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Midlands VA Conference – 5th June 2024

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For the first time ever, the PA Forum will be hosting its inaugural Midlands VA Conference on Wednesday 5th June 2024, alongside it’s L&D Conference which is now in its 7th year and is one of the most economical conferences outside of London for business support professionals.

This is the first VA Conference in the Midlands so come and join us for what promises to be an incredible day!

A full day, in-person event, filled with inspirational, aspirational, and educational keynotes, sessions, and seminars from a lineup of well-known and established VAs, trainers and influencers from the VA industry and content that will support VAs at all points in their career – from those thinking about stepping into the VA world or in the early days of their business, right through to experienced VAs and business owners.

All the content is designed to ensure that attendees leave feeling motivated with tangible and actionable takeaways.

The day provides an opportunity for you to connect in-person with VAs from across the country.

Join us from 8am-5pm at Millennium Point, Birmingham.

Full timings and schedule to be confirmed.

Included within the price of your ticket is 2 x keynote speaker sessions, 4 x breakout sessions covering a variety of topics, breakfast pastries, 2 course buffet lunch and refreshments throughout the day.

We have negotiated reduced accommodation rates at a local Hotel if you would like to stay the night before (please enquire for more details)

Our Speakers confirmed so far include:

Lucy Brazier OBE, CEO, Executive Support Media (Main Theatre Host and Keynote Speaker)

Professor Corinne Hoisington, Artificial Intelligence (AI) Keynote Speaker

“The Essential VA Toolbox” – Amanda Johnson, VA Coach & Mentor, VACT Limited (VA Conference Host & Breakout Session)

“Networking & Nerves” – Hayley Hudson, VA & Owner, Hudson Admin Support

“Your Sales Pipeline” – Steph Middleton-Foster, CEO & Founder, Configure Me This & Outhouse UK

“Virtual Assistant Career Journeys & Pathways ” Panel Discussion

Rebecca Mander FInstLM, GuruYou

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Lucy Brazier OBE, CEO, Executive Support Media (Main Theatre Host and Keynote Speaker)

As CEO of Marcham Publishing, specialist publishers of Executive Support Magazine – a global training magazine dedicated to the professional development needs of senior and aspiring administrative professionals – Lucy works with the best trainers of Executive Assistants from around the world to deliver the most up-to-date and current training in the market.

Her passion is for the Assistant role to be truly recognised as a career and not just a job. Her formidable training expertise and speaking style have given her opportunities to train, present and emcee events in over 50 countries at over 450 events including Chairing the 2015 World Administrator Summit in Papua New Guinea and co-facilitating the same event in Frankfurt in 2018. This has created much-needed discussions ranging from encouraging Executive Assistants to work towards becoming centres of excellence within their companies, to explaining why college students should see the Assistant role as a proper profession with a career path. The work being conducted worldwide on career paths, job titles and education for Assistants is one of her key drivers and she is working with some of the most recognisable companies on the planet to consult on restructuring and training their Business Support functions.

Lucy has a unique overview of the role and where it is heading. With access to the most forward-thinking, passionate and knowledgeable trainers and administrative business leaders in the world, as well as personally meeting and speaking to literally thousands of Assistants over the last 10 years, Lucy’s knowledge of the market and what Assistants all over the world are facing on a day-to-day basis are second to none.

In 2021 Lucy was awarded an OBE for services to office professionals. She has also received an Honorary Fellowship to the Institute of Administrative Management – one of the oldest management institutes in the world having inspired professional business managers and administrators since 1915 – in recognition of her work to drive the profession forward.

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Professor Corinne Hoisington, Artificial Intelligence (AI) Keynote Speaker

Corinne promises to make you love AI !

Corinne Hoisington is a full-time Professor of Information Systems Technology at Central Virginia Community College in Lynchburg, VA training our future Executive Assistants, Personal Assistants, and Admins.

Corinne has travelled to over 70 worldwide cities providing keynote motivational topics and training to corporations, small businesses, admin conferences for such customers as the Microsoft Corporation, Executive Assistant Live London/Johannesburg/Sydney/Wellington, Prague World Economic Forum, Cengage Learning, the international South by Southwest event, APC Conference, Capital One World Admins day, and many others.

Professor Hoisington is the recipient of the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional in Business and Computing.

Corinne presently has authored over thirty textbooks with Cengage Learning/National Geographic such as the Microsoft Outlook 365, Office 365, Windows 11, Technology Now, and Visual Basic.

SESSION AND KEYNOTE: In the Blink of an AI: Productivity New Superpowers

Unlock the potential of AI-driven innovation with Generative AI and Art AI!

Join our interactive workshop to explore the cutting-edge capabilities of AI and CoPilot — discover how it can revolutionize your automation of the tasks that are NOT our favourite in the office.

In this AI session, you’ll learn how to harness the power of AI to boost productivity, enhance creativity, and streamline your daily tasks. Understand how AI and Copilot can speed up the innovation process by automating repetitive tasks, allowing you to focus on creative problem-solving. Let’s kick up our superpowers!

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Amanda Johnson, VA Coach & Mentor, VACT Limited (VA Conference Host & Breakout Session)

“The Essential VA Toolbox”

Whether you’re considering a dive into the world of virtual assistance, or a seasoned pro looking to refine your toolkit, this session has something for you.

Key Learning Objectives:

  • Build your foundation: Gain clarity on the essential skills, tools, and resources needed to thrive as a UK-based VA, regardless of your experience level.
  • Elevate your expertise: Discover advanced strategies and resources to boost your efficiency, productivity, and value proposition, taking your VA business to the next level.
  • Explore emerging trends and in-demand skills to future-proof your VA career and ensure you remain competitive in the ever-evolving landscape.
  • Stay ahead of the curve: Discover effective client acquisition techniques, valuable pricing models, and practical methods for building a sustainable and profitable virtual practice.

Don’t miss this opportunity to learn from Amanda and equip yourself with the tools you need to succeed in the exciting world of Virtual Assistants.

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Hayley Hudson, VA & Owner, Hudson Admin Support

“Networking & Nerves” 

A personal journey of resilience and growth, inspiring you to embrace vulnerability, celebrate victories and connect with like-minded individuals in your entrepreneurial journey.

  1. Gain actionable tips and strategies for overcoming nerves and self-doubt, empowering you to approach challenges with confidence and focus on your success.
  2. Understand the power of networking and learn practical ways to build a supportive community around you to create growth opportunities, both personal and business.
  3. Learn how to reconnect with the original version of yourself and how to define and stick to boundaries to avoid burnout or stress.
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Steph Middleton-Foster, CEO & Founder, Configure Me This & Outhouse UK

“Your Sales Pipeline” 

One of the primary challenges faced by VAs is how to get clients. This session will address the challenges of utilising and understanding tech, AI & software, and how these factors will impact your virtual businesses. This is particularly crucial for those who are new to the industry and may not fully grasp the nuances of running a small business.

This will be run as a workshop session, to try and encourage you (our guests) to look at the opportunities they have OR could have and will work by setting each table a different working topic to present back to the group.

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"Virtual Assistant Career Journeys & Pathways " Panel Discussion

Amanda Johnson, VA Coach & Mentor, VACT Limited (Host)

Paddy White, VA & Owner, Virtual Diamond (Panellist)

Helen Martin, VA & Owner, Aggrandise VA (Panellist)

Steph Middleton-Foster, CEO & Founder, Configure Me This & Outhouse UK (Panellist)

Mel Bates, VA & Owner, Elite EA (Panellist)

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Rebecca Mander FInstLM, GuruYou

Up until 2014, founder of GuruYou™- Rebecca Mander, was Managing Director of global consumer goods company Smartwares. There, she led the UK subsidiary through great organisational change following the global economic crisis with her unique leadership style which has recently gained her a fellowship with the Institute of Leadership and Management. During her time in leadership, as well as professional challenges she also experienced great personal hardship. Motivated by her experiences, she decided to retrain at Warwick University as an executive coach and is now one of the few coaches experienced to coach personal setback as well as professional challenges.

Rebecca is highly valued for her straightforward and honest approach with compassion and understanding in sectors that bring great stress and challenges to their employees. Her 15-year experience at board level teamed with her accredited skills in executive coaching make a winning combination. Her approach is warm, empathetic, and supportive and whilst Rebecca is encouraging, she also understands the need to build resilience, develop new perspectives and better self-awareness to improve performance in leadership.

SESSION & KEYNOTE: You will leave Rebecca’s talk, inspired and ready for action!

By the end of 45 minutes working together you will.

  • Learn the path from victim to victor.
  • Understand the power of delegation.
  • Know what resilience is and is not.
  • Have tools to help you move forward when you feel you don’t have a choice.
  • Feel encouraged to move outside of your comfort zone!
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