For many startups and SMEs, one of the key challenges is getting access to the right administrative support when needed, without having to bring full time staff on board in the early days when budgets are tight. Complete VA is a new South African company with a solution. Entrepreneur Martie Cronje is offering a specialist virtual assistant service to all those that need that little extra support.
LoA found out more about this startup business providing a key specialist service to other startups and SMEs.
What does your company do?
At Complete VA, we offer Virtual Assistant services to small and medium sized companies.
"After going for numerous interviews and not being offered any positions I took the decision to start my own Virtual Assistant business. If no one wants to employ me I'll just do this myself."
What inspired you to start your company?
I have always been a PA in my professional career. During my last employment, the company was going through a restructuring process which resulted in a decrease in salary. After going for numerous interviews and not being offered any positions I took the decision to start my own Virtual Assistant business. (If no one wants to employ me I'll just do this myself). The feedback received from people I told even before starting the business was very positive, which motivated me even more that this was the right choice.
Why should anyone use your service or product?
Complete VA offers an extensive range of services, coupled with 27 years' of administration, secretarial and PA experience at the cost of employing a junior person. In our case, you get far more experience value than what you're paying for.
Tell us a little about your team
Currently we have a team consisting of two.
There is myself, Martie Cronje - I am a highly motivated, extremely diligent, organized and driven individual with a very strong administration background and a keen creative interest. I enjoy bringing my administration skills and experience of 27 years to Complete VA, coupled with building relationships with staff and clients. I have been exposed to various industries and I am comfortable with all levels of communication, including staff, management, clients and vendors. In my role as Virtual Assistant I will be part of my clients’ teams where I can make a difference, and use my previously gained skills and experience to provide the level of service which reflects the very high standards I set for myself.
Andrea is our young matriculant, who is exhibiting a phenomenal aptitude towards creative design. She currently specializes in website graphic design, including the design of logos, business cards, stationery and visual content for websites. She is hardworking and has an incredible eye for detail. Andrea took Visual Art as one of her matric subjects, for which we trust she'll receive a distinction.
Share a little about your entrepreneurial journey. And, do you come from an entrepreneurial background?
The seed was sown about 10 years ago when we investigated the possibility of starting a virtual assistant business. Businesses in South Africa were not ready with the possibility of staff working offsite. With the growth of technological applications and software, with business premises becoming quite expensive, it has become more acceptable. Complete VA was started in October 2016, so it is a brand new business, which is really exciting. Having worked in a variety of industries and reported to managers at different levels, experiencing how they treated their employees / direct reports, as well as the different management styles, I have the opportunity to do it right from the start.
What are your future plans and aspirations for your company?
When we celebrate our 1st anniversary on the 1st October 2017, I would like to have employed at least 5 people. We are looking at training other VAs and empowering young women with the necessary skills and support to start their own businesses.
What gives you the most satisfaction being an entrepreneur?
Connecting with other entrepreneurs, especially female entrepreneurs, who have been on the journey for far longer that I have been and learning from them, as well as the possibility of seeing where this business can go and grow.
What's the biggest piece of advice you can give to other women looking to start-up?
Believe and trust in yourself and your business, remain positive, set goals and continue to work hard to achieve them. Never be afraid to make that call or connection - you never know where it might lead (after all, what's the worst that can happen...?). Always aspire to deliver service of excellence.
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Why LoA loves it….
At LoA, we love self-starters and those entrepreneurs who turn challenges into opportunities, and in the case of Martie Cronje, she took charge of her own professional career by doing just that. Today, her company Complete VA, is helping other startups and SMEs by providing her administrative skills and expertise when they need it, turning her own challenges into real and lasting opportunities. She is a great example of an entrepreneur taking charge of her own destiny by harnessing her own and others specialist skills and turning it into a business. --- Melanie Hawken, founder and editor-in-chief of Lionesses of Africa