I posted this on another thread, but I think it might be useful to you. So I`ll repost it here, if you don`t mind.
Joy hit on several things that I completely agree with and here are a few things to keep in mind in considering a Virtual Assistant.
1. Talk with her several times. There is a lot of VAs out there vying for your business. We all want to help you out, but there are some out there who may not have the experience, drive, desire that you are looking for in a team member. My suggestion is to interview them, speak with them on several occasions, and ensure some common ground between the two of you. A good VA will ask the right questions and feel the same way you do about your deadlines -- sometimes you’ll just feel it.
2. Do your research. A VA should have several years of corporate/real-world
experience. Additionally, it would be helpful if they can provide you with a
list of references. If you want, and have time, give some of those people a
3. Don`t settle. In my opinion, you`ll know when you find the right person. If it doesn`t feel right, keep looking. If you’ve contracted them for a month and it’s still not working, dissolve the relationship and try again. After all, this is your business and you have a lot riding on it. Believe it or not, Virtual Assistants can feel the same way you do -- if we come across a client that we`re unsure about, we won`t work with them. In short, we don`t settle either.
4. Most important, Communication. This is a two-way street. Your VA will and should communicate with you and ensure her understanding of what you need done. Likewise, you should be communicating with her.
Bottom line: it can work. Once you have a VA whom you begin to trust and you have a system going, you`ll find it easier and easier to delegate projects to her. Start off with something small, see how she handles that and see how you feel about giving it up. You don`t have to give up everything all at once, but if it works, you`ll find yourself giving up more than you ever thought you would and having time in your day to actually work on your core business rather than handling things such as bookkeeping, compiling marketing lists, or trying to figure out that dreaded mail merge system.
Let me tell you, once you work with a good VA -- you`ll never be without one again! I`m sure there will be other VAs who may have some other advice, but those are just a few things that I can think of now.
Elite Virtual Assistants, "Combining Today`s Technology with Yesterday`s Professionalism," Elite VAs