There is often hesitation before outsourcing. We hear stories from people about the bad experiences they've had when relinquishing some control and outsourcing key tasks to a virtual assistant or other service provider. These bad experiences can be avoided and when done right, outsourcing can be a godsend to you and your business.
Outsourcing is the best way to ensure that you have a team of experts working on your business, while you focus on what you do best. Depending on the type of task you need assistance with, will determine who you are outsourcing to. It may be a virtual assistant, bookkeeper, graphic designer, social media manager, copywriter or website creator. Regardless of who you are outsourcing to the mistakes to avoid are the same.
Here are six of the biggest mistakes that people make & how to avoid them
1) Not Knowing What To Outsource
Think about the tasks that you want to outsource. What are the repetitive tasks that someone else can look after? Make up a list of tasks that you don't need to do yourself or are taking up too much of your time, these are your first tasks to outsource.
2) Knowing Who You Are Outsourcing To
Don't pick someone just because they come up in a Google search. Do your research and make sure they are part of their National or State Association. For example, you wouldn't employee a plumber who hadn't completed his trade and you would check that they belonged to the Master Plumbers Association. So it's worth checking if your virtual assistant belongs to the Australian Virtual Assistant Association, that your bookkeeper has been certified and is part of the Australian Bookkeepers Association or that your graphic designer is associated with the Australian Design Alliance or the Australian Graphic Design Association.
3) Expecting Your VA To Be A Mind Reader
Be clear on the instructions you are giving. Don't assume that your virtual assistant knows what you expect. Be clear about what you want them to do and how you want them to do it. If you have a system or process for a task, share that with your VA.
4) Not Giving Specific Deadlines
Provide a timeframe for work, 'sometime in the next couple of weeks' is not specific enough. Be clear on when you require the task to be done so that there is no miscommunication.
5) Expecting That A VA Will Not Need To Contact You
Open communication is the key to a great working relationship. Advising your VA how you prefer to be contacted and being available by phone or email to answer questions or to clarify instructions is a must.
6) Not Providing Training
If you prefer a task to be handled in a specific way then you need to ensure you take some time to train your virtual assistant to do the task the way that you want it done. Never assume they will do it exactly the way you would do it unless you provide them with the right instruction and training.
Avoiding these mistakes will ensure you have a successful working relationship with your virtual assistant, bookkeeper, graphic designer, website manager etc. Surrounding yourself with people who want to support you and your business means that you are giving your business a chance to grow and be successful.
If you want to develop a relationship with a virtual assistant who is a member of The Australian Virtual Assistant Association and has been referenced checked by Virtually Yours (one of Australia's premium virtual assistant networks) then contact PA Excellence to find out how we can support you and your business.