How to make sure your virtual assistant experience is a success
August 8, 2017
Many business owners are disheartened with poor experiences with virtual assistants. Most of these problems stem from lack of understanding and trust between the parties, and in some rare cases it relates to the inability to do the work described.
Whilst canvassing of a virtual assistant’s abilities should begin before hiring, I’ve come up with five ways you can work together to build a better relationship with your virtual assistant.
Boring, I know. But in the name of efficiency and allowing your virtual assistant to become more productive, more quickly, it needs to be done. I’m not talking about a ten page document on how to record an expense. It can be a quick video that you record on your phone or even a voice recording. (You could even get your virtual assistant to convert these to written documents for the future!) Next time you do a task that you think could be outsourced, pick up your phone and record the steps.
Documenting your processes leads into being prepared with the tools required to make your relationship efficient. Check out this blog for some ideas on systems you should put into place. At the very minimum a cloud sharing drive reduces the need for constant emailing and a workflow app will allow work to be easily tracked and monitored.
Clear instructions with measurables
This will save both parties hours of unnecessary work. Just as if you were hiring a new employee, you need to take time to explain how you like to work, the quality of the output that you expect, when it is required and what the finished product should look like.
Spending time discussing these things up front will provide your virtual assistant with a clear goal of what is expected. It will also result in work being completed quicker as expectations are set up front.
So many times I hear a phrase like “I just need a simple graphic done for xyz”. A graphic isn’t simple task if you don’t have a clear idea of what the brand represents visually and emotionally. At the very minimum have your logo and colour descriptions (usually described as RGB or #HEX) available for your virtual assistant.
You get bonus points if you were also savvy enough to also have a mood board created with patterns, text and other visual elements. If you have a source for stock photos, make sure your virtual assistant is aware of this too.
This is the most important element of your relationship with a virtual assistant, or any third party you use to outsource. If you are not happy with any aspect of the work, make sure that you verbalise this so they have the opportunity to make it right. Just like you have a business and reputation to protect, so do they! If they are any good at their job they will make sure that the outcome of the work is as you expected.
Conversely if your virtual assistant does an amazing job, make sure you let them know. They are more likely to be happy to continue their working relationship with you if they receive positive feedback. Consider writing them a testimonial that they can post on their website or social media (with a link back to your website of course!).
Hiring a virtual assistant doesn’t need to be a stressful experience. As long as you are prepared and have done everything in your power to find the right person then it should be an enjoyable and rewarding experience for everyone.
If you are wondering what tasks you could outsource to take your business to the next level, download my free workbook on ‘How to identify tasks to outsource’. Otherwise give me a call as I love talking about how virtual assistants can help you build your business.