You’re probably going to think less of me after I tell you about the first thing I ever outsourced overseas…
In my sophomore year of college, I took an introductory level business course. A few weeks in, we started to study outsourcing.
After finishing the section, we were assigned a 3,500 word essay on the pros and cons of outsourcing overseas.
That particular week, I was starting to date a beautiful girl named Emily who would eventually become my wife. So, I wanted to spend time with her and not on this paper.
So, I hired someone from Fiverr to write my paper for me. $25 flat + which included a big fat $5 tip.
I (well, we) got a B on the assignment. When you think about it, I should have gotten an A since I assume I was the only person actually applying the principles of outsourcing that we learned…At least that was what I had planned on saying to the dean of the department if me and (writer’s name redacted) were caught.
(Ghost writer name redacted) is probably a genius, but I didn’t do much in terms of editing his English and grammar, so the B was fine by me.
Questionable ethics of this aside, this was an eye opening experience for me. I learned about virtual labor marketplaces like Fiver and Upwork because of this class and realized that outsourcing could be utilized by anyone, even a college kid who was on a Keystone Light budget.
Why to Hire a VA When You Have
Now, the last thing I want to do is encourage any of our college or high school readers to start hiring out their term papers and homework…I will not come to your school and defend you, although I might hire you someday…
I do however want to show people who wouldn’t normally think to hire VAs how and why they should consider it.
Ok, we’re clear now right? If my blogging get’s you fired I will feel really, really bad, so please, be careful!
Let’s get into why a regular joe like you should consider a virtual assistant.
Reason #1: Better Work
Now there will be a number of you who are reading this thinking, “Sweet! I can outsource my job and just lay back and get paid!”
This is against the spirt of this article. You’re welcome to try that, but I really wouldn’t have shared this information if that was my goal.
My goal is to help you find a VA so you can produce better work, not do less total work.
Better work means better chances of raises and promotions. That’s my goal for you and that’s what a good VA can help with.
Reason #2: Affordable on All Budgets
Not every employee can afford or needs a full time virtual assistant, but almost everyone could benefit from having one for at least some on call work and they can do it affordably.
Later in this article, I’ll share some of the tasks that you can outsource, but just know that they likely aren’t as expensive as you may think.
Reason #3: Frees You Up for Higher Level Work
I don’t know your unique job role, but I’m guessing you have some tasks that are more important than others.
Some things that require the unique talents you’ve developed over the years working the job that, when done well, can make you stand out from the pack.
By delegating the lower level, more monotonous tasks to a VA, you can free yourself up for more work in that higher level. Also, you’ll be able to focus with less distractions knowing that your other tasks are being handled.
What to Outsource to a VA
There are an endless number of things you can outsource to a virtual assistant.
Here are two things you can do for motivation…
1. Read this blog post I wrote on the top 20 things people are outsourcing.
2. Head over to a marketplace like FreeUp.net and browse through all of the tasks they can help you with.
How to Hire, Train and Retain Your VA
This topic deserves much more than a small section in a blog post.
We have an entire course on using VAs effectively called Cracking the VA Code.
It’s not cheap so I’ll share our top 4 tips here for now.
1. Hire Slow, Fire Fast. Take your time and make sure you find a VA that is a good fit. If after a week of work you feel they aren’t fit for the job, don’t drag it out, let them go and start over.
2. Create SOPs. SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures) are documented processes that make it easy for your VA to understand the task you’re asking them to perform. Continually optimize these and make sure that all of your VA’s questions are answered.
3. Maintain High Levels of Communication. VAs thrive on getting answers to their questions. Make it easy for them to connect with you and let them know that questions are encouraged.
4. Pay What They’re Worth. We’ve seen many people hire and train amazing VAs and then lose them when they find better employment opportunities. Pay your VAs what they’re worth, treat them well and offer them bonuses and incentives to reward them for good work.
If you want to take your outsourcing skills to the next level, check out Cracking the VA Code