Hiring a virtual assistant (VA) for the first time can seem daunting and a little scary. But, if you plan out exactly what you want your virtual assistant to do and create processes prior to hiring a virtual assistant then you will see a huge return on investment. Time after time when business owners hire virtual assistants with a plan in mind it pays off so if you’re wondering if hiring a virtual assistant really works, then let me tell you right now the answer is yes. But, that yes comes with conditions.
Try new things — You need to be willing try new things and new technology. Often, an experienced VA will already have systems in place such as a project management system like Central Desktop, or Basecamp, be willing to learn to use it in order to streamline performance. There is all kinds of specialized software that can be implemented to assistant you and your VA with working together be willing to try them out.
Let go — Sometimes it is very difficult for a business owner to let go of various tasks and let the VA take ownership of these tasks. If you want the VA and client relationship to work then you must assign tasks and let them be done. If you never assign anything then he or she cannot do them. If you don’t let them do it their own way, you can cause frustration and misunderstandings. As a business owner the VA is in charge of the how, you are in charge of accepting or approving the results and the deadline. Your VA might do the tasks at 3am, as long as they are done by the due date you provide then when and how it is done is really not your concern. Let go, and you’ll be happy you did.
Take enough time — When you first contract with a VA it can be frustrating but it is imperative that you give it time to work. It takes time to build up a good relationship with your VA. Everyone communicates differently and it takes a while to get to know each other’s methods and styles. For this reason, most virtual assistants prefer to develop long term relationships with their clients. Experienced virtual assistants will often require an automatic monthly retainer for this very reason. The retainer will entitle you to a specific number of VA hours. Many VAs give discounts for more hours. Some allow hours to roll over but most do not which is a good incentive to use the hours you purchase.
Trust your gut — If after a reasonable amount of time you do not feel good about the relationship you have with the VA then it is time to end the relationship and move on to someone else. But remember that just because one VA relationship did not work out does not mean that hiring a VA won’t work, so it is important to jump right back on the horse and contract with someone else that might work with you in a manner that you feel comfortable with.
Hiring a Virtual Assistant can be a mutually beneficial relationship that will offer a huge return on your investment if you go into it prepared and ready to hand over parts of your business to the VA, but if you’re not ready to try new things, let go, take the time and trust in yourself to know what is best for your business then it may not work. Go into this adventure with your eyes wide open and prepared and you will see tremendous success.