This is the third post in a series.  The series will explore some of the common hesitations when it comes to outsourcing and delegating work to a virtual assistant.  Our hope is to shed some light on working with a virtual assistant and clear away some of the doubts so that more people can benefit from having support for their business.

Major Outsourcing Pain Point – No Experience or Not the Right Kind of Experience

Another area that entrepreneurs struggle with, when thinking about hiring a virtual assistant, is in the area of experience.  Entrepreneurs fear that the person that they hire will not have the right kind of experience required or the virtual assistant may say that they have expertise in an area but maybe they don’t really.

Hiring virtually can be a really scary thing.  You are putting a lot of trust and faith into someone you’ve never met and when you send work out to your virtual assistant, it sort of disappears into this black hole only to come out at a later time finished.  It takes a bit of time to get used to the idea of working virtually.  This post is going to explore ways that you can make sure that you eliminate the fear around lack of experience.

Is the Virtual Assistant Walking the Talk?

One of the main ways to see if a virtual assistant has the experience you are after is to see if they are walking their talk.  If the virtual assistant claims to be a really fantastic WordPress designer, yet their own website is amateurish, you may want to look for someone who has illustrated their skill set.  Now, it does happen where the old adage is true: “The cobbler’s children never have any shoes” so sometimes you need to dig a little deeper than the virtual assistant’s presence.  We’ll explore those options in a moment.

In the most ideal of worlds, you would ideally find a virtual assistant who is doing things that you would like to do in your own business.  If they are already executing on those things for themselves, you are going to get someone who has experience from the trenches.  This experience and expertise can be invaluable when implementing on your task list because many of the inefficiencies of certain projects will have been worked out.

Ask for Samples of Work

Samples of work, aka a portfolio, is another fabulous way to see a virtual assistant’s experience and expertise.  Ask them for samples of their best work in the area that you are looking to hire in.  For example: if you are looking to hire someone to help you create a logo, ask them for samples of their logo design work.  If they don’t have any or can’t produce those examples, it will be a really clear indicator as to the true level of experience that they have in a particular project.

Trust Your Gut

Sometimes, you might find someone that you just really, really click with.  Perhaps this virtual assistant doesn’t have the right experience or expertise that you are after.  Sometimes, it pays to go with your gut.  If you find someone that you can train, you might end up with someone that you can mould and shape into the type of virtual assistant you most need and they may cost less.  Keep in mind though that the learning curve for someone like this is much steeper so it might take you longer to get things done.

Set an Intention

Everyone starts somewhere in their business so you will see newbie virtual assistants and you will see seasoned pros.  Your job is to figure out what you want out of a service provider and what you are willing to spend on that.  The more you search, the pickier you are and of course, the more you are willing to stretch your budget a little bit, the better quality service provider you will be able to hire into your business.

Stay tuned for the next blog post in the series!