Document How You Like Things Done
We all have ways we like things done and systems we have created to assure things run efficiently. Having procedures documented with step-by-step directions serves as a guide for meeting business goals, establishes consistency, improves communication, acts as a resource for how things are done, and makes it easier when hiring new team members. A document with easy-to-follow directions for your VA to reference on how to complete certain tasks makes delegating easier. It also clarifies for you how you want a particular task done, and it streamlines the learning process for your VA. If you don’t have the time to parse out procedures, your VA can distill your notes about a process into step-by-step directions. She can update procedures as your business grows and processes change. She can also help with documenting procedures for other team members.
Set Your VA Up With the Right Tools
If your Virtual Assistant will be communicating with your contacts and clients, it’s a good idea to set them up with your company’s email. They’ll be seen by others as the integral part of your business that they are. What tools does your team use? Set permissions for the tools you would like your VA to access. Share your calendar with her, so she can easily manage your schedule. Use cloud storage to simplify sharing documents with your VA. It’s a great platform for collaborating on files in real-time and you can maintain control of who is able to access which files.
Good Communication is Key
When you communicate clearly with your VA you get the task you requested, when you want it, and how you want it. Your VA should understand exactly what your expectations are. Provide all the relevant information about the task you are requesting and be as specific as possible. Let them know if there is a deadline and if the task has priority over other tasks. A good habit to get into is to put the deadline, priority level and task in the subject line of the email. It will help your VA prioritize tasks for you.
Here are a couple of examples:
[medium] [tomorrow, 2pm EST] complete San Francisco itinerary
[high] [asap] clear Wednesday meetings, reschedule
It may take a little extra time to write out all the details of what you need for a particular task, but it will lessen the likelihood that there will be multiple back and forth emails, saving you time in the end. Once your Virtual Assistant gets to know you and the way you like things done, the communication between you will be more efficient. Try to respond promptly to VA emails seeking clarification, or let them know when you’ll be able to get back to them. Some executives find that it is helpful to have a regularly scheduled check in, via phone or video conference, to get updates on projects and make sure you are both on the same page. When tasks are completed, let your VA know how you think she’s doing. Constructive feedback will help her on future tasks and it’s part of building a successful relationship.
Your VA is Invested in Your Success
Establish a relationship of trust and respect, empowering them to do their best work for you. Welcome their input, suggestions, and ideas. Encourage them to be proactive and acknowledge them when they do great work. When people feel good about the work they are doing they stay engaged and perform better. Tell your VA about your company, what it does, it’s background and values. It will help them feel like an important part of the team. Make sure they know who is on the team and their roles so they are confident and comfortable when communicating with the necessary people.
100Ninjas Grows With You
At 100Ninjas, we believe we are part of your team. We are dedicated to seeing your business grow and thrive and can adapt easily as your needs change. Our Ninjas are ready to help at any time…whether you need more hours added to your plan, require different skill sets or are looking for extra help on a special project, we have a solution for you. Reach out to 100Ninjas to learn more about how we can grow with you!
Founder at 100Ninjas.
Bananagram Master. Smoothie Mixologist. Seeker of the cozy. Art lover.