Personal Virtual Assistants and Why You Should Hire One
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Virtual assistants are no longer just for big businesses or busy execs. Affordability, low cost and convenience of connectivity via agencies and job marketplaces mean everyone can outsource and have their own personal assistant.
First, let’s go through the common misgivings small business entrepreneurs have voiced about hiring their virtual assistant.
Can they be trusted if I don’t meet them at all?
Yes. Some executives even give their credit card information to their VAs to book their flights, hotels, and handle their other purchases.
Every freelancer has a reputation to protect. If you go to Upwork, you’ll notice they have feedback scores that reflect how well they do their jobs. And if you go through small, specialized outsourcing agencies like USource, you can bet every virtual assistant is already screened– YOU don’t have to do the background checks yourself, or you can do it instantly via their profile.
They’d be like casual workers, would they? Disconnected from my day-to-day?
Depending on your needs, you can set up a daily or weekly chats or calls. Your virtual assistant will feel like a full-time employee, and they will get to know you and your business in order to do their tasks well.
I’m not an executive yet. I don’t need one. What would I make them do? Won’t it just be a waste of money?
Many startups are by humble entrepreneurs or professionals going at it by their lonesome and feeling good about it. But starting is easy–it’s during the upkeep that the tediousness rolls in. Your excitement at opening, reading, and replying to emails peaks, plateaus, and eventually peters out until opening your email is your most dreaded hour of the day.
There it is. Think how much easier your days can be if you have someone doing these essential background processes for you.
Why should you hire a virtual assistant? Bring your focus back where it matters. All these tasks named here consume your time and overwhelm you, making you feel harried before the day even begins. Outsource them. If you worry about costs, every freelancer or agency, like USource’s Task Master plans, have flexibility to work with you on an as-needed basis.
You won’t be leaking money at all, as opposed to time and money leaking while you struggle with these tasks when you could be expanding your business instead!
#1. Correspondence and social tasks
Hire a virtual assistant to screen your emails and make or answer calls for you. Correspondence eats up too much time, if you let it.
You might be surprised how much bigger your network could be when someone is dedicating their time to correspondence, leaving you free to focus on your business. And you’d also be surprised at how much can be ‘screened’. Your email load goes back to being a ‘bunch’ rather than a load. Only those requiring your personal attention gets to you. Your VA takes care of the rest, including follow-ups and confirmation of appointments.
Entrepreneurs and professionals know they need to be social, but barely any actually has the time. Their VA makes it seem like they ARE social butterflies, however.
Your VA can also be relied upon to remind you of social events, like anniversaries of businesses and people in your network– and to go ahead and send cards or greetings for you.
#2. Online research
Do you spend your days running your business or doing your work, and your nights learning about how to better do them? A skilled virtual assistant can look up EVERY single one of what you’re looking for. For example, you want to automate your bookkeeping (which is another task you can outsource to a freelancer, of course!), your VA can research the best options for you and your small business and report back to you.
Your evenings are free. You go out to dinner with your family and friends. You used to be so burned out but now you get so many ideas while sampling wine and cheese.
It’s also important for EVERY sort of business to be informed and to show that they are informed in their social media feeds. Your virtual assistant can keep you abreast with the latest trends and events, timely and seemingly small pieces of news that nevertheless have an impact on your growing brand.
If you’re a professional or homemaker who simply prefers to spend time on family and friends after work hours, your VA can take care of extras. Grading papers, scheduling and booking travel plans, creating and maintaining a website– the list is endless for what you can delegate!
#3. Data and more data
Your free evenings lead to more contacts. Those contacts need tracking. Give all those names and cards to your virtual assistant. I know a friend who takes pictures of all his cards, emails the pictures to his virtual assistant, and his VA enters them all to his ‘contact database.’ Anyone and everyone is easy to look for from then on, and no one is forgotten, because the VA includes the occasion when my friend met that contact.
And what about all the data your business or practice spews everyday? Depending on the business, neglect for as little as one week can be dangerous and damaging. Hire a VA and all that daily data can be taken care of and a report ready for a quick review, in whichever form you like– a presentation? A spreadsheet? In bullets in a doc? You name it.
Very soon, your business might grow enough that you’d also need a VA to handle your social media. For now, starting with USource’s Task Master plan, your VA can do plenty!