I’ve noticed a very disturbing trend on the web lately via various blog posts about the Virtual Assistant industry. It seems there are many business owners out there in fear of losing their VAs because they might up and quit or something else might happen. It seems that many look at having a VA for the short-term only. Why is this?
Virtual Assistants are not employees but many are talking about their VAs as though that’s what they are and yet, on the other hand they talk about short-term use.
It is REALLY important that people understand VAs are NOT employees. They are self-employed and are business owners. For the most part, the majority come from the corporate world with previous admin or secretarial experience, although many others have joined the industry now bringing their experience from a number of other industry backgrounds such as bookkeeping, desktop publishing, even accounting.
Working relationships for VAs should be considered a long-term thing, just as you would plan to have a Personal Assistant, however. VAs are not employees, but they are there for the long haul.
I have clients who have been with me well over 5 years and my longest-term for over 11 years. We’ve spent time getting to know each other’s businesses – they having learnt my capabilities, and me having learnt what their needs are. We discuss what needs to be done and explore how I can help them even further. I’ve become the backbone of their businesses (just as any admin support would be) and am very aware of how much I am needed. I need them just as much – after all without my clients, I wouldn’t have a business!
Looking for a VA is not about submitting a project for bids each time you have something you want done. It’s about getting support that can work alongside you and help support you in your business.
When seeking a VA make sure you look in the right places – amongst the industry based networks where the VAs get the support and training that’s needed for the industry. And you can be sure that there will also be back up support available through that network should your VA need some time off, or becomes unavailable for some reason. Things do change, VAs do move on, just as PAs do, but that doesn’t mean they should be considered as a once-off for an odd job here and there.Â VAs are there for the long haul.