Today’s work-at-home spotlight features Justin Boynton, owner of watchmygreen.com. Justin is a banker-turned-virtual-bookkeeper in March of 2017. In this interview, Justin tells us why he got started in bookkeeping and how it’s helped him schedule his work around family instead of his family into work.
He also imparts some great insight on what you should keep in mind when you’re first building your business, including the importance of process-documenting and relationship-building.
As far as careers for stay at home dads go, Justin proves that virtual bookkeeping is a viable opportunity. If this is a line of work that interests you, you'll definitely want to read this interview!
UPDATE: We caught up with Justin in February, 2022. There have been some major developments in his business since our original interview. You can read about his progress here.
Over to you, Justin!
1. Can you describe a little of your background and how you got started working from home?
I was a retail banker for 15 years. We bought a new house in November 2016 to accommodate our growing family. Then, a month after being there, we found out unexpectedly that my wife was pregnant again!
After celebrating that, we were breaking down the numbers and found out that we were going to have 3 kids in daycare at once and with our current budget, we needed a little extra income. So, I started to look for ways to make money at home that I could do on a part-time basis. That's when I found Bookkeeper Launch.
2. What made you decide to take Bookkeeper Launch?
I watched the free videos they provided and Ben instilled confidence in me that I could do this part-time, from home, and still keep my daytime job.
3. What does your typical workday look like?
I start off by taking my kids to daycare. I then get home and look at my list of items to do for the day/week and prioritize the things to get done. And then, I simply get to work. I do have things to do throughout the day that require me to take the kids here and there and my business allows me to do that because of the flexibility of it.
4. What is your favorite aspect of working from home?
Flexibility and the fact that I am building a business that is my own. I am not doing things that a corporation tells me to, but rather, I am building it the way I want to.
5. Were there any unexpected challenges in starting your home business?
Yes, I wish I would have started documenting processes first before taking on clients. I would have saved a lot of time now if I did that in the beginning. Sometimes there are distractions when my wife and kids are home for the summer, but I have been able to work around those by scheduling time to do family stuff, and then fitting the business tasks around those.
6. What would you say is the most important skill to be a great bookkeeper?
The ability to build relationships with clients. The skills of bookkeeping can be learned through education and trial and error, but the relationships we build are paramount to those.
7. How long did it take to fill up your client roster?
I got my first client in March of 2017 while I was still working, and I was able to leave my job in October 2017 with a full roster of clients.
And we have been growing ever since.
8. How many hours do you work a week?
Right now it is about 50, but in the next few months, that should move to 30 or so because I have hired people to do a lot of the work, which frees me up to work ON my business, rather than IN my business.
9. Has your business helped your family reach certain financial goals?
It has, but it has been slower than I thought. But, with the changes being made, I am confident that this will pay off big time in the end.
10. Do you feel that bookkeeping is a good work-from-home career option for stay-at-home parents?
100%, especially since Bookkeeper Launch teaches you how to do the bookkeeping tasks, along with the business-building tasks. It has helped me prioritize the fact that I can fit my business around my family, and not the other way around. I can plan my week based on what my family and I need, rather than planning my family activities around my business.
11. Any advice for moms or dads who are thinking about becoming a virtual bookkeeper?
If you are starting off, document processes from the beginning. Once you have those in place, it makes growing so much easier. Ultimately, if someone has a dream to own a business and have the flexibility to do things with the family, Bookkeeper Launch is no doubt a great way to accomplish that.
If you are on the fence, jump! You won't regret it!
Thank you, Justin!
If the BL course is something you’re interested in, you’ll want to head over to our comprehensive review. The course creator, Ben Robinson, is always updating and adding new content, and we always make sure our review is up to date with the latest additions!
Remember, you can read our February 2022 update with Justin right here.
Wondering if there are any other student success stories? We’ve got those too! Be sure to check out our interviews with Bookkeeper Launch grads Jackie Snaza, Holly Ferris, Amy McLaughry and Callie Sitek!
Are you curious about careers for stay-at-home dads? What do you think about virtual bookkeeping? Share in the comments!