If your business is sucking your happiness dry, it’s time to make some changes to alleviate your stress. One way to free up some of your time is to hire a virtual assistant (VA) to take over some of the daily or weekly administrative tasks needed to run your business.
Hiring a VA can certainly be stressful, especially if you’re a first timer who has never been through the hiring process before. However, set up an interview process complete with interview questions and decide what skills you need in a VA.
What Tasks will Your VA Handle?
Before you even enter the hiring arena, first decide which tasks you want a virtual assistant to handle. This list will determine the skillset you need to find as well as if you can hire someone who is new or if you need a more experienced (aka more expensive) VA.
Do you need an administrative VA to handle your email responses and manage your client calendar? Or do you need someone who has tremendous writing skills to handle your blog and email marketing? As you can see, these tasks require different skills and will reflect different pricing.
To get your list started, determine which tasks you despise and always put off. There’s a reason why you’re procrastinating so maybe those are tasks to outsource first.
A note of caution: This may be obvious but it bears repeating. If you want to outsource your monthly billing and bookkeeping, find a certified bookkeeper instead of a general virtual assistant. You should always be picky when hiring someone but especially when they will deal with your money.
Other tasks that should be on your list are those that are not direct money makers. For instance, answering emails isn’t making you money but starting a group coaching program will generate income. Answering your own phone to make appointments isn’t the best use of your time if you can write multiple emails to your list with relevant offers for subscribers to purchase.
Where to Find a Virtual Assistant
Do a quick Google search and you will see many thousands of results. Virtual Assistants are numerous but take your time to find the right one to fit your business. Refine that Google search by using keywords of the services you need (ie: administrative VA, local bookkeepers, or freelance writers). If you prefer to hire someone local to work in your office, include your location in the search.
Here’s a couple of great websites that have directories of freelancers making them super easy to find:
You can also ask your business associates if they can recommend any VAs that they’ve used in the past. Ask on your social media networks; chances are you may have VAs in your followers who are looking for work. If any of the VAs on your list aren’t accepting new clients, ask if they can recommend someone else. Just like any industry, VAs often network with each other.
Go with Your Gut
You can come up with 100 interview questions and your candidate may give 100 perfect answers but if anything in your conversation gives you pause, follow that instinct and move on to the next candidate. Absolutely do not hire the first person you interview; trust the interview process and compare each candidate’s answers. Who do you feel would best represent your business? How dedicated do they sound? Is there anything about their experience that makes you question their abilities? Don’t ignore that gut instinct.