Our SmartPA of the month is Harinder. We caught up with her to hear all about how far she's coming since joining our Partnership community!

"I never really thought about running my own business before approaching SmartPA - I never quite knew what sort of business I could run so I always turned to employment rather than running a business in my earlier 20s. I liked the idea of the virtual model because it is so simple to work with your clients remotely and all that is really required is determination, a desk and laptop to run the business. Technology means there’s no worry about losing clients’ work and plenty of modern trust in the virtual system. Thanks to regular calls and programmes like Slack, communication is easy and efficient. I haven’t even met in person either of the clients SmartPA gave me in my first year of business.

SmartPA appealed to me because they provide an open-ended opportunity where I can work as much or as little as needed. It gives me work security and I can choose my own hours to work from the comfort of my own home.

A bit about me; I’m an enthusiastic home business owner and bookkeeper who is passionate about supporting small businesses and individuals. In my spare time, I enjoy doing yoga, socializing and doing meditation. Before SmartPA, I worked in a family-run Post Office as a counter clerk. It feels like a different time!

Nowadays, I do all sorts for my clients, like bookkeeping, data entry, research, social media management, document production, travel management, transcription, buying gifts, occasional call handling and other back office tasks. The weirdest request I ever had was to research ND panels for a television production company - I had no idea what ND panels were until I Googled!

To future Partners, I would say that you always have a great support system to help and guide you throughout the whole process as a SmartPA Partner. The challenges are worthwhile because they expand your horizons - both in business and personally; I’ve learnt a lot about myself in the last few years. The ongoing learning and support from SmartPA, mentorship programs and regional meetings with the local ambassadors and Partners from the network make it so worthwhile. As I’m still in the junior stage of my business, I have secured a lot of work from other Partners, but also with clients of my own via networking groups and social media. As everything is online these days, winning your own clients with SmartPA’s social media sales strategy is so rewarding.

Probably my best memory was visiting a potential client who was a disabled, housebound young woman - after I left she gave only positive messages to me that I had sold the SmartPA services extremely well and it gave me such a boost of confidence. I feel like now I have some good selling skills which I never thought I would!"

What piece of advice would you give to your younger self?

"To worry less in life and always be happy!"

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