A couple of readers, after reading Callie Sitek's first interview, have asked recently how she is doing now. Did Ben's course give her what she needed to build a bookkeeping business? Was she able to get it off the ground? Is bookkeeping as a virtual business a realistic work-from-home career opportunity?
Callie was more than happy to talk about her experiences so far in this second interview.
Hi Callie! It has been about 6 months since you finished Ben’s Bookkeeping Business Academy course. How are things going?
Things are going very well! I'm having consistent growth and really loving my business.
So you actually have a virtual bookkeeping business? A real-virtual career?
Yes, it's totally virtual. As a matter of fact, I don't even have any clients in my state, they're located all over the US.
Have things developed as you hoped?
Things are developing differently than I had hoped but in a good way. I just recently hit my client goal I set at the beginning, but I've now hired some other moms to help out with the work on a part-time basis. I'm focusing now on new content and product creation as well as marketing to get new clients.
I’ve been following you via your website. It seems to be developing well – you offer a lot of useful information for bookkeeperless entrepreneurs.
That's the idea! I'm trying to create a safe (and hopefully fun) place for entrepreneurs to learn the basics so when they are ready to outsource we are the obvious choice.
Have clients been hard to find? Have you been able to find recurring clients?
In the beginning, I had trouble getting traction, but once I started getting clients it was pretty consistent. I actually get a lot of referrals from my clients who love the service we provide. I'm still working out the marketing kinks and always learning new techniques to try out to get clients in the door.
You mentioned in your last interview that your eventual goal was to have enough clients to hire your husband to help so he could quit his job and you could have more time and money for family adventures! Are things heading in that direction?
It's funny you'd mention this! My vision has changed quite a bit. My goals have gotten much bigger since the last time we spoke. I realized that I would really rather see him able to quit his job and focus on something he loves. I'll leave the positions in my business to other work-at-home moms who are passionate about helping other women. The family adventures are still definitely high on the wish list.
Is this career allowing you to do your ‘work’ around family needs as you had hoped?
The scheduling was tricky to figure out at first because I like to speak to potential clients on the phone. I had to schedule around nap times and deal with a crying baby a few times, but in general, everyone is understanding and luckily I have a happy baby that stops crying as soon as I pick him up. Now that I'm moving away from doing the actual bookkeeping work, I will have my team doing these calls so they will likely be dealing with similar issues as they are moms too.
You are moving away from the actual bookkeeping work?
Yes, I only work on clients books minimally now. I spend my time creating new content for the website, doing consultations, doing social media marketing, and creating a new product. My team does most of the actual bookkeeping work now.
Now that you have actually been building a bookkeeping business for 6 months, would you still recommend Ben’s course and this career to other stay-at-home moms?
Absolutely! The course has evolved, becoming even better. The community in Facebook is so great too. We are all in there supporting each other and helping out when we have questions. For stay-at-home moms looking for steady income, this is a great option. Picking a niche that you are interested in, and maybe even have worked in previously, will help you speak the language and break into these industries. If you offer great service and communication you will be golden and have clients who sing your praises to other business owners.
Thank you so much, Callie.
Callie finished Ben Robinson's 10-week online Bookkeeping Business course in September of 2015. Ben Robinson is a former CPA turned bookkeeper teacher. It is his mission to produce great bookkeepers for the many entrepreneurs that really need them.
He has developed an online, interactive course based on his own experiences of training bookkeepers for his clients when he owned an accounting business. He not only teaches his students the skills to become great bookkeepers, but he also teaches them the marketing side and how to do it virtually – from anywhere for clients anywhere.
Have you had any experiences with bookkeeping? Or with Ben's course? We would love to hear about your experiences.
Or do you have any questions for Callie or about the free course or full course? Start typing away! 🙂