Top 7 Warning Signs You're NOT Ready for a Virtual Assistant

Top 7 Warning Signs You're NOT Ready to Hire a Virtual Assistant

Are all your fellow small business entrepreneurs praising a Virtual Assistant as “a must” these days? Feel like you’re missing out? Whoa, Nellie. You may or may not benefit from a Virtual Assistant just yet. Chances are, once you’re organized and mentally ready enough, a VA will be a must. But rushing into hiring a VA just because it seems like it’s par for the course could actually work against you. So, before you start your Virtual Assistant search, consider these reasons why it might behoove you to wait, or to bite the bullet and go for it.

1) You have time to do everything – from the big picture to the menial. At present, your business is structured in a way that you feel like you can manage it all without assistance. You’re not aware that there’s anything you could pass on to others. For now, all seems under control. You can give attention to detail on all fronts, and don’t feel the need to be freed up just yet.

2) You want to make all the decisions. The idea of giving up some control over what happens in your business makes you shudder. You’re not ready to delegate some of the smaller decisions to anyone else, and you’re not ready to let others manage underneath you. How could anyone else take care of your baby as well as you?

3) Doing it yourself seems more efficient. You feel like it’s easier to just do things on your own. Letting someone else do it would likely take longer, and you feel like you’d do a better job than anyone else anyway.

4) You don’t have time to train someone else. While in the long run your VA will save you time, it will require a time outlay at the beginning while they’re learning the ropes. If you would be too overwhelmed to train someone, it won’t be a success. You need to be prepared to sacrifice time at the beginning to gain time in the end.

5) You’re unsure whether your management systems are organized enough for an assistant, or if you need an assistant to help you set them up. In order to take on an assistant, it’s helpful to explain your existing management systems to them. On the other hand, you might need a VA to help you get these organizational systems off the ground or revamp them. Before you hire a VA, you will benefit from taking at least thought time about whether you prefer your VA to be your organizer, or one who will work within your existing organizational processes.

6) You are not available for questions. Virtual Assistants generally might have 10-20 minutes of email questions every few days, and meet with their supervisor at least once a month by phone for 30-60 minutes. If this feels like too much of a commitment, you might prefer to wait until it’s clear how it will actually save you time.

7) You already have a Virtual Assistant. While this point might seem out of place in this list, it’s not. Some people do not wish to start over with hiring a possibly better VA, or they hesitate to hire more than one VA even if they need it. So, you’ve decided to stick with your current VA because it’s easier than finding a replacement, or hiring additional VA’s.

A small business can be a one-person show for a while, but eventually will need to expand to include other employees, and a Virtual Assistant is often the first new employee on the roster. There’s an irony about the list above: Just when you feel too overwhelmed to hire a Virtual Assistant is likely the time that you really need one. Thankfully, a skilled VA can help you through the process of delegating and increase your confidence about handing over tasks.

As with anything entrepreneurial in life, it’s not about waiting until you are ready, because you might never feel ready. And if you get to the point that you “feel” ready, it might be harder to integrate a VA because you’ve gotten even busier. The bottom line is whether you honestly could benefit from assistance in order to allow you to focus on the tasks only you can do. When you’ve answered that question, you’ll know if you’re really ready to hire a Virtual Assistant.

Keep in mind there’s no one paradigm for a VA. Some are strictly administrative, while other run a team of workers and handle top financial transactions. Feel free to contact us for an initial consultation to assess your needs.

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Submitted by Chaya Leah