A question I hear often is “what exactly IS a Certified Online Business Manager?” It’s one of my favorite questions to answer!
First, a quick history lesson: The book that started it all: “Becoming an Online Business Manager” was written by Tina Forsyth in 2008.
Soon after, Tina launched the International Association of Online Business Managers and created a training & certification program to meet the growing need and interest from service providers and business owners alike.
The official definition of an Online Business Manager (OBM) is:
A virtually based support professional who manages online based businesses, including the day-to-day management of projects, operations, metrics and team.
The role of an OBM is to make sure the right THINGS, get done at the right TIME, in the right WAY and by the right PEOPLE.
An Online Business Manager is responsible for:
- Project Management – laying out plans and managing projects through to completion, including launches, managing programs, creation of new revenue streams, updating websites, etc.
- Operations Management – automating systems and creating processes for all day-to-day activities in the business to streamline and simplify how things are run
- Metrics Management – tracking stats for key business activities to see what is working and what is not working so that decisions can be made for ongoing growth
- People Management – outsourcing, managing, and leading the efforts of the team to meet business goals
The investment I made in Tina’s program (in 2011), hands down, was the best decision I’ve ever made for my business.
Over the past 12 years, our industry has naturally changed and evolved. Tina and her team are no longer leading the training, and instead, she has selected amazing trainers who run their own programs.
The Certification remains under control by Tina and her team at the International Association of Online Business Managers.
So what sets Certified OBMs apart?
A Certified Online Business Manager…
- Has demonstrated their commitment to being an Online Business Manager by making a significant investment of time, money and energy in the Online Business Manager Training Program.
- Has successfully completed the Certification process which involves them working on a series of real projects for real clients.
- Has taken the Online Business Manager Pledge in dedication to their clients – present and future – and in acknowledgement of their own dedication to the profession.
- Accepts the Certified OBM Mission.
This certification represents a commitment I made to continually invest in myself and my business so that I can better serve my clients’ needs.
As a Certified Online Business Manager, I am part of the community at International Association of Online Business Managers. Ongoing training and professional development, support, and community for and by my colleagues (over 300 strong) is an invaluable asset.
Virtual Assistants are NOT Online Business Managers
As our industry has grown, particularly in the past few years, I’ve noticed more and more virtual assistants and other online service providers using the term OBM or Online Business Manager in their marketing. While there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that, let’s be clear – only Certified Online Business Managers have been through the program.
Great virtual assistants are my favorite service providers. I depend on them for the teams that I manage and are integral to the work I do as an OBM. But a great VA is NOT an OBM.
Not sure what the difference is?
Download the Comparison Chart (free download, no optin required from Tina Forsyth’s site)
Click here to learn more about how I can help you reach your business goals as a Certified Online Business Manager! Or comment below with your questions and comments!