Most entrepreneurs and business owners are adept at wearing a number of hats, it’s all part of the job description.
BUT … two big hurdles holding today’s entrepreneurs back are a lack of time and too much misdirected focus and unnecessarily wasted energy.
Having to do everything yourself in the early days prepares you for the later days of growth and delegation – rather like the right of passage of having an old banger for your first car. How else do you learn about chokes and where to put the oil – or perhaps I am just showing my age!
Innovative entrepreneurship requires management skills, and more importantly the ability to manage change. This encompasses many skills that are critical including the ability to raise/ manage money, be productive, to effectively deal with stress, to identify strengths and weaknesses, to close sales and meaningfully connect with people to name just a few.
How much time do all of those important and business building activities take?
How much time do you spend deciding which hat to put on next?
Instead of focussing on the part of the business that you feel passionate about, you can very easily end up spending the majority of your time taking care of the necessary but mundane business related tasks. The message here is:
Just Because You CAN Do Something, It Really Doesn’t Mean You SHOULD!
A great, professional and skilled VA is your business administrator on call. And not just ANY administrator – a ninja, force multiplying, business knowledge devouring encyclopaedia. One that can help you simplify your business related activities and become more productive in what you are passionate about.
Just some of the essential hats you can seek help to take off are:
The E-Mail Hat
Besides the obvious filtering of spam mail, your VA can keep your contact lists and subscriptions up to date, respond to business related e-mails and bring to your attention only those that really do require your time.
Perhaps you generate business with email campaigns or ensure you keep up your client engagement with sending regular newsletters – a great VA will be able to help you compile, send and manage the responses from them too!
The Blogging Hat
The possibilities here are expansive – Your VA can help you design your blog site, use plug-ins to build SEO and take care of any comments. A well crafted weekly blog alone can take up a considerable amount of your time, for a VA with serious research and writing skills this is an easy and enjoyable task that can have a significant impact on your business. They can create and post for you, or they can be in charge of researching, editing and posting if you still want to be the creator of the content.
The Accountant Hat
Sage and QuickBooks now have cloud services that will allow you to share financial information securely with your VA. They can then take care of your bookkeeping needs online.
You are spending hours every month managing accounts that can be handled by a VA to help you manage your income and expenses, track client billing and make sure that yours are being paid on time.
The Social Media Hat
Have you thought about giving a VA access to your business related Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts. You can also have them use LinkedIn to build your professional network. Successful social media sourcing is essential for small businesses but can be time consuming. A VA can seek out new connections, build engagement by posting on your behalf and responding to comments. This is invaluable for building loyalty with your current clients and developing those that aren’t yet!
The Appointment Keeping Hat
Set up a free online calendar and share it with your virtual assistant. Many entrepreneurs use free services such as Google Calendar. Not only is keeping up with your calendar time consuming, it can cost you clients if you focus enough of your time onto it.
Using a joint calendar, your VA can ensure that you are never late for an appointment or miss an important deadline by sending you text and e-mail alerts. They can also set appointments for you and watch out for any conflicts.
The Research Hat
Assign consuming online researching to your VA. Depending on your topic, research done right can take considerable time to accomplish if this is not a task you are experienced and skilled at.
Whether you are looking for statistics on consumers or trying to create an e-book, a VA can be invaluable when it comes to combing the internet or any other source to find the information you need.
Become a Boss
True leadership comes from learning how to delegate the important tasks while you focus on your business growth.
You don’t make (or save) money by trying to wear all the business hats yourself.
Instead, you become over-burdened and burnt out, causing you to lose sight of your original passion, and its potential to earn you money.
Become a boss to a virtual assistant, and your business will begin to run as you dreamt it would when you took the leap of faith.