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  • Sondra

    I figure the best blog to start with is Who is Sondra Ray. I am a businesswoman who owns Sondra Ray VA company for the last 15 months. I am also a wife to a lovely redheaded awesome man. I am a mother to 5 children and I have a son-in-law who I claimed as my own for the last 5 years. I am soon to be a first time grandma. I am the oldest of two children even if my little brother is way taller than me like a foot taller. Our parents raised us in southern Indiana around Bloomington area….Go Hooosiers!!

    I attended one year of college in Minnesota and then took a long break. I went back to college and graduated with my BSW from Eastern Michigan University. I have worked for the state of Michigan for over 15 years in various departments.

    I love my business and I love my 2-year-old pitbull!! When I have free time it’s usually spent with family watching t.v. Or movies. I also like puzzles and reading. I am been on a health journey for over 6 years that has completely changed me physically and mentally and emotionally. I love to do personal development and grateful for a large healthy support community.

    Family picture at my daughter baby shower
    We celebrated my first grandchild…missing one son.
    I look forward to sharing about me and about how I found my passion to do goal accountability and how fun I have cheered on business owners. Thanks

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  • Sondra

    How did my business start? Let’s go back 2 years ago when I started helping a friend who was running two business and needed some administrative services. I helped him out when I could then he moved away. He decided we would meet once a week by video conference and he would update me on the businesses status and set goals for the week. I would organized meeting notes into action plans. I set up trello board to help him see progress. I would do some research for information for content for his client’s websites. I did this for several months. I started doing some social media things for him on two Facebook pages.

    Jospeh and I will always have a bond as we are now family.
    I seen that there was a free webinar for Moms Work Hard course. I took the webinar and ended up getting the course. It was awesome to learn that there are over 150 different services virtual assistant can do! I took a small break after finishing course for my daughter’s wedding. I then started joining groups on facebook and found an internship.

    I did an internship and learned a lot about a few different services. I ended up getting hired by owner as her virtual assistant. She turned into my first goal accountability client. I have found that I love cheering on people and that I am great at helping people figure out action steps. I have learned many ways to help people and will continue to keep learning new skills. Thanks

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  • Sondra

    The dictionary defines a goal as “the object of a person’s ambition or effort; an aimed or desired result”. I define a goal as the desired result a person plans and commits to achieve. I feel that there are five types of goals: yearly (long term goals), quarterly (medium-term goals), monthly (short term goals), weekly, and daily. Although, daily goals are more like tasks or steps towards your weekly goals.

    Setting goals is one thing, following through to their achievement however, requires perseverance and accountability. The goal accountability process will look different for each person. The basic definition is being held responsible to someone until you reach the goal(s). Research by ASTD shows that you boost your chances of reaching your goals by 65% by committing to someone that you will do the work. I offer goal accountability in the all form of monthly, weekly, daily or several times a day check-ins.

    My own personal experience with goal accountability started six years ago, when I decided to begin a health journey to lose weight. Let’s just say, it took me a bit to get the hang of not only writing out my goals, but also creating an action plan to see them materialize. I also struggled in finding the type of accountability I needed but once I figured out I was a people pleaser and how I could use that to my advantage! (what?) With the proper support, I lost over 100 pounds and went from a size 22 to a size 12!

    two years apart
    I now apply the knowledge I gained to my business supporting business owners to reach their goals. I love being a part of other business owners success; whether that is in holding them accountable to achieve their goals, or assisting in the administrative front to organize or act in their capacity as to free up their valuable time!

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  • Sondra

    We all know that we should set goals, but what do you do with the goals afterward? The answer is getting accountability.

    Today, I am talking about accountability and why 75% more people reach their goals with accountability!

    I use accountability in my personal and business life. Personally, in my health journey, to keep me on track with my mental, physical, and spiritual health. The accountability groups I have been a part of for my physical health could be competitive, I have won things following through on my goals.

    Professionally, I stay accountable by utilizing the services of a business coach; participating in a mastermind program, and plugging into a daily business accountability call and girl tribe group! I prefer smaller group accountability as it still allows me to be shy until I get to know people.

    My business coach Danielle lives in another state but happened to be in Michigan for a day so of course, we had to meet up!
    Accountability just works! Check out these proven and researched tidbits…
    1.Definition…let’s start with the basic definition of accountability. According to the Oxford Dictionary, accountability is the fact of the condition of being accountable and held responsible. I see accountability as a people-pleasing personality that I don’t want to let people down.

    1. How do you figure out what level of accountability works for you? You can take personality tests to get results on what may or may not work. I just try different methods and various people and groups until I find what works best for me.

    2. Types of accountability vary depending on what your needs are and what works for you. There is accountability to oneself, friends, clients, groups, coaches, and/or paid professionals.

    3. Tracking your goals and your accountability to do’s is the best way to figure out what methods are working and not working. You want to celebrate your wins no matter how small you think that is…celebrating can be telling yourself a good job or perhaps sharing on social media. Recognition is key… award yourself with something new or adventure out and do that favorite thing when you hit your goal(s)!

    4. When you’re working with accountability partners or professionals, you need to establish what style works best with you. How often do you need check-ins? How will you communicate? Do you need someone who is very firm or gentle? Who will you listen to and TAKE ACTION FOR? Do you need someone who is super energetic or someone who offers calming energy?

    5. Investing in accountability helps motivate people to achieve success through follow-through. It also gives you someone who can be objective, coaching you to take consistent action steps. Working together, an accountability partner can help prioritize those next action steps to make the most efficient use of time.

    Figure out what type of puzzle pieces you need to be held accountable.
    I am the type of person people can bounce emotions, ideas, and goals off of…gentle enough to listen, yet educated and firm enough to set healthy next steps. I also find, when a client panics or feels overwhelmed, I am an encourager, reminding them just how far they have come, and HAVE ALREADY accomplished! Accountability helps my clients get, set, and stay in a more positive mindset!

    Masterminding together is so helpful in goal accountability.

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  • Sondra

    This post does contain affiliate links

    We all have our favorite business and organization tools to get things done. These tools help me create organization and efficiency so that I can get things done in my business and while providing Virtual Assistant Services to my clients. Here are a few of my most used tools.

    Trello
    I use both Trello and Asana for the organization of my own business, but I prefer to use Trello for working with my goal accountability clients. Trello and Asana can both be used for free, but I find that each platform has different strengths while working in my own business and with clients.

    Dubsado
    Dubsado is my client management system. I love that I can set up the scheduling calendar, invoice, and manage leads and clients all in one system. I use workflows to automate the next steps for onboarding my clients and collecting any information that I need from them. This really frees up my time. To get a 20% off coupon, you can click here! https://www.dubsado.com/?c=rayva

    Zoom
    I use Zoom for video conferencing because it’s a simple and straightforward tool that offers free recording if needed. Zoom allows me to really connect with potential clients even if they are remote. With my full-time clients, this is an essential tool in helping them get things done and keeping our accountability sessions enjoyable. We all need that personal connection, especially when you are isolated at home and working online. Zoom allows you to take that extra step to connect as often as possible.

    SiteGround
    Siteground is my preferred website hoster, and I appreciate how straightforward it has been to get my website up and running properly. Their customer support is the best I have experienced! Click here to get a special deal on your first year of hosting! https://www.siteground.com/index.htm?afcode=49d46c6b3cbb2a8d7dae3d21f69c9bf0

    Toggle
    Toggl is my timekeeping tool and bonus, and the free version has enough features to keep me organized and on top of reporting.

    GSuite
    Gsuite is what I primarily use for documents and storage which gives me access to Google products such Docs, Drive, and Sheets. I also like Google Keep for simple note-taking on the go. The features allow you to share the notes, making things like meal planning and shopping lists easier for the whole family.

    Coach Accountable
    This platform is great for coaches to use with their clients and it’s one I personally use. This tool will help you manage your clients better and make the most out of your programs. Learn more about Coach Accountable here: https://www.coachaccountable.com/?referredBy=SONDRARAY

    I hope this gives you some great ideas on tools to help you get things done and create the organization in your business needs to be successful. These tools help my clients and I keep on track and organized.

    What are some of your favorite tools?

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  • Sondra

    What is the difference between 1:1 accountability and. group accountability? I have used both for personal and professional goals. During my health journey, I have found that I need both types of accountability depending on the type of goal and where I am with my mindset. I did weight loss challenge groups consistently while I lost the initial 100 pounds.

    Professional goals I started with mentors (friends who already did businesses) to help me get started and up to running my business part-time. When I decided I wanted to make a plan to leave my day job and go full time I got a business coach. I added the Mastermind group about 30 days before I went full time and it’s been great to have a group of business owners supporting me.

    Group accountability has benefits of different people thoughts and ways to hold you accountable. You also are able to network and find inspiration from others. Now if your shy or have fear of talking in groups then either try a group of people you know or just know that group accountability is not for you.

    Wonderful health coach Joseph
    I have found that 1:1 accountability only works if you respect the person who is holding you accountable and you set up regular check-ins. I have found that sometimes your family is not the right fit for holding you accountable when things get tough. I find that I need accountability from people who have similar goals or on similar paths.

    Accountability works it up to you to figure out what type works best for you to reach your goals!

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  • Sondra

    The task of figuring out what type and style of accountability work for you is going to take some work on your part. I’ve tried different methods: from friends and family to groups, to paid mentors and coaches to keep me accountable. Through this, I discovered, my style and my needs change depending on my season of life, and my goals.

    No doubt, accountability offers great value. However, I encourage you to try different methods to help discover your learning and working style. Perhaps, take a personality test that has standard questions to help you figure out different aspects of your personality and emotional status. There are common ones like Myer Briggs and 16 personalities which you can find online and some places offer them for free. I took the 16 personalities test when I first started my business and learned so much about how I operate and who I could work best alongside.

    personality development, personality test, accountability style
    On the 16 personalities assessment, I am Defender
    You could also take a work style or career assessment to determine your work skills and aptitude to help see what career fields would be a better choice for you. For example, the Disc assessment that helps determine your personality style and how your style works with other personalities.

    With the results from your test, find an accountability partner, group, or paid coach or mentor. I found that sometimes free groups can motivate me, but that I do best when I invest some money, as then I feel I have more to lose. And, as I mentioned, I’ve also found that every stage of my life needs a little bit different accountability! I highly recommend you keep trying until you find what fits and pushes you to reach your goals. The biggest benefit I have found in using accountability for my business was taking my business to full time!

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  • Sondra

    What if we are measuring our goals but not considering how effective accountability actually is? I feel accountability measurement can be subject to your own internal cues. You need to know what you want from an accountability person or group, then measure its effectiveness.

    What small steps are you taking daily towards your goals?
    Here are a couple of questions to measure if the level of accountability you are using is working:

    Are you meeting on a regular basis? Scheduled check-ins are required if you are consistently rescheduling then it simply can not be effective.
    Are you being honest in your meetings? When you withhold information that could help you, then you are doing yourself a disservice.
    Is the advice from the group or person(s) aligning with what your goals are? You must be willing to try the advice received. If you feel as if it doesn’t align with your goals, you need to have open communications to realign the relationship.
    Are you taking action towards your goals? Are you achieving your goals? Your accountability person can give advice, cheer you on, ask you a million questions but in the end, it’s you having to do the work. Do be sure you honestly evaluate your own actions!
    Accountability is more than tracking your goals. It also involves your efforts and the level of supported provided by your accountability partner!! Please let me know in the comments just how accountability has impacted you and why!!

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  • Sondra

    love the quote “you choose to plan or choose to fail either way you make a CHOICE!” I choose to plan! I plan my week on Sunday in accordance with my goals and then set up my weekly/daily trello board. Trello is a task management system that lets you organize your projects into boards and lists so you can get more things accomplished.

    Keep Track of resources and training
    Planning is important so you know what you are aiming to accomplish and just how you are going to do it. I stumble through the week or day if I don’t have my task list and goals. I pick a top goal to accomplish daily and I then align daily accountability goals.

    I also suggest you review your goals weekly and it’s even better if you review them daily! Keeping your task for the day in front of you also helps keep moving you forward in the right direction. Reviewing your previous week before planning your next week works well to know what worked and what didn’t. And, don’t forget to CELEBRATE your wins whether publicly or privately!

    Now, I want to know… do you plan weekly? How has that helped you reach your goals?

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  • Sondra

    I started rethinking what I wanted to do in my business about a month ago. I know my passion is to help people reach their goals. So, I decided to pivot two weeks ago to only offering goal accountability coaching! Allow me to back up and define what it means to pivot.

    To pivot means shift or change your focus and strategy. The dictionary definition of pivoting is a turning point.

    Pivot concept with hand pressing a button
    Now that I decided to pivot, I’ve needed to go back and rethink who my ideal client is and what I need to do to reach and service that individual. I have interviewed this past week on a podcast: Inspired Women Amazing Lives by a business mindset coach and a marketing mindset coach. I had many “AHA” moments and walked away with homework. One “AHA” was that I need to step back and rethink who exactly is my ideal client. Then, I need to redo my website content to speak to these individuals. Here link to the podcast: https://inspiredwomenamazinglives.com/podcast/episode-53-special-segment-business-breakthrough-with-sonya-ray/

    Feature on podcast Inspired Women Amazing Lives
    I will be documenting my journey as I feel it’s important to show how I succeeded and how it made me a stronger goal accountability coach.

    Please comment with any questions you have about my journey or goal accountability coaching.

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