Read time: 1 minute and 40 seconds
I've been listening to a podcast about the value of getting help when you’re feeling overworked, overwhelmed, or stuck.
The show, hosted by Orna Ross and Sacha Black of The Alliance of Independent Authors, focuses on author-publishers, but their advice applies to everyone running a business.
Orna said something that really resonated with me, something that I don't think enough people realise:
Read time: 56 seconds.
You don't NEED a virtual assistant.
You also don't NEED to be able to put your feet up at the end of a long day and revel in the fact that all your tasks were completed on time.
But it sure is nice, isn't it?
How many times have you uttered the words, “it’s easier if I just do it myself.”
We’ve all been there, whether it’s something as simple as helping your child get dressed in the morning when they’re refusing to do it themselves or writing a new blog post for your website because the idea of handing the task to someone else is a little terrifying.
There are usually two main reasons people choose not to delegate:
“I can do it myself. I don’t need any help.” – Translation: “I don’t want anyone to think I can’t manage. I don’t want to feel like a failure.”
“I’d rather do it myself.” – Translation: “What if they get it wrong?”
Both are understandable mindsets, and trust me, as a business owner and especially as a Virtual Assistant who’s used to being delegated to, I still find it difficult to let go of certain tasks and responsibilities to someone else.
While rows of cubicles and corner offices are still the first associations we get when we think about office space, the knowledge of what boosts our productivity in the workplace has changed to better fit the needs of both the employees and the company, as well as the satisfaction of their visiting clients. Although closed doors and cubicles were created to keep all the distractions away and employees focused, teamwork and active communication were limited to staff meetings, thus lessening the odds of the employees' cooperation.
If you are thinking about ways to manage your office space in order to increase productivity and cut costs, here are some ideas you should consider
In order for any for-profit business to be successful, it must be for-people before anything else. When customers decide to spend money on your service or product, they do so by expecting to be served in the best way possible. That’s what customer service is for. Otherwise, if the service isn't satisfying, they may go shopping elsewhere. This holds true whether you are oriented on service or product and whether you're a B2C or B2B business.
Around the world, a staggering 96% of customers are saying that customer service is a major factor in their choice of loyalty to a brand. Great customer service will create a satisfied and loyal audience, the business will experience growth in the best way possible and the customer experience level will rise substantially. However, just one wrong Facebook or Instagram complaint or dozens of bad comments and reviews will ruin the years of effort that went into building a high-quality business reputation.
For small businesses, one of the better ways of achieving such high-quality customer service comes with using a virtual assistant to deal with all the nuances.
The internet is full of dire warnings about GDPR (EU General Data Protection Regulation). Non-compliance will be punished by heavy fines, they say: you’ve got a lot of work to do to reorganize all your data and mailing lists. You’d better pay a consultancy a large amount of money to help you, is the implied message.
How much of that is really true? And how much of it applies to you?
The emergence of the gigging economy has given rise to the virtual assistant, resulting in quite possibly the most convenient marriage of work-life balance and productivity imaginable.
Freelancing is a popular career stepping stone for many, yet with this form of work comes a raft of responsibilities that such people are unlikely to have contended with before. Invoicing, call handling and basic office administrative duties are essential when you work for yourself, but can be nothing more than a distraction when just starting out
As a self-published author, your life can be pretty hectic.
If you're not starting a new project, you're probably already working on one (or several). Maybe you're editing your latest creation, researching a fact that you need to reference, proofreading your work, sending out ARC copies to bloggers and reviewers, arranging interviews, updating your blog to keep your readers up to date on what's coming next, answering emails from your readers, dealing with press enquiries, submitting your finished manuscript for publishing and then you have to move onto marketing which can include signings, book tours, email newsletters, social media, more blog updates etc.
With all of this going on and the characters buzzing around your head, who's stories just want to be told, it can be hard to focus on the one thing you love doing most, writing.
How much time each day do you spend actually making money? Now how much time do you spend answering emails, posting to social media, writing this weeks' blog post or doing other unpaid admin tasks?
You can save yourself money today by outsourcing one or more of these tasks that take up more time than you think:
Happy New Year!
Are you excited for 2016? Do you have any new year's resolutions? We have another one for you to add to your list - Hire a Virtual Assistant!
Why? Because running a small business or start-up is hard but by taking advantage of the benefits that go with hiring a Virtual Assistant you could see a vast improvement in the running of your business in the new year.