Working with a virtual assistant (VA) can be an extremely effective way to grow your business and take on more projects without sacrificing personal or family time.
However, it can also be a challenging dynamic if you aren't careful about how you interact with your virtual assistant. With a virtual assistant, there's always the potential for miscommunication and overlap in responsibilities. Both of these things can lead to uncertainty from both parties and overall frustration.
The relationship will become much more streamlined by creating more straightforward communication between you and your virtual assistant. It's important to remember that communication isn't one-sided. It's a give-and-take situation where both parties should feel comfortable bringing up concerns or questions at any time.
Here are some tips for creating more straightforward communication with your virtual assistant so that your relationship remains strong no matter what comes up!
Be Clear About Your Expectations
When working with a virtual assistant, it can be easy to assume that they know your expectations, goals, and deadlines. But suppose you don't communicate clearly with them. In that case, your virtual assistant may feel just as confused as they would if they were working with a manager in an office.
Make sure to clearly outline what you expect from your virtual assistant and when you wish them to complete it. You should also state specific things you'd like them to focus on while working with you. If you have a particular schedule you need to adhere to, let your VA know!
It's a great idea to go over some details with your VA before they begin working with you. This way, they have a more comprehensive picture of the overall work they'll be doing and what the next few weeks or months will look like.
Be sure to give your VA enough information to know their expectations, but not too much, so they're overwhelmed. If you think your VA might need extra guidance, start by being more specific about the nature of your work. You can also offer to walk them through specific projects or tasks so they can get a better idea of what you need from them.
Use Discreet Transparency Tools
As previously stated, miscommunication can be a challenge when you work with a virtual assistant because there are fewer ways for you and your VA to communicate openly.
However, there are some discreet ways to better keep track of progress and notes on your VA's projects without disrupting their workflow.
- Using a virtual sticky note tool, like Post-itBot, can be a discreet way to leave virtual sticky notes to your VA. This way, you have a record of your instructions visible only to you.
- Use a virtual meeting tool like Zoom to hold regular meetings with your VA. Virtual meetings are a great way to have an open dialogue about project progress and any questions your VA has about their work.
- Take advantage of video conferencing if you want an even more in-depth conversation. While it's essential to use discretion when keeping track of your VA's work, it's also important not to stay too quiet. Be sure to check in with your VA regularly to see how things are going and if they have any questions or concerns.
Hold Regular Meetings
Remember, you can use regular meetings to keep track of your VA's progress and to check in on any questions they might have. But you can also use these meetings to discuss the bigger picture. The bigger picture includes examining your VA's goals, your goals as a business owner, and what both of you plan on doing in the coming months.
This conversation is a great way to build stronger relationships with your team members. It's also a great way to ensure your virtual assistant feels like they're part of the bigger picture, not just working in a silo.
If you're not checking in with your VA as often as you should, consider holding regular meetings to keep communication flowing freely between all parties. You can do this as often as you like, but make sure you don't overburden your VA by scheduling meetings every few hours!
Ask for What You Need
Asking for what you need from your VA is essential, especially since you're paying them for their services. However, it's also important to note that not all requests need to be in the form of a demand.
If you have a question about your VA's work, ask it! If you need your VA to re-prioritize their work, talk to them about it. If you want to know about your VA's plans or their overall thoughts on the company's direction, inquire about it!
Having a clear line of communication goes both ways. Your virtual assistant isn't just there to take your instructions; they're there to give you information and feedback, too!
Always let your VA know when they've done a great job or if they've effectively answered your question. Letting them know this will also help your VA feel comfortable bringing up questions or concerns in the future.
Check-in with Your VA Weekly
Even though you may be communicating regularly with your VA through meetings, notes, and other ways, it's always a good idea to check in with your VA. Hold meetings once every week or two.
These meetings allow you to see how your VA is doing and help you identify potential issues early on when they're easier to resolve. It also gives your VA a chance to offer you feedback and suggestions for how you can work together more effectively.
Make sure to check in with your VA regularly so they don't feel like they're always on the receiving end of the communication. Checking in on them will make your VA feel valued and let them know that you care about their well-being.
When your VA knows that you care about their feedback, they'll be more likely to communicate with you about concerns and questions. Input from employees can go a long way toward improving productivity and overall communication in your business.
Communication is one of the most critical aspects of managing a virtual assistant, which both parties need to put effort into. You must be clear about your expectations and let them know how you feel about their work.
However, it is also essential that you are open to feedback and that you let your VA know how they can improve. With clear communication, you will get the most out of your virtual assistant relationship and ensure that both parties are happy with their jobs.
At Cápita Works, we believe talent should not be limited to location. We offer virtual assistant services to entrepreneurs in the USA. By insourcing VAs with Cápita Works, you can access a world of resources at a fraction of the cost by delegating to VAs and saving up to 70% on salaries. You can check out our offer or contact us if you wish to know more about our service.