Bootstrapping a Company to 130 Employees

We chat with the humble and impressive Michelle Penczak, CEO of Squared Away.

Michele Hansen  0:00 
Hey, welcome back to Software Social. I'm Michele Hansen.

Colleen Schnettler  0:04 
And I'm Colleen Schnettler.

Michelle Penczak
And I'm Michelle Penczak, the CEO of Squared Away.

Michele Hansen  0:09 
We are so excited to have Michele with us our guest, another Michelle. She. So she said she's the founder of Squared Away, which is a company that employs mostly military spouses to be virtual assistants. And they have over 130 remote virtual assistants working for them. So Colleen and I are super pumped to have us joining our virtual table today to learn more about her business and what they're working on.

Michelle Penczak  0:47 
Thank you guys for having me. I'm excited to chat with y'all.

Colleen Schnettler  0:52 
So Michelle, I have just so many questions about how you started this business and grew this business. And I would love to like kind of hear a little bit about the beginning of your story, I read some of your Medium articles about how you were a virtual assistant and you got laid off. So most people, when they get laid off, you know, they try to find another job, or they just don't find another job, but you decided to start an empire. So can you tell us a little bit about that.

Michelle Penczak  1:18 
I wish it started and found that cool. But um, I it kind of sounds like a really bad country song getting started. Um, I was a virtual assistant for zirtual in 2015. And this is where the sad country song part comes in. My husband had deployed two weeks before I was three months pregnant with my first little boy. And I was actually on a family vacation when it happened,

Michele Hansen  1:51 
Oh my gosh.

Michelle Penczak  1:52 
So literally woke up one morning, five years ago, and couldn't login to my email. And that's when I found out along with 399 other people that we did not have a job.

Michele Hansen  2:05 
Oh my gosh.

Michelle Penczak  2:07 
I still am like, Oh my god, I can't believe that happened. even five years later, it's kind of crazy. But, um, I called one of my clients who was to be honest, my favorite client at that point, and I kind of had a mini meltdown on the phone with him. And he was like, "You know what, it's going to be okay, because we're going to get you more clients, and I'm going to keep working with you." And he told me that and I was like, You know what, yes, I'm going to kick ass regardless of what's happening right now. And I'm going to do my thing. And I did that and started my own independent contractor business as a VA. And I worked literally, my husband will tell you, I worked up until the moment I got my epidural, with my four year -- now-four-year-old, but I was literally like, putting my out of office email up when I was going into labor. And I took a grand total of two weeks off. And because it was just me, at that point, supporting my clients, and worked with them with a newborn and that whole thing and becoming a new mom and all the craziness that goes into that.

And in true military fashion, Colleen, I'm sure you are familiar with the military fun, um, my husband came home one day and was like, hey, guess what, we have orders to Hawaii. And I was like, shut the front door. Get outta here. I cannot even entertain this idea right now. And, um, I can't, you know, working with my clients. Um, I told them when we were getting ready to move to Hawaii that I was taking a week off to move. And I took a week off, we moved to Hawaii, and I started working with them like normal. I just started getting up at 3am to work Eastern standard time hours with them. And still had, you know, a nine month old at that point. And I told my husband was like, I am either insane, or I have way too much of a coffee addiction to stop this. And he was like, you know what it's working. And I did that for about six months before Squared Away was kind of implanted in my brain.

Colleen Schnettler

Michele Hansen  4:31 
Can you talk to us about how you're, you're in this state where you are waking up at 3am every day with a newborn, navigating everything that comes with having a baby and attempting to work and then you decide to create a company and -- talk to us about that. So I like I'm so excited to hear this, I have to say cuz like we started Geocodio when our daughter was four months old. And people always think we're crazy. And I don't think I've come across anyone else who started a company with a baby. And so I'm really excited to hear from you about how that came about.

Michelle Penczak  5:26 
I, so my co founder, Shane, he was one of my clients, and his company was doing really well. And he had always told people about, you know, the glory of having a virtual assistant as a resource on your team. And he was like, you know, what, I need you to scale. I need you to clone yourself. And I was like, Huh, this is as good as you get like, you get me. And he told me, he was like, you know, we need more of you. How can we do that? And I said, I told him, I was like, let me think about it. And I called him a couple days later, I said, I figured it out. We're good. We can do it with military spouses. Because I had always heard, you know, in my journey, as an assistant, how can you work? How can you have a baby and work? How can you still be able to do this as a military spouse? And you know, I would tell people, hey, I work as a virtual assistant. And they would say, Well, how will How can I do that? How can I get into this, and I didn't really have a good path for them I, at that point, I just kind of fallen into it with my circumstances. And this was a really clear cut path for me to say, this is what I did. This is how I provided help provide for my family. And this is how we can make a path forward for other military spouses as well. So yeah, it all kind of happened by circumstance. But um, my when the idea came about, I'd been in Hawaii for about six months. And my son was thriving, he was going to preschool. And I was like, You know what, because I don't get enough sleep as it is, let's take this journey. Squared Away started, was officially formed in March of 2017. And I brought on my very first assistant, who is now my director of operations, in July of 2017.

Michele Hansen  7:26 
That's amazing. And I think I think maybe, almost with both of you, it's probably worth diving in a little bit more on just what it's like to be a military spouse and how hard it is for military spouses to work. Because I think, you know, being sort of like non military, myself and not coming from a military family, like, this isn't something that that you really come across. And like the unique challenges there.

Michelle Penczak  8:00 
Yeah. And I, I can speak to the pilot side of the house, I know calling you said your husband's a Navy pilot, as well. So their schedules are so unpredictable. Like sometimes they're flying in the mornings, sometimes they're flying in the afternoon, sometimes they're flying at night, and they're just kind of all over the place. And when you have to be that constant for your family and for your kids saying, Okay, well, I'll pick you up from school, I'll do bedtime routine, and all that good stuff. That's something that's very fluid with every single day. And it's not predictable, and the following week, and being able to say I have this job or career that I'm working towards during the day and being able to support your family is huge for a military spouse, because a lot of times it's so reactive to the military members schedule that, you know, you can't typically work a regular nine to five job in an office or even you know, as a teacher, sometimes it's really hard. And one, one of the "safe" jobs, I guess, for military spouses, so is extremely challenging, because, you know, there's just so much unpredictability there.

Colleen Schnettler  9:13 
Yeah, not to mention the moving on top of that.

Michelle Penczak 9:17 
Yes. All of those things. Plus, you may move every couple years. Absolutely.

Colleen Schnettler
Which is, I mean, that's why I got into software, because I could do it on my own time remotely.

Michelle Penczak  9:27 
Exactly. And that's something that you don't have a set schedule, because in my experience, most employers were either like, Oh, well, you have to work this schedule. If you don't, then we're gonna let you go. Or on the flip side, Oh, we don't want to hire you at all because you are a military spouse and you're only going to be with us between two and four years is that so? There's so much stigma that goes along with being a spouse, especially when you're applying for a job and I think what I've found is that people who are you know, I've seen a lot of companies that will say, Oh, we support military spouses. But then when it actually comes down to hiring a military spouse, they always find a reason not to.

Colleen Schnettler  10:12 
Yeah. So you decided you wanted to start growing squared away. What was your first step? Did you go for clients first? Did you look for talent first, like, how did that kind of evolve from you and your partner to this hundreds of employees?

Michelle Penczak  10:27 
So oh, I wish I had a really good answer for that. But it was more, we're on a teeter totter. So the more popular we became with clients, the more assistants were able to hire. And it's kind of still that way on now, we hire between four and six assistants a week, just depending on our client demand. Um, this time, last year, we had about 60 assistants. And now as Michele said, we have over 130, which is great.

Michele Hansen  10:57 
Wow! Over 100% growth in a year, that's amazing.

Michelle Penczak  11:04 
The pandemic was extremely terrifying at the beginning, but we found with everybody moving remotely, um, you know, we did have a tough couple of months where we weren't bringing on assistants, we didn't have very many clients coming on board. But then we started to get back to where we were, and continue to grow, which quite honestly shocked the heck out of me in the middle of this pandemic. But our team is amazing. They're extremely talented, they have found so many different creative ways to work with their clients and support them. And most of the time, just being a listening ear and saying, hey, let's brainstorm together, more so as like a partner than a typical assistant.

Colleen Schnettler  11:50 
What I'm wondering is, you started this process five years ago, with a baby, as a military spouse, and now you've you've grown this very successful company. Was there ever a time you wanted to quit?

Michelle Penczak  12:04 
Oh, yeah. More if I wouldn't be lying. If I said there wasn't, I'm there. This time, actually, um, I had my second little boy in May of last year, and my husband was deployed. And it was just me and my four year old, my mom came out for about six weeks to help me. But after she left in July, it was so hard with a four year old and a deployment where he was finally understanding what it looked like to have daddy gone. And I was getting used to mothering two, instead of mothering just one, and Squared Away was really starting to boom, then, and I was so tired, I was so frazzled, and it was just hard. And I wanted to quit so many times, I would call my husband and say, How can I do this, I'm literally it's literally just me, I'm in Hawaii, I don't have anybody other than my friends and, like, family from afar. And it was hard. It was extremely hard on me, it's been hard at points in time on my marriage. And it's hard to for my kids, because, you know, they is a struggle to be present sometimes when I'm trying to balance, you know, the needs of my team and the needs needs of my kids. So I would say that there's definitely been a lot of points where I've really taken a moment and said, Is this something I really want to keep doing.

It's so funny that every time that happens, somebody will come to me and say, "Thank you for this opportunity. It's doing amazing things for my family." Or, "Michelle, I just want to tell you, like, this is an amazing company. It's so supportive." Like some type of comment will come through even just like a message in slack or something, just saying, thank you so much for having me on your team. And when I take a step back and look at how many people we have, and how much value they're feeling as an individual spouse, it makes it all worth it. And that's something I wouldn't trade for the world. And I hope it teaches my boys a solid work ethic and, you know, taking care of people and how important that is.

Colleen Schnettler  14:30 
Yeah, it must feel amazing to have a business where you're actually like a profitable business where you're actually doing good for the world to, that's like a win win.

Michelle Penczak 14:36 
Yeah, I I literally have to like pinch myself at least once a day and say, Oh my gosh, this is happening. This is incredible. And we have assistants who are from Poland to Japan. We have them all in between. And that's just something I never would have imagined that a few years ago.

Michele Hansen  14:58 
I think it's interesting how you say when you're having those tough moments, nice comments from people that you work with, come through and really motivate you. And this is something that Colleen was talking about last week how she just got her first customer for her new service, and how the the journey to that point was so long, but then you get to that point when someone appreciates it, and I find that in our, in our business to where I feel like there's so many blog posts and everything about staying motivated working on your own company. And, and I think what I see in your story, and in ours as well, is that that motivation is as much internal as it is external, from people simply appreciating you and what you do.

Michelle Penczak  15:58 
Yeah, it's, and it's not just from assistance, either. It's from clients, it's from people who've, you know, we've had clients who've been with us for two years, and they're just like, I can't imagine my life without my assistant, who is my right hand. And, you know, even from new clients who have had their assistants for a week saying, Oh, my gosh, like, my life is changing because of this person, like, those small comments means so much, especially when I am personally struggling with, you know, the conflict of, you know, family versus business. But the really great thing about Squared Away, I think, is that, you know, our mantra is, we're a family first, we're business second, and I have 130 people who I can say, "Guys it's a rough day, let me just tell you, what my four year old did." And we'll all kind of commiserate together and we laugh together, we cry together, we pick on each other, like, it's very much a family. And that's something that, you know, I have team members tell me all the time, like, it's so hard to log off with Slack and have boundaries, because I always want to know what's going on with people. And I think that's great, because, you know, we have that internal and external support.

Colleen Schnettler 17:15
So when you started to grow Squared Away, do you have a business background? Or were you just learning on the fly?

Michelle Penczak  17:22 
Totally on the fly, um, I had my background is actually in political science and history. So I can teach you all you want to know about history, but I couldn't tell you what MRR was three years ago, to save my life. Um, I was totally learning on the fly, I still am learning on the fly a lot of times, but I always, um, my rule of thumb is to always be transparent with my people and tell them what's going on. If they want to know if we're having a bad month or a good month, or, you know, if we've had a crazy client situation or something like that, I'm always like, this is what it is. And this is what I'm thinking moving forward. I'm behind number one is also my mantra, transparency, number two, like, and going with my gut. So those are my top three things. And I feel like they've taken me this far and will continue to take squared away as far as we want to go. But those are, that's my background, I don't have any type of business experience whatsoever.

Michele Hansen  18:31 
As you've learned about business over the past couple of years, and, and clearly have sort of discovered an innate propensity of yours. for business. Are there any resources that you have found useful in that journey?

Michelle Penczak  18:50 
Yes. Oh, my gosh. Um, so my favorite resource is actually a book by David Marquet. It's called Turn the Ship Around. It's about building leaders.

Michele Hansen

Michelle Penczak
Have you read it?

Michele Hansen
Such a good one.

Michelle Penczak
Oh, my gosh, yes, it is one of my favorite books, but he is incredible. And it's teaching, it teaches you to empower your people on your team and not ask for and not have them ask for permission. So my team knows but you know, never go to Michelle and say, Can I or may I? Hey, this is what I intend to do. And I would love your feedback kinda thing. Um, but that's how Squared Away is built out completely, is based upon that. And I would say that's been my biggest and most helpful resource.

Colleen Schnettler  19:36 
So were there any -- when you were building this business were there any or you're still building this business, I guess? Are there any communities that really helped you that you were a part of any like groups or anything like that, that kind of helped you on this journey? Yeah,

Michelle Penczak  19:50 
Absolutely. So I'm a part of a few different ones. So the first one I would say is Dreamers and Doers. It's It's an amazing group of women who are just badasses in and of their own right. And they're building all types of different businesses out there. And their resources have been phenomenal. We have a lot of clients who work with them. And they're just women empowering women, which is always amazing and such a joy to be a part of. So that's a huge one. And then I'm a part of several different military spouse Facebook groups. That, you know, it's teaching women how or spouses how to find work as a spouse, and the different companies that are military spouse friendly. And I'm just sharing type different types of resources for resumes and different free resources out there.

Colleen Schnettler  20:51 
So when you are selecting people, like, that's got to be really hard, I imagine because I imagine everyone wants to work for you. And you want to keep your quality high. Like, can you talk a little bit about that process?

Michelle Penczak  21:04 
Yeah, absolutely. So there's like, I want to say, like five different steps in our application process. And it's something that we have just improved over the past few years, based upon who we've seen improved, or just work really well internally, um, with most of our assistants have a bachelor's degree or more, we have a couple of PhDs internally, which is really cool. I just have a bachelor's so I'm always in all of how smart they are. But um, we asked for that. They have to have certain details in their profile like -- one of our random questions, what's your favorite flower. If you don't provide your favorite flower, then you don't make it through the application process, because we are a details business. So if you can't get all the details, obviously. They also do an interview with Kelsey, who is our Director of Operations. And if they make it through her then they interview with me, and then we offer them the opportunity to train with us. Not everybody makes it through training. They realize that it's not exactly suited for them in their talents, or it's something that they didn't expect. But typically, we also have them do two to three training tasks to make sure that they can actually make it through to the interview.

Colleen Schnettler  22:36 
What kind of things do virtual assistants do?

Michelle Penczak  22:39 
Oh, my gosh, you name it. Um, we have done everything from basic admin scheduling to planning yacht parties in the south of France. Um, and literally, that was an actual test. Finding a small, the smallest boat in Cannes and filling it full of ice and champagne. And having a saxophonist on the dock real and true task that we had.

Michele Hansen

Michelle Penczak
That was actually something from my co founder that he will never live down. So that actually happened and the probably one of the only times I've spoken spoken French since college.

Michele Hansen  23:25 
So, so something we tend to talk a lot about on our podcast is that we workshop, whatever is going on in our businesses and what we're working on that week. And so I'm curious what were you working on this week?

Michelle Penczak  23:41 
This week is actually pretty unique. Um, we I've actually been focusing on the Military Family Caucus Summit. It's a virtual summit that's taking place tomorrow. I'm the keynote speaker is actually the Secretary of Defense. And I'm going to be talking about military spouse employment. So that's something of its focusing on this.

Michele Hansen

Michelle Penczak
I'm excited to talk more about military spouse employment, it's gonna be it's amazing.

Michele Hansen  24:09 
It's a huge issue, right? Like, I mean, Colleen has said a couple of times that you know, one of her goals in life is for military spouses to never have to sell leggings.

Michelle Penczak  24:21 
Praise be. Yes. leggings and hair stuff. Like that's where I'm at with that or face. Yeah.

Michele Hansen  24:30 
It always hurts so much to see that because you can see that people have so much potential and and so much capability and are completely getting taken advantage of by those companies. And I think that's really what attracts me to to your company and what you are building because you are enabling people to find fulfilment in a way that is not exploitative.

Michelle Penczak  24:58 
Exactly. And That's something I've trust me, I've had my fair share of people paying me for leggings and hair stuff and everything in between. And to me that just, I feel like they're preying on military spouses because they are so susceptible to those, because they do want to be able to provide for their families, but there are not enough legitimate opportunities out there that people are saying, or companies are saying, Yes, we can work with you when you PCS. Yes, we can work with you, when you go on maternity leave, or paternity leave. Yes, we can work with you when you know, you're having a rough day because your husband or your wife just deployed, like, those are things that people want to know, hey, you know, my husband's coming home in a week, or two or a month, depending on when the military decides to tell me the exact date is. And, you know, companies don't always work with that. And that's something that our assistants prep us ahead of time they prep their clients. And we have a process in place so that they can take that time. One of our assistants just got her husband back after 10 months. And that's something we absolutely wanted to make sure that she had the time to do. And she was still able to step back in after she took that time with her family. And that to me is worth its weight in gold. Because I can't imagine like working with a company that didn't support that.

Michele Hansen  26:36 
So in that case, like, would you have another assistant fill in for them? Or?

Michelle Penczak  26:42 
Yep, the process with that is, the assistant essentially preps covering assistant ahead of time, the client knows it will be coming, they might not know the exact day depending on when the military is telling the spouse, but they walk through what their client needs, preferences, all that good stuff, so that it's extremely seamless whenever one assistant steps out. Um, and they still have that support without, you know, losing any downtime with their business.

Colleen Schnettler 27:16 
That's awesome. Have you guys raised money, like funding? Are you good? Have you thought about it?

Michelle Penczak
We have thought about it, but it's not for us.

Colleen Schnettler
Okay, can you? I'm always curious.

Michele Hansen  27:27 
Can you talk us through why it's not for you?

Michelle Penczak  27:30 
Number one is, I don't think unless we had a military spouse or someone affiliated with the military, that they would truly get our mission. And that's something I never want to hand over to somebody who doesn't truly get it. And I always want our people to feel like we're a family. And if we were ever to raise money, I would be extremely particular about who we brought in, to be able to continue to fulfill that mission and that support system. And quite frankly, I don't know what I would do with more money right now.

Michele Hansen  28:07 
It sounds like with your business, you know, if you have clients coming on board, and what not, as long as you can keep a balance between the number of clients you have and the number of assistants that you cash flow would seem seem to balance. But I guess you know, what happens if you have a client that drops? And then what do you do with their assistants.

Michelle Penczak  28:31 
So our assistants will go back into the pool, or assistants who are actually available to work with clients. So if we did have a client cancelled, then they would be able to pick one up pretty quickly afterwards.

Michele Hansen  28:45 
And so when that happens, like for example, do you email your existing client saying that someone is available and try to place them and basically, sort of increase the average revenue you're getting per client in that scenario, or what happens?

Michelle Penczak  29:00 
if they cancel, then we wish them well on their journey outside of Squared Away, but then the assistant will go back into our pool of available assistance. And then our client relations team essentially plays matchmaker with our new incoming clients. So we're not really losing a whole lot there. Um, and we have a 30 day cancellation policy. So we know well ahead of time, if clients or clients are going to cancel.

Michele Hansen  29:30 
How would you say the split is between virtual assistants in the company versus other support staff, like you mentioned, you have a director of operations and you have a client support team and I'm just curious if you can get us give us a sense for the percentage in the work staff.

Michelle Penczak 29:50 
So right now all of our assistants have clients except for my directors, which is myself and our director of clients relations, client connections, our finance director and our director of operations. So the five of us are the only ones without clients right now. Everybody else has clients that they work with. And they do might have a different role. So -- one of my assistants that comes to mind, she actually has two clients. And she's also a team lead, which means she made manages a team of between six and eight assistants. And she helps to facilitate any issues that arise in the client relationship. She's kind of their support our first managerial support when it comes to our tiers. So if any client issues arise, that's the first resource for our team.

Michele Hansen  30:52 
It sounds like you've got a pretty well oiled machine at this point.

Michelle Penczak 30:56 
It is they I took some time off a couple of weeks ago, and I am extremely type A where I feel like I had to kind of always know what's going on. And I was like, Oh, my gosh, you guys could rule the world. Without me, this is amazing! So they totally blew me out of the water. And they're just every single one of them is it are just incredible what they do.

Colleen Schnettler  31:21
That's amazing. I'm so impressed. Like, this is so cool. So my Michele -- Michele Hansen,

Michele Hansen

Colleen Schnettler
Yes, you're my Michele. My Michele knows that. Like, as she mentioned earlier, I mean, like my personal mission, I see all of the same struggles that you see, right, I've been, we've been in the military for 15 years. And it's such a frustrating situation to see women who want to be there for their children, because to your point, husband can't pick up the kids because who knows where he is. But they also want to work and they want to feel valued, and they want to contribute to society, and they want to support their family. And so they sell leggings. And this just drives me crazy that they can't find another path to employment. So it just what you have built is so cool. I just think it's the neatest thing.

Michelle Penczak
Thank you, thank you.

Colleen Schnettler
And I'm so impressed how, especially without a business background, you just like built this thing. Like, with this whole structure

Michelle Penczak 32:16 
Totally flying by the seat of my pants. I'm like, okay, we we need to do this. But it's, I wish it were as easy as it worked. I truly do. But I just, every time I hear the numbers of military spouse, unemployment 300,000. That's insane to me.

Colleen Schnettler

Michelle Penczak
A year ago, actually, the unemployment rate for military spouses was 24%. And that's what it was during the Great Depression for the entire nation. 24%. And that blows my mind, especially when these are spouses that are supporting their service members who are like, pledge their allegiance to our country. And it just it breaks my heart that there are companies out there that say Thanks, but no, thanks. You're a military spouse.

Colleen Schnettler
So what do you see as the future for Squared Away?

Michelle Penczak
Oh, my gosh, I would love to just continue to watch our team grow and grow and keep just doing more badass things for their clients. We literally have assistance in every niche that you can imagine. We have clients who are New York Times bestselling authors, we have people in the entertainment industry, we have venture capitalists, we have CEOs of startups, like, we literally are working with everybody right now. And that's really neat to see. I tell everybody, I'm like, you know, we have so many spouses with so many different backgrounds. We have yoga instructors, we have real estate agents, we have teachers, we have a couple of nurses. And you know, the yoga instructor works really well with the venture capitalists, which was really funny. Um, but these are people who are just so able to mold themselves to these businesses and support their clients, like nothing I've ever seen before. And it's just incredible to watch them, you know, bloom on their own after we've kind of put them in that spot. So I'm very, very proud of them.

Michele Hansen  34:23 
I just have one more question for you. Is there anything that you wish someone had told you when you were starting this business?

Michelle Penczak  34:31 
I wish somebody had told me to have better boundaries. In all honesty, I would say that's the biggest thing. As a mom, it breaks my heart to tell my four year old "Mommy has to go on a call right now" or "I have an email to check" or something and I wish somebody had told me in the beginning you know, enjoy the moments with your family, your business will still be here. Because you know, even then they see the good work ethic, they also see me not having good boundaries for family. And that's something I wish I'd been better about. I would say that the biggest thing.

Michele Hansen  35:13 
I can say that like I have been there. And, you know, that's something my husband, I talk about that, you know, sometimes our daughter who's seven, now she'll say, Can you guys stop talking about Geocodio because it's so boring, and I don't want to hear about it. And I'm sure your kids recognize the work ethic that you're teaching them. And, I mean, you're giving a speech tomorrow and sharing a platform with the Secretary of Defense, which is amazing. And they will probably find out about that later. And they will be amazed by you. And I think they will understand.

And, and I will say, you know, as someone who, whose parents were also, you know, like running companies as I was a kid, it was so good for me to be exposed to that as a child and seeing that it's possible, and seeing all those different day-to-day things that come up when you're working for yourself or trying to get something going. It's so valuable for kids to see that. And it's so clear how much you love your kids.

Michelle Penczak  36:25 
Oh, yes, it's, I would say, that's the biggest thing, I just, I want them to always know, you know, I bust my ass every single day for them. And for our families that we're out there, you know, providing employment for and that's something that will always be here dear to my heart. I just said hope that that's something they recognize the older they get.

Michele Hansen  36:47 
Maybe one more question here, so maybe someone listening is thinking, hey, having a military spouse as a virtual assistant actually sounds pretty awesome. And I need to scale myself a little bit better. So if somebody wanted to start using Squared Away, like, like, how does that process look like from a client's perspective?

Michelle Penczak 37:08 
they can always email me or me at or they can submit our contact form on our website. And they can definitely get started with our client relations team and walk through the process of finding their perfect VA match.

Michele Hansen  37:26 
That's awesome. Well, thank you so so much for joining us today. It's it's been really great talking to you. And I'm so excited to see where you and the company go from here.

Michelle Penczak  37:39 
Well, thank you guys so much for having me. It was such a pleasure and I am always thrilled to talk to another military spouse. So thank you, Colleen and Michelle both for having me.

Colleen Schnettler 37:49 
We'd love to hear what you think of the episode. You can tweet at us at @softwaresocpod and we will chat with you next week.

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