Mike Sullivan

About Mike Sullivan

Mike Sullivan is an entrepreneur and marketing professional who tries to keep things humming along as best as possible. From time to time, he updates the AVO blog, but mostly he can be found on Skype talking with someone about virtual offices. Connect with Mike Sullivan on LinkedIn.

Latest Alliance Virtual Offices Mentions Around the Web

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Alliance is passionate about virtual office services that accelerate small business growth and furthering the conversation on how the industry is radically changing the way in which we all work and do business.

News and Articles

The following is a list of articles from around the web that highlight the benefits and uses of virtual offices, and shed light on where the industry is headed as new technologies emerge.

Brand culture: What millennials expect from the 2019 workplace

Millennials are a force to be reckoned with.

Currently, this age group comprises 35% of the UK workforce and they’re expected to represent 50% of the global workforce by 2020, according to KPMG’s 2017 study ‘Meet the Millennials’.

Millennials make up a huge talent pool and as this demographic matures, many are now moving into management and CEO positions. Given their vast number and growing influence, it certainly pays to keep millennials happy. So how do you do it?
[Read the full article]

How to Communicate with Your Audience in 2019

Effective business communication begins when you are present in places where your audience is. Gone are the days when a customer support desk alone used to be sufficient to answer queries or register complaints. People now have access to a plethora of tools and technology which means they expect you to be there too.

So what should you be doing to seamlessly connect with your audience and distribute information related to your business in 2019?
[Read the full article]

[Infographic] 8 Features A Call Centre Software Must Have

Too many phones ringing continuously. Agents sitting in front of desktops, receiving calls back to back. Numerous other calls queuing up. And agents seem to be talking breathlessly.

A typical call centre scene, isn’t it?

But what happens when agents are unable to handle so many calls at once, despite all their efforts?

Customers start screaming for making them wait, and agents keep apologizing. Dissatisfied customers threaten them to give poor reviews and discontinue the services. [Read the full article]

How to Run Your Lean Startup Like a Boss

Look up ‘lean’ in the dictionary and you’ll find some surprising definitions. ‘Thin but healthy-looking; lacking fat; unproductive.’

Would you class your startup as thin or unproductive?

That’s not exactly what author and entrepreneur Eric Ries had in mind when he first proposed the lean startup methodology back in 2008. Rather, his vision for a lean startup “isn’t about being cheap [but is about] being less wasteful and still doing things that are big.”
[Read the full article]

How to Write Compelling Social Media Posts that Won’t Land Your Business in Trouble

Every company under the sun is on social media, or so it seems. It’s not surprising really, given that the number of social media users hit 3.196 billion in 2018 and the majority of those people log into their accounts at least once per day.

Imagine if your brand could get under the noses of just 1% of that community.

It’s powerful stuff, and it’s easy to see why companies are scrambling to get onto the social media bandwagon. But before you leap onboard, is your social media strategy compliant?
[Read the full article]

How To Manage A Fast Growing Startup

There are a number of moving components in every business. Hiring the right people, investing in the right productivity tools, adopting the right growth strategy and finding the right price point are just a few of them.

The challenges associated with each of these components are exacerbated in a fast growing startup. This is because business owners have little time to react to challenges and fix them before they encounter larger problems. In the absence of a focused strategy, a fast growing startup is doomed to fail.
[Read the full article]

How Startups Build Credit-Worthiness For Business Growth Funding

When you first stepped into the world of entrepreneurship, you probably knew that sooner or later you would need to apply for financial credit. Whether it’s a laptop for freelance consulting or a warehouse full of inventory, credit is part and parcel of any business, and it plays an even larger part in your business growth plans.

Yet it pays to approach the process carefully. Truth is, anyone can apply for business credit, but getting accepted is a lot harder than you might think. [Read the full article]

Top 5 Benefits of using Virtual Office Tech for Startups

Getting a startup off the ground requires a lot of hard work and budget-conscious decisions. One of the most significant choices you’ll need to make is where to base your business; often, the prospect of renting a physical office space is not logistically viable, which is why many entrepreneurs lean towards working from home or a cafe.

However, even in the early days of launching a startup, having a proper business address and access to professional meeting spaces can work wonders for a new business, both in terms of mindset and client perception. [Read the full article]

6 Productivity Boosting Tips for Work From Home Freelancers

ve just passed the seventh anniversary of my freelancing career. Wow! It took two years to pluck up the courage to leave full-time employment and go solo, and I’m pretty happy with the way things turned out. I feel fulfilled, productive (mostly), and I work with some really great people. It was worth the leap, 110%.

But freelancing is not all rosy. Like any career, some days are tough. Surprisingly, the difficult days often come from the thing I wanted the most: working from home.
[Read the full article]

6 Ways Startups Can Manage a Remote Workforce

It’s no wonder startup owners are increasingly turning to remote teams to build their businesses. Time after time, studies show that remote working leads to greater employee satisfaction, higher work output and significant improvements in productivity. This is often combined with improvements in collaboration and lower attrition rates, too.

Productivity benefits aside, remote working offers a crucial advantage for startups in the form of reduced overhead expenses, as it removes the need for full-time office space and its associated running costs. [Read the full article]

How To Create A Fact Sheet For New Hires + Examples [Infographic]

Creating a fact sheet for new hires can help them feel more connected to the team from day one. A new employee’s first day at work is more than just a day. It is the start of a journey with your company that could last decades if it is the right fit. That is why onboarding new employees the right way is so important. Right now we could point to thousands of articles that deal with this problem. And they all are written to help lessen the culture shock that those new hires feel.[Read the full article]

How To Optimize Your Business With A Virtual Office

If you’re a solopreneur or small business owner, you’ll know how fun running a company can be. You get to exercise your creativity daily, work flexibility on your own terms and benefit from that satisfaction that comes with building something from the ground up. But running a business can also be challenging. According to GEM national report, more than 100 million startups are launched every year, which is about 3 startups per second. It’s a competitive playing field, and to thrive in a competitive world you need to optimize all aspects of your business. [Read the full article]

3 Tips to Streamline Your Small Business

Small business owners are constantly spinning plates. From sales and marketing to invoicing and accounts, most entrepreneurs would agree that they spend too much time working in their business, rather than working on scaling and growing it.

To do that, it’s necessary to take a step back from the day-to-day handling of business operations and focus on your growth objectives.

But for smaller companies who aren’t ready to hire support staff, how do you push aside fundamental tasks like customer service queries and client meetings? [Read the full article]

Secrets of a Digital Nomad: How to Grow A Business While Traveling

For many small business owners, entrepreneurs and freelancers, working remotely is a way of life. Last year, FlexJobs released data that found that found 3.9 million U.S. employees, or 2.9% of the total U.S. workforce, worked from home at least half of the time.

And the trend is growing. According to FlexJobs, the number of people working remotely has grown 115% since 2005.

Thanks to mobile technology and wireless connectivity, many desk-based workers can now work from virtually anywhere — at home, on the train, in a coworking space, or from a variety of third place locations. [Read the full article]

How Millennials are Traveling the World Before Retirement

For many people, traveling the world is a luxury reserved for the retirement years. Yet for Millennials and Gen Z in particular, traversing the globe while building a successful career can go hand in hand quite nicely.

Millennials typically value ‘experiences’ over ‘material possessions’, and as it’s becoming harder for younger people to invest in assets, it’s easier to see why so many are attracted to the nomadic life.

Experience is the new social currency, and as such many are choosing to ditch the 9 to 5 office slog in favour of remote working and freelance work. [Read the full article]

How to Build Credit and Credibility as a Small Business

Building credibility remains one of the biggest challenges for small businesses. In a world where startups fail fast and fail often, your trustworthiness and reputation are key to creating a loyal customer base, securing financial support, and growing your business.

So how do you go about building a ‘credible’ business?

There are two sides to business credibility. [Read the full article]

How To Manage A Fast Growing Startup

There are a number of moving components in every business. Hiring the right people, investing in the right productivity tools, adopting the right growth strategy and finding the right price point are just a few of them. The challenges associated with each of these components are exacerbated in a fast growing startup. This is because business owners have little time to react to challenges and fix them before they encounter larger problems. In the absence of a focused strategy, a fast growing startup is doomed to fail. [Read the full article]

How a Virtual Receptionist Bolsters Your Brand

Entrepreneurs and small business owners wear many hats. On any given day you could be in sales, marketing, finance, operations, customer service — or everything all at once. It’s a lot to ask. For smaller companies who aren’t ready to hire support staff, it’s easy to get bogged down by mundane tasks and constant distractions, like answering emails or picking up the phone. These tasks are fundamental but the problem is, they pull you away from what you should be doing: growing your business. [Read the full article]

How to Set Up an Employee Benefits Package in 6 Steps

Employee benefits are employer-hosted perks like health insurance, commuter benefits, 401k savings plans, and life insurance. Offering a benefits package can cost from $0 to hundreds of dollars per employee per month. An employee benefits package helps you attract and retain quality workers; you’ll need two things to start—a benefits provider and a budget. [Read the full article]

Why Businesses are Embracing Coworking Spaces

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past decade, you’ve probably heard of coworking. It’s a style of shared workspace that has made huge waves in the commercial real estate industry in recent years, and it’s showing no signs of slowing down. One of the largest and best-known coworking operators, WeWork, is currently the second most-valuable start-up in the US (behind Uber), thanks to its lofty $40+ billion valuation. [Read the full article]

Missed Calls Killing Your Business? Here’s the Fix

It probably comes as no surprise that missed calls are bad for business. It doesn’t matter what industry you’re in or how long you’ve been in business — too many missed calls coupled with slack customer service will send even your most loyal clients packing. Here’s the ugly truth. [Read the full article]

3 Powerful Tactics to Bolster Your Startup

To survive in a competitive world such as ours, all startups aspiring to make it through to scaleup phase need a lean mentality. Establishing a business presence and growing a brand requires agility, adaptability and a certain amount of savviness when it comes to hiring talent. Sounds expensive, right? It needn’t be. With the right tools at your disposal, you can bolster your startup the lean way. Let’s take a look at how virtual offices, freelancers and building brand awareness can strengthen your startup without maxing out your budget. [Read the full article]

​Pro Tips for Telecommuting Executives in 2019

When you think of telecommuting, what springs to your mind? Do you imagine lucky freelancers working on laptops in exotic coworking retreats? Or maybe millennials working in cafes? Perhaps you envision creatives replying to emails from a remote beach?

You are not wrong. All of those dream scenarios are possible thanks to mobile tech and always-on wireless connectivity. Trust me, as a digital executive, I know. [Read the full article]

Secret Tools of Successful Solopreneurs

What does it take to become a successful solopreneur? Sure, it takes a certain mindset to work for yourself, which usually comes with plenty of hard work, dedication, and some strange working hours. But even the most well-practiced solopreneur needs a little help, and that usually comes in the form of technology.

We’re not talking fancy laptops and robot assistants (although an AI coffee machine would do wonders for productivity). There are some fantastic apps and online tools to help sole professionals do their job faster and more efficiently, and we will explore some of our favorites here. [Read the full article]

Future of Work: 3 Trends That Are Happening Now

Think future of work, and what springs to mind? You might have visions of commuting to the office by passenger drone, holding meetings with colleagues across the world by VR, or working alongside a lifelike robot. While we’re not there yet, these ideas could well begin to take root in our working culture within the next few years.

But drones and robots aside, the future of work is a lot more mundane than you might think. What’s more, many fundamental elements that will support the future workplace actually exist in our business environments right now.

Here are 3 of the most impactful trends that are influencing the future of work, today. [Read the full article]

How to Turn Your Side Gig into a Reputable Brand

According to CNN, more than 44 million Americans have a side hustle, and it’s easy to see why. Not only is a side gig financially rewarding, it’s often more intellectually stimulating and fulfilling on a personal level than an ‘ordinary’ job.

Side gigs often start off as passion projects, and sometimes they start to grow to the point where you think: Hey, I can actually make this a full-time thing!

So how do you transform what started out as a side gig into a reputable brand? Well, with the right help and support in place, it’s easier than you might think. [Read the full article]

The True Costs of a Call Answering Service

Good communication is the cornerstone of any successful business. However, without the right infrastructure in place to facilitate it, communication can easily break down. This inevitably leads to frustrated clients who decide to take their business elsewhere.

If you’re an entrepreneur or small business owner, it can be difficult to manage communication effectively. Sometimes, you simply don’t have the time to respond to an inquiry, or an important meeting might prevent you from being able to answer the phone. [Read the full article]

How to Build Business Credit for Your Home Business

One of the toughest parts of launching a startup or growing a small, home-based business is obtaining financial credit.

It’s tougher than you might think. A 2015 survey by business credit advisor, Nav found that 1 in 5 small business owners had been turned down for business credit between 2010-2015, and 43% had been rejected more than once.

You might wonder: why is it so difficult to get approved for business credit? [Read the full Article]


For people in the shared workspace world, coworking is something we talk about all day, every day.

To hear our in-depth conversations about community, workspace wellness, design, productivity, open spaces, phone booths, meeting room amenities and how we’re creating the future of work, you’d think coworking already was the way everyone worked.

But I regularly meet people (it happened just this week) who have never heard the word coworking and know nothing about the concept of shared workspaces. [Read the full article]

10 Money Saving Tactics For the Frugal-preneur

We’re all familiar with the statistic: ‘90% of businesses end in failure’. Every time we encounter it in an article online we’re reminded that following our dreams isn’t easy. Success requires bucketloads of gusto, effort and thriftiness – particularly in the early days.

Our 10 money saving tactics will help you on your way to becoming part of the 10% of entrepreneurs who go on to grow their business. So get ready to be savvy with your savings, frugal with your finances and economical with your expenses… [Read the full article]

What Your Address Tells Me About Your Small Business

Running your business from home or on the move as a digital nomad has numerous benefits, providing you with freedom, autonomy and flexibility.
However, using your residential address for business matters doesn’t leave the best impression on clients and could end up compromising your personal assets and privacy.

Like a picture, an address speaks a thousand words when it comes to your business.
But a business address in a prestigious location is expensive, right?
Wrong. [Read the full article]

The Rise in Popularity of Online Services

More and more of our lives are online – many of us work online, chat with loved ones online whether it’s Skype or on Facebook. New online services are popping up on a weekly basis with the aim disrupting traditional services more than they ever imagined. Can you remember the last time you looked in a physical phone book? Me either! There are so many online services that are gaining in popularity, offering competitive pricing, and allowing us to do more faster in our daily lives. Here are some of my favourite online services that you might not have considered using yet: [Read the full article]

Unique Marketing Ideas for Coworking Spaces

Over the last few years, Heroic Search has been privileged to work on marketing campaigns for some truly kick-ass coworking spaces (see our coworking case study from Common Desk). They are consistently some of the most innovative groups of people we work with, so the ideas for promoting their spaces are equally kick-ass. Whether it be a concept of ours that we executed for a client or one that came from someone else, we wanted to share some of the most creative ideas we’ve seen for these spaces with you guys. Below are some killer marketing ideas… [Read the full article]

How to run a business like a digital nomad

It’s hard to believe that only 3.6% of the world’s population had access to the internet 20 years ago – a figure that now stands at around 55.1%. There’s little doubt that widespread WiFi access and cloud technology has made the world a smaller place and given rise to a new type of worker: the ‘Digital Nomad’.

These enviable entrepreneurial types are defined by their ability to traverse the globe while running a business or working on a freelance basis. It’s a lifestyle many of us dream of, and having the option to sip a mojito on a beach in Bali while responding to a disgruntled client really does take the edge off.

Joking aside, running a business as a digital nomad can be incredibly rewarding… [Read the full article]

How to secure your home business with a virtual office address

More people than ever are taking the plunge and starting their own business. Digital technology has made marketing processes easier and with the gig economy in full swing, larger businesses are substituting permanent employees for freelancers. Starting a business is exciting endeavor, but with so much to consider, it can be daunting at times. There are so many things to figure out: an appropriate name, a brand identity that will work in the long term and whether to work from home or in an office space.

Working from home used to be associated with startups and freelancers who lacked the budget to rent a full-time office, but now it’s proving popular with established businesses too.The absence of a commute, flexible hours and productivity are just some of the advantages. [Read the full article]

Top 5 Benefits of Remote Working

Remember when working remotely was seen as an excuse to get away from work? Well, things have changed quite a lot since then.

The workplace has experienced a sharp culture shift over the last couple of decades. In that relatively short space of time, remote working has moved from a rare employee perk to a valuable productivity trend — and that trend is rising steadily.

Data released from the US Census found that 5.2% of workers, equivalent to 8 million people, worked at home in 2017. This number is up from 5% in 2016 and 3.3% in 2000.

Why are so many people working remotely? [Read the full article]

Virtual Virtues – The Benefits of Virtual Offices for Businesses

Building a professional image is a significant feature of a successful business. New Zealand is one of the most popular places to start a business and many business owners look to expand and grow their businesses here.

As times are changing and the idea of flexible working becomes more popular, one of the easiest and most affordable ways of growing your business, as well as creating a professional presence in New Zealand is through the virtual office. What are virtual offices? [Read the full article]

Getting Started on Social Media: 6 Tips for Small Business Owners

Social media can be a boon for small business owners. It helps you to expand your reach by connecting with new audiences and prospective customers, and provides a platform on which you can advertise your products or services.

One study shows that consumers are 71% more likely to buy a product or service after a positive social media experience, while the number of social media users in 2018 reached a massive 3.196 billion. This was 13% higher than the year previously.

In fact, so powerful is social media that some businesses use it exclusively to advertise and generate sales.

However, like any marketing channel, it’s crucial to target your customer segment and communicate with them in the right way. Failure to do this will result in your efforts landing on deaf ears, which is a huge waste of time and money. [Read the full article]

Not Living the Work/Life Balance Dream? A Virtual Office Can Help

Are you a sole proprietor or busy entrepreneur? Consider using a virtual office to help swing the work/life pendulum back in your favor.

Think back to the time just before you started your home-based business. Fresh faced and full of ideas, you pictured yourself whipping out proposals and hitting deadlines with ease. In your fantasy, you were fueled only by filtered water and enthusiasm. Fast forward to the current reality. [Read the full article]

Five Powerful Benefits of Virtual Offices

As the work-anywhere trend has grown, it has prompted a rise in demand for flexible on-demand workspace, remote receptionist services and virtual office space — a service that provides a number of office amenities and business support for distance workers, minus the actual office. [Read the full article]

How to Choose the Right Virtual Office For Your Business

Virtual offices provide a number of office amenities and business support services for distance workers, small businesses and remote teams – minus the actual office.

But like most flexible initiatives, you won’t find cookie cutter virtual office space. There’s plenty of variation between virtual office plans depending on what you need, not to mention huge differences between virtual office providers themselves. [Read the full article]

The Benefits of a Virtual Office for your Ecommerce Business

Thanks to the Internet, eCommerce has flourished into a multi-trillion-dollar industry spanning every business sector imaginable. From niche product lines and rare parts to branded goods and seasonal gifts, the virtual storefront is now everywhere and nowhere, bringing the world closer together without so much as a front door. [Read the full article]

Seriously, What is a Virtual Office?!

As a term, the ‘Virtual Office’ first emerged in the 1980s. Even so, there is still some confusion over what it actually means.

Here, we offer a brief explanation of the Virtual Office to help you get to grips with the business model, how it works, and how it is used in business. [Read the full article]

How to Select the Best Work Solutions

As technology advances, modern software solutions have been able to offer increasingly impressive functionality. The complexity of many of these offerings makes it incumbent upon companies to take care to select the tools that are right for their business. Matching a solution’s features to your firm’s needs is essential to getting the most out of your IT budget.

[Read the full article]

Alliance Virtual Offices User Reviews & Pricing

Users who gave Alliance Virtual Offices a positive review said that they are impressed with the support team’s responsiveness and professionalism. Several others like its reasonable pricing plans.

One user who left a positive review of Alliance Virtual Offices on Trustpilot mentioned that signing up for their virtual office service is very simple and easy. He added that the customer service representative who handles his account is always very helpful. [Read the full article]

Factors that May Be Holding Your Business Back

As any experienced small business owner will tell you, the world of small business is a roller-coaster at times, but worth it in the end. Many new small business owners have to learn the ropes as they go, which can create some problems along the way.

The only thing that you want to do as a small business owner is staying with something that does not work. Whether you use an actual office or virtual office services, you will inevitably run into problems, but you will need to find a way to bounce back and come back better each time.

The following are a few factors that may be holding your business back from the growth it needs. [Read the full article]

How To Attract (And Keep) The Best Millennial Talent

Millennials are already the world’s most populous generation. Now, they’re also changing the workforce for the better.

This generation is bringing a whole new set of ideals and expectations about the roles they hope to take on.

Currently, Millennials make up around 35% of the workforce in the UK and the US, and they’re expected to comprise three-quarters of the global workforce by 2025. [Read the full article]

Experience Virtual Reality: 8 of the Best VR Headsets 2018

What could VR in business look like? In truth, the possibilities are endless. Virtual reality creates a completely digital world in which the viewer is fully immersed, which makes it particularly promising as a training tool — particularly for hands-on roles in engineering, architecture, construction, design, and medicine.

In the corporate world, VR has the ability to enhance virtual office and remote working practices by immersing employees in a virtual workplace.

[Read the full article]

5 Ways to Use a Virtual Office When You Work from Home

Working from home is one of the joys of today’s advanced technologies. Not so long ago, the majority of employees and entrepreneurs were chained to a desk regardless of the type of work they do.

Now, it’s a different story.

A study released in May 2018 from workspace provider IWG found that 70% of professionals work remotely at least one day in a week, while 53% work remotely for at least half of the week. [Read the full article]

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