Why You Should Hire a Virtual Assistant

The real title of this blog post should be “The Crazy Amazing Benefits of Hiring a Real-Life Virtual Assistant Instead of Doing Everything Yourself or Relying on Technology.”

But that’s not catchy.

I hear it all the time. “With all the technology today, why should I hire a virtual assistant?”

Simple. Technology can’t replace human critical thinking, strategy, brand awareness, autonomous behavior, compassionate response, and much more – all at once.

Sure, there are plenty of ‘virtual assistants’ out there – Alexa, Echo, Siri, Google Assistant, and tools to automate your business. You can set up all your systems and hope they do exactly what you’d like them to do. But chances are you going to spend more time managing your tools than you will be working on your business and still none of those tools can apply years of administrative and business expertise to make sure you make the right decisions for your business.

Sold yet? No?

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How to Protect Your Time and Energy by Creating Boundaries

In our ever-connected world, we are being drained by our work. Access to email means your boss can find you wherever, whenever. Customers and colleagues are using social media for business at alarming rates. Throw in collaboration and communication tools like Slack, workflow managers, chat, text, *gasp* the phone… and the idea of unplugging becomes downright laughable.

On top of all this communicating, you have to get actual work done and live a life.

It’s enough to drive people absolutely mad. And I’ve seen it happen.

I’ve been there.

Years ago, I was working myself to insanity because I felt an overpowering sensation of indebtedness to my job and an unwavering commitment to an unscalable definition of good customer service. I was always on-call, responding to emails within moments of receiving them and handling tasks quickly because I didn’t want to be a bottleneck in productivity. People would politely chastise me, “It’s so late! This isn’t urgent!” But for me, it was. Good customer service meant dealing with every single task with a sense of accessibility and urgency.

But the burnout hit me hard.

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How to Color Code Your Calendar

Color coding your calendar is one of those organizational tricks that most people shrug off. Either they think it takes too much time or they won’t implement it or it is just plain frivolous.

I’m here to tell you – if you aren’t color coding your calendar, you’re missing out.

Color coding your calendar allows you to see how your time will be used at a glance. Colors can be used to distinguish between projects, clients, meeting types, activity types. You name it. You will know in a matter of seconds how your time is allocated just by looking at colors.

The system will take you a mere few moments to set up and I guarantee you’ll see the benefits immediately.

How to color code?

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Get Organized with a Business Binder

One of my biggest frustrations as a business owner is the sheer amount of information I have to maintain. Even being small, I still have to keep track of business licenses, client contracts, EIN documentation, web logins… the list can go on and on.

Even with my organizational skills, I reached a breaking point.

My contracts were stored electronically, but one glitch and it could all be gone.

My business license was sitting in a folder amongst a bunch of other random documents.

I was constantly looking up my business banking information.

And oh yeah, what is my password for that software?

Enough was enough.

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Increase Your Effectiveness with this Daily Habit

A common productivity hang-up is the inability to stay focused on what’s important. Whether it is feeling buried under all the tasks that need to be completed or dealing with constant interruptions, getting thrown off course is so easy. Plus, life is just full of distractions. Then you get to the end of the day and feel like it was wasted. Where did the time go? Did you actually get anything done that you needed to?

I’ve been there – I get it.

However, you don’t have to be a victim of this black hole. There is a way to get everything done and feel accomplished, rather than frustrated, at the end of the day. Continue reading

Using a Phone Contact as a Business Card

Every year, I attend an executive assistant conference. I have wonderful conversations with interesting women and men from all over the country and come away with an expanding network… and a stack of business cards.

Don’t get me wrong – I love business cards. They can be creative, interesting, and incredibly effective at creating a lasting connection.

However, there are some downsides. Inevitably, cards get lost or I run out of cards. I try to write a quick note about how I met someone or a follow-up note on a card, but it’s bad etiquette to write on a business card and there’s rarely enough space. Then, what happens when I get home? I have a huge stack of business cards that I spend time converting to contacts anyway.

Finally, I had a brilliant idea to make my life and others’ a tad easier. Continue reading