My Needs Expand Beyond My Business (Part III)

Hopefully by this point, you’ve realized just how demanding your lifestyle has become and that your next intelligent step would be to hire a Virtual Assistant (VA) that best fits your business needs or busy lifestyle. In this three part series (see part 1 and part 2), we’ve learned how to create task lists of our most important (and not-so-important) duties or business related functions. These lists have been categorized into home/work/social, etc. and prioritized into those we can easily accomplish on our own and those which would be best to hand off to someone else.

Next, we learned methods to manage these task lists, from simple post-it notes all over your computer monitor, to more advanced syncing functions with your PDA. Some devices required extensive training of software applications, while others were as simple as sending personal reminder emails.

In this final segment, we’ll discuss the delegation of your tasks to a Virtual Assistant who is the best fit for your demanding lifestyle. One who can accomplish your given tasks in the most productive, cost-effective manner and will allow you to flourish in your own business and personal successes.

As we learned in Part II, a Virtual Assistant is generally someone who is:

Self-employed.

• Providing professional administrative, technical, or creative (social) assistance to clients remotely from their own office.

• An independent contractor.

• Responsible for their own employee-related taxes, insurance, and benefits.

What’s important in hiring a Virtual Assistant?

• Cost – You will want to choose a VA that you can afford within your own personal budget.

• Reliability – Are they credible? Do they offer references? How long have they been in the business? If you intend to use the VA for a more long-term purpose, you may tend to do more research on their work history. The more years of experience they have usually indicates a more knowledgeable person, although their costs may also reflect their extensive experience.

  • Location – This may be a factor if you choose to delegate more personal chores/tasks in which they will travel to your home or business to perform work. Otherwise, VAs tend to work from their own office and this is a non-issue to the immediate success of your delegated tasks.
  • Specialty – You will want someone specialized in the tasks which you wish to have completed. For instance, if you had Real Estate forms that needed to be filled out on a consistent basis, you wouldn’t want to hire someone that has no credentials/background in Real Estate. It’s important to remember that the more specialized the VA is, the higher their fees may become.
  • Personality – You will want to search for a VA that you can interact with in a positive manner versus one that will create a constant conflict of interest.

Now that we know what is important in researching a competent VA, where do we look to hire them?

  • Impact Virtual Services – Yes, my business can help! www.impactvs.com I’m not just trying to advertise for my own business, but rather I’m trying to make a very logical point. When you choose from a creditable business such as Impact, we’ve already done the research for you and because of this, are able to provide VAs that offer extensive specialties, credibility, and work history.
  • Online. Another obvious choice that can offer solutions is to perform a search on the internet to help you resource VAs (Craigslist, Google searches, etc). The negatives of choosing from Craigslist is that your background checks are all at your own time and expense. You definitely take on more of a personal risk when using such search tools.
  • Word of mouth. If you have a referral, this is always a great choice. It usually means the advice is trustworthy and already worth your investment in time.
  • Newspaper ads. Again, comparative to Craigslist, but if you are aren’t an online person, this is another route. And shows you really need a VA to take your business to the net!

You now have all of the tools available to make the executive decision of hiring a reputable Virtual Assistant. Look for affordability based on your budget and needs, credibility in their references and work history, and ultimately, someone that can accomplish a given task based on your demands and time restraints.

Ultimately, if you choose to hire a Virtual Assistant based on the tools I’ve passed along in this three part series, you will be taking the next step in making a positive investment in the future successes of your business and personal lifestyle.