April 24, 2013

Interview with Sai Prasad from iDating Assistant

Work at Home Wednesday

Name: Sai Prasad   Company: iDating Assistant

Please tell us about your business:   I am Sai Prasad, Founder of iDating Assistant – the innovative new online dating resource for time-strapped professionals. At iDating Assistant, our mantra is simple: We Work. You Date.

Today’s successful professionals are often unlucky in love simply because they lack the time it takes to navigate the online dating scene. From finding the right site, creating a compelling profile, pouring over thousands of prospects and then relentlessly trying to interest one in a date – it’s no wonder that so many hard-working professionals leave their love lives unattended.

That’s exactly why we’ve created iDating Assistant – the new outsourcing service in online dating. We make dating fun, exciting and simple for busy professionals.
iDating Assistant isn’t a dating service. 

What we do is let overworked young professionals delegate the minutiae of the online dating process to their very own online date manager, who provides one-on-one personalized service throughout the entire dating cycle.

With the help of an iDating Assistant, clients no longer have to endure so many of the inherent stresses and time-wasters associated with internet dating. We pre-screen candidates to make sure only the best prospects make it onto the radar. We help to craft compelling profiles and offer photo retouching services to help attract only the most promising new dates. 

We write and send customized emails and even text messages to keep the communication flowing. We even help to plan dates and offer date follow-up and coaching. All that’s left for iDating Assistant clients is the joy and excitement of the dates themselves.

How long have you been working from home?   I have been working from home for the last two years.

Do you work from home full time or part time?  Full time
How do you stay connected with colleagues in your field?   I always make it a priority to schedule at least one lunch with either a past colleague or a new acquaintance.

Meeting up for coffee is another great opportunity to touch base with old friends or meet new business contacts. The casual nature is also well suited to further understand the needs of potential customers.

Meet up is another venue that I see has great potential to get a pulse of on ground information on what is really happening in your industry.

In addition to this, there are the usual suspects that I take advantage of: Phone, Email, Video chatting via Skype & Social media tools.

How do you deal with the isolating nature of working from home? As a professional, notwithstanding the fact that you are working from home or a corporate office, you are always under constant pressure and stress to deliver. As a work from home professional you have isolation on top of it.

The first step is acknowledging that isolation is the nature of beast when you have chosen this path and it is here to stay. The good news is, one of the luxury afforded is, you are in total control of your work schedule. 

I spice up my routine by switching my schedule as well doing things in between just for the fun. Say, I go for a walk out of the blue when confronted with a complex problem and I am in need of motivation for out of the box thinking. There were even times that I worked from a coffee shop, chatting in between with total strangers.

How do you stay motivated without the accountability of a "time clock"?   I made it a priority to separate my work space from home, this provides me a semi-quasi notion of working from a corporate office and helps me put in a “Work-Zone” mode. If there are instances where I am stuck with a particular issue, I take my mind off by thinking about side projects.

I also use a “carrot and stick policy” on myself. I am a sucker for movies, I hold off watching it till I at least make reasonable progress with my work for the day. 

Coming to the stick, “FEAR” is a such a powerful motivator, first off I remember the reasons why I wanted to work from home and ask  myself, “So, let’s see, whom should I blame if things don’t work around”. The answer prods me to stick to a “time schedule” or work twice hard if I slack off.

Finally, I maintain a support group of friends & peers, they may not understand my exact challenges, but it is a great relief to have someone to talk to.

What are the biggest challenges you face when working from home?  The biggest challenge for me is the volume of work. Without the luxury of a corporate structure in place, as a business owner considerable amount of time is spent in administrative tasks. This takes time from my core areas that are revenue generating and which need constant attention.

The second one would be "instant networking", as a work from home professional you have to be proactive and go the extra mile to network as compared to the opportunities that are presented in a corporate office.

Do you work in your underwear?   No

What is the best part about working from home?   The most key benefit working from home provides me the prerogative to choose projects that I know I am passionate about and that I know can positively impact people’s life’s. There is also the luxury to work at my convenience and pace. It is always a plus that there isn’t a boss breathing down your neck about a deadline.

What is the one item that you find vital to have in your home office?  My Smart Phone. By consolidating all my email accounts & all the apps, it is a single point of information for my quick reference that saves me valuable time.

What is the one piece of advice that you can give to those just starting out working from home?  Focus on your core and revenue generating areas. Get help or outsource your administrative tasks, don’t fall into the notion that you have to do everything all by yourself.

You wouldn’t believe that a simple task like maintaining an expense report will take up some much of your valuable time that could have otherwise been spent on mission critical tasks.

Continue the conversation... 
Facebook  Sai Prasad Facebook iDating Assistant Google Plus +Sai Prasad Twitter @iDatingAsst                                        

If you are an entrepreneur that works from home and would like to be highlighted in an interview.  please submit your information here.

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