If you are starting out on your journey to appointing the perfect Virtual Assistant then it is important to do some pre-work.
1. RESEARCH THE VA MARKET
Hiring a VA is a BIG move for your business so it's worth doing your research beforehand to make sure you choose a VA that has the right experience, skill sets and personality. Use your business networks to get recommendations for any VAs and then visit their websites, LinkedIn profiles or their social media pages to find out more about them and read their testimonials to see what their clients think about them.
2. BOOK AN INTRODUCTORY CALL
Once you have identified a potential VA, book an introductory call to get to know them. It is great idea to do this via a video call like Zoom.
3. SET YOUR EXPECTATIONS
Spend a little time thinking about the support you need so you can outline your expectations from the start. Most importantly, think about what you need support with and how many hours a week/month you think you'll need to start with.
Discuss how you like to work, what systems you use to communicate and how you envisage delegating tasks. If you're not sure on the latter, then ask your VA how they currently manage their workflow, track their time and share work progress. To help you prepare for an initial call, this blog post has some tips on the sorts of questions you should be asking about the practical side of hiring a VA. Click here to read.
Once you have found the right VA for your business and agreed to work together, you can expect to receive their T&Cs prior to the start of any work. Then the fun begins!
3. PROVIDE INDUCTION & TRAINING
To get off to a flying start, think about what system access and permissions your VA will need to be able to do their job ie. an email address, calendar access, unique logins to software platforms. If your VA will be required to use a particular system, be sure to allocate some training time. It's important they understand how to navigate and use the system effectively so they can get up to speed and support you as much as they can.
4. COMMUNICATE REGULARLY
As your VA will be working remotely, COMMUNICATION IS KEY.
Nowadays there really is no excuse for not having regular catch-ups either by phone or video call on a weekly or fortnightly basis. Have a structure to your calls to keep them focused and productive. For example, discuss the status of current tasks, set out new tasks, review calendar/availability etc. It is also a good opportunity for both of you to have the opportunity to provide feedback or raise any concerns. Keeping communication open is important to building a strong working relationship.
5. DON'T BE AFRAID TO DELEGATE
Learn to let go and make the most of your VA's experience and skillsets - after all, that is what you have hired them for!
If you're not sure how to maximise their time or feel a little nervous of handing things over, then try discussing your future plans, any current frustrations or ideas you have for your business because your VA may be able to suggest ideas of how they can support you to reach your goals. Remember, a VA is working with other businesses too and usually comes from a varied business background and will have lots of experience to draw upon.
6. OFFER FEEDBACK
You and your VA are a TEAM; let them know that they are valued and are doing a good job! If they have done something particularly well then let me know but likewise, if you want them to approach a task differently then don't be afraid to say so. Feedback works both ways so be open to receiving their feedback too.
Lastly, sit back and enjoy your new found freedom, focus and drive!
Has this blog post been helpful? Do you feel a step further forward in understanding how you can use the skills and experience of a Virtual Assistant to support your business? If you have any further questions or would like to discuss how we can work together then please do drop me a line. I would love to hear from you!
Fast Lane VA Ltd
M: 07814 456740