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Locating A Great Virtual Assistant - How To Do This The Right Way

By Shalon Roskelley

Hiring a VA (virtual assistant) can be a blessing for your business, or a can be a curse you will regret. You know what can happen if you hire the wrong employee. The same thing can happen with the wrong VA. People say "hire slow and fire fast" because this is true. If you don't know what needs to occur while you are hiring, it can be difficult to make this process slow. You have to think of questions to ask your VA, ones that really matter. Some questions are obvious to us, yet others are not so obvious and take a little contemplation. If you receive replies from references, that's good. If you don't, contact them again to verify that they are real indeed.

It's generally true that you get what you pay for and this also applies to hiring a virtual assistant. Absolutes generally only apply to science. Keep this in mind. They are typically exceptions to rules in general. You may be in for a tough lesson if you're cheap and don't want to pay or are working on a limited budget.

So if you are hiring a virtual assistant, do not jump with both feet forward when you do this. After you find a good candidate, then give that person a smaller project or amount of work. It's all about evaluating them, seeing how they do on the project. This is how you test your VA's abilities. As you probably know, it's natural to put your best foot forward, creating the best possible impression. Figuring out what to do during this testing phase may be difficult for some people. Be honest with the VA, especially if they ask how much work will be available, now and in the future.

Obviously you are going to need to figure out the important stuff in terms of pay because that is what is important for both of you. Figure out what you feel comfortable paying before you start contacting and communicating with potential hirees. Typically a VA will agree to being paid an hourly rate but you will find at least a few who have different requirements. There are a lot of experienced VAs who have been around the block a few times and know exactly what they are worth. There are going to be some instances in which an experienced or specially skilled VA will be able to actually ask for a certain wage. You'll also find some who work on a project fee basis with a percentage paid upfront. There are all sorts of choices out there so help yourself by figuring out what you need and keep yourself open and flexible in the terms you will consider.

Ignoring these and other tips will only hurt you in the long run. If you hire a VA that is just not working out, you will lose money and time when dealing with them. And if you do come to the realization you hire the wrong person, you will have to do this all over again.

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