5 Signs You Need a Virtual Assistant

When Should You Hire a Virtual Assistant?

As a small business owner, it is always a balancing act between time and work. My work is never done; there are always tasks I could be doing. And now, as my speaking and coach commitments increase, I am facing the dilemma that many of you share: when should I hire a Virtual Assistant?

In speaking with Eydie Stumpf, VA virtuoso of Eydie’s Office and e-mail marketer, it became clear that sometimes you must bite the bullet and grow your revenues by first spending money with a virtual assistant. How can you tell when it’s time? Here are a few suggestions:

1. When Your Work is Out of Balance – If your list of want to do, need to do, and must do is ever-climbing with no end in sight, it’s your sign. Eydie takes on many administrative tasks that her bosses used to do, but now recognize it is best to delegate.

2. If You Truly Dread The Task – We all know that we are happiest doing what we love, so here’s your opportunity to maximize the time spent doing your “thing” and minimizing the things you don’t. Take tasks off of your plate and put them on someone else’s. And, don’t forget that we often postpone our dreaded tasks meaning that small tasks today can transform into big headaches tomorrow.

3. If It is Not Your Core Competency – There’s a reason why we are experts in our field: we concentrate, review, read, and analyze data in our little sphere. As a result, we are great at one thing and shouldn’t assume or pretend to be experts in areas where we are not. If you are not a numbers gal, hire a bookkeeper! If you struggle with writing, hire a copywriter! And, if the thought of learning Constant Contact makes you want to vomit, hire an e-mail marketer!

4. If You Are Forfeiting or Postponing Paid Work – If you cannot complete your client’s work on time or are turning down assignments because your are too busy with “busy work,” this is your flashing neon sign to hire help today! Yes, your database, filing, and accounting need monthly attention, but these are clearly tasks to be delegated.

5. If It is Unprofitable – There are tasks that only you can do: follow-up, close the sale, perform the analysis, give the speech, etc. These are your money-making priorities. If you review your time over the last month and see that too much of your time was spent on activities that DON’T make you money, there is an opportunity to grow your revenues.

Until next week…..Liz

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Liz Goodgold

Branding speaker and expert Liz Goodgold has over 25 years of experience working for clients such as Quaker Oats, Times Mirror, and Arco Oil as well as with small business owners and start-up. Her specialized, one-on-one branding and coaching programs spark new ideas that deliver sure-fire results. Liz is alsothe author of RED FIRE BRANDING: Create a Hot Personal Brand and Have Customers for Life and DUH! Marketing.
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19 Comments

  1. Tabby

    The idea of delegating to improve efficiency and overall work output really is a very strong indicator to seek help and get someone on-board who is much better at performing particular tasks. This will not only save precious time and effort but will indeed allow a business owner or even a busy employee focus on things that need your actual attention especially if that is the income-generating aspect of your business or work.

    Reply
  2. Jenn Brockman

    I included the link to your post in my most recent post at my own blog, and a group blog that I contribute to.

    So many of us are overwhelmed with everything at this time of year and it’s great info to help us learn how to let go and put it into some one else’s hands.
    .-= Jenn Brockman´s last blog ..Keeping up with work and life balances =-.

    Reply
    • Heather Allard

      Thanks for sharing the article, Jenn! Hiring a VA might just be the best gift we can give to ourselves this year! 🙂

      Heather

      Reply
  3. Amy Lang

    Just in time! This is exactly what I needed to help me figure out if this is my VA time…I think it is. Now to find one…

    Reply
  4. Devon Zimny

    This is a great post! Sometimes business owners get so busy, they don’t stop to look at what tasks they could delegate. And you can find a VA that specializes in the tasks that you want to delegate. Most of the time the VA is already well versed in the technology, so the transition is very smooth! Your VA can even help you figure out the easiest way to delegate – so it is seamless.

    I agree with Eleanor too – Va Classroom is great! So is VA Forums for those wanting to get into the business.

    Thanks for a great reminder to business owners that delegating is well worth it 🙂

    Devon
    .-= Devon Zimny´s last blog ..Quick Website Tips: Anchor Text for Links =-.

    Reply
  5. Eleanor Prior

    Yes, her post is fabulous, thank you Liz!

    One of your readers contacted me wanting to know about becoming a Virtual Assistant. So if anyone else might be interested in becoming a Virtual Assistant, one that wants to specialize in a certain niche (The demand is there) I thought I would share the best resourse ever….

    Vaclassroom.com

    I could of not asked for better mentors, support system, training. I have endeavored to take every class they offer I’ve only missed one but it’s on my to do list!

    So if you are a Mom looking for a great opportunity or a great change Vaclassroom.com could be your answer. Even if you don’t want to work from home the skills you will obtain can be used in the corporate world to.

    Eleanor
    .-= Eleanor Prior´s last blog ..The Mogul Mom =-.

    Reply
  6. Eleanor Prior

    Thank you Heidi ;0) for the referral.

    I look forward to connecting with you Heather. This is a great post for all VA’s and there are so many of us that specialize in different niche’s. So thank you Heather for helping get the word out about us.

    Eleanor
    .-= Eleanor Prior´s last blog ..Virtual Event Specialists =-.

    Reply
    • Heather Allard

      Hi Eleanor!

      I look forward to connecting with you too! Liz Goodgold wrote this post and, as usual, it’s a great one!

      Heather

      Reply
  7. Kristin Black

    This could not have come at a better time for me! I just hired someone (today actually) to start doing my “behind the scenes” stuff that has been piling up and stressing me out. I have to focus on making the product and keeping our shelves stocked and the other stuff was just getting to be too much to bear! I feel such a sense of relief to know that this is going to be a good thing for me and I made the right decision. I’m hoping my time will help make morem oney now which will help pay for her salary!

    Reply
    • Heather Allard

      Kristin,
      Yessssssssssssssss!!!! Good for you! I’m so glad you decided to do that for yourself and your business!

      Heather

      Reply
  8. Heidi Alexander

    Hi Heather! Yes, I totally know a Killer VA . Her name is Eleanor Prior- also a pro with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and WordPress- It’s [email protected] or . She is awesome-check her out!

    Reply
    • Heather Allard

      Hi Heidi,
      I just fixed your 4 comments, so no need to hire a VA to comment. LOL. Thanks so much — I’ll definitely check out Eleanor!! 🙂
      Heather

      Reply
  9. Patricia Voss

    Easier said than done for some. As I tend to feel I need to take care of it and need to know what is going on. Then I fall behind. This is an awesome kick in the backside to get me thinking. 🙂
    .-= Patricia Voss´s last blog ..Green and Black Speckled Stone Pendant wire wrapped with 14kt gold filled wire =-.

    Reply
    • Heather Allard

      Patricia,
      I totally agree — I soooooo need a virtual assistant but dread the “training” process. Sometimes I fall back into the “Oh, I’ll just do it myself –I can do it quicker than having to train someone how to do it” mode. Also, I actually enjoy some of the tasks that aren’t profitable–like playing around with my blog design. 🙂
      Any killer virtual assistants out there looking for work?? 🙂
      Heather

      Reply
  10. Macala Wright

    Heather & Liz:

    Great post. Paid work pays the bills, it comes first. If paid things are profitable, they’re not worth doing right now. You have to assess and balance.
    .-= Macala Wright´s last blog ..Dispelling Illusions: The Real Value of Fashion’s Night Out =-.

    Reply
  11. Stephanie

    Great post! When I read this “Take tasks off of your plate and put them on someone else’s”. It reminds me of one particular marketing task (article submissions) that needs to be done consistently ,but it gets pushed to the bottom of that ever growing list. This is one of those tasks that are great to outsource 🙂

    Reply
  12. Heather Allard

    Liz,

    You cracked me up with “If the thought of learning Constant Contact makes you want to vomit…” Awesome.

    I definitely think I need to hire a virtual assistant. 😉

    Heather

    Reply

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