Running your own business is one of the most difficult yet rewarding pursuits. Entering the world of entrepreneurship is like hopping on a gigantic roller coaster that’s both frightening and exhilarating.
Instead of being focused on big-picture thinking that will grow the business, many business owners find themselves stuck on the minutiae of tasks outside their zone of genius, just to survive another day.
Fortunately, there is a wide range of support staff you can enlist who can help you gain back the time needed to focus on the projects/tasks where you deliver the most value.
The Right Support for the Right Circumstance
Online Business Manager (OBM)
If your business processes, systems and/or automation feel a little tangled, consider bringing on an Online Business Manager (OBM).
An OBM is like your “Executor Chief of Staff” who oversees day-to-day operations, including managing employees, developing, and implementing strategies to achieve the company’s goals, and monitoring financial performance. Online Business Managers have decades of experience problem solving and seeing around corners in a business environment.
You are ready for an OBM if:
- Important commitments get pushed out due to a lack of time, energy, or resources
- You feel the pressure of not having the time to strategize
- Integrating new business opportunities feels more energy-draining than exciting
- Connection within your team is fragmented, and communication gaps are creating roadblocks
- Keeping your team morale up seems to be getting more difficult as you grow
- Recruitment and hiring are too rushed or do not get done at all
To be clear, an OBM is NOT an Executive Assistant. More than handling your administrative functions or bookkeeping tasks, an OBM can manage your staff, set processes, and oversee operations.
An Executive Assistant (EA) can take on a wide range of functions. Everything from calendar management and email organization to project coordination and travel booking. An EA not only handles typical administrative functions, but they are also happy to tackle more personal tasks, like booking dinners and vacations and even selecting and sending flowers and gifts. Having a healthy balance between home life and work life can help you accomplish more at work with a clear head.
An EA can even drop work blocks into your schedule, giving you permission to simply focus rather than be pulled into last-minute meetings that sabotage the day. They can also help you strive for “inbox zero,” a productivity strategy and proven system that declutters your mind by decluttering your inbox. Methodically delete, sort, and clear incoming emails.
You are ready for an EA if:
- Your inbox is overflowing.
- You move a lot of meetings because you don’t have control over your schedule – your schedule has control over you.
- You can’t imagine shutting off while on vacation. Too many things would slip through the cracks.
- You’re constantly sidelined by small or distracting projects that take you away from the tasks where you shine.
The right EA can transform how you structure your week and make it more productive!
What’s worse than staying up all night balancing your books? Staying up all night balancing your books, only to catch a glaring error down the road and having to start again.
A Professional Bookkeeper will balance your books and handle invoicing, reconcile credit card receipts and expenses, process payroll, and so much more. This oversight reduces the risk of errors, penalties, and legal complications that could arise if not monitored properly.
You might be ready for a Bookkeeper if:
- Keeping your books organized feels like an epic battle.
- Your stomach is in knots every tax time.
- Being overwhelmed is affecting your ability to act on opportunities.
- You have no idea what the financial health of your company is.
What’s more, Professional Bookkeepers save valuable time and offer an unbiased perspective. Numbers don’t lie, but sometimes your judgment, especially about something as emotional as money, can get clouded.
You might not require a full-time Controller but tapping into their expertise and insights would sure be helpful. Fractional Controllers bring a wealth of financial knowledge and experience to the table, helping companies improve financial efficiency, identify growth opportunities, and navigate through complex financial challenges.
A Fractional Controller blends intel and insights so you see more possibility and potential. They can help you with things like key accounting functions, budgeting, cash flow forecasting, and tax filing and compliance.
You might be ready for a Fractional Controller if:
- You’re ready for a strategic approach to your financing needs
- A comprehensive monthly budget-to-actual comparison will help you forecast your finances better
- Capital management and a strong cash flow are big drivers in your organization’s success
- You would benefit from a clear cost vs. revenue structure that reveals opportunities to become more profitable
- You would like a better understanding of cash flow, projections, and variances
Hiring a Fractional Controller enables you to enjoy the best of both worlds; exceptional financial intelligence without committing to a full-time team member.
We See You, We Get You, So Let’s Talk About You!
Stop trying to do it all and start hiring support where you need it. Not only will you gain back precious hours in the day, but you will grow and prosper when you have more time to not only act on opportunities as they come up but identify them far in advance.
Contact VEA anytime to talk about your specific needs. Let’s find the right support to help you get ahead.
Frequently Asked Questions about Online Business Managers (OBMs)
Q1: How do I onboard an OBM?
A: The team at VEA will guide you through a step-by-step onboarding process to ensure you are matched with an OBM who is right for you and your business.
Q2: What if I only need help during peak seasons?
A: Our OBMs are available on an ongoing basis as well as for one-off projects to fit your needs.
Q3: How can I be sure I will get an OBM who understands what I need?
A: We begin with an in-depth strategy session to better understand where you require support as well as assess for personality and culture fit. You get to meet potential candidates and are part of the decision-making process from the beginning. VEA prides itself on HAND MATCHING every OBM to every client. We will work with you to get it right.
Q4: What if I quickly realize I don’t need an OBM?
A: We will discover that for you before we even get started and most likely recommend an Executive Assistant instead.
Q5: How does VEA ensure I am getting the most value from my OBM?
A: Open and regular communication with your OBM is the best way to get what you need. By the end of your kickoff call, your OBM should be clear about the project and/or role expectations.
The kickoff call for a one-off project entails a review of the scope of work. Your OBM will then use the approved scope to create a project plan and work-back schedule to complete deliverables.
The kickoff call for an ongoing role entails the creation of a 90-day plan that focuses on a combination of “quick win” improvements and short-term goals.
In either case, your OBM will lead and execute the work needed to result in positive outcomes.
Q6: How many years of experience does an OBM have?
A: Our OBMs have at least ten years of experience, and many have more than that.
Q7: Where is your team located?
A: We are a Canada-based, remote workforce. Our OBMs are spread across Canada, and we can match you with someone who is within or near your time zone.