At CEED, it’s no secret that we love to shout our client’s successes from the mountain tops. So you can imagine how thrilled I was when Kathy Colaiacovo, a former SEB graduate and CEEDling – wanted to give back to where it all began.
Kathy says that CEED’s Self Employment Benefits (SEB) program really helped her launch her business. The program helped her build the confidence she needed to start out on her own and with all the resources we offered she was not as scared to stumble along the way. She wanted to come back to CEED to help other people who are going through the program today, to show them how well it works. What a wonderful woman – you’ve got to love it when someone wants to give back – especially when they are as busy as she is! So, Kathy came in recently and spoke to SEB participants during a social media workshop and I got to sit in and observe.
As I watched her speak so calm, cool, and collected I couldn’t help but think of how she told me of her high school and university years. She told me a story when we first met, of how she couldn’t speak in front of crowds back then and even passed out on the floor analyzing a poem in front of 25 regular classmates. It’s amazing what practice and confidence can do!
Kathy officially launched her own business in 2008, Time on Task Virtual Assistant Services. The company covers a wide variety of services; from marketing strategy to support for email marketing, company websites, to managing other businesses online presence through social media. Kathy started as the owner and has since hired 11 other subcontractors. Together with her team of VA’s Time on Task solves problems for companies at a fraction of the time yet with great efficiency.
If a successful business isn’t enough, she is now the first Canadian elected as Vice President into the International Virtual Assistants Association (IVAA), a non-profit organization dedicated to the professional education and development of members of the Virtual Assistance profession. Kathy is now President of the association and she just loves it. She is a successful role model for business owners and people all over the world. The IVAA has 750 members in the association, in the U.S, Canada, and the rest from all over like Venezuela, Italy, Australia, and even the U.K.
When I asked Kathy to share some of her experiences with CEED, she told me she loved coming in every 2 weeks for the training and the mandatory networking – it forced her to learn to network. This helped her get in the mindset of being a business owner realizing that she was no longer an employee, she now had to be the marketing department, the organization/administration department & the sales department – she was all the departments in her business. All the training that we provided here at CEED really helped support this and was definitely what helped her build her confidence to now be able to speak in front of large groups.
Kathy both teaches and practices her philosophy at Time on Task – Helping Business Entrepreneurs Work Smarter. She and team have all the skills and know-how to do many things that business owners struggle with; such as newsletters, websites, social media, content management or blogging. Now we know that some business owners know how to do these things, but whether they have time is a different matter. Time on Task helps businesses spend more time on the things they need to do to run their business.
Some words of wisdom and inspiration from Kathy for someone starting out in the Virtual Assistant business is to get in the mind frame of not looking for work – for a job, but clients and business. You have to have the ability to accept change and be flexible, accept mistakes and understand that what you start out doing might not be what you actually end up doing in the long run. Kathy speaks from experience; she transformed into a place she didn’t know she would go but embraced the change and self-knowledge she gained along the way.
It was an absolute pleasure meeting and chatting with Kathy after so many years since her start and successes. I learnt so much about her business, experience with CEED and so much about her as a person, for example – did you know she’s a huge Kevin Costner fan?
Now you do!