7 Traits of a Successful Virtual Assistant
While most people probably love the idea of working from home, not everyone is cut out to be a virtual assistant. It takes a lot more than having an internet connection. You’re dealing with real human beings on the opposite end of your computer screen. Being a VA means connecting with those people online the same way you would if you worked with them in person. Of course communicating, while being incredibly important, is not the only skill a VA needs to have in order to be successful.
1. Show a genuine interest in your client
It’s very difficult to work with a client you don’t care about. When you take on a new client, you should consider their business an extension of your own. (Legally this is not a valid statement, so don’t quote me. ;)) Thinking like this is the best way to ensure you put effort into your work. Your effort, or lack thereof, is evident in the quality of what you produce. No one wants to be known for mediocre work.
2. Appear trustworthy
Okay, don’t just appear trustworthy. You should actually be a trustworthy person. The point is that it should be evident that your client can trust you. Granted they won’t be throwing all their passwords and financial information at you on site, but it’s important that later on down the line they would feel comfortable doing so. Explain your policies on confidentiality and keeping your client’s files safe. Use an encrypted password storage service like LastPass. Do what you can to prove that your client’s information is safe in your hands.
3. Be organized
Organization is pertinent when it comes to running your own business. Oftentimes other entrepreneurs hire VAs for the sole purpose of getting organized. No one is saying your closet needs to be sorted by color or your socks by length. At the very, very least, you should be able to find a file in less than five minutes. Folders are your friends and tags are your best friends. Use them. And be sure to give everything a CLEAR filename. Long gone are the days of “fakljdlkfjaiojf.doc.”
If you use your computer for both personal and business use, keep an external hard drive with all of your work files on it.
4. Stay open-minded
As a successful virtual assistant, you’ll likely work with a broad range of clientele. A lot of these clients will be bursting with ideas now that they have a VA to help implement them. It would be smart of you to keep an open mind before shooting down any ideas. Anything that seems outright ridiculous or impossible, certainly advise against it, but consider taking on new challenges. Learn a new software, start creating content, or anything else that might pop up. You never know where it’ll take you.
5. Be an innovator
The clients that aren’t bombarding you with ideas are probably lacking in the creativity area. This is when it’s important for you to get creative and think up some new ways to help their business. Consider setting up a new organizational system for their files. Help start a clever marketing campaign. Redesign their email newsletter. Clients love it when virtual assistants are bright and full of ideas. It gives them confidence that your working relationship will only bring growth.
6. Be a leader
An important fact to never forget is that virtual assistants are business owners. As a virtual assistant, you are in charge of when and how you work. You are responsible for managing your time properly and handling all the tasks you may have taken on. That being said, leadership plays a key role in making that happen. Show your clients and potential clients that you’re a leader, a self-motivated business person who isn’t afraid to push forward. A go-getter attitude is crazy attractive to someone looking for assistance. Show people that you’re running your own show and they’ll be dying to get their hands on you.
7. Show confidence
Confidence is key to any successful endeavor. I don’t think I can say that enough. Confidence is key. It is absolutely one of the most important parts of your personal brand. People in your industry need to know that you’re self-aware and know your own value. Not only that, but you shouldn’t be afraid to showcase your expertise and explain why you’re such a valuable asset. You should never feel like you have to prove yourself to anyone but you should know that you’d be well beyond able to do so.
``It is confidence in our bodies, minds, and spirits that allows us to keep looking for new adventures.`` Oprah Winfrey
Success can be defined in a million and one different ways. Though for any level of success as far as virtual assistance is concerned, having these traits will definitely ensure it. Do you have any other thoughts on what makes a successful virtual assistant? Share them in the comment section. Let’s get a discussion going!