The Do's & Don'ts of working with a Virtual Assistant
Updated: Jul 30, 2019
Are you or someone you know, thinking of working with a Virtual Assistant (VA)?
Of course, there are many benefits of a VA which is explained further on my website (View Why Zeit on the homepage of https://www.zeitva.com.au/).
There are 2,080 working hours in 1 year. This sum of hours has already taken into consideration all of the leave entitlements. When hiring a VA, we can do the exact same work for half the time and half the cost. Therefore: Save Time, Save Money.
However before you decide to take this step into the unknown, there are some Do's & Don'ts you should be aware of.
✅Provide clear instructions
Not providing clear and concise instructions for tasks is a large reason why a virtual assistant does not work well with certain individuals and/or businesses. The best automation tool that you can do is create operation manuals that details every task a VA may need to do. Even writing an email or SMS can provide some direction for the VA, and offering to clarify anything via a phone call can prevent any miscommunications or misunderstandings. Did you know - some VA's offer Policy & Procedure Management, including creating the documents for you!
It takes time to get into a groove with VAs. Give one task out at a time, and manage each task at the beginning. Some may offer to touch base every hour or so, particularly for a new task. That way, you can view the progress and make decisions based on their work thus far.
Test your virtual assistant with a variety of tasks, some simple and some complex, and get an idea for what he or she is capable of doing without constant chaperoning. There are practical limits to what a virtual assistant is going to be able to accomplish without ever meeting you or seeing your business. It is up to the VA to advise you certain tasks they definatly can or cannot do, but most of the time they are willing to learn and develop based on your business needs.
❌Micromanage your VA
This is a common mistake, as we all like to take pride in our work and particularly our own business and/or products. It can often be difficult trusting someone, however a VA is meant to FREE up your time - not waste more of it.
❌Don't hire someone without the correct paperwork signed first
It may take some time, but do some research first. An experienced VA will have all the necessary paperwork and information available for you. Legally, a service agreement is required before any services can begin. This will protect you and them if anything goes wrong (hopefully not). If this particular VA cannot answer the questions you have, or reassure your concerns - then maybe they're not the one for you?
❌Cheaper is not always better - and neither are the expensive ones!
Although hiring a VA is meant to save time and money for you and your business, however imagine if this was your car. After you've had an accident, you would typically get a number of quotes to compare, do some research on places nearby, and look at reviews. Just because a VA doesn't have reviews, doesn't mean their bad. Maybe their new, or maybe they're more established and work off word-of-mouth referrals. Every 6-12 months you would put your car in for a service to review how things are running. Although a VA has two arms, two legs, 10 fingers and 10 toes - and a car does not - hiring a VA works in a similar way.
There are pro's and con's of everything. Working with a VA is not for everyone, or for every kind of business. But, there are many benefits of them especially when it comes to saving you time and particularly your money! Your relationship with your VA works in the same way as your car. Compare, Research, Review, and once established and working - review things. That way you're doing right by your business every time. 🚗