There is nothing more frustrating than knowing that you need help, but you’re still not sure what kind of help you need. You want to be more productive, but you just aren’t sure where to start. It may even seem that it’s faster for you to do it yourself than to explain it to someone else. That is a perfect example of faulty thinking. If you weren’t overwhelmed “doing it all” we’d never think to ask for help.
We need to convince ourselves that our assistant(s) help multiply our time and get things accomplished so that we can enjoy other aspects of our lives too. But that leads us back to the question, what can a virtual assistant really do for me?
First Step to Delegating – Take a Step Back
Consider all the ways you spend your time each day. Now, consider those tasks that don’t necessarily require your presence. Those are perfect tasks for a personal assistant. Here are a couple of examples:
- Have a way of tracking progress that is always available to both of you. It’s a mistake to allow an assistant to develop their own tracking processes. Determine what is needed and create it yourself. It’s important to be able to pull up the information from any location, at any time, and see what’s happening. Make the most of the technology available. Shared spreadsheets, Google Documents, or project-oriented websites such as Nifty are all viable options.
- Use your assistant to manage your inbox. This will take some time to accomplish. Determine a process for determining how the various types of emails and are to be handled. Decide what:
- Must be handled by you
- Your assistant can handle
- Can be ignored
- You can do to facilitate communication. Perhaps make use of email folders and tagging to communicate the assistant’s activities.
Productive Uses for Your Virtual Assistant
Did those examples start the delegation train rolling? To truly understand the value of working with a virtual assistant, we won’t just tell you about the value you will receive, we can show you! Everywhere businesses and business owners are faced with many tasks that take away precious time from building their business.
What may take a VA an hour or so to complete, may take you hours because of all the distractions and necessary projects that have to be done. Our goal is to be sure that after you realize what just one-hour* can do for your business, imagine what five or ten hours can do!
As we all know, paperwork (even if it is digital) never ends, so why not have someone else deal with it. Here are some ideas:
- Data Entry of a minimum of 75 contacts into an Excel spreadsheet
- Create correspondence for a client
- Edit and proof a minimum of a five-page
- Create documents and/or reports using Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Google Docs, Google Sheets, Zoho Docs, Zoho Sheets, etc.
- Update and manage your calendar
- Delete spam accumulated in your e-mail overnight, and sort, answer, or redirect
- Convert document files to PDF (or vice versa)
- Create PDF’s for numerous company documents, whitepapers, charts.
- Select and schedule 15 individual handwritten greeting cards for delivery, each with a personal message using online services
Although travel hasn’t resumed to its pre-pandemic numbers, sometimes you just have to see a client in person. Why not save yourself a bit of time (and stress) by having someone else handle the details such as:
- Research travel, hotel, and meeting
- Find a few venues to visit on your trip, along with directions to get to them from your hotel.
- Book your flight, hotel, and/or rental car
Research, Writing and Note Taking
Everyone is Zoomed out, but video conferencing is a part of our new normal. Worst yet, when you zone out you’re left scrambling as you try to find out what the group has been discussing. Wouldn’t it be great if your Zoom recording could be transcribed so that all you have to do is search for keywords (like your name) to see exactly what you need to do? Yeah, that’s a VA . . . and here are some ways that we can help.
- Transcribe a half-hour of audio
- Transcribe Zoom meetings
- Research for a specific project
- Do follow-up research on a client, prospect, applicant
- Research possible vendors of a service or product you need
- Monitor and forward info from multiple sources of client industry news headlines, blog posts, and articles.
- Gather info on grant opportunities and calendar deadline reminders (Filling and submission 15-30 minutes additional for each).
- Write article and press release
- Proofread a narrative of up to seven pages
- Copy edit and proofread several
- Write a blog
- Research best price/features for a needed service or technology
- Create a viable prospect list of 25-30
If your job is to update websites or you’re working on a project where your time is better spent thinking up strategy and UX ideas, then a virtual assistant can definitely help.
- Update web site
- Make edits to 1-5 web pages (depending on # of changes).
- Post 3-4 blog entries to blog adding also photos
- Submit a press release to 5-10 sites
- Submit an article to 5-10 sites
- Analyze and update basic SEO elements for a 5-page heavy-content
- Edit a 30-60 minute audio file using Audacity or
As you can see, a virtual assistant can adapt to a number of different tasks. All you need to do is define what you’d like someone else to do and get them started. We’re really quite adaptable and friendly too!
*Each project is unique. This list shows actual project examples as they pertain to a particular project and serve as a guideline only. This is just a sampling of what a VA can do.