Proofreading and updating your materials

Proofreading

Proofreading

You just bought a book from your favorite writer. You make yourself comfortable, coffee on the table, feet up and you start to read. Page 5, spelling error; page 9, grammar error; page 16 punctuation mistake and from there it goes on and on. What do you do? Do you read on and ignore it? Or do you put the book down, disappointed in your favorite writer?

Does it really matter whether you proofread and update your PROFESSIONAL materials?

As a Virtual Assistant, I have seen many websites, blogs, articles and blogs with spelling mistakes, grammar and punctuation mistakes. Mxit language does NOT go with professional materials – even if it is easier to write… Contact details need to be updated at all times. You are losing prospective and current clients when your contact details are incorrect. Not everyone will do the effort to Google you to find out what your new contact details are. And then, as I mentioned, spelling, grammar and punctuation. A mistake on your documents, website, blog, articles and materials are a red mark on your company, your brand and yourself. It is a reflection on your services. Unfortunately they immediately score you less, based only on your mistakes. You can offer them the best services, prices, products, etc., what they will remember are the mistakes.

Here are some tips that might help:

Firstly: When you publish material, you want the reader to READ that material. With Mxit and Whatsapp these days, unfortunately people do not spell as correctly as a few years back. But that does not mean you can apply that spelling to your professional material as well.

  1. Make sure your language settings are correct – UK English vs. US English makes a use difference, e.g. standardise vs. standardize – the s and the z in these two languages will always differ;
  2. Grammar – is / are / am – make sure ONE person IS always singular and more people ARE plural. I AM always except in the past tense. I ARE NOT!
  3. Punctuation:
  • Bullet lists gets a semi colon (;) behind every sentence except the last sentence gets a full stop;
  • If you work with numbered lists, make sure of your indents – as you can see in this post – the main list(s) are either indented in the left margin (0) or at the very left;

(i) If you have multilevel lists, you indent them further – that way your reader will see that you have multilevel lists.

Secondly: UPDATE your material. If you have information that change – either products, prices, contact details, etc.; make sure you UPDATE your website. Nothing chases a client away faster than incorrect, outdated information on a website.

The same goes for your materials. If you read a brochure and they talk about 2010’s statistics, are you going to take them seriously? Or you know that the CEO of the company resigned 5 years’ ago, but they sing his / her praises, what will think of them?

If you want to make sure your website, blog, material, articles, etc. are up to standard why not get a Virtual Assistant to proofread your stuff? We have an eye for detail, we are that third-eye that can pick up mistakes (the writer reads that they think they wrote) and we do not charge as much as a professional proof-reader! A Virtual Assistant can also help you in so many other ways, you will be astounded!

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I am a Virtual Assistant! “A What???”

I help educated professionals whose biggest need is to have more time in their day, at the end of the week and / or during the month. I help them get more time for business, potential business, family and personal time.
I do this by taking everyday admin off their schedules, doing tedious, time wasting tasks and saving them money at the same time.

  • I’ve captured information for a geologist of over 900 entries in MS Excel while he continued with his other projects;
  • A profiling company entrusted over 200 job profiles to me for typing in less than 3 weeks;
  • I’ve helped students with the transcription of their MBA interviews;
  • I typed a manual of 500 pages in 5 days!

No job is too big or too small for Amazing Admin Assist. So why choose me? What makes me unique?

  • I type 100wpm;
  • I’m honest and trustworthy;
  • I proofread my own work;
  • My work is my passion and,
  • I add that personal touch to my work;
  • I care about EVERY project AND every client.

Amazing Admin Assist works WITH you, so if you succeed, I succeed. I’m in your corner, without being in your face.

Amazing Admin Assist
Service with a Smile

2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The new Boeing 787 Dreamliner can carry about 250 passengers. This blog was viewed about 1,400 times in 2012. If it were a Dreamliner, it would take about 6 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

WIIFM – How can I help you?

By now you probably heard about Virtual Assistants, VA’s or internet PA’s. But you are also probably thinking they can’t help you. How can someone help you when they are not in your office, seeing how you work, understanding the pressure you are feeling and experiencing?

That is the point of a VA. We take the pressure away.

Read my latest blog post – WIIFM – on What is in it for YOU – how can a VA help YOU. Even though she is working in her own office.

WIIFM – What’s in it for me – an article written on YOUR BEHALF.

 

My computer and I aren’t soul mates – part 2

There is a saying “Intel inside, idiot outside” and when I started working on a computer, that got me furious. Of course computer companies would say that – they would think they are perfect!

But as I got to know a little more about computers and what my part in computer problems are, the more true the saying began to become. Let’s face it – a computer is ONLY a machine! You are the human, the brains, the supposed intelligence…

Sometimes I can really laugh at myself. I don’t have the newest or the biggest or the most expensive computer, but it is a computer that fits my needs – it is fast enough, big enough, has all the software I need and overall I am very happy with my desktop computer. So when it gives me trouble, I am immediately fire-and-brimstone mad! What is your problem? I do not have money to upgrade you! I take care of you? What can possibly be your problem?

Hehehehe – oops.

The wonderful world of updates. I can actually write a book about this. That little yellow icon in the right-hand side of your screen, at the bottom that says “Microsoft Updates“. Know that one? If you don’t – read on. If you do, you know what I’m talking about! So read on anyways and have a good laugh at my expense!

Microsoft – love it or hate it, we all need it. Except if you are a Linux guru or you have super-power knowledge in Apple (I’m more an Avo person…) and if you have Microsoft, you have the love-hate relationship with Microsoft Updates.

A few years back, if an update came out, everyone ran, because that meant computers crashing, hanging, bombing, stopping, blue-screens-of-death, and worse – not that I know what is worse than that horrible blue-screen-of-death! I’ve had more of those than I had … dreams of falling. But luckily Microsoft had a bright moment and upgraded their updates and updated their updates and now Microsoft updates are fairly safe for the ordinary human being to do on their computers.

So the first tip I want to give you in this post is: Microsoft Updates are safe again! You can put your updates on automatic! How? Go to Control Panel – Automatic Updates – and you will see a few options:

Microsoft Update ScreenAs you can see, mine are set on Automatic (recommended). That way my computer will download the updates automatically, install them and tell me if I must restart my computer. I love this option because then I don’t get pop-up screens telling me there is updates, or I must install updates, or even worse – my updates are not up to date!

TAKE NOTE: These updates are only the EXPRESS and ESSENTIAL updates. There are more updates available on http://windowsupdate.microsoft.com/ – select “custom”. (This website can also be found if you click on start – and if you scroll to the top of your menu you will see “Windows Updates”) There you will find updates that are not crucial to your computer such as hardware updates e.g. for your screen, graphics, sound, software updates for e.g. Windows Media Player, MS Office, etc. These updates you can CHOOSE to install if you want and when you want. Read the description under the update and decide.

Tip number 2: Keep those updates updated. It happened to me that my .Net Framework updates got mixed up and I skipped one update. Now don’t ask me how, I don’t have super-powers in .Net Framework, but a long story short, one .Net update did not happen and when my MS updates wanted to update again, I got error upon error upon error. The result? I had to uninstall ALL my .Net updates, and start over! And you can only download and install one update at a time, some of which you must restart your computer, of course. I was not amused.

Another update that had me flabbergasted was a Windows Media Player update – I run Windows XP (I know I know – old fashioned) and I didn’t read what the update said so I downloaded the newest Media Player there was and updated it. It didn’t work. I went into the settings, tried everything but Media Player looked at me and did nothing! So, frustrated and irritated, I uninstalled Media Player, went back to Microsoft’s site and a little light bulb appeared – read what it says. Microsoft Windows 7. OK, I knew that…. I was just … being an idiot and waste 2 hours of my time!

So tip number 3? Read what the update is about!

Overall Microsoft updates are a joy and a pleasure – it makes your computer safer, faster and fixed problems in Microsoft programs that they didn’t pick up when they programmed it. And with the hackers and spammers these days, you can never be too careful with your protection of your computer.

In my next post I will be writing about the joys of Anti Viruses (flue vaccines for computers) – I hope to see you there!

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