Why You Shouldn’t Hire Your Virtual Assistant on Guru.com

I recently read an article by Ryan Lee called “The REALITY of Outsourcing and Virtual Assistants”.   He makes a great point about waiting until your business is ready for a virtual assistant rather than simply getting one because some ‘guru’ tells you to in their book(s). But he also included a few items that I felt the need to comment on, both on his post and now here in this post.

The first thing that concerned me was all the talk of hiring a virtual assistant. While technically I suppose using the word to describe finding a virtual assistant is correct usage, I feel it can cause incorrect expectations in the client/virtual assistant relationship.  Why?  Many business people ‘hire’ with the expectation that the virtual assistant is an employee rather than an independent contractor.  I’ve written here before about the differences between an employee and independent contractor and how important it is to not blur the lines.  And sadly many virtual assistants aren’t very good at pointing out where that line is or at reminding clients why that line exists.  I feel part of my service is to make sure that my clients don’t have to worry about the IRS accusing them of being my employer.  And although I’m sure I’ve lost a few potential clients because of it, part of my introduction packet explains my business policies to remind them that they are collaborating with another business professional, not employing me as part of their own business.

Read moreWhy You Shouldn’t Hire Your Virtual Assistant on Guru.com

Think Your Website Isn’t that Important? Think Again.

How important is your website to your service provider business? Amazingly I still see some ‘so-called’ experts telling people it’s not all that important. In the recent past I’ve overheard at least two conversations in which the expert told the new business owner to ‘just get a free website or Facebook page‘. If I hadn’t been in a public place I probably would have screamed “Noooooo”, much like Obi-wan Kenobi when his mentor Qui-Gon Jinn was struck down by Darth Maul.

Your website matters. A lot.  Want proof?  Keep reading.

Read moreThink Your Website Isn’t that Important? Think Again.

7 Things Every Virtual Assistant Should Know

I love being a virtual assistant. I love educating others about virtual assistance. And I love helping new virtual assistants get started.  With that said, I also believe that if you’re thinking about becoming a virtual assistant there are some things that you shouldn’t need to be taught.

The whole concept of a virtual assistant is that clients are hiring someone who is technology savvy. After all, we rely on said technology to do our jobs right? Yet more and more I’m being contacted by new VA’s asking for help with things that I feel they should already know or at least be aware of.

1.      You should know how to do a comprehensive search with a search engine.

2.      You should be aware of Word templates[1] and how to use them.  This is office administration 101.

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Social Media Time Savers for Virtual Assistants

If  you follow me on Twitter you’ll have noticed that for the past week or so I’ve sent out a tweet that looks like the one below every day:


The virtual-assistants Daily is a compilation of tweets, links, RT’s and information shared on Twitter by the other virtual assistants I follow there.  I started it because some days are just so busy that I don’t get much time to check Twitter, but I really hate missing all the great information. 

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Virtual Assistant Rates- You Want to Charge What?

Don’t let the title mislead you, this post is for both those of you that are interested in using a virtual assistant as well as virtual assistants themselves ( and those that want to be one). I love hanging around the virtual assistant forums. It’s become just one of the ways that I try to … Read more

Do We Need More Than the Name Virtual Assistant?

I have a Google Alert set up for the term Virtual Assistant, and today’s alert brought me a link to an ABC News story on, you guessed it, Virtual Assistants.  I was excited at the possibility of a major news network shedding some light on our industry.  That was, until the video began. First, it … Read more

How to Work with A Virtual Assistant Successfully –Top Secret Tip #3

In my first two top secret tips, I shared that you really need to understand exactly what your needs are, both related to your business and your personality.  These are both important steps in laying the foundation for success working with a virtual assistant.  Top Secret Tip #3 is yet another item you should do … Read more

Happiness. What’s it worth?

According to a BusinessWeek article by Carmine Gallo, only 10% of American employees look forward to going to work.  With those same employees working longer hours, a whopping 47.1 a week on average, that makes me think that there are a lot of unhappy employees out there.  In the above mentioned article it points to uninspiring leadership as the major reason employees are less than excited about their work week.  It then gives seven things that employers/leaders can do to change the workplace environment and inspire their employees to not only enjoy coming to work, but also stay excited about the company they work for.  All well and good for those businesses with employees, but what about the independent businessperson?

Read moreHappiness. What’s it worth?