4 Tips for Getting the Most of Your VA

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Before you ever sent your Ask Sunday Dedicated Assistant (“DA”) a single task, you sat down and evaluated all of your daily activities and carefully divided them into two buckets:

1) strategic activities that required your time and skills.

2) those tasks that are nonessential to your core business.

The tasks that fell into bucket #2, the non-core activities, you’ve outsourced to us. As a result, you’ve been freed up to focus on only the most important aspects of your business.

Congratulations. Really. Make no mistake, this is a huge step. Every entrepreneur worth their salt knows that without proper delegation, scaling a business is impossible.

The viability of your business idea is irrelevant if it lacks the proper manpower to get it out into the world. Failing to delegate and having do-it-all-yourself-itis can be catastrophic. But, that’s not applicable to you, so let’s keep moving!

We’re happy to have freed up your time. Now, how’s it going with your DA? You’ve created the systems and checklists you need, and each project you delegate contains detailed instructions….right?

We know there’s more to the game then just hiring a VA. Now that you’ve taken this life changing first step, let’s make sure you’re using your VA as effectively as possible and optimizing this strategic relationship.

Here are 4 tips that’ll help you get the most of your relationship with your VA:

1) Put in the time to train your VA!

If you hired an employee on site at your office, would you expect them to hit the ground running without being properly onboarded? The same is true of your DA.

Just because your VA isn’t physically with you, don’t forget they’re human, too. Your VA will need what we at Ask Sunday call an “upfront conversation.” Before beginning to send tasks, make sure you provide insight into what it is your business does, what your expectations of them are, what types of tasks you’ll be sending their way, and anything they need to know about working with you personally. Like any new employee, know that your DA will need time to adjust to your work style

2) Set expectations for the relationship.

Be very clear about the following three points:

  • What kind of response times do you expect for e-mail communications between you and your DA?
  • What will you do if the work performed does not meet your standards?
  • How will you deliver feedback? Don’t save it all up. At Ask Sunday, we encourage all of our clients to give feedback on a real-time basis.

3) Give detailed project instructions.
Sending clear instructions with each project will ensure things go off without a hitch. Remember, you’re in charge of ensuring your project’s success!

Use email if your desired method of communication is typing things out. Or, if you prefer, send an audio voice recording, or shoot a quick video via your SmartPhone. How you communicate direction is up to you. Regardless of the format you choose, be sure that each project you send includes the following:

  • Clearly defined deliverables. Let us know exactly what a successful finished project should look like and all the elements it should contain. Do not assume your DA, (or anyone for that matter!) is in your head with you. If there’s something you want, you need only ask. Your DA wants to make you happy. If you want a spreadsheet with specific elements, for example, itemize each column you want it to contain.
  • Clarity on the exact amount of time your want your VA to spend on the task. Avoid vague statements such as “a few hours, or not too much time.” If possible, give each section of the project an approximate timeline.
  • Check-in or status updates, if applicable. If it’s a long-term project, request a check-in where you and your VA can touch base and make sure the project is on track.

4) This DA not working out? Let’s try another one.
As with all the relationships in our lives, the good ones have the proper chemistry. We ask that you take the time to get to know your VA, invest in training them properly, and are very specific with your requirements and expectations. Ultimately, however, if the connection isn’t right, let’s switch it up. We have an entire team to leverage and we want you to be perfectly suited.

We want to hear from you! Leave us a comment below.