Caroline Wylie, Co-Founder of the Society of Virtual Assistants provides an insight to her top tips …
Once you have made the decision to enter a virtual assistant award, your next step is to get organised for the application process. The sooner you start, the better.
Here are a few tips on how to prepare for a virtual assistant award.
- Set up a calendar and a checklist of the tasks to be completed, with deadlines for each task. Stick to it. Before you start to complete your entry, have a look at prior awards. Focus on the finalists and winners from the previous years and see what you can learn from them. This will give you an idea of the standard you need to be at, in order to be nominated.
- Make sure you read all the rules, including any fine print before you start any writing. Follow all the submission instructions, if you are in doubt about anything you can contact the award organisers for more information. Be aware of how many words you are expected to write, don’t exceed it. Stick to the guidelines set out by the judges and be sure to answer the questions, don’t waffle.
- Tailor your entry to the category you are entering. If you are applying for more than one category, don’t submit the same pitch, you have to write a completely separate pitch for each category. Think about the story you are trying to tell, try and put some personality into your story, be you. Let the judges know why you think you feel deserve to win, highlight the goals that you have accomplished.
- Put yourself in the judge’s shoes, they have lots of entries to go through before making a decision, so try to make your entry engaging and easy to read. Tell the truth, don’t make claims you can’t back up with evidence. If you have additional material to include in your application, make sure it is relevant to your submission. Also, if you are allowed use images and videos, keep the videos short.
- Take care to fill in all the relevant sections. Spend adequate time on each one, and don’t leave any sections uncompleted. Having an incomplete part of your application, may reduce your overall score, and so lessen your chances of making it to the next stage.
- Once you have finished writing, make sure you take the necessary time to proof-read your entry, to ensure that there are no grammatical errors or spelling mistakes. If possible, get someone else to review your submission so as to give you an objective opinion. Finally, make sure you get your entry in ahead of the submission deadline.
These tips should help you get ready for a virtual assistant award. Avoid any last-minute rush by giving yourself plenty of time to complete your entry. Don’t forget to include some time for the unexpected. Also, remember that there are always things you can do to make your entry stand out from the crowd and improve your chances of getting shortlisted for the final.