You've decided to hire a virtual assistant (VA), but you aren't sure how to make the most of the VA's time and skills. Here are some tips to help you maximize your VA's role in your day-to-day operations.
Audit Your Average Day's Tasks
Hiring a VA is an exciting moment for any growing business. Extra free time for you as a business owner means more time to grow your business and interact with your most important clients. How will you decide which tasks to delegate to your VA out of all your daily commitments?
A good way to visualize your VA's role in your business is to spend one or two days auditing what you do every day to support your business. Create a spreadsheet, jot down the information on a notepad, or arrange a timeline on your phone to keep a record of your personal work audit.
Create categories in your audit notes to log the amount of time you spend during the day on your various business tasks. For example, a real estate professional might have a to-do list that includes the following tasks:
- Meeting and calling property sellers and buyers
- Showing properties that are for sale
- Creating advertisements for properties
- E-mailing and phoning clients, banks, lenders, insurance companies, and vendors
- Coordinating property inspections and closing events
- Consulting with attorneys and appraisers
- Reviewing and filing relevant legal documents and deeds
After you perform your daily task audit, rate your satisfaction with each task that could have been done by an experienced VA. Were you forced to return a phone call in the middle of a property showing? Did you feel frustrated or stressed because you had clients on site, and the call came at a delicate moment in your sales pitch?
Any general task that gives you grief, stresses you out, or takes time away from sales is a task that should be passed on to your virtual assistant. Delegating onerous, mundane tasks to your VA helps you feel more in control of your business day and frees your time for important marketing and business growth activities.
Create Clear Instructions for VA Tasks
In any business, clear, two-way communication is key to outstanding work performance and job satisfaction. However, many real-life and virtual bosses fail to communicate their needs and expectations in mutually beneficial ways to their staff.
Don't make the mistake of hiring a VA and then throwing them to the wolves in your business frontier. Even the most highly trained VA needs guidance and a short period of experience working with your specific business processes, client base, and industry.
In the first few weeks, create detailed instructions for your VA to help them acclimate to your particular business culture and operations. No, you won't insult a professional VA when you provide them with clear directions for their work, but you will reduce the need for your VA to ask you endless follow-up questions about their tasks.
It may seem as if creating detailed task descriptions is wasting your time and micromanaging your experienced VA. However, no VA lasts forever, so your written task instructions can be passed on to the next VA without going through the instruction process all over again.
A professional VA wants input when it comes to their role in your company. Pro VAs don't view detailed instructions as micromanaging as long as you allow them to perform their tasks without constant interference.
Take Advantage of VA Skills and Training
A good business owner is driven and focused. Sometimes, that hard-nosed business drive and focus are associated with staunch perfectionism and a refusal to delegate advanced tasks to qualified staff. The failure to delegate skilled tasks leaves some business owners exhausted, frustrated, and irritable. Home and work life suffers when a business owner is overwhelmed with daily responsibilities.
Stressed-out, overworked business owners must remember that VAs aren't simply glorified receptionists. You hurt yourself when you refuse to let a well-trained VA shine. If you've hired a VA for your business, allow them to use their business and technical skills to their full potential.
VAs assist their clients with the following activities:
- Creating SEO content
- Monitoring and posting on social media
- Bookkeeping services
- Inbound customer service
- Graphic design
- Web development
- Language translation
You don't have to set the VA completely free in the wild to do what they please with your website or your accounts receivable, but let the VA start with smaller expert tasks to show you what they can do. As your trust in your VA grows and their workload increases, you increase the time you have to spend on lifeenhancing business functions, family activities, and social outlets.
Give yourself a break and free up more time in your business day with a virtual assistant. Contact UASSIST.ME to sign up for one of our unique, no-contract virtual assistant plans today.
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