Only a year ago, Virtual Squad LCC started its operations with merely 7 trainees. Now, it is a full-grown company with more than 300 employees from all over the Philippines. It now has 100 e-commerce stores and has been in service to over 200 real estate clients from all over the world. Here is how Kai Karen Santos, the woman behind it, single-handedly accomplished everything in only 12 months. Read more about this amazing woman’s story.
Before Virtual Squad Happened
Before all of this booming business happened, Kai has already worked many jobs. But the one that has shaped her the most was the American company she has worked in.
Kai joined the company in its early stages. The CEO and Founder of the company was a genius and he saw Kai’s potential to become an operations head. Initially, they were only looking for a receptionist, however, impressed by Kai’s great skills, the CEO entrusted her with the client-relations manager position.
She handled all the difficult projects and helped build the company. From two, the company grew to six American call centers with over 300 American employees. Realizing her skills in the industry, Kai said to herself, “I could turn this into a business someday. I could run my own virtual assistance company.”
In March 2020, just before the lockdown, the company was suddenly under new management and the former CEO sold part of his shares. With that, they had to appoint a new CEO who decided to only hire locally. They subsequently laid off the entire Filipino team without any notice.
Establishing Her Own Company
That road bump could have resulted in depression for some, however, that event didn’t waver Kai’s spirit. The very next day, she found another work opportunity and immediately got hired. From a client-relations manager, she became a cold-caller for a real-estate company. She was determined to learn all about it and had the motivation to establish her own company soon.
“I had the tools and the skills to actually open a company. That was when I met my current business partner Quentin Flores. I knew that I could manage the virtual assistance here but I needed someone in the US—a business partner to help me build the clientele.”
Kai Details the Potential of Her Plans
Quentin Flores was the person that Kai built her empire with. And their relationship with each other is actually very unconventional. They have been doing business since 2020 and share an American bank account, but they have actually never met in person.
However, Kai was never afraid of something as uncommon as that. She had always wanted to break barriers and stereotypes. They have established a strong bond and she trusts her business partner.
The Beginning of Virtual Squad
And so they built the company together with their combined wit, strong network, and impressive management skills. Kai and Quentin had great chemistry and they got the company running. On September 15, 2020, seven trainees were recruited, trained, and mentored until ready.
In October 2020, the first set of virtual assistants was partnered and matched with the company’s first five clients.
“Virtual Squad learned how to run before it knew how to walk. Marami nang lumapit na clients sa’kin. Popular kasi si Q [Quentin]. So we started training. That’s the very first thing that I did. I started scouting people who could be on my team and I had to reach out to an old friend of mine because we needed a logo—branding. So he helped us with that. These were the three things that I did to put up the company. I was very particular with our branding. I don’t accept so-so output. Lahat ng ilalabas namin dapat high quality.”
The Virtual Company That Thrived Amidst the Pandemic
Virtual Squad emerged at a time when the entire world literally got confined in the comforts of their own home. Everything was very difficult and devastating for many. However, amidst all of this chaos and uncertainty, the company did not only survive–it actually thrived!
“Pandemic, daming nawalan ng trabaho, dun ako nag-succeed. Nahanap ko yung puwede kong gawin. Everyone was affected. Now, I was like ‘What can I do with this? During the pandemic, people are locked in their homes. So, mauuso ang mga work from home na trabaho.’ Naisip ko, ‘Ito ang aatakihin ko. Dito ako mag-build ng company sa ganitong klase ng trabaho.’” Kai relates on what pushed her to start Virtual Squad.
What is Virtual Squad?
Virtual Squad LCC is not only a Virtual Assistance company but also an online BPO. They don’t only provide Virtual Assistants but offer business solutions.
Currently, they have two lines of business. Firstly, real estate, where they vet, mentor, and manage virtual assistants for real estate investors. Secondly is e-commerce, where they are partners and co-owners of Amazon, Walmart, and Shopify online stores. The company provides full automation and manages the stores for its partners.