In the seven prior posts in this series, we’ve covered the preparation and search for a virtual assistant. We’ve also touched on how being an ‘ideal’ client for your virtual assistant can benefit the relationship as well. Our next top secret tip actually expands on one of the items that we identified as being a mark of an ideal client.
Top Secret Tip #8- Communicate Effectively
I think most virtual assistants would agree that if they could have just one ‘ideal’ trait it would be that our client were a good communicator.
When it comes to working with a virtual assistant, being a good communicator goes beyond just being able to talk or e-mail someone in an understandable manner. In fact, you could say it has three distinct parts.
1. Clear expectations
Don’t assume that your virtual assistant is going to know what your expectations are going to be. You may know that the document you’re having them work on is a draft, but unless you tell them, they don’t. You don’t want them spending hours of your time perfecting something that doesn’t need to be perfect. On the other hand, if it’s something that needs special attention let them know. One VA on the forums said, “It’s so much easier to do a quality job when you know what their ultimate goal is.”
2. Specific instructions
It may be difficult at first to think specifically as you assign tasks. Give as much detail as you possibly can. If you have an example of how something should be formatted, include the sample. The more detailed your instructions, the better chances of having it done right the first time. Trust me, neither you nor your virtual assistant want do overs. The longer you work with your VA, the easier it will get. Especially since the more repetitive projects are passed along, the less information you’ll have to pass along to have them completed.
3. Timely responses
Try to be as timely as you possibly can with your responses to inquiries from your VA. Remember, the answers to their questions can mean the difference between an item completed quickly and correctly.
It could easily be said that the success of your relationship with your virtual assistant balances on how well the two of you communicate with one another. If you are prepared to communicate effectively you can feel good about doing your part.