In less than a decade, Trevor Fenner went from working in a lock and security warehouse to working as his own boss from some of the most exotic places in the world. When you talk to Trevor, he exudes enthusiasm for learning and a passion for entrepreneurialism; both qualities propelled him from his 9-5 job and into the world of successful eCommerce.
Browsing Trevor’s online content, you’ll see the words “Choose to Live a Life You Love,” and it’s a mantra he lives by every day. With the flexibility of his eCommerce business, he lives an adventurous, nomadic lifestyle. He works remotely anywhere from the beaches of Bali (his current residence) to the jungles of Thailand or the bustle of Jakarta (with an occasional stop into the States).
Not only does Trevor manage an eCommerce business, he also runs coaching program called Ecommerce Paradise, he authored a book by the same name, and he publishes a regular podcast that hit 100,000 downloads last year.
Trevor’s main business is high-ticket dropshipping (selling items valued at $500+). He manages the online store-front, marketing/advertising, sales and customer service related to the high-ticket sales. Unlike his warehouse days, he doesn’t have to deal with the logistics of stocking or shipping, but he’s still left with a huge list of tasks to keep his business functional. And with selling high-ticket items also comes the pressure of providing outstanding customer service and satisfaction.
One of Trevor’s secrets to managing a full-time high-ticket dropshipping business and living the nomadic life of his dreams? — employing Filipino VAs.
Trevor has 7 full-time Filipino VAs working in his business, and they help with everything from customer service to virtual store management. He also works with a handful of project-based contractors who help him with part-time or temporary design or development jobs.
With all of his outsourcing experience, Trevor has some great advice regarding hiring, training and managing Filipino VAs.
- Do your best to get to know their personalities while you’re in the hiring process. Lots of communication and phone interviews help accomplish that.
- Look for someone with a great attitude. That’s the most important quality a worker can have. If they have a great attitude, you know you’ll work well together and you can train them to do all sorts of things.
- Get to know their working environment while you’re recruiting. Do they work from home? Do they have the necessary equipment for the job? How is their internet connection? Is their environment distracting? Will they be able to work effective hours?
- Look for full-time VAs who aren’t working other jobs. They provide the best quality of work at the best price (and they become an investment in your business – they will grow with you).
- If it’s relevant, ask your potential VA to screen record themselves doing a task they have on their resume, so you can gauge their knowledge and effectiveness.
- Don’t expect $3/hr VAs to be masters of their craft at the get-go. It will take time to train them and get things right, but they are capable of so much.
- Video trainings are more effective than written trainings in Trevor’s experience. He uses Loom to record videos and Google Sheets to organize and keep track of his video trainings.
- As you create trainings, try to document and create systems that will simplify future trainings for future VAs.
- Trevor’s favorite management tools: Facebook Workplace, Googe Drive, Gmail.
- Create systems in your business so that you don’t have to micromanage your workers — they know what to do and you know what they’re doing.
- And for those readers who are hesitant to make the jump from their 9-5 day jobs and into the “Life You Love” like Trevor, he also has some great tips.
He explains that any successful business model is a real business, not a get rich quick scheme (the same goes for outsourcing). Don’t get overwhelmed by information overload, just apply single principles at a time as you learn about them (and delegate tasks to your VAs!).
He also advises that to get your mindset in the right place, you have to educate yourself — read as much as you can on the internet and watch quality YouTube tutorials. Then make a plan and prepare for the long haul and set-backs. In his words, “It’s a long road, but it’s a lot of fun once you get the ball rolling!”
For reference, here’s a list of some of Trevor’s favorite business reads that helped fuel his entrepreneurial endeavors:
Expert Secrets – Russell Brunson
Dotcom Secrets – Russell Brunson
Ecommerce Evolved – Tanner Larsson
Anything – Seth Godin
The Four-Hour WorkWeek – Timothy Ferris
Rich Dad Poor Dad – Robert Kyosaki
The Richest Man in Babylon – George S. Clason
Think and Grow Rich – Napoleon Hill
How to Win Friends and Influence People – Dale Carnegie
And Trevor’s own book: Ecommerce Paradise (available on Kindle)
Whenever you feel that you’re ready to start scaling up your business by hiring your own virtual assistant, sign up for a free Onlinejobs.ph employer account and start hiring your first VA in minutes!
You can also learn more about how to get started on hiring Rockstar Virtual Assistants.
Shelane Tuttle is a full-time mother and part-time writer. She loves music and reading, is a terrible cook, and thrives on learning/teaching others about new things, like outsourcing.
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