As a Certified OBM Trainer, the most rewarding part of my job is helping other aspiring OBMs and Certified OBMs® make it as entrepreneurs.
I know how difficult (and freakin’ scary!) it can be to go all in and make the jump from starting an online side-hustle, to diving in at the deep end and growing a full-time business. It took me a few years of not owning my true worth as a Virtual Assistant before I realized that I was actually working the higher role of an Online Business Manager.
Since getting Certified back in 2011, I’ve navigated all the highs and lows of the business rollercoaster. I’ve struggled with mindset, had to find my inner confidence (SO tough for us introverts), and had to step up into my power and OWN IT.
As Richard Branson once said, “Being an entrepreneur is not that dissimilar being an adventurer”. He couldn’t have been more right!
I’m always asked by those starting the Certification program, what my best pearls of wisdom are for those hoping to scale a thriving OBM business. So it’s time to put a decade of industry experience into action, as I’m serving up my top tips for becoming a Certified OBM. Let’s do this!
Top tips for becoming a Certified OBM ®
1. Mindset is EVERYTHING
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – firing up into the OBM mindset is something which is totally underrated in terms of the influence it has on your success.
Whether you’re coming from corporate, or you’re working as a VA, there’s a high probability that your current role involves you taking orders and implementing. AKA – getting sh*t done! However, Certified OBMs are LEADERS. And that’s an important distinction to make when it comes to owning the OBM mindset.
As a Certified OBM®, you are the expert. You’re working in collaboration with the business owner to form a business strategy. You’re making key decisions. And you’re coming into a client’s biz to show them what action to take in order to grow their biz. So it’s important to not only lead with confidence in your own expert mindset, but also to give the business owner confidence that you are the right person to lead their business in the right direction.
You’re likely already a manager/leader in other areas of your life – whether it’s mom duties, planning a vacation, or delegating household responsibilities to your partner! You just need the confidence to take those skills and utilize them in your working environment!
Pro tip: Adjust your language when you speak with clients to reflect your leadership position. For example: instead of asking the client “How can I help you?”, be firm and confident in your position and switch to “I can help you do X Y Z”.
2. Community is key
It’s time to find your tribe! Networking and connecting with the OBM community is one of my top tips for becoming a Certified OBM® and THRIVING at what you do.
So many of my Certified OBMs® who have gone through the program say time and time again how valuable it was to have the support of their peers and the Confident OBM Community. All of us need a place where we can ask questions without fear of judgment, get advice on how to move forward when we’re stuck, and where we can celebrate our wins with people who are rooting for us. And that’s exactly what the OBM community can do for you!
Better still, networking with the wider OBM community can bring you so many valuable opportunities. Think about it: if you’re a systems queen, and your OBM friend who focuses on team management has a client who needs a full systems setup, who can they call for a helping hand? Or if you get to the point where you need to scale, and you’re looking to take on an amazing VA for your business, you can ask your fellow OBMs for recommendations, which can save you time and money in the long run by avoiding bad hires.
Pro tip: Don’t just join a community like The Confident OBM Community, make sure you are active! Find an accountability partner within the group to help you stay focused on your goals. Or invest in paid groups like the Certified OBM Momentum Community, which will give you consistent accountability prompts and provide structured opportunities for networking with others.
3. Don’t take advice from everyone.
Whenever you start a new venture, you soon find 100’s of people coming to you with unsolicited advice on how best to move forward. And it’s so easy to get lost in the midst of a million opinions on what’s right for you and your business.
That’s why it’s important to be selective about who you take advice from. Not everybody knows exactly how to get to where you want to go. You wouldn’t ask a builder how to make a cake, so don’t listen when that guy comes knocking and tells you what to put in the recipe.
Pro tip: Listen to those who have already got to where you want to be, and those who you’d love to trade places with. Again, you can utilize the power of community to make these contacts, and to surround yourself with people who know your industry. That’s where you’ll get the best advice for your business.
4. Take stock of your transferable skills
My final tip for becoming a Certified OBM® and BOSSING it? Take stock of your transferable skills and leverage them to your advantage.
Why reinvent the wheel when you likely already have a ton of awesome skills that you can use as a Certified OBM®? If you’ve spent time in corporate, chances are you’re a great communicator. If you started out as a VA, you’ll likely already be prepared for OBM work. And in both of those roles, having followed documented procedures before gives you an amazing understanding of systems and how they work.
So when it comes to putting together your package as a Certified OBM®, take stock of what you’ve already got. Love systems? Focus on putting together 90-day systems streamlining plans for your clients. Love managing operations? Jump into your client’s business full-time as an OBM who takes care of operations management. You can mould the Certified OBM® role to serve your clients as the expert in your chosen field.
Pro tip: Take some time to write down your strengths and what you’re good at. Then from that list, look at what it is you LOVE to do, or where your true zone of genius lies. You can then put together an OBM package that focuses on leveraging your expertise.
When it comes to becoming a successful Certified OBM®, the best place to start is levelling up your mindset. It’s the key to positioning yourself correctly with your clients, and to confidently charging your worth.
By utilizing the power of the OBM community, you’ll be listening to the advice of the RIGHT people in order to grow your business and get to where you want to be.
Finally, don’t try to do ALL the things! Take stock of what you are great at, and leverage that sh*t until the cows come home! By creating an OBM package that focuses on your area of expertize, you’ll serve your clients to the best of your abilities, and you’ll feel confident in charging the high rates you want to be making.
If you’re interested to learn more about becoming a Certified OBM®, click here for more.
Now over to you: If you’re already a Certified OBM®, what is your best piece of advice for aspiring OBMs? And if you’re not, is there anything else you’d love to know? Let me know in the comments below!
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