Entrepreneurs and VA’s are a fairly recent combination, yet an increasingly desirable strategy for operating almost any online business. Who would ever have imagined that the traditional personal assistant could be replaced by a new and improved, ultra-economical and ultra-versatile Virtual Assistant?
The Internet has a great many purposes, but the most advantageous application for small to medium sized business owners is that the Internet can – with a bit of very carefully designed website development, literally be their place of business, where all of their information and personal files can be stored, employees can be taken on and an office can be set up and maintained – all entirely online, so irrespective of where you happen to be and what you’re up to, you can log into the office whenever it suits your schedule.
Some people may be put off by the idea of never meeting the person they’re working with, some may be concerned that they’re not there to oversee the work activity, while others may feel that their information is too vulnerable online. These are all very valid reasons to be worried, but with a professional virtual assistant at you side, these concerns will soon diminish and you will be left with a more profitable, more streamlined and far less stressful enterprise.
From your point of view, doesn’t this seem far better than regularly paying out for the massive overhead to maintain an office, shelling out for sick pay and searching through piles of papers and files to discover what might of happened to a lost invoice or to a new client’s phone number?
However, if this virtual paradise is to be realised, you’re going to need to find a truly exceptional VA to point your business in the right direction.
Here are a few tips:
First, decide what you would like to achieve with your business, tell your potential VA what your goals are, and develop an idea of how you see things working for you. This information will allow a VA to understand how best they can assist you. Leave the employee mindset. Your virtual assistant will most likely be a business owner as well, with as much drive and ambition as you have! Treating your VA as an employee will only lead to problems in the long term. Virtual assistance is a partnership on equal terms, and mutual respect is paramount to success.
Every VA will need to establish whether your business would be a good fit for theirs. Make a list of all the tasks and jobs (no matter how large or small) you would like to see the back of, then speak to a few VA’s who have the skills and capabilities to take them off your hands – you will soon find out which VA’s are on your wavelength. Shortlist the ones you see with the most potential to fulfil your plans.
Finding your virtual assistant is slightly harder; there are thousands out there, from all walks of life, and all corners of the world. You may need to do some research to find the right one that meets your criteria. Other times, you may just get lucky first time round. The internet should be your first port of call, and Google is a great place to start, just type in “Virtual Assistant” and see what you find. You can also search “Virtual Assistant Directory” or “Virtual Assistant Networks” which will bring up a host of sites where VA’s congregate and list themselves and their services.
A virtual relationship is built on trust, and this will come in time. In a virtual world, if you move, then so does your VA – it’s perfect for the makings of a reliable, long lasting relationship.