Virtual Assistant

How to Offload to a Virtual Assistant

It’s hard to offload tasks when you’ve always done everything yourself. The first time you offload tasks to a virtual assistant, it almost never goes as planned. Issues with processes, communication, and understanding are bound to happen, but if you are prepared to hand off tasks, you can avoid making some common mistakes.  The part that you can always control in the relationship you. The more you can learn to be an awesome client, delegate well, and communicate your needs, the faster you will have a VA that makes your life better!

Have clear processes set.

When you have always done something the same way for a long time, it can be hard to break down each step for a new person to learn. If you set up a process for each task that can be used each time this task is completed, it will make the delegating process easier. Next time you go to start a task, you want to offload; write each step you are taking as you complete them. It is helpful to take screenshots or even a video as you go through. This allows your VA to return to the instructions if they have any questions and make sure they are doing the task the way you want it completed. 

You want things to be easier for both of you.

Keep in mind that setting up a plan is not just to make it easier for you. You want it to be easy for your virtual assistant to see what needs to be done and how to do it. This will make completing tasks more efficient and remove any unnecessary stress from either of you. You want your VA to enjoy working on your tasks and feel a passion for what you are working toward as well. If they are stressed each time they are working on a project for you, it will show in their performance.

Communication is key.

Communication should be the core of your system. Tell your virtual assistant what the outcome should be and how the job fits into your business goals. Give clear instructions in a format that will be easy for them to digest then, show them how to do it step-by-step. If you teach them well once, they will be able to do it without needing much of your support going forward.

Once you have completed the task with your VA, it’s good to check for understanding. Ask them to repeat the steps back to you or ask more questions. As they complete the task, especially the first time, you should be available to them in case they have a question. Make sure feedback is constructive and encourages them and helps them improve.

Many people hire and offload thinking that it is the magic key to making their business grow. And I believe it kind of is. But it can only be magic if you invest the time into making sure your VA has what they need to do the job well and know what needs done. I don’t care how good a VA is, you need to train them in things to be good for your specific needs.

Give your VA space.

You will want to be there for your virtual assistant, but you should not micromanage them. Together, set communication expectations for each task. Don’t hinder their work or become overbearing. Just make sure you are available, so if they need you, you can help. This will not only give them satisfaction when the job is complete but also make them more efficient by being able to focus better. 

From the virtual assistant’s perspective, there is nothing more frustrating than starting your day and realizing your client went in and changed or edited what you were working on the night before. If you edit their project before it is complete, you will slow the process as your VA tries to figure out what has been changed. If it looks like your VA is going in a different direction than you would like, simply ask for a call so you can clarify what is needed and your VA can explain their thinking. Who knows, maybe your VA has an idea that will help you in the long run.

Hiring takes time.

No matter how prepared you are, it won’t go perfectly. It may take longer than planned for your VA to finish the work, or there could be issues with the completed task. You’ll need to be patient and allow some flexibility as you work out a workflow.

Take a problem-solving approach where you don’t blame either party, but work together to find a solution. Make sure you give the benefit of the doubt that maybe you didn’t explain something all the way, or skipped a step. No one will be perfect in this relationship, and you want to give a fair try in making the relationship work.

Do you still feel a little shaky about how to successfully delegate to a virtual assistant and grow your business? 

If you want to learn how to hire and work with a VA stress-free, check out my full course.  The course covers all the steps you will need so that by the end, you are ready to hire your first VA.