I am proud to announce that Adonai Business Solutions, LLC is celebrating Twenty Years of being in business.
In many ways, it doesn’t seem that long ago. But for me, it was literally a lifetime ago. April of 2001 my son was born and I became a stay-at-home mom of two. And because having a newborn plus his two-year-old sister running around wasn’t enough chaos at the time, I decided to start my own business three months later. Thus, Adonai Business Solutions, LLC was born.
I get asked all the time…why did you go into business for yourself?
My “why” for starting my own business was simple…because of the babies. When our son was born, I worked in corporate. My entire paycheck went to putting two kids into daycare. So after much consideration, I became a stay-at-home mom. Now, we could have lived off of one income, but it would have been tight. So I started researching stay-at-home jobs. I dabbled in the medical transcription a bit. It gave me hives. Seriously, if I was going to have to memorize all those medical terms, I was going to go be a doctor. It was right about then that the company I left asked if I would work for them as a consultant for a few months. I could work from home & set my own hours. Shortly after that I came across the term virtual assistant and realized that is what I was doing. So hubby and I discussed it. We had a contractor come in and finish the basement with an office and play area for the kids. One day the contractor asked me what the office was for. I explained to him the business I was starting and he became my first paying client. While he was pounding nails in the basement, I was pounding the keys at my kitchen table.
Looking back, I can see how building a business is very much like raising a family. There are phases.
In the beginning, everything was fresh, new, and exciting. In preparation for the birth of our children we had names picked out long before they were born.Our daughter, Katlyn, was named after this cute little pumpkin we saw at a baseball game. Our son, Joshua, was named after Joshua from the bible. After watching the Veggie Tales cartoon Josh and the Big Wall more specifically. But coming up with a name for my business was a bit harder.
Originally, the business name was Virtual Assistant Services. Certainly said what it is we did, but man, was it a mouthful. Not to mention the email address was quite lengthily. It wasn’t until my husband and I attended a church service one evening where the pastor played this beautiful Jewish worship album titled Adonai that I knew what the name of the business should be. It was never meant to be a witnessing tool. It was more for me personally. The conversations I have had and the relationships that I have built simply because someone asked me how I came about that name for my business have truly been a blessing.
Also at the beginning, much like raising children, no one had a manual for running a virtual assistant business. Sure, there were a handful of people who had gone before me, but the virtual assistant industry was in its infancy, so those of us doing it were pretty much making it up as we went along. There was a lot of trial and error along the way.
Then came the toddler years. Both the business and the babies were starting to walk and before you knew it, they were off running, leaving me to catch my breath. Learning how to navigate boundaries between family and business was a challenge. The kids still needed me to be a mom and yet the business needed me to run it. I didn’t always get it right, but I hope I was able to show my kids that you can indeed raise a family and have a successful business simultaneously.
When the teenage years hit, I thought for sure I was going to lose my mind. School, sports, theatre, friends all kept us pretty busy family-wise. Add a business that was growing faster than I could keep up to the mix and things got pretty interesting there for a while. Luckily, like the baby & toddler phases before, things don’t stay the same for long around here. By moving the business into an agency model where I had team members who supported both me and our clients, my time was freed up to settle into a new schedule with the kids.
And just when we get into a new rhythm, things change again. The babies are now young adults and doing their own thing. They don’t need me as much as they once did. I have now shifted my primary focus from raising the babies to growing the business.
Looking back, a lot has changed over the past twenty years. The babies are no longer babies. The industry has evolved. Technology has changed. The business is growing into something more than just me. But there is one thing that has stayed consistent…I did not get to where I am today alone.
I would like to acknowledge a few people who, without their support, none of this would have been possible.
God – Without his presence in my life none of what I have accomplished both personally and professionally would have been possible.
Family – by spending time with the kids, you allowed me to have uninterrupted time to focus on the business.
Team Members – you have all heard me say this before…Adonai is nothing without its team. And I truly mean that. Whether you are a former team member or one that is still with me, you are the heartbeat of this company. I value your expertise and cherish your friendship.
Clients – one of my favorite things about running my own business is that I have the luxury of choosing who I want to work with. Some of you came into my life for a short period of time and others of you have been with me for years. It has been, and still is, an honor to be a part of your business.
Lauren (my bestie) – you have been my colleague, my confidant, my warm hug, my prayer warrior, my friend. Thank you for being there through it all. Thank you for simply being you.
Katy & Josh (the babies) – Without you, none of this would have been possible. You are literally the reason I started the business. I hope I have been able to show you that there is more to life than “just working”. That you don’t have to follow what society says is the norm…go to school, get a job, have a family, etc. You go out and follow your own dreams. Regardless of where that may lead you, I will be right there beside you cheering you on.
Andrew – I thank God every day that he gave me you. Thank you for giving me two beautiful babies and for walking side by side with me every day. You are my rock, my sounding board, my partner in life. Thank you for being the logical one so I can be the visionary one. Thank you for believing in me even when I don’t.
Just to put twenty years into perspective, during this time we have seen the invention of smartphones, social media and emojis, Wifi, Uber & Air BnB, how movies are filmed, and the graphics in video games are now movie-like. We have also had the 1st African American President and the legalization of marijuana and same-sex marriage. Unfortunately, we have also seen 9/11, Hurricane Sandy & others that followed, and COVID-19.
I have no idea what the next twenty years will bring. What will the virtual assistant industry & online businesses as a whole look like? What will the next wave of technology look like? What major events will shape our lives going forward?
What about you? What do you think the next twenty years will hold? Comment below. I would love to know your thoughts.