The importance of working with the right VA cannot be underestimated. Get the right VA and your business will flourish, as your VA will have as much of a vested interest in the success of your business, as you have. Get the wrong VA – and you’ll both end up frustrated and going nowhere fast.
The working relationship between a business owner and VA is a special one. Although you both have separate businesses, you have a vested interest in helping each of those businesses grow. If your business grows, you’ll pass more work over to your VA. If she does a good job, you’ll also recommend her to others, helping her business to grow. In return, you’ll become one of your VAs best clients and she’ll work harder to be your best asset, your most loyal fan and overall business cheerleader!
That all sounds great, but how do you ensure you get the right VA for you, in the first place?
The key to finding the right VA for you, is to ask questions – lots of them!
Non-negotiable must-have questions
No matter how nice a VA is or how well you get on, there are some non-negotiable things they must have in place, if you want a professional and legally protected relationship.
Non-negotiable must-haves include:
- Insurance– A VA needs to have at least Professional Indemnity – Public Liability too, if relevant.
- Registered with the ICO for data protection – to ensure they’re correctly handing and managing yours and your client’s personal data.
- Contracts– so you both know the commitment and requirements for both parties.
- Using a Secure Password tool– such as LastPass, to ensure your login details and passwords are always secure.
General questions to ask about the VA and their business:
There are lots of general questions you’ll want to ask a VA, prior to deciding whether they’re the right one for you. Questions that clarify how long they’ve been in business, who they prefer working with, and their working preferences in terms of hours, communication, payment etc, are all important, but you need to also clarify:
- Time zone– Knowing what time zone they’re in will help avoid confusion over deadlines and contact hours etc.
- Contingency plans– As VAs tend to work solo, you need to know what their holiday and sickness contingency plans are, to ensure your work isn’t affected.
- Good grasp of English– If written content is going to be part of your VA’s role, it’s worth clarifying how well their written English is & whether it’s UK or US English.
- Who’s doing the work– Some VAs work with a team, others may outsource, so it’s important to clarify whether they’re doing the work themselves.
Specific questions relating to your needs:
The final set of questions relate to your specific needs. This can include:
- Book keeping– Do they have MLR cover?
- Dictation– Do they have the right equipment and experience for your dictation needs?
- Sales funnels & pages– Do they have access to, along with experience of, the type of systems you use? Systems such as ClickFunnels and LeadPages all have a learning curve before you’re competent. If you need a fast turnaround, can you afford to wait for a VA to learn those systems?
Never underestimate your feelings, when deciding on the right VA
It doesn’t matter how many questions you ask or how a good an answer you get, if the VA doesn’t feel like a good fit for you and your business. You need to feel happy working with them – and they need to feel the same about you. It’s therefore a good idea to meet them (either in person or via video call), so you can both see how you interact and gel with each other.
Selecting the right VA for you isn’t an easy process, but it is an important one, if you want to grow your business, build a great working relationship and gain a valuable asset. By using the above advice, you can make that process a lot easier – and ensure you’re working with the right VA for you!
A Note From Brilliant Together
Thank you to Amanda for doing this great guest blog for us; as a small business owner, there is so much to do and typically, you try to do it all yourself, but with a VA you don’t have to. With the right person at your side you can keep on top of your to-do list and get your business growing.
If you have some great business advice you’d like to share and would like to do a guest blog for us, please e-mail us at: firstname.lastname@example.org