Goal setting is an important step in your business success. But sometimes our best intentions to accomplish a goal is met with interference, or lack of planning.
Now is a great time to set attainable goals to kick start the New Year. Short-term goals can be just as important as long term goals. Accomplishing goals gives you immediate gratification and will help you maintain motivation with future goal setting.
Here are a few easy goals you can implement, or you can choose your own. Just make sure you write them down, put them on your electronic notes or calendar and/or tell someone about them, who will hold you accountable.
- Clean out your email inbox or computer desktop – start off the year with less digital clutter. It will help you feel much more organized!
- Set your daily schedule – what time you will get up every day and what time you will try and go to bed.
- Reconnect with your clients -drop them an email, or pick up the phone to call them. Don’t try and sell them anything, just call to say hello and see how they are doing.
- Invest in new technology -decide if upgrading software or hardware, is beneficial to your business success. Figure out if newer technology can save you time, or allow you to work faster.
- Delegate work -determine if your budget allows you to hire someone that can help you and your business. Figure out the tasks you would love to delegate and see if hiring someone makes financial sense. A virtual assistant can be hired on a project or as-needed basis. It may be great to have someone to outsource work to in 2018.
See our blog post – Tips to Clean Up Your Digital Clutter
Albert Einstein once said, “life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving”. The key to keeping your business growing and prospering is forward motion. This is not always easy to do when there is so much going on in your day, week or month, but there are ways to overcome this challenge.
1. Set goals that are achievable.
I suggest daily goals first, so that you feel a sense of accomplishment every day, and then set the goals that are more long term. According to Thought Leader, Jesse Torres, entrepreneurs who know what they want and have set a course are more likely to accomplish their objectives.
2. Take the leap of faith
The saying “nothing ventured nothing gained” speaks volumes in the world of entrepreneurship. Success is never guaranteed, but without leaping and trying new things, success will be very hard to achieve.
3. Never settle
If your business is doing well, great, but always ask yourself, “can it do better?”. You should re-evaluate how your business is performing and make necessary adjustments based on feedback and results.
4. Improve your online presence and invest in visual marketing
Today it’s not enough to have an attractive and impressive website. According to Business Consultant Sam Makad, creating appropriate marketing content involves a lot of creativity and it is necessary to rely on visual content to attract more visitors. Continually working on visual content is a very demanding task. It is important to change your mindset about spending money on visual designs and see it as a long term investment, as it is much more engaging and will attract a much higher number of visitors to your website. You will also want to have a plan in place to share your visual content on multiple marketing channels as you never know where your customer may be searching.
5. Decide what you are willing to do
You need to be all in or all out as an entrepreneur. So take the time to figure out how much you can do alone, with help, or with a strategic partner. If there is change to be made you have to be willing to make it, invest in it, and follow through on it.
It’s the time of year when resolutions are made and goals are set. We evaluate our past wins and re-evaluate our losses. We determine what worked and what didn’t work in previous years, who helped us and who didn’t, and we review budgets and schedules to help us make intelligent decisions moving forward.
The goals and resolutions, the wins and losses, and the budgets and schedules involve ALL aspects of our lives -both business and personal. You can’t effectively be happy in one area, if the other is out of balance. Many people try but most do not succeed to have a REAL work/life balance. It is hard to do. We all have so many responsibilities, we are pulled in a million different directions, and everyone seems to be after a portion of our money and wants a large portion of our time. So, what can you do differently this year to help get that balance that most of us want and need? One simple solution would be to hire a virtual assistant to help you move towards that goal of a work/life balance.
Here are the top 3 reasons to work with a VA this year.
- You can’t afford not to. If time is money and you are stuck doing non-revenue producing tasks, then you need to outsource that work immediately! Find a VA that can do some of those tasks for you. The investment you make hiring a part-time VA (you can offer minimal hours to start) will give you back time that can be spent working on revenue generating activities or spending quality time with your family.
- Project completion. Look around your life and see how many “great ideas” were started but never finished because you didn’t have TIME to complete them. If any of these can be outsourced for completion, do it! Or again, outsource the activities that may be keeping you from completing your million dollar idea.
- Peace of mind. It would be hard to place a dollar amount on peace of mind. Hiring a VA could be that missing link that helps to lower your stress level and increase your productivity this year. Wouldn’t it be great to know that when you pass a project off to your VA, it will get done in a timely manner, with professional results? You can give a deadline and have it done when you need it, without having to do it yourself. Peace of mind can help you have better clarity which is essential for success in 2015 and getting you to live a more balanced life.
Making the decision that you need help in your business is easy, however taking the next step to delegate the work out to another person is not as easy. We tend to think we can do it all, but the reality is we can’t, and we really shouldn’t try to do everything required to run a successful business.
Hiring a virtual assistant to take some of the burden off your plate usually turns out to be the best decision you can make for yourself and your business. But how do you find someone that will fit your needs, the culture of your business and relate to your personality?
The easiest way to do this is to start making lists that include the following information.
List #1 : business operations that you would like to delegate.
List #2 : business operations that you hate to do.
Is it book-keeping, marketing, online research, scheduling appointments, etc…?
List # 3 : professional skills that you want a virtual assistant to have.
List # 4 : your personality traits and what kind of personality you think you would work well with.
Do you want to work with a creative mind, an analytical mind, someone who is not afraid to share their thoughts with you, or someone who will just take direction and do the job?
Once you have your lists completed, the best thing to do is to work with a professional placement company who can review your needs and discuss exactly what your objectives are for hiring a virtual assistant. You will want to be matched with professional VA’s who have been pre-screened for you. Someone that you know will be equipped to accomplish your goals and will be an asset to your organization.
Working with the right virtual assistant or virtual team can give you the time to devote your full attention to your business growth and development. Investing the time to build the right virtual team will help you scale your company to the next level.
What helped you choose your virtual assistant?
Business events are designed and implemented in many different formats. There are online events (webinars, & video training) and events that require a physical location, like a hotel banquet room, conference room, or restaurant space. Executing any of these takes time, preparation and planning.
A virtual assistant is the perfect solution to helping you with the following tasks when it comes to event planning.
- Researching possible event locations or online tools, including catering needs room setup or technical requirements.
- Creating the marketing and publicity through social media, email marketing or affiliate links.
- Managing the registration process either through your website with 1ShoppingCart or through an online event registration page link through Eventbrite.
- Preparing any and all training materials, including Powerpoint presentations, marketing sheets, and take away items.
- Keeping you on target by creating or managing a checklist for facilities, attendee information, speaker needs, etc…
There are plenty of other details and prep work required when doing an event, but these are just a few to get you thinking about delegating some of the work to your virtual assistant,
As the event approaches it’s a fact that you can expect last-minute alterations and possible drama. You really don’t want to be dealing with those especially if you are the main speaker at the event or training. You equally don’t want to be bogged down in trying to find a solution in terms of any event you’re planning. Most Virtual Assistants have far more dexterity and problem solving ability than you do in these situations, if you’re honest with yourself.
Virtual assistants skilled in event planning have experience in negotiations, online tools, and much more .Executing a successful event should be your goal, and working with a qualified virtual assistant can make that goal a painless reality.
A well-functioning team can’t function well if what’s important isn’t established. As a business owner, it is important to relay the goals that you want to meet in the New Year with your virtual assistant or your virtual team.
Clear communication is the key to having a successful virtual team. Schedule a conference call or Skype with them this month. This kind of strategic communication allows your virtual assistant to fully understand your expectations and can alleviate any unnecessary confusion about your virtual assistant’s role in your plans. You want to be clear about tasks you need help with and ask them for input on where they feel they can help you. Don’t forget that a virtual assistant’s role is to support you by accomplishing tasks that will help move your business forward. If you VA isn’t privy to your business goals, than their professional input will be limited.
So, schedule an hour to talk with your virtual assistant or virtual team and let them know the goals, and the expectations that you have for making 2014 a prosperous year.
Every business owner knows that decisions affecting your business have to be made pretty much every day. There are easy decisions, and then there are those harder decisions that show up and create sleepless nights, stressful days and self doubt. These are usually the decisions that are necessary to keep your business moving in the right direction.
For many business owners, the biggest challenge isn’t making the right decision, it is doing or implementing it. I love the quote by Tony Robbins, “ A real decision is measured by the fact that you have taken a new action. If there in no action then you haven’t truly decided”.
Think about how much time is wasted or lost making decisions that don’t ever come to fruition.
So, what are the main causes of decisions not being implemented?
- Lack of Time?
- Lack of Resources?
- Lack of Motivation?
- Lack of Finances?
Every business is different and every person handles decision-making differently. If you’re finding that more decisions are being made than are getting done, it’s time to pause, reflect, reorganize, and re-evaluate your processes your resources and your time-management skills.
Let me know if you struggle with getting your business decisions moving from an idea to an action.
Have you ever heard the quote, “you can’t reach for anything new if your hands are still full of yesterday’s junk”, by Louise Smith? Those words resonate with me because I have witnessed many business owner’s frustration when they feel like their business is moving in slow motion or even worse, that it is in gear but not moving forward.
Being involved in all aspects of your business can definitely be important to you, but trying to do everything does not always allow productivity to happen on a daily, weekly or even monthly basis. I usually ask the frustrated business owners that I meet to tell me how much time they spend on business development opportunities. The overwhelming response is very little, because they are too busy, marketing the business, doing the daily administrative tasks, handling the accounting and responding to customers. With only 24 hours in a day and hopefully 6-8 hours of sleep and a few hours of personal or family commitments there isn’t usually much time left over for developing the business which is critical to success.
So, how do you get out of the time-crunch of “having your hands full”?
Ask yourself these questions:
1. How many hours are you spending on activities that are not generating revenue?
2. What is your time worth?
Once you have answered those 2 questions it may be easy to justify hiring a virtual assistant to help you with some of the tasks that are swallowing up the hours in your day.
Some of the earliest adopters of virtual assistants were speakers and authors, business coaches, real estate professionals, and entrepreneurs just starting their businesses. Those groups of people still work with VAs, but today industry seems to matter less. Virtual assistants are very popular with entrepreneurs and small business owners across many sectors.
At Assistant Match, we have clients ranging from bestselling authors to doctors to IT companies to consulting firms to non profits. We have provided virtual assistants to manufacturing companies as well as dog walkers.
Regardless of industry, most people who work with a VA have a few things in common.
- They need additional help in their business but do not need a full time employee.
- They are comfortable with the idea that they may never meet their assistant face to face.
- They are more interested in results than the traditional way of structuring a work team.
It’s wonderful when someone comes to a virtual assistant fully comfortable with the 3 points above. That isn’t always the case, so don’t hesitate to have the conversation that will help flesh those out. Some clients love a VA who can help educate them on how to work together and how s/he can best be of service.
Working with a virtual assistant or a virtual team of assistants can be a win/win for both the business owner, who can outsource specific tasks and increase their own productivity, and the professional virtual assistant who has the expertise and time to do exactly what you need help with.