Fantastic Tips to Easily Train Your Best Virtual Personal Assistants Now

These days, productivity does not only mean that you have done a lot of tasks within a working day, it means that you have delegated your tasks. In order to achieve this, you may choose to hire a virtual personal assistant to help accomplish more for your business. This will help you acquire more time for yourself and your loved ones.

Just the mere thought of doing everything by yourself may already be overwhelming, especially when you take into account not all tasks laid out before you are those that you really look forward to in the first place. This is where the wonder of training your VA enters the picture. If done right, you get to do the work that you enjoy while your virtual assistant completes tasks that they are really good at which may also be those that you do not particularly like to do. It’s a win-win situation, to say the least!

Establish Company Rules and SOPs

If you plan to train a team of VAs in the future, you should have everything in writing! Actually, you may want to prepare a training manual even before you hire your first VA. While it is more convenient to let everything go and just conduct video and audio chat training sessions, everything is more concrete when properly documented in writing.

This is also beneficial especially if your VA is a visual learner. The best part is, you will not have to design a manual over again if you need to hire more VAs in the future. All you have to do is update your information as needed. In case writing manuals is not your thing (hint: you can delegate this task), you may go for audio and/or video manuals as well. This is especially important if you are about to assign voice-related tasks.

Once you’re done creating your training materials, upload them on your dedicated drive. This can make the files more accessible for your trainees. This will also help save time in the long run because you do not have to repeat everything for them. Instead, you can focus on matters that were not directly tackled in the training materials. Once the new concerns are tackled, you may organize the ideas and concerns that were raised and create even more helpful training materials!

Set Expectations

Not to assume that something will go wrong, but preventing things from going awry can save you and your VA from a lot of problems that can be avoided if you talk about the essentials beforehand. This can also help improve your professional relationship with them from the get-go. This is especially ideal if you plan to hire your VA on a long-term basis.

A couple of days before the first working day of your VA, hold an orientation meeting. Video calls are ideal to help you see and hear each other in real time. Seeing and hearing each other while talking to each other is a good way to establish better communication online, according to experts.

Prior to the orientation, prepare a checklist or simply a rough list of what you think you need to tackle during the meeting. You may initially list any random ideas that come to mind. After listing everything, group them into categories depending on the nature of the topics. For example, group together rules and regulations, workflow essentials, filing for breaks and leaves, payment schedule and terms, and so on. If you have ideas that do not seem to fit your categories, consider them as miscellaneous and discuss those last.

During the orientation, you may also tackle personal and business expectations, responsibilities, and even the entire business process. You may also establish a time frame for replies and when you need a heads-up for anything. Most importantly, encourage your VA to ask questions and voice their concerns during this meeting. This will help you get on the same page and develop a harmonious working relationship.

Manage Expectations and Prevent Being a Control Freak

Remember that your VA is also a human being with feelings and aspirations. Therefore, they also have limitations. If it is their first time working with you, make sure to set realistic goals with them. Don’t expect them to provide you with a “100% output” during the first few days of work. Most VAs will still need to undergo an adjustment period. If you expect them to provide that type of output and they fail to give it at once, you’re in for a great disappointment.

Instead, ramp them up for a gradually increasing workload. For example, if they are tasked to answer bulks of e-mails, provide them with a minimum of 20 e-mails in a day. After a week, increase the number to 30 e-mails, and so on. If your target number is at least 100 e-mails in a day, then you should set a goal of reaching that level in about five weeks.

During this period, make sure to periodically check your VA’s progress. To check progress, set metrics like the number and length of e-mails sent. Identify weaknesses and strengths. Let them express how they feel about their experience and if there are other things that may need to be reinforced or improved upon.

Especially during this time, withhold judgment and establish trust with your VA. It is not a pleasant experience having someone (virtually) breathing down their necks while they work, nor is it a good to feel like they are being interrogated all the time. Be compassionate and your VA will surely work at their best potential.

Takeaway

One of the largest mistakes that you can commit is assuming that your VA already knows everything. While VAs are already considered experts, you still have to teach them their roles and your typical workflow. This will help them see the bigger picture and engage in their role accordingly.

How Virtual Assistants can help with Christmas

christmas-design-elements_1045-315It is correct to assume that you may be thinking of hiring a virtual assistant for your office, particularly with the holiday season fast approaching. Consumers tend to always scramble to get things done right before Christmas despite the fact that they have the same number of days to prepare every year for the big holiday. As usual, business is going to be somewhat crazy for everyone, starting from last minute projects and assignments, to needing last minute favors and help.

Depending on your situation, you may be considering bringing
in additional help during the festive season, seeing that it never misses to
bring the same amount of stress and chaos each year. As a result, if you want
to maintain a steady routine, and keep your head above water, what choice do
you have other than securing extra help? However, rather than bringing in additional personnel, it may be much more beneficial for you to hire a virtual personal assistant.

A virtual personal assistant is an excellent alternative to
hiring extra staff members since they can work whenever you need them and do not have time limits. If you would like to save money when it comes to hiring costs and still get an extra pair of hands this holiday season, your best option
would be to bring on a virtual personal assistant to handle some of your tasks.

We can all agree that the holidays tend to be a busy time
for everyone, and we could all stand to benefit from some bit of help here and
there. Luckily, if you have a virtual personal assistant, you will be able to
handle a variety of tasks with their support.

The following are some of the ways on how a virtual personal
assistant can help with Christmas:

Brainstorming gift ideas and finding the best prices

For some people, gift-giving is one of the most stressful
aspects of the holiday season. You may like to hand out presents, but hate to
shop for them since you never quite know what to get for those closest to you.
Fortunately, there are literally dozens of online resources for the finding the
best Christmas gift. Providing your virtual personal assistant with a list of
the people you are shopping for and little bit of information about each one of
them will enable your VA to find some of the most thoughtful presents for
everyone on your list. After picking out each piece, you can have them compare
prices in different shops in order to find the best deals.

Arranging travel plans

If you intend to travel over the holidays, you should let your virtual personal assistant handle flight and hotel reservations. On the other hand, if you plan to stay with relatives, your VA can book you a relaxing and soothing getaway for when you get home.

Research for you year-end tax saving tips

Every year, there are certain tax strategies that you can take advantage of. The good thing is that your VA doesn’t have to be a financial guru to help you out. They can simply do the necessary research on various tax sites in order to find the best year-end tax breaks available. The truth is that investing in a virtual personal assistant could end up saving you huge chunks of money next year.

Ordering and mailing holiday cards

Christmas cards are a fun and exciting tradition that most
of us treasure. However, the time required to make and send them out can be a
quite much at times. As a result, instead of handling such tasks on your own
during the holiday season, you could send your VA some pictures and have them
come up with a couple of designs using built-in softwares such as TinyPrints or
Shutterfly. After they send in what they have, you can pick your favorite.

Take care of things in your absence

It is always a good idea to take a bit of time off over the holidays to be closer to your family and friends as you reflect on the years’ events and mentally prepare for the upcoming challenges. However, for some of us, it is not that easy to leave work behind, and this where a virtual personal assistant can prove to be quite handy. They can cover all your bases while you are away so that you can have peace of mind over the holidays.

Expressing gratitude on your behalf

While you are running around, trying to make everyone happy during the festive season, your best and most loyal customers may feel unappreciated more than usual. Since it is that time of year to give thanks and show appreciation, it is vital that you show your top clients how grateful you are for their loyalty to your brand.

You can even go an extra mile this year by hiring a virtual personal assistant who will send out Cards showing your appreciation. They can even include some kind of generous gesture like offering a discount. Such things will help to show your top customers that you are grateful for all your dealings throughout the year and would like your business relationship to continue and prosper.

Conclusion

We are on the cusp of the festive season, and you could have
schedules filling up, orders coming in, and your time being pulled in all
directions. Faced with such a situation, a virtual assistant can prove to be a
huge asset, not only for your sanity, but your bottom line during this busy
time of the year.

Also to consider…

If your virtual personal assistant has been providing you
with adequate help for most of the year, or they have added substantial value
to your life, you could consider paying them some kind of year-end bonus or
giving them some extra days off. After all, they would also like to be appreciated.
Such some small gestures can end up paying big dividends when it comes to
long-terms success and loyalty.