Being an entrepreneur is difficult. In fact, it’s one of the toughest career paths you can take. Setting up a completely new business and growing it successfully takes a huge amount of time, efforts, and guts. There are also a lot of financial risks. You therefore need all the help you can get and this is why virtual assistants may be your perfect ally.
A virtual assistant (also known as a VA) is a personal assistant who works entirely online. They do the same things as a PA except they work remotely and can assist you from any location. Some VAs are specialists and focus on particular types of tasks and industries, while others are generalists.
Your VA can help you grow and run your business more effectively. They take a lot of the mundane everyday tasks out of your hands freeing you up to focus solely on making money and building a lucrative company. What’s more, when you sell one business, they’re right there with you to continue the whole process again with your new endeavor.
So what sort of things can a VA do to make your entrepreneurial life a whole lot easier?
Bookkeeping and Invoicing
As an entrepreneur, managing your money sensibly is extremely important. You need to understand where your money is going and also keep precise records of all income and expenditure.
Your virtual assistant can help you keep track of your finances by maintaining accurate reports of money you receive and money you spend. This makes things a lot easier when it comes to paying taxes, for example.
A VA can also look after your invoicing procedures, writing invoices to clients and ensuring they’re paid on time. They’ll know exactly how to format your invoices and how to include the relevant information.
(Read more about Invoice Ninja’s free invoicing software as well as the features every free invoicing SaaS provider should offer)
With a million and one things going on, it can be very difficult to keep a schedule of what needs to be done and when. As an entrepreneur, you’re focused on creating and growing successful businesses yet key to this is proper organization, including diary management.
Your virtual assistant can help you arrange your daily and weekly schedules so you get the most done in the most effective way possible. This might include your VA arranging meetings, appointments, and work (or even leisure) activities according to predetermined requirements.
All the details are then added to your favorite scheduling apps which are then automatically synchronized across many different platforms.
When you’re out and about racing to finalize deals and complete work for customers, the last thing you want to be doing is fiddling around with your website. Unfortunately, your business website does need regular updating otherwise it’s susceptible to errors and hacks.
Over 80% of hacked websites were not recently updated and nearly half of these attacks were against small business websites.
Your virtual assistant can take over the role of website monitor and ensure all your systems and plugins are regularly updated, secure, and working efficiently.
Blogging and Social Media
You might enjoy social media and writing a couple of articles every now and then. However, the nature of entrepreneurism and running your own business means your time is usually at a premium. Successful inbound marketing requires a dedicated social media timetable together with a strict blogging schedule.
When you just don’t have the time, you can instead employ your trusted VA to make updates for you. Many virtual assistants are proficient in social media and blogging. They can write a weekly article about your business and create updates for social platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and even Instagram.
Even when you love what you do, it can be difficult to keep up with events and developments in your particular industry. There are only a certain number of hours in a day yet knowing about the latest trends and what your competitors are doing can be vital to your success.
An expert VA who has some experience in your industry can help you keep on top of the latest events, findings, data, standards, and developments in your sector. From this research they can then create an overview of the most salient facts for you to quickly read.
One of the most time consuming activities for anyone is researching, booking, and arranging travel. When you’re already feeling frazzled and trying to juggle multiple tasks, the idea of looking for good travel deals might fill you with horror.
Luckily for you, arranging travel is among the things VAs do best. Your trusted assistant can look for the best deals among hundreds of possibilities, book your flights and hotels, arrange car hire or taxis, develop a detailed travel itinerary, provide backup in case of emergencies, and more. All you need to do is pack your bag.
From training and social events to company conferences and exhibitions, arranging and managing business events can be complicated and time consuming. With so little time as it is, trying to arrange catering, find venues, and look up the details of various contacts can be a big hassle.
Your VA can do all this for you and more. While you focus on growing your business, looking after your clients, and preparing speeches, your assistant will look after the event management side of things. They’ll closely liaise with you as they go about arranging the perfect event.
Entrepreneurs and Virtual Assistants – A Perfect Match
A core benefit of hiring a virtual assistant is that doing so is cost effective. The virtual nature of a VA means there’s no need to add office space nor finance their travel costs. They also tend to be less expensive than on-site or full-time personal assistants, while still doing the job just as effectively.
If you’re trying to do everything yourself and feeling close to burnout, then consider hiring an experienced virtual assistant to free up some of your time and focus. (See also: Types of delegation partners)
Once you do, it might very quickly become apparent that you and your trusted VA are a match made in heaven. From bookkeeping and invoicing to event management and travel arranging, a virtual assistant can be the difference between burnout and success.