Investing in an excellent virtual assistant (VA) is a brilliant idea, especially if you find yourself in a constant state of overwhelm. The purpose of a virtual assistant is to perform company roles and responsibilities that are time-consuming and take you away from thinking about the bigger picture.
A VA can save you money because you do not need to have extra office space, computers, insurance and so many other associated fees that come along with hiring someone to come into your physical location.
Some of the best practices to apply while working with a virtual assistant are discussed below.
1. Hire One Role at a Time
Once someone discovers outsourcing, it is easy to get excited and carried away. Hiring more than one VA can be time-consuming and confusing because you never know who is doing what.
Make sure to have the ‘Roles and Responsibilities’ identified and written out prior to your VA beginning work on day one.
It is advisable to use one VA at a time so that the process of management is easy. Building an entire team in a day is highly unlikely. Therefore, start slowly.
Related: What is a Virtual Assistant
2. Virtual Skills
You might be enticed by a virtual assistant with knowledge in different sectors of your business, but, in most cases, such an assistant has surface knowledge of the different sectors.
Once you get a virtual helper claiming to have many skills, try to avoid them. An excellent virtual assistant should be specific.
If you are looking for an SEO assistant, ensure you get one that has special skills in the specific area you need. Beware of the Golden Goose rule – one person that does everything in your business.
3. Virtual Etiquette
When working with a virtual assistant, communication is essential. As the business owner, do not worry about communicating too much with your virtual assistant about your business.
It is recommended to meet with your VA a minimum of one time per week. Brief ‘Huddle Meetings’ once a day are also good. Feel free to ask them for advice and send them updates regularly.
Be sure to communicate what software and/or systems you use to communicate and have a process for best practices ready to go for your VA.
Take the time to train your VA so they understand what is expected of them and how you prefer for them to interact with your clientele. The moment your clients are treated well, they will trust your brand and bring in more new clients.
4. Avoid Micromanaging
Micromanaging works well in a typical working environment. However, since a virtual assistant is an independent contractor, micromanagement might not work at all.
You can communicate with your VA as many times as you feel like, but you should not micromanage. The role of a VA is to ensure that your job is done professionally and in the best way.
If you feel like there are some changes that need to be made in a project, let your assistant know immediately.
Create the boundaries with which your virtual assistant can operate in and let them have the freedom of operating within the designated boundaries and you will be surprised at the results.
5. Handle Pressure Well
You need to understand that a virtual assistant is a human being that has emotions and feelings. Therefore, in case a mistake is made while taking up a project, do not relieve all your pressure on the virtual assistant.
If you are running a business, there will always be situations wherein the pressure gets to be too much. If you find yourself in this position, you need to know how to deal with your VA calmly and reasonably.
You need to know that your assistant is a professional and has dealt with different situations like this before. Let the assistant give you advice on how to deal with the issue.
6. Treat your VA as a Team Member
Even though your VA is an independent contractor, ensure that you build a great working relationship with him or her. If your VA does something excellent, do not forget to thank them and appreciate them like any other person in your team. Such appreciation motivates the VA to perform better for your company.
7. The Delegation of Duties
Once you settle on an assistant, compose a list of tasks and projects that you need help dealing with. Your VA should handle the tasks effectively and on time.
Additionally, make the VA aware of the workload they should expect from you. The moment you know what the VA will be doing for you, the chances the business runs smoothly will greatly increase. You can focus on what is important, and they can concentrate on the task at hand.
If you feel like you are overwhelmed with tasks, it may be time to consider hiring a virtual assistant. Succeeding in business requires everyone on your team to feel like they are part of the team. If you already have a VA, follow the best practices in this article to improve on your operations.
Looking to hire a virtual assistant? Get started with a free consultation at Bottleneck Virtual Assistants.