How To Have The Best Relationship With Your Virtual Assistant
If you’re a small business owner who has been struggling to keep on top of your workload and you’ve finally made the decision to hire a virtual assistant, I salute you!
Successful delegation will not only make your life less stressful, it will also free up more time for you to expand your business and increase profits.
If you have never worked with a virtual assistant before (or if you have, and it didn’t go so well), I wanted to give you some tips that will help to ensure a fantastic working relationship between the both of you.
Give CLEAR Instructions
You must remember that your VA is not you, so don’t assume that they will know exactly how you like to work (at least, not at first anyways!). You will also not be sat next to them in an office. They may not even be in the same country! You must therefore, document all of the processes that you want your VA to take over and ensure your instructions are as clear as possible.
If you want to show your VA how to do something (like how to use your bespoke online system), recording your screen via Loom is great because your VA can refer back to it whenever they like.
If you have a list of things that need doing, don’t just reel everything off over a phone call as things might be forgotten and mistakes can be made. Write your tasks in an email or via a task board such as Trello so your VA can refer back to this whenever they need, and tick off the tasks as they go, making sure nothing is missed out.
Make sure to always include the following:
WHEN is the deadline?
WHAT exactly do you need your VA to do?
HOW do they do it (templates, login information etc)
When you first start working with a VA, it may take them a little while to get used to all of your systems and way of working. The clearer you are with your instructions from the beginning, the quicker your VA will settle into the role, meaning supervision and guidance should soon become almost non-existent (the way it should be).
If your VA is doing a good job, tell them. Likewise, if they could improve on certain tasks, let them know. A good VA will want to make sure they are always doing their job to the best of their ability, so if you are not happy, constructive feedback will always be welcome.
Stay In Touch
Set up regular times where you can both check in with each other to make sure that everything is running smoothly and both parties are happy.
If processes could be improved, or either of you has ideas for development, regular Skype sessions or phone calls are a great way of communicating these things. It will also help to remind you that your Virtual Assistant is in fact still a real person!
Don’t Call Them At Stupid Times
Your VA has a life outside of being your VA. They probably also have multiple clients. Respect this and try to keep all communication within working hours.
If you have an idea at 10 pm on a Saturday night, don’t pick up the phone! Put it in an email or wait until Monday morning to call them.
If It Doesn’t Work Out, Don’t Worry!
Sometimes, two people just don’t work out and that’s fine. One of the major perks of having a Virtual Assistant is that if you don’t want to continue working with them, you can simply come to the end of whatever agreement you have with them. Getting rid of an employee, on the other hand, can be a lot harder.
Remember, there are thousands of Virtual Assistants out there. Some will be more suited to what you need than others, so don’t stick with a VA if you're not happy.
If you’re ready for your business to take the next step and become more successful than you ever imagined, you need to master the art of delegation. “You can do anything but not everything” goes the saying, and it’s so true!
As your business grows, you may find it beneficial to have a team of Virtual Assistants who each work on their own specific tasks. For example, one of your VAs might be incredible in dealing with your customer service, whilst another VA is perfect for managing your social media.