Most of our clients are really amazing people and so entrepreneurial, but are in dire need of immediate help and organization. They don’t have a need for a full time employee, but they are also overwhelmed by the success of their business and need help NOW. However, when they come to our team, they are still not sure how to start working with a super-efficient virtual assistant, and just delegate sporadically. We try to help them get into the right mode of working, set up systems whereby we can help them in an organized manner which reduces time of work and saves them money! A virtuous circle really, more productivity and reduce cost.
Here are our tips on how you can start working with your executive virtual assistant, and if you don’t have one yet, give us a call to have a chat.
Get into the right mindset
Before you start working with your virtual assistant think about what you want to achieve with their help, and with more free time on your hands, what can you do to grow your business and revenue. Your virtual assistant is an investment in your business, if you choose the right team, you really will feel a big impact in your day, and instead of running around like a headless chicken you will be able to focus on the important things.
Don’t just make up sporadic lists of trivial tasks and delegate your virtual assistant just because you feel you should. Plan what you can delegate and give it over to them! Treat your assistant as part of your team, they may work remotely but is a valuable support for you. Our team come from various business background and have valuable experience that we can contribute as well.
Work out with your assistant your budget and how much help you need weekly or monthly, and let them get on with it. In terms of how long to do a task, entrepreneurs can sometimes think they take 30 seconds to write an email, but in reality they take longer, so please don’t have unrealistic expectations of your virtual assistant. You need to let your assistant offer quality and efficient work, not fast and shoddy. A quality assistant will be very reluctant to work with you if you just want speed and not quality, as the result of the work reflects on them.
What to delegate?
During our initial consultation with our clients, we ask them to spend a week writing down all the tasks that they do. Then to analyse this list and decide which task the client prefers to focus their efforts and which task they can delegate. For example, one of our client is a private doctor who is a sole business owner. He followed our advice and realized that he was spending 70% of his time on administration tasks, such as raising invoices to send to patients or insurance companies, and not having quality time being a doctor to his patients. He even realised that some of his invoices were not paid since the last 4 months! So not only did he not have time to be doing what he really wants, he is also out of pocket because he didn’t have time to chase invoices. He was also working 13 hour days trying to keep up to date with paperwork!
With our help, he delegated all diary management, appointment making, raising invoices and chasing them to our team. We now run a virtual clinic for him, and all he needs to do is turn up to the appointments and be a great doctor. He also now has more time and energy to offer, and is seeing more patients than ever before. We talk once or twice per week with him, but as we have such a great system set up together he knows exactly what we are doing and he feels in control of his time and life.
You don’t have to start handing over everything to your assistant, start small to test the waters, and then slowly delegate more. It is about trusting each other and finding the best way to work.
How to delegate?
You will have a vision of your business, and how you want things to be done, which is great, and you need to share all this with your Virtual assistant. If you have templates of letters, or logos or like your virtual assistant to write your blog post in a certain way, you need to share with them. Just delegating by saying, ‘write a blog post’ but not telling them the subject, the tone, images you prefer to be used, it is not easy for the assistant to complete your task the way you want. It may seem hard at first to have to explain so much, but as you work together, it will become easier and your virtual assistant will be able to follow your brand and bring consistency.
Set up systems together
If you need regularly help on a weekly basis, it is best if you and your assistant can analyse the task, set up the system and do it on a regular basis. This will mean streamlined work which you don’t even have to think about as it is done routinely. For example, our doctor wants us to email an appointment letter to confirm appointments with patients, so this is something we would do automatically. We also send email reminder of appointments to his patients 1 week in advance.
Also, decide on how often you can catch up with your Virtual assistant, as communication is very important. Some entrepreneurs like to have a 5 minutes chat daily, or just once per week. Keeping in touch with each other is very important, especially when you are working remotely from each other.
Finding the right Virtual assistant
When you find a right virtual assistant to suit you, it is wonderful. But before hiring, do think about what skills they need to have and crucially do you both get on? You don’t have to be friends, but be compatible professionally and enjoy working with each other. This is really important, as a virtual assistant may have the skills but you both don’t share the same working practice, or you just don’t have a spark.
Do use the latest technology!
This is one of the best time to be an entrepreneur, as there are so many fantastic technology to help you do more and faster all at the touch of a button. The great news is that, it makes working with your virtual assistant very easy, and less paperwork. For example, use cloud technology, such as Google business which provides a business email, a cloud storage for your documents. You can create excel spreadsheets, word documents, powerpoint, work on same calendar, and you both can work at anytime and anywhere. Sharing documents is easy and secure as you can share the same cloud drive.
Or for invoicing, you can either use an online bookkeeping system, and your virtual assistant can work remotely to update for you.
Or for communication to your virtual assistant, you can talk via phone, whatsapp, skype call. The list is endless, so there is no excuse to not communicate to each other.
If you need any help with business support, keeping your invoicing and cash flow in control, give us a call. Our team at Kudos PA offers virtual assistance in secretarial services, administration, marketing, blogging, research, invoicing and so much more. We love business, and want to support you to be an entrepreneur! Give us a call if you need any help or just want to chat on 07875108255.