors who helped me grow beyond my administrative skills and guided me with career choices.
9. What is your favorite thing about running a business in Loudoun County?
The other entrepreneurs that I meet! I LOVE meeting new people and getting to know them and their business. We are all here to support each other!
10. If you’re not in the office where can we find you?
Networking or having one-to-ones with other business owners.
11. What is your favorite weekend activity in Loudoun County?
Fall is the best time in Loudoun County – there are so many different festivals! My husband and I love taking our dog, Theo, to different pet festivals.
Weekends are always our dining-out time. There are so many restaurants in Loudoun County, you can try a new restaurant every day!