Team post by Pamela Murray
Are you working hard and still not reaching your expected goals? It may be time to open the door to hiring a Virtual Assistant so that your business can flourish and reach its full potential. Here are my 4 top tips to ensure that once you have found a virtual assistant that is a fit for you, you can work effectively & efficiently – together!
A great start to a partnership with a virtual assistant is to let them know your preferred method of communication, i.e. email, telephone, skype, etc. Having too many methods is a prime example of how things can fall through the cracks and deadlines are missed.
Once you’ve agreed upon the best line of communication, make a plan on how often you will be checking in. This really depends on what kind of business you have and the amount of work a VA will be doing. Ideally no less than once a week to check in and make sure both parties are on the same page and to answer any questions that may have come up. It’s best to have that specific time each week already scheduled. Then anything else is just bonus!
Be Clear on Expectations & Instructions
You need to have a clear plan of expectations and instructions for your VA. Yes, VA’s are multi-talented but not mind readers! By the time you decide to hire a VA, you probably have a good idea of what tasks you are needing assistance with so build on that! Write down those tasks with detailed instructions.
Also, be timely with your responses with your VA. If they have sent you a question or concern outside of your regular scheduled check in, it is probably for a good reason. If you don’t take the time to reply promptly it could result in a task completed incorrectly & inefficiently.
Just as you have boundaries for your VA and clients, you must realize that your Virtual Assistant will have boundaries as well. Time zones can certainly play a factor when hiring a VA. For example, if you are in Nova Scotia but you’ve hired a VA from British Columbia, don’t expect to receive a reply on the email you sent at 8am ATL time for at least another couple of hours!
General respect & patience can go a long way. Understand that it takes time on both sides to build a good rapport between business owners and virtual assistants. You know your business inside & out but your VA is just learning the ropes. As time goes on, you will begin to realize how each other works and directions & completion of tasks will only get faster and more precise.
Trust & Learning to “Let Go”
As a business owner, you are used to doing EVERYTHING! Even though you are feeling overwhelmed and now understand that hiring a VA to bring you to the next level is exactly what you need, you still have a hard time letting go. Understandable! Your business is your baby, so to speak, so just to allow someone else “in” can feel overwhelming. What you must remember is that your success is their success as well! The VA that you decide to hire and build a partnership with wants to see you succeed and wants to be the one to help you get there. A good tip for learning how to build trust is to delegate the smaller tasks and work your way up to the bigger ones. This will not only help you with “letting go” but will also enable your VA to learn what your business is really about, how you like things done, and to feel comfortable and confidence in their work. Win Win!
It’s now time for you to focus on what your true passion was that ignited the fire for you to start your own business in the first place! There were probably many reasons that you wanted to become a business owner, and with the help of an effective & efficient Virtual Assistant, you are now able to be a successful entrepreneur, while still having the time to enjoy family, friends, and anything else on that bucket list!