Frustrated? Overwhelmed? Wanting another 12 hours in your business day just so you can catch up? You need a VA, also known as a virtual assistant. Hiring a VA is a great way to take tasks off your to-do list so that your time is freed up to focus on growing your own business.
Before you hire a VA, take a moment to ask these questions:
1.What areas do you specialise in?
Hiring a general virtual assistant isn’t always the right move. If you want help with your content marketing, then you want a virtual assistant that specialises in blogging and content creation. If you want high-level email marketing, you need to say that’s what you’re looking for, and what platform. If you want a VA to manage your diary, you need to hire one with the correct skillset.
2. How do you handle tasks you’ve never done before?
You want a virtual assistant who knows how to think. For example, your VA may say that they’d pause and ask you for documentation relating to software they’ve not used before, or they might say that they’d look up a tutorial on YouTube for help. A great VA will speak up and tell you when she’s out of her depth and recommend another VA. Often, if you really like your VA and the work they do on a regular basis, it’s worth investing in some training for them so they can continue to work for you.
3.Do you work well/communicate with a team?
This is especially important to consider before you make any job offer to any new team member. Many VAs can work with multiple team members successfully. However, there are some VAs that prefer to work independently and autonomously, and to work in a team would take this away from them.
You also need to know how your VA likes to be communicated with. Does she want you to email her? Pick up the phone? Can you call ad-hoc or do you need to schedule an appointment? Find out in advance before you think your VA is never available to you.
4.What time zone are you in?
You need to know before working with a VA what time zone they’re in if they’re not in your home country. You should also ask about their business hours. Some VAs work the typical 9-5 while others may do the bulk of their work in the early hours of the morning. Having a VA 8 hours behind means you can leave them tasks, and they’re already completed when you get up the next morning. You won’t know how to manage this, if you don’t know what time zone your VA is in.
5. What are your favorite types of projects?
Listen carefully when you ask this question. This shows you which projects are your VA’s strengths and where she may need extra help. If your would-be VA loves graphic design, hiring her to do the writing of your sales page may not be the best use of her skills. You may find that her writing is superb, and her passion is Twitter. If you’re lacking in this area it will be a match made in virtual business heaven!
Hiring a VA is easier than you think when you know what questions to ask when you interview them.
Of course, you can always find out the answers to these questions in advance to create a shortlist of virtual assistants to interview.
P.S. When you hire your VA you’ll need to know what’s yours, and what’s not and our outsourced business contracts will help you get this right.