All the clients that the AVirtual team works alongside bring their own personality and profession to this dynamic work environment. We haven’t taken an in-depth look at our clients for a while and thought it was high time we did. This week we spoke to Dermot McLaughlin, client to Carrie Hickman.

When asked to describe Dermot, Carrie had this to say:

“Dermot is probably my funniest client in terms of humor. We have the most amazing conversations (veering off path often) but he has taught me so much about his industry. We often discuss the differences between South Africa and the UK and he is just filled with useless trivia which always keeps the conversations interesting. When Dermot first took on a virtual PA he really struggled to know what to hand over and let us help with. Now we have a solid relationship and he keeps me in the loop with everything that is going on in the business and I offer suggestions with how AVirtual can assist.”

We pride ourselves in relationships we get to form with our clients, and Dermot proves just that. This is what he had to say.

About the Business Owner

Company: Hadley Brook Renewable Energy (HBRE)

Location: Warwickshire


What does your business do?

  • Provides full Part L compliance assessment and testing for both domestic and commercial new builds and renovations.
  • Provides design advice on energy efficiency and conservation
  • M&E Design
  • Design & Installation of both ground source and air source heat pumps

What is the most important thing to keep track of in business and why?

Cash flow without good cash flow management you can easily throttle your own business.

What are the most common difficulties you face daily?

There are so many to mention, too many in fact. The main ones would probably be:

  • Phone calls
  • Emails
  • Distractions
  • Poor calendar management (by me)

Describe your company’s culture in three words.

  • Honest
  • Pragmatic
  • Reliable

How would you describe your PA?

  • Forward thinking
  • Creative
  • Challenges our current status quo all the time – which is exactly what I wanted

What are your top tips for delegating?

  • Stop thinking you can do everything better than anyone else
  • Don’t be afraid to let go of things you currently do
  • Assess what is the real value add jobs that “you need to do” shed everything else
  • Understand it will take time to get it 100% right but good delegation will make you and your business better immediately even though it’s not 100% right first or even second time.

Why are you using AVirtual?

There was a glass ceiling in my business stopping growth – ME.

Engaging AVirtual has allowed me the freedom to start to step back from everything I was doing and allow me to focus on what I should be doing and what we needed to do to develop and move forward and grow.

What would you say to someone who is unsure about hiring a virtual personal assistant?

I wished I had done it sooner as I am 100% sure that our business would have grown quicker and better if we had engaged AVirtual earlier.



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