Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Lisa MacDonald, founder of The Virtual Solution, located in Lawrencetown, NS, Canada.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

My business is The Virtual Solution. As a Certified Online Business Manager and Tech Virtual Assistant, I help coaches, course creators, and consultants put their plans into action and get more done so that they can have less stress, more time, and focus on making money.

I offer a range of support in systems and operations management, project and team management, procedure documentation, course planning and buildouts, tech and automation, product launches, funnels, websites, online marketing, and more.

I have a specialty as a Systems/Operations Architect and Online Course Consultant, offering assessments and planning Deep Dive Sessions.

Tell us about yourself

My former boss retired and closed his business back at the end of 2007. I had no idea what I wanted to do next, so I did some random freelance work online and medical transcription before I discovered the term virtual assistance. I learned more about it, put my intention out on Facebook that I wanted to become a virtual assistant, and got my first client almost right away, a business coach. My business progressed after that, and I continued learning. I eventually became a Certified Online Business Manager in 2016.

What motivates me is my love for taking a client's goals and making them come to life, automating and streamlining their systems and tech, taming the chaos in their business, and making sure everything runs smoothly. It's what I enjoy, and most of the time, it doesn't feel like work.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

This is a tougher question for me to answer because I tend to stay happily behind the scenes. I'm not a speaker, I haven't published a book, I don't do TV appearances, etc., so I don't have something really big and cool to brag about. There are so many smaller accomplishments that I am thankful for. I think for me, what I feel has been my biggest accomplishment is my personal and professional growth along this journey.

My business has allowed me to not just work with some amazing coaching clients, but it has enabled me to hire some great business and transformational coaches and sign up for their programs. That growth has been priceless when I compare my business and happiness from before I hired my first coach through to now.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

Not comparing yourself to others - everyone is on their own journey, and looks can be deceiving. The view that someone else presents of themselves on social media or via webinars doesn't always reflect reality, so comparing yourself to your interpretation of someone else can set you up for failure. Don't compare the inside of you to the outside of someone else.

In comparing yourself to others, it's also easier to fall victim to the Impostor Syndrome: Thinking you're not good enough or not experienced enough to put yourself out there, offer your services, and charge what you're worth. All this serves to do is to keep you small and in self-sabotage mode.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Plan to budget for a good business coach to help you fast-track your success. Make sure they've had the success online that you're looking to have and that their clients have achieved similar or greater success.
  2. Either start your business on the side while you're still working, with the intention of building it to the point where you can easily transition, or ensure you have healthy savings set aside to fund your business expenses and any help you may need in getting started. This will make it less stressful for you.
  3. As soon as you can, hire admin or tech support to help you in areas that are not your zone of genius and free up your time to focus on revenue-generating activities. You want to be working on your business, not in your business.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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