Success story


Riipen is a collaboration platform for experiential learning to connect post-secondary institutions, educators and students with industry partners. They target post secondary institutions and industry and have been steadily growing the number of students placed in meaningful, educator-driven, experiential internships.

The opportunity

Founder and CEO Dana Stephenson’s time was divided between raising investment, securing partnerships, travelling and presenting at conferences. As a servant-leader, Dana pushed himself to be all things to his team, working harder and longer hours to make sure he was available to respond to his team’s needs. When his team revealed that his inability to get back to them fast enough was actually slowing their entire company down, Dana knew something had to change.


  • Enable Riipen’s CEO to focus his time on higher value activities while feeling confident the rest of the work was getting done
  • Support company growth momentum

The solution

  • Virtual Gurus matched Dana with Cher, one of our highly-skilled Virtual Asstants.  
  • Shortly after they started working together, Dana realized how many more things Cher could assist with. Cher’s strengths in communication and organization immediately helped Dana to declutter his work life. 
  • Although they started with a smaller hourly package Dana doubled it within a short time upon realizing the value Cher was providing.
  • From triaging his calendar and inbox to communicating internally and externally and managing Dana’s personal social media presence, Cher became an invaluable asset not only to Dana but to the entire Riipen team.

The impact

Having a virtual assistant allowed Riipen’s CEO to focus on high priority/high value activities, projects he is passionate about that move the business forward. With the support of his VA, Dana is getting significantly more accomplished while also achieving something more akin to a work-life balance. He's also more available to support the rest of the Riipen team -- they can now get what they need when they need it, faster and more regularly, which allows them all to accomplish more.

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If I could give advice to my old self, or any founder, it would be to bring on a virtual assistant way sooner, a hundred percent. Having a virtual assistant unlocks a whole bunch of brain capacity and time, opening up doors for you to create more growth."

Dana Stephenson

Founder & CEO


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