You’ve taken the time to research and choose the VA you think will be the right fit for you and your business. Congratulations! This is the beginning of what should be a hugely beneficial and profitable partnership for both of you. But, before you can reap the rewards, there are a few things you need to do to maximise this remote working relationship and ensure your VA is as productive as possible.
Here are a few tips to help get you started:
Start Off On The Right Foot With a Good Onboarding Process
The first step towards success is an efficient onboarding process to get your VA up to speed as quickly as possible. This should include getting all the relevant contact info, discussing preferred communication methods, and establishing clear expectations and goals. Being as clear and concise as possible in outlining what you need will save you both time and frustration down the road.
Make Communication a Priority
Communication is key in any relationship, and it’s especially important when working with a remote team. One thing to consider is how often you will be in communication with each other. The best way to ensure that communication between you and your VA runs smoothly is to have a designated plan for how you will be in touch. Decide on the frequency of check-ins (will they be weekly or monthly), and what type of communication (e.g. email, instant messenger, phone call) will be used. This will help avoid any miscommunication, ensure that both of you are always on the same page, and help keep everyone organised and on track.
Give Your VA All the Information They Need
Your VA is not a mind reader, so make sure you give them as much information as possible upfront to avoid them having to spend time searching for files or trying to track down access permissions. This could include everything from contact lists, files and passwords to specific instructions on how you want things done. Think about everything they need to do their job effectively - the more organised and prepared you are, the smoother your working relationship will be.
Establish Clear Working Routines, Deadlines, & Boundaries
When working with a virtual assistant, one of the most important things to establish is clear working routines and deadlines. Will the hours worked be in a single block or split across the week? What are the specific deadlines that need to be met? Clarity here is key in ensuring that you and your VA can work productively together towards common goals and there is no confusion or overlap in work. It's also important to set boundaries - this is a professional relationship and separating work and personal time is essential.
Agree On Deadlines For Checking & Approving Work
If you are handing work off to a virtual assistant, it’s important that you agree on deadlines for checking and approving the work. This will help ensure that everything flows smoothly and there are no misunderstandings about what is expected. If your VA needs something checking, ensure you are aware of the appropriate deadlines (for example, checking scheduled social media posts before they are published).
Any Relationship Worth Having Takes Communication & Effort
Finally, remember this is a two-way business relationship. A remote working relationship with a virtual assistant takes communication and effort from both parties in order to be successful. Don’t forget to take the time to commend your VA on a job well done and be open to feedback so that you can continue working together in a productive and efficient manner. Your VA is there to help make your life easier - make the most of their skills and knowledge and, most importantly, enjoy the benefits of having an extra set of hands to help get the job done!
Managing a remote working relationship with a virtual assistant can seem daunting at first, but if you follow these tips, you’ll be on your way to a more productive, efficient work life.
Happy remote working! :)