How to get the most out of your VA
You have lots of ideas swirling around your mind. You have written down what your achievements will be, how you will get there and have fired off several emails to your VA itching for the action to begin. Two heads are always better than one when building your business, use your VA to their full potential. Here are my 8 tips to get the most out of your VA.
1. Access all areas
Ensure your VA has access to all the areas that they need. Email accounts, documents/folders etc. from the beginning. Your VA might have their own areas where you can send them your passwords securely. I use Lastpass.com and clients can submit their passwords securely. LastPass will auto-populate the fields of various websites, so clients confidently know their information is secure.
2. Weekly meetings in-person or via Zoom
It is a good idea to have a regular catch-up, just to ensure that everyone is on the same page. Ask your VA to draft up an agenda prior to the meeting taking place, so you know exactly what you will be covering. Your VA understands that you are super busy and overstretched, so if you can squeeze in 15 minutes to just touch base, do it. Use this time to iron out any miscommunication or tasks which may need tweaking, reiterating or just starting from scratch again.
3. Use a Project Management tool to stay on track
A project management tool is helpful to keep an eye on tasks assigned to you, your VA and any extended team members (if applicable).
Having a tool in place gives you a complete overview of projects, who is responsible for what, by when etc. You will be informed when tasks are completed, pushed back or if more information might be needed. It’s also helpful to keep all communication in one place. Imagine spending all that time trawling your mailbox for your key correspondence.
My go-to is Asana. As a Certified Asana Pro myself, I love the simplicity Asana brings and it can be integrated with so many other tools which you may already use. Asana offers a free version which is cool.
Some other project management apps to check out are:
With all the above, it is worth noting that they are not one size fits all. See what works for you and your business.
4. Be realistic
When giving your VA work to do, be realistic in how/when you expect the work to be completed. If it is urgent, please be specific and say when you require the work to be completed. I have a rule of thumb that the client’s deadline is never my deadline. I always aim to deliver work a day or two before the deadline, that is always a good feeling for us both!
5. Mistakes happen
When mistakes happen, give your VA a chance to rectify the blunder and have a discussion as to how this can be avoided in the future. It is good to talk, you want to create a safe space for you both to have conversations that might feel uncomfortable, it’s always better out than in.
If your VA feels as though they are constantly walking on eggshells, it will show in the work that he/she produces.
6. Increase responsibilities
VA’s are hired to grow with businesses, as part of the team. Once your VA has learned the basics, why not hand over a little bit more. You have hired a VA because you are overstretched and want to concentrate on what you love to do, so don’t shy away from letting go that bit more. You will have hired him/her to support YOU so let them do it. If your support is unfamiliar with something that happens within the business, invest in some basic training, or show them the ropes where you can.
I once had a lovely client who recorded how-to videos for me, they worked well as I could refer to them had I ever got stuck.
7. Be transparent
I have covered this above but please if you are unhappy about something – say it! We are not always going to get it right and would rather you speak to us directly than be unhappy with the work that is being produced, remember you are paying for a service and your VA is not a mind reader.
Communication is key. Emails can be misinterpreted or come across in the wrong tone. Maybe follow up with a call to confirm that the instructions have been received and understood.
8. Trust the process
Lastly, this might be your first time using a VA or you could be well seasoned in using VA’s. Each one will be very different so treat them all as an individual. Not all VA’s will be technical and not all VA’s will be general, but what they will all be is excited about working with you. You might find you even need more than one VA for different aspects of your business, and that is fine too.
Look at what you need and outsource it, so you can focus on the things that you love/can do.
Book in a discovery call here, if this gave you some food for thought.