Delegate, Focus, and GROW Your Business

Avoid These Mistakes When Using VAs

When you run a small business, it’s easy to feel like there isn’t enough time in the day or days in the week to get everything done. From digital online presence, to regular marketing, bookkeeping, sales and inventory or providing services, is it possible to get everything done without having a huge staff or brick and mortar to run? Of course it is, especially for certain types of businesses.

Technology today has done us the great service of making available remote workers, otherwise referred to as Virtual Assistants, or VAs. Like any other great ideas, VAs can be super useful or can seem like a frustrating waste of money. The issue is knowing how to best utilize any utility or employee. A Virtual Assistant is a combination of both, so you have to know how to use them and how NOT to use them to get it right.

Don’t Make These Mistakes With Your Virtual Assistants

For the uninitiated, a virtual assistant can do anything from secretarial and admin work to graphic arts and copy writing. They can schedule your work life, proofread, edit, and do research. They are great for customer service and all things bookkeeping, and they do it remotely. Those who hire them need to avoid a few traps to get the most out of their services. Mistakes are made when you…

  • Aren’t sure what to have them do

Although many VAs will have a good idea of what they can do for your business, it’s not their job to figure that out. Decide what tasks you really want from them before they are hired. Read this article for ideas on what you should delegate to your VA.

  • Don’t have an organized system

Part of knowing what they should do is having procedure for getting tasks done. Create a policy and Procedure document or booklet for them to refer to. They are the task-doers and you are the strategist.

  • Hope they can read your mind

Make sure your VA has a clear understanding of what you want and how you want it done, complete with dates and formats. Once you develop a strong communication and working relationship, it may seem that your VA can read your mind, but they need clear instructions and specific guidance up front.

  • Neglect to review their work or give feedback

Once they’ve turned in assignments, they need feedback regarding their task. Was it what you intended? If they make mistakes, give them the chance to adapt. A correct job needs positive feedback and issues need to be addressed for course correction. Your instructive feedback is a tool to help them do the best they can for you.

Even the best VA relationships take time to cultivate, and your goal should be to help them know what you want so you can retain that same VA for a long time. It saves you money, frustration and gets more work done if you don’t constantly have to find a new VA.

photo credit: thirdblade

Posted on July 2nd, 2019 by Rachel Braam, Office Manager

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