Reasons Why Business Support Is Getting More Popular In The Past Decade.

Reasons Why Business Support Is Getting More Popular In The Past Decade.

I would love to say I am fresh out of school and at the start of a career, but that’s not the case at all. I have been in work since the mid-90s, I remember getting my first business support job, then getting another job in London (that’s my hometown) I remember finishing work and heading to the nearest wine bar and having a laugh with my work colleagues.

What I also remember is most people that I left school with went straight into employment, whereas nowadays I am seeing so many fresh-faced, young people leaving school or college and starting their own businesses. I think at that age whether you are going into employment or starting a business it is all a learning curve and hard work, I remember my first few jobs, going home and saying to my dad ‘blimey dad this working lark is tiring’ I remember him smirking at me, only now do I know now why he was smirking!

Hard Times

I know in my working life I have seen a lot of tough times when it comes to financial crisis and how some businesses got through those times but others didn’t, I know that now is still tough for some businesses out there, but with so many businesses popping up due to the rise of programmes such as The Great British Bake off, The Great British Sewing Bee, The Great Pottery Throwdown and Kirstie’s Handmade other such like shows. These shows have spurred on the public to start buying more British and handmade goods, people are happy to pay that little extra more for something, not mass produced and made in Britain, they love supporting small businesses, we even have things like #smallbusinesssaturday and other such events.

And so it begins

With this new surge of small businesses comes the need for business support, people are beginning to see there is an alternative, they are also seeing that there is a different kind of business support out there, gone are the days of large corporates having their typing pool’s or team secretaries, it has all changed, the small startups are able to now have their own business support, the small companies that have only 3 or 4 staff can have causal support but not cost a fortune.  In the last decade, we have seen an unprecedented rise in Virtual Assistants (VAs) that offer such support as a cost-effective solution.

You see a decade ago you didn’t have someone working from home purely as support, that support position was seen as an onsite role, bosses couldn’t see how you could provide support to the team if you weren’t in the same office as them or on the same phone loop, they were thinking inside the box.

Of course, there was also the small problem of technology! we all remember the mobile phones that would resemble a small suitcase with the flimsy wire that was meant to be the aerial! we all remember the fax machine that would make that really annoying high pitched noise, but not everyone was able to have these, which made working from home pretty much impossible.

Dawn of a new age

In the last decade we have seen technology change with the wind and in my opinion for the good, (minus those pesky keyboard warriors on social media!) with the winds of change it has swept in a new way of thinking and doing, it has opened up the amazing new world of support to business owners.

I have been in business support since I left school, I have seen the change from working on a floppy disc, DOS and WordPerfect, from communicating via telex and fax, to emails and online chat (which is revolutionary!) from having that office secretary sat in the office to have a VA business support person working in their home office giving you full business support.

What have we learnt in the last decade?

  • Working from home is more popular now than ever before
  • Mobile phones are small. slimline and cost a pretty penny, but lightweight! we all remember the Motorola
  • Online file sharing, who would have thought we could share work instantly over the internet, instead of saving to a large floppy disc and posting it!
  • Age! no one seems to ever look their age anymore!
  • Anyone can build a website to host their amazing new business venture
  • Reality TV! who would have known that watching Joe Bloggs would be great TV?
  • Apps! you could almost and I say almost! run your business via apps from your smartphone and tablet
  • Struggling Apple in the late 90s would become one of the biggest innovative companies of our future! and paved the way for upcoming technology
  • Crocs – who knew that they would ever take off!
  • Youtube! this is just as important as Google in my eyes, not only have I learnt many technical things to help fun my business, I have learnt how to make soap, and sew!
  • Free phone calls! that’s a biggie when I met my hubby our monthly bills were HUGE and I mean HUGE, remember cross network phone/text charges?
  • Free software, so many new businesses have the ability to use amazing tools and apps for free, you really can do so much with free options
  • Adverts! what are they, the dawn of live pause TV no one has to wait anymore, but now have to pause the TV to make a cuppa and slice of angel cake!
  • A minicomputer in your hand, who would have thought that your phone would be the extension of your PC
  • Facebook! this was such a game changer but has proven to be a huge asset to most business owners, gone are the days of leaflet dropping, when you can advertise to millions on here
  • Google! not even sure I could even imagine my life without Google, it’s my IT support, my parenting go-to, my everything, I ask it so much advice its crazy
  • GPS, haha gone are the days of getting lost, and having that ‘YOU’RE READING THE MAP UPSIDE DOWN’ rows!
  • Instant gratification – no one seems to have to wait anymore
  • Ipods, see I am at that age of cassette players with no rewind! I would have to turn the tape FF and flip it over again, who knew that there would be way of having all the music we could ever wish for on a mobile device
  • Texting!!!!! Oh my giddy aunt, R U STL CMG OVR 2NIITE? how did we manage that, I am sure I have RSI from texting!!!
  • VA’s who knew how vital they were to your growing business!

Let’s make your next decade less stressful

You see with the plethora of new businesses out there, us admin peeps are seeing that you need support, so let us use our decades of knowledge and help you succeed.

There are loads of Business Supports and VAs out there, and one that will just click with you. Get in touch today I would love to be able to help you.  Business support is getting better with thanks to technology, the rise of new businesses taking the plunge and believing in themselves and their products and services, it’s changing as VAs are becoming more than just a secretary!

Drop me a message HERE

Thanks for reading, this blog made me smile looking back on the last decade, so many things I could have listed

 

Signoff

 

 

Virtual Assistant vs employee

Virtual Assistant vs employee

This is something I get asked often:

‘why would I use a VA and not hire an admin assistant?’ 

Firstly, there is no right or wrong here, it is what suits you and your business at that time and place, you may find having a VA at the start of your business suits you better, then as you grow and business becomes more fruitful you may find that you need to start employing staff to be in your office/shop, and that is fine too.

There are many stages of business, and there are solutions for every step of the way, so make sure you do your research. You will know roughly your budget and workload, so your options should be clearer to you.

So, let’s take a peep – Let’s get this straight, I am not saying one is better than the other, let’s just take a step back, 5yrs ago I was an employed member of staff, so I have been both, this is just a broad overview of VA vs Admin Assistant, I am not here to tell you one is better than another, there are pros to both as well as cons to both.

Hiring an admin assistant 

Having someone based in your office is a plus, there is a huge advantage in having someone based in your office, that presence can be a plus for you and your clients but remember there is a price tag to having a member of staff in your office.

Some of those costs are can be a hindrance to your business:

  • Equipment
  • Sick pay
  • National Insurance contributions
  • Holiday pay
  • Lost money when the member of staff may not have much work on
  • Hiring fees (if using an agency)
  • Training

But the plus side of hiring an office-based member of staff:

  • Someone based in your office for specific times
  • Hired personal has set jobs and works solely for your business

Hiring a Virtual Assistant 

When you are just starting out or do not have the budget to hire a full-time member of staff, hiring a VA is a great way to get that support without breaking the bank balance.  But by no means am I saying that a VA is only suitable for small/medium businesses or start-ups, as 2 of my biggest clients are larger businesses with 10+ employees so that just shows that you can have a VA working alongside your bank of employees.

So, here are some pros and cons to hiring a VA:

  • You only pay for the time spent on a task
  • You can pay hourly or most VAs will have monthly retainers
  • No sick pay
  • No holiday pay
  • No equipment overheads
  • No training costs
  • Most VAs have a large network of support should there be a task or problem they need to work out
  • Your VA will 9 times out of 10 be located offsite, so this may play a part in your decision
  • Your VA will most definitely have more that one client, so offsets their time between their clients

Both work well 

Depending on where you are at in your business journey will heavily depend on your choice, as I said earlier there is no right or wrong, having support with your business is key, and how you chose to do it is down to you and your plan.

Small business support 

I know a lot of small business owners do prefer to support other small businesses, they like the relationship that you can build with your VA, and that they know they are also supporting another growing business.

For me, I have clients that have an hour a month and I have clients that have 10hrs a month, I also have project-based clients as well as ad-hoc clients.

Work on a plan

Your first action should be to sit down and work out what is keeping you stuck, what tasks are keeping you away from doing what you love to do, you know that thing that earns you money, that thing that made you start your business, so if there are things keeping you away from that, then you need to be figuring out what they are.

You then need to decide which will suit you and your business better. Remember you can hire someone on a part-time basis and you can also have a VA to work on large projects. It is your business you know what is best, and both options work well.

If you feel working with a VA is a viable option for you and your business then get in touch HERE I would love to be able to support you.

 

Signoff

Mindset is not just for January!

Mindset is not just for January!

As we say farewell to January, probably one of the toughest months for most, not just business owners, just everyone in general.  We have seen the end of the festive period, Blue Monday and what seems an age since we had money going into our bank accounts.

But the light at the end of the tunnel is here and we can breathe a deep sigh of relief, February is here, and Spring is ever closer! We have seen loads of goal setting, resolutions, how powerful 2018 is going to be, as well as the be kind (my motto) as well as mindset.

I have refrained from doing anything about mindset in January as I know there is a lot of noise on this matter through January and its true, mindset is everything, if you don’t have that straight, your balance is off, both in business and in general life, you have got to have your mindset balanced, it is so easy to be knocked off your balance, this could be a number of factors.  January is enough to knock anyone off kilt, but getting back on is key, so brush off those knocks and doubts and get back to balancing your mindset and actions.

Why is mindset so important? 

Believe it or not this is what makes us feel how we feel, do the things we do and when, the definition of Mindset is simply, your mood, your attitude, your intention, ideas and the approach you have on a situation, so if you are down in the dumps (as my dad used to say) then your mood is down, this alters your attitude to doing something, and you have less intention to get on with what you need to do.

So, it’s all about keeping that on the up, aligned and in check, having those knocks or talking yourself out of things will only push your mindset of kilter.

It could be a factor 

If you are finding that everything is a struggle, or your confidence in performing certain jobs and tasks, or even lacking confidence in your knowledge, this could be a result in your mindset being unbalanced, life is very much about can and can’t do’s, but we often tell ourselves we can’t do something quicker than we tell ourselves that we can, this boils down to confidence and your mindset.

To get this sorted you need to push that Self-talk fairy off your shoulder, (self-talk fairy a phrase coined by the lovely Emma Holmes of Rebels and Rockstars, who is guest blogging for me on this topic very soon).  Once you have got rid or at least gagged her for a while (your self-talk fairy not Emma) you can start to build your confidence which will have a staggering effect on your mindset, as you won’t be talking yourself out of things (mood and attitude part of mindset)

Drowning

Another biggie for your mindset is your workload, when you are swamped, and your to-do list is just screaming more hours at you, it hits your motivation, which then starts that huge ricochet ripple of doubt, angst and self-talk, if you are struggling with your workload do not look at it as a failure, spin it around and see it as a positive! Instead of telling yourself you are a failure because you can’t keep up with your work demands, say to yourself, I am getting busier, my clients are enjoying working with me, my products/services are resonating with my clients which means I am getting busier!

See the different mindset spin can really help you.

Discovery calls 

If your business is picking up and you are finding you have less hours to do those tasks, then see this as an opportunity to put something in place now, before you do get into a spin that you cannot get out of, book a free call with me and we can run through your sticking points.

Signoff

Review of your year!

Review your yearSo every year I tend to do a quick review on where I am, what I currently do for my clients, what more I can do to support them, as well as looking at where I want my business to go next year.

This week for me is my review week, I don’t tend to do it in December and I find it too much of a stress month to add another fairly big task to run with.  Not sure about you by December is filled with finding hiding places for all those parcels that have been delivered, explaining why there are several Santa’s around town, remembering to move the elf before I go to bed, school plays, pantos, Christmas dinners, social media, client work etc, so throwing in several client reviews wouldn’t be the best use of productivity in what already is a hectic time of year.

I started this week with a quick look at where my business has gone this year, and I must say this year is probably my best yet, I have continued to support my long-term clients, I have gained some truly awesome new clients who are doing amazing things in their businesses, I am so fortunate to be able to support them. I have to say business wise 2017 has rocked for me here at RAS.

So, how can I improve on my progress from this year?


Small targets! 

Like with 2017, I will be setting small realistic targets for next year, it can be so easy to add in so many HUGE and unachievable targets at the beginning of each year, which will only deflate you if you start missing those goals, so instead of giving yourself one massive target break it down into several smaller ones, a bit like your to-do list, this way your confidence in what you do will grow as you hit your goals each month.  This year I set myself 4-5 small goals a month, 1 slightly larger one for 6 months and a 1 largish goal for the end of the year, and some of the smaller monthly tasks were heading to my ultimate goal for the end of the year, so I was always seeing my progress as the months ticked on.

Be realistic 

First day back in the office refreshed and pleased you don’t have to commute hours by train to your office because you run your own business, you sit down to start jotting your goals on paper, as we all know writing them down makes you accountable (yeah righty ho!) but we still do it, we are super pumped and off we go:

2015 list

  1. Earn enough to go to Florida (deadline March!)
  2. Earn enough to only work (deadline Easter)
  3. Earn enough to book a regular spa (deadline before summer holidays I need to be prepared)
  4. Gain more clients (deadline February)

(this is a real-life goals list from a close business buddy of mine) she set it 2yrs ago, and when I asked her the other week how many she ticked off, she said none! She told me she became disheartened and deflated when the first goal was missed.

She has since redone her list, in fact we both sat down at the start of this year and made our goals together, she is a bit of an accountability buddy for me.  On her list for 2017 she had:

  1. Offer more hours to her current client base (deadline March)
  2. Take on 3 more 1-2-1 clients (deadline July)
  3. Earn £150 extra each month (ongoing)
  4. Continued from 2016 earn deposit for 2018 family holiday (deadline December)

These were just a couple of hers that she was happy for me to share with you all, you can see the clear difference between the 2 years, she told me that 2015 was negative for her due to the constant missing goals, she quickly realised they were too big and the deadlines were unrealistic. She refused to set goals in 2016!

I was talking to her over the weekend and said that this week I was doing my review, she said she would let me know how hers had gone, so yesterday we had a quick live chat, out of the 4 listed above she has completed all of them, she is going into the travel agents on Saturday and laying the deposit for her family holiday next year.  She said that her goals were more achievable and realistic deadlines, and with each one she crossed off the more confidence it had given her.

Moral of this! 

Set yourself goals, I actually think they are a healthy thing to have in your business, but don’t expect to move the moon closer to the earth, we already have more pressure on us as it is by running our business, why put more on our shoulders but adding unrealistic goals! Start small and few at a time.

Outsourcing 

Is 2018 the year for you to offload some of those tasks that are weighing you down? Don’t let it become an issue or too late and your stress levels hit the roof. If you are already working late nights and odd days over the weekend or struggling to knock things of your ever growing to do list, then maybe having a VA on hand maybe the right option for you!

Check out this blog about working with me

Let’s make sure 2018 rocks for us all, with no added pressures made by ourselves 😊

Signoff

What’s on your investment list

What's on your investment list

Yep Investment List!

If you are anything like me your life is probably built on lists, shopping, kids, business, bucket, you name it everything goes onto one, whether we follow it and tick things off is another thing (there is a list on my fridge, paint kitchen, new shower screen, paint hallway! This has been there since the beginning of the year!)

But my investment list I take incredibly seriously, because I am so passionate about what I do for work, and have the thirst to better myself for my clients, this list is so important to me.

For me, this isn’t solely about money, this can be things that are free but beneficial (yes that does exist!)

When I started my Virtual Assistant business I knew I had the knowledge of being a PA/Admin support as I had been working in that field since I left school, but what knowledge I had on running a business I could have written on the back of a stamp, so I spent equal time working and growing my business with researching how to run a successful virtual/online business, and before I knew it I found a list of things that I wanted to invest my time and money in to make my business thrive.

So what was on this investment list of mine?

1. Training – this is no different from my corporate days, except I pick and choose the training I want and what is going to benefit my business and help me move forward. Being an online/virtual business there are a wealth of programs/systems out there and always new fancy ones being released regularly. So, it is a case of staying on top of new systems and keep my knowledge levels replenished.  Also doing research to see if any new systems that come out could benefit my clients in their business.

2. Software – this ranges from upgrades to new software, we always need to be up to date with our software, and making sure the one we are using now is still the right one for your business, if not sourcing a new piece of software to fit in your business now.

3. Hardware – when I started I had an old laptop and that was it, but over time I have upgraded my hardware to suit my business, I have a new laptop better running system, separate keyboard, bigger screen, this all makes my working day run more smoothly and easier for me to work throughout the day, but have added to my arsenal of hardware, printers, office phone, equipment for recording videos.

4. Support network – this is one that does NOT need to cost you any money at all, every social media platform has groups of small businesses, there are even business groups for specific
industries, I am in a few dedicated to Virtual Assistants, but am in a few that are for small businesses, and some that are dedicated to either women in business or mums in business, bizarrely not just for support but those categories are my ideal clients too.

5. Dedicated space – when I first started out I was working out of my kitchen, then a small area in my bedroom, but it became obvious in the early days of running my business that I could benefit from that space, as a VA I don’t really need a dedicated space as everything is predominantly online, but I felt I needed that place where I was undisturbed, not just from people but household chores that were staring me in the face all the time, I was lucky to have a Summerhouse at the end of my garden that we could convert, and that is now my office or ‘The Cabin’ as its affectionately known as.

What’s on my list going forward:

My list is always evolving like my business, so my list changes over a course of time, what may be on my list now, may not be there if I decide a different direction.

1. Audio equipment, even though I do video’s I want to move into podcasting and webinar support, so on my list for future investments is a new external microphone, podcasting/webinar software and a better camera.

2. Courses – I can’t get enough of information, there are a few courses that have a monthly cost that I want to start being part of probably from the new year.

3. Accreditation – As a VA I want to be seen as the professional that I am, so I am working towards and getting the things in place to become fully accredited with VIPVA association, this is more something for me and my peace of mind, gives me that little bit of security and back up from an association.

4. Accountant! Yep, I want to be able to outsource my accounts, now don’t get me wrong my accounts aren’t huge at the moment, but it’s a job I dislike, so being a person that people
outsource too I see those benefits of not having a job you procrastinate over sitting in your trays!  I would like to outsource my accounts, I would like to start as I mean to go on with my accounts, as my business grows it would be nice to have that person working with me on my accounts and making sure all is in place and correct. Yes even a VA outsources.

So what is on your investment list? I certainly cannot tell you what you should have yours, as everyone’s list is going to be different. You may have all the equipment you need to run a successful business, but may not have that support network around you, so that could go on there. As I said it’s not necessarily all about monetary investment, it about making your business work with you and becoming fruitful in all ways.

Your list isn’t set in stone either if you have things that were on your list they can be tweaked, our businesses change on a regular basis, mine has changed a lot over the years, even though the function is the same, other aspects have changed.

Don’t keep yourself trap, adapt to your business. Sit down and create your very own investment list, you do not need to put deadlines on them, sometimes they are helpful, but not always necessary. For an example, I want to be fully accredited by the start of the new tax year 2018, so this gives me plenty of time to get all those bits in place.

You may want to put a Virtual Assistant on your list for when you get super busy 🙂

Signoff

How to free up time

How to free up your timeSometimes we just can’t put our fingers on where the time has gone today, it always seems a surprise that it’s time to clock off and do the other job you might have, for me its mummy duties!   

We all say the same thing ‘OMG where has today gone’ I am such a culprit of those sayings, you’ll find me saying it half way through the year too, and the same at Christmas time, sadly the time goes to the same place it does every day lol, it is no real surprise really ‘Time and Tide wait for no man’ and it’s true. 

But it’s a bit of a double edge saying, as yes the days do go fast but when you have that pig of a task that you are doing, time just d-r-a-g-s doesn’t it, it makes it even more painful, it’s bad enough that you have to do the damn task, but to make your day hell is just not acceptable.

So, what tasks are time-consuming?

  • Social media – oh my days what a total time zapper, you popped on to check your page, and then you find out that Karen’s daughter has a new hamster, or Darren has scrapped his car and is looking for a decent repair garage!!
  • Spreadsheets – yes they do still exist, they haven’t become extinct (yet) and yes they are still long winded and painful, whether its expenses or keeping track of work related performances to plain old data entry, it is still time-consuming. 
  • Newsletters – this is one of those ones that you know you should be doing, but finding the time to create your newsletter, create the address list for it to go to, then find the time each month to get a new one created and sent out, is frankly boring and time zapping, you haven’t got time for this! But your little fairy is telling you otherwise! Who needs sleep anyway!
  • Research – there is still no quick way of doing this, well unless you were researching in the 80s then yes Google has happened and has sped some things up, but basic researching is still the equivalent to teeth pulling in Edwardian times.
  • Late payment chasers – ah this is one of my favs! Doing a job and not being paid for it, luckily in my VA business this has only happened once, in my other joint business sadly this has happened too often, and the time it takes to get in touch with them and give them suitable warning that payment needs making, that could be 20-30 mins wasted. 

Have you got any of these tasks?

Do you have to do any of these during your time on your business? If so then of these can be outsourced to a virtual assistant.  As well as audio transcription, copy typing, diary management, travel arrangements, event management, data entry, database management, CRM set up, a blog set up or creation, website assistance. Then you can start considering those VAs that have specific Nichè, like those that can do your paperwork for your tax returns, those that have medical or law background, you will also find some that have design as their forte.

My tip to you is a simple one, if you have a task or 2 that is taking up far too much of your time it is possibly the right time to get that extra pair of hands in.  

I am happy to have a chat with you on where you need to look, or just happy to speak to you about the whole process.

Chat soon

Signoff

Surviving the school holidays!

Surviving the school holidaysIf you are a parent then you know the school holidays are coming around FAST, those that have children and run a business know that this can be one of the most stressful times of the year!

We are aware that our families are probably one of the reasons why we started our businesses, but equally, we know that if we don’t work then we don’t get paid, which that is a concept that some children just don’t understand!
They see mum or dad at home which to them equals family fun time!

So, what do you do? I hear you sigh 

Last year was probably my most successful summer holidays with my children, I removed the pressure from my shoulders and reminded myself why I am doing my business and that my children are small for such a short period of time.


I follow a lady called Claire Mitchell of The Girls Mean Business, and last year she published a book dedicated to surviving the school holiday. Not all of it was relevant to me, and necessarily be helpful to me in my business or with my children, so I had to adapt and learn as I went through the 6 weeks, and I can honestly say, that come September when my children went back to school, I didn’t feel as frazzled as previous years.

What did I do so differently?

Most of my clients are family orientated, so I could let them know that I was still available during the school holidays, but made some changes:

  • I spoke with my children and set a rota, so for an example,  Monday AM I was working, clearing any weekend enquiries, and schedule in my social media for the week. Then Monday PM I would take them out to a park or something fun, this would happen throughout the week. It gave them something to look forward to and I got to tick a few things off my list.
  • My reply time changed from within an hour to the same day response. If I had a message come in just as I went out with the children it gave me some breathing space knowing I could still have fun and reply when I got back to the office.
  • Soft Play! This was a great one for us, it gave my children that time to run off steam and have fun, and I could sit there with a coffee and laptop and work, that was a great compromise, and will be doing that again this year.
  • Park trips, this one was quite useful for me, as it meant I could get away from my laptop yet still get some work done, I found I was able to sit and write or come up with topics for my posts and blogs etc
  • Logging on when they went to bed, this one goes against most of my ethics really, I tend to have one late night a week, but I did allow myself to log on once or twice a week in the evening to clear things and get back to people should they have messaged me. But again, I was strict!

These were just a few of the slight changes I made last year, it was all about compromising with the children, and myself, I also learnt how to manage my expectations on what I can and what I wanted to get done, luckily my children are at that age now where when they see me in my office ‘mummy is working’.

I plan to do the same this year, we will sit down and work out a rota for time with the family and time for work, this will be put in place a week or so before they pack up from school, giving them time to get used to the rota.

Work-life balance is hard to achieve but you can do it, you need to compromise with yourself and cut yourself some slack too. This is your dream, you have been building your business for some time don’t let school holiday break you.

Remember, you can outsource too, there is no shame in having a VA on hand to help you out either regularly or through holidays, this option does give you that peace of mind and free up some time, it’s one less ball to have to juggle.

If you are struggling to stay on top of things, why not have a chat with me, I am happy to discuss outsourcing and how I can help you gain back sometime during your week.  And check out my latest freebie HERE

11 Things to ask your Virtual Assistant

 

 

 

 

 

Hope to chat with you soon

Signoff

5 Tips on staying Calm when you outsource your dream

Staying calm when you outsource

Recently we have spoken about outsourcing, what to expect and how to do it, but one of the biggies my clients have told me is staying calm, they know they are doing the right thing, but when the day comes to handing stuff over they get all jittery!

This is so normal, don’t feel that you are over reacting because you are not, remember this is your dream, you have been working on this for months if not years, this concept has been in the making for such a long time and now you are having someone else come in and start poking around in your systems, your templates, your work and it can be daunting and really unsettling.

Just make sure you follow these quick little tips:

  • Make sure you only delegate a few small things for the first few weeks
  • Make sure they are done to your satisfaction, don’t feel your VA will be annoyed at the amendments, they will be more annoyed that they haven’t done it to your complete satisfaction.
  • Communicate with your VA regularly, on a new contract for me it is normal to have a least one email a day for the first few weeks, then I find that they have become settled and more comfortable with my work so we tend to touch base once a week.
  • Don’t feel pressured, if you are not happy or you are not ready to hand more work over, be firm!
  • Enjoy! Don’t feel guilty that you have outsourced work, you need to do this to grow your business and free up your time, you are not lazy, you are being honest with yourself, you know that you need help! There is no shame in that!

If you are feeling swamped with work and you feel you could benefit from outsourcing then get in touch, will be happy to run through anything with you.  Grab my latest freebie HERE

11 Things to ask your Virtual Assistant

 

 

 

 

 

Signoff

5 things to expect from outsourcing

5 things to expect from outsourcing

Previously I have spoken about the things you should expect when working with a virtual assistant.

But what can you expect when you outsource? So you have spoken to a VA, you and told them what your pain points are, and the possible tasks you want to outsource.

5. Offload THOSE tasks! – we all have those tasks that take an age to do, or forever to get off your to do list, these could be the type of tasks that you can outsource to your new VA, it could be that type of task that would take them half an hour, where it would take you hours or days.

4. Reduced stress – Knowing that you could be working into the dead of night on the endless tasks you have, can be a real stress inducer, so knowing that you have that extra pair of hands at the ready will reduce the stress, knowing that those tasks that have taken you forever to get done are being done by your VA will reduce those stress levels.

3. Having an expert on hand – Now I am not saying your VA is the all seeing all singing superstar, but she/he will undoubtedly have a vast knowledge on may things that will help you move forward in business, and most VAs have a wide support network that they can call upon should the task or problem become troublesome.

2. More time in business – You will find that you will be gaining back more time to spend ‘IN’ your business not ‘ON’ your business, there is an enormous difference with this one. We all know that working ‘in’ your business you are working with clients, selling, making, planning whichever it is you do, basically making money, the ‘on’ the business is the amount of time you are having to spend doing the background work, emails, invoicing, marketing, advertising, social media, overdue payments, the list is endless, but these are the tasks your VA can do, which then turns your ‘on’ to ‘in’ time.

1. Happier you! – This one speaks for itself really, but yes after your initial settling in with your new VA, and things start to tick over and your business relationship grows, the less stress you will have and the happier you will be knowing that they are being taken care off, giving you that time you need to grow your dream.

If you are looking to outsource or you think you could benefit from this, then get in touch, will be more than happy to have a chat with you.  Check out my latest freebie HERE

11 Things to ask your Virtual Assistant

 

 

 

 

 

Signoff

Talk to your family………

talk with your family

Again, another random title lol but it is something I want to talk about, as let’s face it, your family have a massive influence in your business, at the end of the day I am pretty sure they are one of the top 5 reasons you started in the first place.

But do you talk to your partner? Do you bounce ideas off them? Do you ask for advice? And MORE importantly, do you NOT talk about business!?
Let’s face it we are all culprits of having a moan, or talking to your partners as soon as they take the key out the door, not least because it’s nice to see them, but also to the fact you have been in your home office all day, so adult company is always nice.

But we need to be mindful not to bombard them with our woes and worries, it’s nice to bounce those ideas off your loved ones, but equally, it is nice to SWITCH OFF, you’ll hear this a lot from me in the future.  I am all for working to grow my business but I am also a massive advocate of having that downtime, and more so lately with all the #headstogether campaign too.

#headstogether 

I know this is so off topic when it comes to business, whichever industry you are in, but it’s one that needs to be out there and spoken about, and being a business owner I worry about this too, when working from home we lock ourselves away in a bubble and sometimes forget to come out for air.

Your family are the ones supporting you, so make sure you are connecting with them and making sure if you have any problems they are aware of them.

Equally, you need to make sure you have plenty of down times too, this is such an important part of your business thriving, if you are not logging off and enjoying what is around you then it becomes a chore and no different to going and working for someone else.

 

Remember your reasons  

Now and then you need to put things in check and you need to remember why you are doing what you are doing, this works on other things too not just business related.  But sit and ask yourself what were the reasons you started your business.

 

  • Stick to your hours
  • Switch off
  • Play and talk with your family and friends
  • Enjoy downtime
  • Remember you need to make sure you talk to those around you, it’s so easy to lock yourself away
  • Enjoy your business, but also enjoy the reasons why you started

 

Your family and friends are there to support you, talk to them, be honest with them, and more importantly ENJOY what you have

 

If you are struggling to stay on top of things, why not have a chat with me, I am happy to discuss outsourcing and how I can help you gain back some time during your week.  And check out my latest freebie HERE

11 Things to ask your Virtual Assistant

 

 

 

 

 

Chat soon

Signoff