How to hire a V.A.
In last weeks blog, "What are you worth?," I talked about delegating some things on your to do list so that you could free up more time to work in the areas of your business that are your zone of genius.
So after the blog went live, I literally put my words to work and hired my first virtual assistant.
I've never done it before.
Along with the usual objections, (take a look at last weeks blog.) I had a few more to add to the list.
#1 The Big One.
Insecurity. Pride. Shame. (is it right to call it that Brené Brown?
I don't know what I don't know.
Will I sound stupid or not say something right? Will I have to type out all my questions? I would much rather speak to someone, or show them questions via Facetime. When I don't know the tech language to use, this could get really painful, really quick. And really, deep down I know it's "Not that hard," so really, shouldn't I just figure it out and do it - and save the really heavy lifting jobs, like putting in a microwave to the experts?
(I literally am having a new microwave installed as I type this. And by the drilling and grunting I hear, It sounds really hard.)
#2. How do I pay them?
Hourly, project based? How much or how long?
And then I had even more questions once I started the on boarding process and some of those questions I'm still not certain of the answers.
So what's the process like to hire a Virtual Assistant?
Well, here's how it went down.
Last Thursday I googled how to hire a virtual assistant and picked the platform, Upwork. Within about 30 min. I had created an account, put together a job description and uploaded my payment method.
Here's what it looked like:
1. Graphic design for social media
2. Help navigating my WIX platform, and tweaking automations, email sequences, membership platform.
Within minutes of hitting submit, I had people that I could hire.
What was really cool was that I could see how much money they had made on this platform. 3k, 10k, 25k. Surprisingly, it became a factor in how I hired. I didn't want a newbie.
I could see what their hourly rate was. $25 or $40 or $97 etc. I went with the middle.
Then I could see their approval rating. 85% or 97% or 100%. I went with 100%
I could also see where they were from. For me, I struggle with time zones and keeping it all straight in my calendar. No matter how many apps and alarms I put on my phone, I always seem to mess up the meeting time. So I wanted to avoid that anxiety and stick to CST.
Robin from TX became my first V.A.!
She submitted a cover letter (which I could require in the job post) which was very personable and she had a friendly face. Bonus? She was a ballet teacher for 10 years! She knows what I do! Not that she's gonna teach a ballet class in my studio, but it just gave me a little peace of mind and a sense of, "ok, she gets me."
We messaged back and forth a couple times, adding her into my platform as a contributor so she could look around, and then we set up a time to chat live. During the phone call, she asked what was one win that I needed today.
I told her I needed a pop up for a free dance class.
I used to have one on my website, but I took it down because my classes were full and it was the middle of the season. Now I'm ramping back up for a registration season and I couldn't figure out how to add it back in without the new email contacts dumping into to an email sequence that I was already using for another opt in.
Robin and I also chatted and she also suggested creating an automation after the pop up box that was tagged with "Free Dance Class" so that I would know where these emails came from in my email list. YES! Exactly what I wanted, but I didn't know how to tag them automatically within WIX. I had been doing them manually. She said there was a way, but she would have to do some research.
Well, within 24 hrs. Robin had a beautiful pop up created. Feel free to check it out!
It is way more classy then "Hey wanna try a free class?" with a generic box. She made it look gorgeous and connected it all to an email automation that is tagged properly for "Free Dance Class." That way, I can follow up quarterly to these people in that list, and remind them to take advantage of their FREE class if they hadn't yet come into the studio.
I was stoked.
Was a satisfied? Yes.
And yes, there is always a but. I was charged for 2 hours of work which made me think, hmmm I think I could of done that in two hours. I wasn't expecting it to take 2 hours.
To her defense, she had to see what I had done, how things looked and do a bit a research on her end to do what I envisioned. WIX is not as robust as other platforms. However, now that the entry learning curve is past, I'm hopeful that we can move faster through other projects.
The biggest win? A weight was lifted. Which honestly, was worth the $80 I paid. I didn't have to stress about finding time to get it done, or learn how to do it. I saved myself from 2 hours of "torture time" learning software, to hanging out with my kiddos.
(And since the kids were being pretty amazing, learning software didn't compete. Let's face it, there are some days...)
So, Was it Worth it to Hire a Virtual Assistant?
I am hiring her for another two hours this week. If she can help manage my website needs so that I can have systems in place to grow more efficiently, freeing me up to focus on my zone of genius in my business and being a better mama to my kiddos? It is so worth it.
So... what's holding you back?
You'll never know if you never try. Need some more encouragement to get to the next level? Grab my 3 Tips!
Comment below and let me know about your experience, or tips you've learned along the way!
ps. Hiring a V.A. also became an exercise in learning how people hire or buy. Some of my reasons for hiring Robin were pithy and I totally own it. However, it forced me to reflect on "how I am selling myself and my services." Something that is always being improved. ;)