If you can learn the power of delegation early in your business, then you will have saved yourself enough time to do big things and become successful. Today, it is easier and more convenient than ever to delegate work to a remote assistant.
As scary as it may seem to those who are new to this setup, working with a remote assistant has helped many small businesses take their products and services off the ground. Others have become more productive that they were able to accept more clients and grow their email list! Isn’t that amazing?
So how do you begin delegating work to a remote assistant?
1. Have a plan in place.
If this is the first time you are hiring a remote assistant to help you in your business then you definitely need a plan! You need to have a list of tasks or projects you would like to delegate. Your list will help you decide what type of assistant you’d be bringing onboard.
Your plan should also include how long you expect to work with the remote assistant and whether or not you need to get on a trial work period. Decide on a budget—how much you are willing to pay your assistant per month—and prepare a work agreement if you want to, although not necessary.
2. Schedule a time to meet online.
Meeting your remote assistant online through Skype, Zoom, or whatever call app you wish to use will instill confidence to both parties. During this first meeting, you could get to know each other and learn how you can both benefit from the work relationship.
Some projects may not require a meeting; sometimes an email would suffice. You will have to work it out with your remote assistant. The purpose of the meeting is to make your assistant feel valued and part of a team, if you already have a team (virtual or not).
3. Agree on a work process.
Will you be sharing documents through Google Drive, Dropbox, or Asana, for example? Do you prefer to receive weekly invoices every end of the week or twice a month or monthly? What will your main communication channel be? How can you contact each other in case of emergencies or, say, in case of power outages or loss of internet connection? How often would you like your remote assistant to send you an update about his/her work progress?
4. Prepare to train your remote assistant.
Training is often not necessary when you work with a remote assistant because he/she comes with all the skills you need to perform the job. But in case you have a platform that he/she may not be familiar with, then prepare a video tutorial. Processes that are only known to your company/business should also be taught. Most often, training will only take a short time for a skilled person.
5. Give constructive and appropriate feedback.
At the start of the working relationship, when your remote assistant is still learning the ropes of your business, it is helpful to give regular constructive and appropriate feedback. This will help him/her understand your business better and improve based on your feedback.
Once he/she gets the hang of things, you can stop with the feedback, although from time to time, it would be good to give words of encouragement and appreciation for the work he/she does.