Worxbee: Fine-Tuning the Virtual Executive AssistantApr 11, 2022 05:27PM ● By Amy Bonesteel
If timing is everything, then Kenzie Biggins’ instinct has served her well. In the third year of running her business she says she was “floundering and trying to figure out what was next,” when she took a mentor’s advice and moved to Greenville.
Soon she was enrolled in the Greenville Chamber of Commerce’s Minority Business Accelerator (MBA), a Bank of America-funded program that was part of the organization’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Initiative.
By providing minority-owned firms with connections to training, corporations, and business coaching, the program helped Biggins develop and grow Worxbee, her executive assistant staffing business.
The concept of the company is simple, and the timing was genius: Worxbee pairs experienced executive assistants (EAs) with business leaders who need their help. The EAs are independent contractors – the clients are invoiced by Worxbee, and they pay the EAs. Working virtually, most of the EAs work for multiple clients, enabling them to customize their schedules and balance family and other interests.
The company has close to 50 EAs at press time, but is increasing its number actively.
Before the unexpected shutdown of the economy in March 2020 due to Covid, Biggins, whose title is “Founder, CEO & Visionary,” had already been having conversations with Worxbees’ clients about “how to help them take their business virtual,” she says. “I had an inkling that something was coming down the pipeline.”
Sure enough, everyone’s business slowed down until the end of 2020 as they scrambled to navigate the new normal.
“Then, business skyrocketed,” she recalls, as more and more firms adapted, and many businesspeople found they could work from home.
Biggins says several operating principles distinguish her business from others: “Our EAs have true executive assistant experience. We offer monthly training – the same type of training they would offer their executive leadership team like ‘how to mind map an idea’,” says Biggins. “The executive assistant is an executive on your team.”
The firm also takes time to make sure the right EA is paired with the right client, she adds.
“We are implementing a new consulting tool called ‘Admin Roadmap’ that will really break down what clients need.”
As national media started to notice Greenville’s resilient post-pandemic economy, Biggins was quoted in a Wall Street Journal article. That in turn led to her business being profiled on a “60 Minutes” episode about “The Great Resignation,” which told the story of well over 20 million people leaving their jobs in late 2021.
Using LinkedIn data to show the drastic changes in the career goals and job aspirations of millions, Worxbee was shown as an example of the flexibility many remote workers are seeking.
The spotlight filled up Biggin’s inbox with interested EAs as well as potential customers.
“We are experiencing ‘The Oprah effect,’” she notes.
She plans to grow the business carefully.
“As a small business, we don’t have the option to just hire for a moment in time,” says Biggins. She credits a stellar management team for its contributions, including COO and Integrator Angela Wynn, an experienced EA and mother of five based in Nashville.”
Biggins has also started offering a series of Friday videos with advice and motivation (hence the “visionary” part of her title) which she sees as “a place where we can have very transparent conversations.”
A recent chat dealt with operations and the idea of “leveling up.”
With a graduate degree from SCAD and corporate experience at Target before starting Worxbee, her enthusiastic wisdom has made the videos popular with her staff and clients.
As a relatively new resident of the Greenville area, Biggins says the “huge” focus on small business and entrepreneurs is a positive. Her husband, who works for Apple, is an entrepreneur as well; he runs a T-shirt business. Being close to her hometown of Atlanta is also a bonus.
“A lot of it is community,” she adds, appreciating the city’s walkability and local shopping. “I feel like the little things keep you in a place.”