A Virtual Assistant can be a great asset to any small business or entrepreneur. They can save you time and money by taking care of those small administrative tasks that you don’t want to do….. but do you really get the most out of your virtual assistant?
To get the most out of your virtual assistant be very clear on what tasks are to be delegated i.e. Will your virtual assistant be dealing with clients or will they just be doing back office tasks, such as formatting a document? Now if they are only formatting a document or updating a database then your virtual assistant chances are they won’t need much more information than the document and directions on how you want it formatted (e.g. font or text size).
However, if your virtual assistant is dealing with client matters it is extremely important that you brief your virtual assistant on your business and the task at hand – just as you would with an in-house employee. The reason for this is simple your virtual assistant needs to be briefed so that the task can be carried out as if they were dealing directly with you.
For example, I have recently been assisting a client with sponsorship for an event. My client has provided me with ample information to ensure I can do my job properly and professionally. My client has provided me with background on the event, details on her company, details on the event and also templates that I can use for standard responses to sponsors. I also have access to the sponsorship email account that I can use to respond to sponsors instead of using my virtual assistant email. It is small details like this that can make a HUGE difference.
Another way to maximise the benefit of a virtual assistant is to define clear parameters on what decisions your virtual assistant can make without consulting you. What is the point of hiring a virtual assistant if they need to speak to you every time a query comes in – you may as well be doing the task yourself.
Basically the more information you provide your virtual assistant the higher the quality of work you will receive. Please do not take this as the chance to micro-manage your virtual assistant because that is not how virtual assistants like to work, however ensure that you communicate your expectations right from the beginning and provide as much information as possible so that you can maximise the benefits of using a virtual assistant.