8 Time Management Hacks for the Virtual Assistant

A Virtual Assistant is a virtuoso when it comes to time management. But believe it or not, they could get overwhelmed too. Here are 8 time management hacks a virtual assistant should consider to maintain productivity:

  • Get 7 to 9 Hours of Sleep Every Day. Productivity begins the night before. Doctors have long advocated getting 7 to 9 hours of sleep for better brain and body functioning. If you get less than 7 hours, you will feel sluggish and your level of cognition will be compromised.
  • Do an End-of- the Week Review. At the end of every work week, ask your client if he or she is amenable to do a review of the previous 5 days. Assess performance, identify potential problem areas and draw up courses of action for implementation the following work week.
  • Target 4 Hours of Productive Work Every Day. According to research, regular office workers only accomplish 90 minutes of productive time per day. That’s only an efficiency rating of 18%. If you dedicate 90 minutes to complete a task, 4 hours or 360 minutes would mean you could accomplish 4 tasks every day!
  • Never Multi-Task. Even in this day and age of smart phones and digital technology, you should never multi-task. You will open yourself up to making mistakes because your focus will be divided. Dedicate full and undivided attention one task at a time. Always keep in mind that it’s the quality of work that counts, not the quantity.
  • Set a Target of 3 Goals Every Day. Goal setting is a powerful tool for improving productivity. But make sure your goals are realistic and attainable. Review your list of tasks and determine which ones are urgent and have more immediate deadlines. Then rank them in order of priority. Do this at the end of your work shift.
  • Schedule Work Breaks. If you work too hard, too long you will eventually break down. There is a limit to your capacity to remain focused and productive. The more you work, the less productive you become. Put in a 30 minute break every time you accomplish a task. It could be a nap, a quick meal or a short walk to clear the mind and get circulation going. Short breaks help recharge your batteries.
  • Learn to Say “No”. It’s great to be in demand but you should not be taking in any more clients if it will affect your commitments to others. The clients that you have now will help build your business. As long as the quality of your work remains consistent, you can be rest assured your clients will continue to give you more business.
  • Get Help. Another solution if you continue to get job offers is to hire your own Virtual Assistant. You can delegate spillover work to him or her. Start out with an easy project; one where the probability of mistakes is very small. Propose an income sharing arrangement. For example, if you are getting paid $12 per hour, pay your assistant $7. You may not get everything but you get a new client nonetheless.

Effective time management will get more things done and improve productivity. It’s not just about watching the clock. You have to be mindful and strategic on how you utilize time on a daily basis.

real estate virtual assistant productivity

How To Increase Productivity Using A Real Estate Virtual Assistant

In the real estate profession, you have to wear many hats: marketer, salesman, researcher, financial consultant and administrator among others. A typical day can require you to constantly switch hats depending on what needs to get done. And that is the problem confounding many real estate agents. Are you doing things that need to get done or have to get done? Having a need implies urgency which is a consequence of poor time management. Productivity demands effective time management which you can achieve by using a real estate Virtual Assistant.

Take a moment if you will, to review your calendar from the previous work week. Ask yourself these questions:

  • On average, how many hours did you work every day?
  • How many goals were you able to attain per day?
  • How close are you to converting your warm leads into sales?
  • Are your files, social media accounts and MLS records updated?
  • Do you have a backlog on e-mails and other correspondence?
  • Do you feel exhausted, tired and stressed out?
  • Are you frustrated with your progress and wish you could get more things done?

Everyone wants to be productive. The problem is many believe that productivity is measured by the number of items that you can cross out of your “to-do” list. Yes, productivity is a numbers game. But it is about accomplishing tasks that directly contribute to the growth of your business.

Meeting clients, showing properties, delivering corporate or group presentations, negotiating contracts, attending open homes and auctions are activities that can translate to money in the bank.

Filtering e-mails, taking calls, updating MLS records, posting in social media, setting appointments and managing your calendar do not. Although these tasks need to be done to keep the business organized, for entrepreneurs, these are time- wasters. You will be better off delegating these tasks to a real estate Virtual Assistant.

Research has shown that we only average 90 minutes of productive time every work day. That means in an 8 hour work day, people are only productive 18.75% of the time. At that rate, you will have a difficult time building your business.

By hiring a real estate Virtual Assistant, you can increase your productivity by 300%. Here’s how:

1. Identify Your Business Core Functions

Review your business model. Write down all the tasks and responsibilities that need to be done. Next, identify the core functions of your business and separate these from the non- core functions.

The core functions are those that you as business owner have to attend to. These are the activities that will grow your business and make it succeed. The non- core functions are non- essential tasks that serve to support and organize the business but do not directly contribute to revenue.

2. Qualify Your Real Estate Virtual Assistant

Once you have identified the non- core functions, use them to qualify the type of Virtual Assistant you need for your agency.

In real estate, you have to cover 3 key areas of responsibility: marketing, sales and administration. Ideally, you should hire a Virtual Assistant with the following skills:

  • Phone handling
  • E-mail filtering
  • Scheduling
  • MS Office
  • MLS management
  • Social Media
  • Website management
  • Customer relations

Adjust your qualifications accordingly. For example, if you have several warm leads you may want to focus on finding a Virtual Assistant with experience and a good track record in conversions.

3. Delegate the Non- Core Functions to the Real Estate VA

When you have hired your real estate Virtual Assistant, take the necessary steps to clearly explain his or her scope of work.

  • Attach a copy of the Scope of Work as an addendum in the contract.
  • Orient the Virtual Assistant on each and every item on the Scope of Work.
  • Encourage feedback to make sure the Scope of Work is understood.
  • Include guidelines or benchmarks to serve as the Virtual Assistant’s references for quality of work.

It is very important to have a system in place that ensures effective communication, proper collaboration and clear protocols for work submissions.

4. Establish 3 to 4 Goals Every Day

Now that you have delegated the non- essential tasks to your Virtual Assistant, you will have more time to focus on the business side of things.

Goal setting is a proven method for increasing productivity. Identify 3 to 4 goals that you want to accomplish on a given day. Dedicate 90 minutes per goal; this means 100% focus, no distractions. Once you have accomplished your goal, give yourself 30 minutes to rest.

The rest period is meant to “recharge your batteries”. You can use this time to eat, nap, take a walk or do errands.

Assuming you picked out 3 goals to accomplish this means you worked a total of 360 minutes or 6 hours on that day. If you accomplished all 3 goals, then your productivity rate can be measured at 270 minutes/ 360 minutes or 75%. This is a 300% improvement over the average productivity rate of 18.75%.

5. Track Business Performance

At the end of every work week, schedule a meeting with your Virtual Assistant and discuss the following:

  • Summary of Targeted Tasks
  • Summary of Accomplished Tasks
  • Metrics on performance
  • Issues, problems and other pressing concerns encountered during the work week
  • Courses of action and alternatives that can be implemented to resolve the problems
  • Summary of Targeted Tasks for the following work week
  • Summary of goals to be achieved the following work week
  • Updates or news on latest developments

When it comes to productivity, your best approach would be to remain conservative. It’s not the number of tasks you accomplished but how you achieved them that matters. Quality of work must always take precedence over quantity.

Do not aim to accomplish 4 goals if upon thorough review, it may seem likely that 2 goals is the more realistic target. Keep in mind that conditions may change on a daily basis. There are unforeseen factors that may come into play while working on a goal and sometimes these will be beyond your control.

However what should be clear is that by delegating work to a real estate Virtual Assistant, you will have better time management practices in place. And this alone will increase your level of productivity every day.

Renting In Australia- A Tenant’s Guide

Renting In Australia: A Tenant’s Guide

If buying a home is out of your budget, renting in Australia is the next good option. But renting a home isn’t simply a matter of choosing a place you like and paying the required deposit to the landlord. There are factors that must be considered and procedures to be observed. And in a market where supply is tight, renting a home could present some challenges.

Finding Your Own Place

Renting a home is a decision that must be well- thought out. You must consider all factors and scenarios covering a specific property. The conditions can change depending on where you plan to rent in Australia.

1. Practicality:

  • Is the cost of rent within your budget?
  • Will your current source of income be enough to cover rent and other cost of living expenses?
  • Is the place near your place of work or study?
  • Will you be renting within proximity of commercial areas?
  • Is the place accessible by public transportation?
  • What is the peace and order situation in the area?

2. Cost:

Australia has some of the most expensive real estate in the world. It should not surprise you that its cost of rent could likewise be expensive. Again, this would depend on the city state you plan to rent. But there are upfront costs to be considered and these could be quite significant.

For example, if you are planning to rent a place that goes for $250 a week, the cost of moving in can be broken down as follows:

  • Advance Rent equivalent to 2 weeks rent – $500
  • Security Bond equivalent to 4 weeks rent – $1,000
  • Pet Bond assuming you own one – $260

Take note that we have not factored in the cost of moving furniture and other related expenses. In this scenario, you are looking at a total upfront cost of $2,000 or more.

The Process of Renting Property in Australia

Once you have found a place that suits your needs and fits your budget, the next step is to comply with the requirements of renting property in Australia.

Property rental in Australia is covered by the Residential Tenancies Act 1987 and the Residential Tenancies Regulation 1989. These laws are designed to protect your rights as a tenant and outlines the responsibilities of the parties to a rental agreement.

There are forms that have to be submitted and fees to be paid before you can be accepted as a tenant:

1. Tenant Application Form – The landlord or Property Manager will ask you to fill out a tenant application form which will be used to assess if you qualified to have exclusive possession of the premises.

In addition to the application form, you may be asked to submit the following:

  • Proof of Employment or pay slips
  • Photo ID
  • Cover Letter
  • Proof of Previous Rental History
  • Character References

In order to save time, make sure you have all the documents ready. The place you are interested in renting could have a long line of suitors. The landlord will award the premises to the first party that qualifies as a tenant.

2. Option Fees – The landlord may require you to pay an option fee while they verify your application and the documents you submitted. The amount of the option fee would depend on the cost of weekly rent and the location of the property.

Always verify the option fee before proceeding with the application process. If you decide not to push through or if you are not awarded the use of the premises, the option fee should be returned to you in full within 7 days.

If you are awarded the lease of the premises, then find out if the option fee can be applied to first month’s rent.

3. Tenancy Agreement – Renting property in Australia may require both parties to enter into a written tenancy agreement.

Although non-written tenancy agreements are recognized under the law, a written one gives more clarity on the terms and conditions covering your use of the property. It presents little room for argument in the event of disputes or arbitration.

The landlord may offer you a fixed-term or periodic tenancy which specifies a start and finish date. Another option would be a periodic tenancy agreement which could cover an indefinite time period for leasing the premises.

The written tenancy agreement is an important document. It outlines the provisions of your relationship with the landlord or Property Manager. Take the time to fully understand its stipulations and what you are agreeing to before affixing your signature.

If possible, ask an attorney who specializes in real estate law to review the contract and explain the conditions to you.

Once both parties have agreed and signed the tenancy agreement, the landlord must give you a copy.

Australia certainly has a lot to offer. A stable economy with good job opportunities, some of the world’s best universities and plenty of wonderful sights to see. These are just a few of the reasons why Australia’s real estate market continues to attract both local and international interest.

Thus, when planning to rent in Australia, have all your documentation ready and make every effort to fast track the tenant application process. Properties can easily come off the market as more people are looking for places to rent.

Three tips on becoming a more successful real estate agent

Three tips on becoming a more successful real estate agent

As a real estate specialist isn’t simply to offer or purchase a home for your customers, however, to likewise give quality information and experience that relates to the business. There are numerous classes that can separate you from your immediate rivalry, as you pick up validity for being the territory’s land master. Execute these three tips to end up a useful real estate operator and expansion your upper hand:

1. Have an abundance of local knowledge

Numerous purchasers and vendors are searching for a real estate virtual assistant that offers more than only a useful reputation. Truth be told, you can emerge from different operators by highlighting your insight about neighbourhoods. At the point when a customer is hoping to purchase or offer their home, they need a land operator that is acquainted with the range to guarantee ideal results. Expand your nearby information, and increase that upper hand.

2. Have strong communication skills

Nobody needs a real estate specialist who’s hard to get tightly to. Continuously decide every customer’s favoured technique for correspondence and also the recurrence they seek – and focus on it. Purchasers and merchants need a land specialist that they can believe, one that will be immediate and let them know the genuine actualities about their circumstance. Impeccable the ability to be straightforward and careful about everything from the deal cost to timing, and advanced entirely through the purchasing procedure.

3. Have connections

All of the top real estate operators have a considerable rundown of associations, whether it’s a review of potential purchasers or other land specialists in the range that they can work with. Begin systems administration to wind up more fruitful inside the business. You additionally need to hone up on your association abilities, which will permit you to be more productive and brief when speaking with your customers.

Turning into a fruitful real estate specialist is as simple as having these three standards. Devote yourself to your clients and to giving astonishing administrations, and the achievement will take after.

How to increase your earnings without selling more homes

How to increase your earnings without selling more homes?

Some may assert that the present subsidence is behind such small numbers, yet as a general rule, they’re not that different today than they were five, 10, or 15 years prior. Tragically, the pay levels as depicted above have dependably been around.

Here are four tips for expanding your yearly pay throughout the following 12 months:

Plan Ahead

plan earnings increase

Tragically, numerous land geniuses enter the business with no arrangement. Most exceedingly dangerous yet, most experienced specialists I know have no arrangement! In the wake of contributing hundreds (and here and there thousands) of dollars, significant time, and a tiring examination, numerous newcomers wind up with a land firm that has no arrangement for the following 30, 60, or 90 days.

A strategy for success is vital in the real estate. Without a stable arrangement, you’ll likely wind up wasting your time.

Take Action

take actions for better earnings

At the point when fabricating your activity arrangement, utilize a layout and run down every one of the things that you plan to accomplish for each new posting you take. One great approach to fabricate activity arrangements is to duplicate or print out three or four schedule pages and decide when and how frequently you might want to speak with your customers. What promoting tries do you have to execute through the span of the assertion? Pretty much as you need a “marketable strategy” for your business, each new posting and each new purchaser you go up against necessities a different commercial strategy.

Work Your Sphere

work your sphere

As per a few pieces of information, according to For Sale By Owner, 57 percent of first-time home purchasers discovered their land operator through the proposal of a companion, relative, or collaborator. Thirty-nine percent of all shoppers and vendors said they found their specialist through this procedure.

If this information does not fortify the way that you require loved one’s individuals prescribing your administrations, then please rehash those insights above. Working your authoritative reach is one of the best things a land ace can do consistently. Send cards and letters every month, make telephone calls, and, if the open door emerges, make a trip and make an individual visit.

Prospect

prospect homes

Prospecting is the soul of a striking deals vocation: Without new business, you’ll, in the end, leave the business. Make it a point to set objectives on what sorts of prospecting you’ll accomplish for the day, week, or month. Monitor your calendar and figure out where you’re squandering time, and roll out any essential improvements to achieve your prospecting objectives. Likewise, make sure to record your prospecting goals where you can see them and be helped to remember your jobs needing to be done.

The way to expanding your wage as a land proficient is to stay industrious and do the right things. When you have a firm composed strategy for success, set objectives, prospect day by day, and have a decent state of mind, you’re sure to succeed.

The Pros and Cons of Outsourcing Services

As we head off toward 2017, the future looks bright for companies that have been outsourcing services. Outsourcing is a process that capitalizes on regions that provide a comparative advantage in cost without affecting revenues or productivity. It functions by providing a hedge against uncertainty and turbulent economic periods.

If you have been keeping track of the news, times have never been more uncertain and turbulent. Equities markets worldwide are unstable. Political regimes are collapsing. Threats of war and conflict appear more imminent. Global warming continues to wreak havoc and destruction in different parts of the world.

All of these events have established conditions that lead to an increased demand for outsourcing services.

But is outsourcing the “be-all” cure for what ails your business?

There are pros and cons of outsourcing services that you have to be aware of before you decide on implementing the process:

Pros:

  • Reduces cost of business – The greatest comparative advantage lies with labor. If you hire virtual assistants or outsource work to home based workers, you only pay for the hours they render service. If you outsource work to remote locations such as the Philippines and India, the rate per hour can be 50% lower.
  • Improves productivity – By outsourcing non-core functions, you can focus more on the core functions of your business. You can also re-purpose cost savings to fund revenue-generating projects.
  • Increases quality of work – Not only do you improve your quality of work but even the non-essential tasks are managed properly. You can even outsource technical skills to people who are more qualified than you.
  • Improves business flexibility – Do you want your business to be managed 24/7? Outsource work to talent from the Philippines and India. Time zone differentials make it possible to have your business supervised even after office hours at no extra cost.
  • Reduce the risks of business expansion – If sales volume did not increase enough to warrant additional manpower, simply terminate the outsourcing agreement. There are less legal issues to be concerned about when you outsource services.

Cons:

  • Cultural and Social Nuances – If you are planning to hire virtual assistants from other countries, you will have to deal with cultural and social nuances that may impact on the working relationship.
  • Language Barrier – Another problem when hiring virtual workers or contracting service providers is language. A difference in perspective in combination with social and cultural nuances will lead to miscommunication.
  • Data Security – Whenever you work across the virtual world, you are at risk of transmitting confidential data or giving access to your business network. There have been cases when a breach of information has lead to the downfall of business.

The answer to whether you should be outsourcing services or not comes down to one question: “Are you managing your business from the position of revenue generation or cost savings?”

If you are focused on generating revenue, then you should outsource services. Although outsourcing reduces business costs, it provides you more options to improve revenue. The risks or “Cons” of outsourcing can easily be managed through smart planning and the implementation of adaptable security protocols.

Should You Hire a Virtual Assistant or Download an App?

Technology makes it seem appear the days of the human Virtual Assistant are numbered. Apple started the revolution last 14 October 2011 when it launched its virtual assistant “Siri” with the Apple iPhone 4S. Since then other technology giants such as Motorola, Black Berry, Facebook and of course, Microsoft followed suit.

But does that mean the human Virtual Assistant will go the way of the dinosaurs and become extinct? Is Siri the virtual comet that ends the civilization of human virtual assistants?

The answer is an unequivocal “No” for the following reasons:

Human VA’s Have Foresight. In an unpredictable business environment as we are in right now, you need to implement flexible strategies.

The key to having effective flexible business strategies is foresight because it helps you anticipate changes in conditions before it happens.

People have the capacity to foresee because they are constantly working, learning and thriving. Tech VA’s functions depend on their programming capabilities.

Human VA’s Can Adapt. When a human VA foresees change, he or she can conceptualize strategies or introduce revisions to the current one in order to accommodate potential problems.

Tech VA’s are limited to the extent they can design, adapt and implement changes to strategy. Even if they can, they will not conduct tests and assurances the human VA does to ensure risks are mitigated.

Tech VA’s Have No Empathy. If you think dealing with human Customer Service is frustrating, try dealing with a customer service with a tech VA.

Customer service is all about creating a feedback loop between the end user and the service provider. The feedback loop allows a consistent exchange of ideas that will hopefully lead to a resolution.

It is common for human VA’s to deal with irate customers online or over the phone. In order to placate the customer, the Virtual Assistant must know how to re-route the negative energy and navigate it toward positive solutions.

You need empathy for this; the ability to place oneself in the position of the customer. Siri and the rest of the tech VA’s do not have empathy.

Tech VA’s Have a “Hidden Agenda”. Before you decide to download a tech VA, you should understand there is a price to pay for the convenience. These technology giants use the tech VA’s to compile information about users.

Facebook, Microsoft, Apple and all of these giants want to know your online behavior so they will know which products or services they can sell to you.

It should be no surprise that over the last few years, Facebook has been moving away from being a social media site to becoming an advertising company.

Big Data is Big Business; if they have information on you, they can monetize this in a number of ways.

Despite their imperfections, human Virtual Assistants remain more valuable than a tech VA. If your human VA makes a mistake, it is easy to rectify the issue and come up with an immediate solution. But tech VA’s may require program reviews and further analysis.

In a volatile and unpredictable world, perfection is not a realistic objective. In fact, it is precisely because of the imperfection of the human VA that makes him or her more valuable in this day and age.

Real Estate Virtual Assistant: For Sale By Owner’s Secret Weapon

A real estate Virtual Assistant is a godsend for many real estate agents. This is a type of Virtual Assistant who has experience in working with agencies and agents. They know the scope of work, the list of duties, responsibilities and tasks agents do on a daily basis in their quest to land a sale.

But if you plan to sell your own home via the FSBO route, contracting the services of a real estate Virtual Assistant should be the first item on your to- do list.

FSBO or For Sale By Owner is exactly what it is. A property owner decides to sell his or her own home without enlisting the services of a real estate agent. The For Sale By Owner concept saves you from paying commission fees and gives you more control over out- of- pocket expenses such as marketing and advertising.

While selling property can be complicated, it can be done even without an agent. All you need is to educate yourself, learn to organize and draw up a plan for selling your own home.

Organization is the calling card of the Virtual Assistant that is why you have to hire one right away. Virtual assistance is an inexpensive service because they do not have to work full- time. You can get a lot done with just 20 hours a week worth of work.

What can a real estate VA do for you?

  • Find Professional Help – The first step begins in getting your home in presentable shape to help generate interest from buyers. Your home also needs to look good in pictures. A VA can help you source property evaluators to inspect your home and photographer to take professional quality photos.
  • Create Marketing Copy – The VA can proceed to write marketing copy on your property that will be distributed to various online sources and in key areas around your neighborhood.
  • Create an FSBO Account – The first online priority by the VA is to set up an account for you at an FSBO site. These are sites that attract thousands of potential buyers who prefer to deal directly with owner than go through real estate agents. The VA will upload and regularly update images and marketing content.
  • Utilize Online Channels – The Virtual Assistant will also utilize other online channels such as social media, real estate communities and search directories. All of these accounts will be linked directly to your For Sale By Owner account.
  • Take Calls and Respond to E-mails – You no longer have to be inundated by calls and e- mails. The VA will take all the calls, respond to e-mails and qualify the level of interest.
  • Schedule Home Visits – Once the VA has made a short list of potential buyers, she can schedule the home visits at your convenience. This will give you enough time to prepare before meeting the buyer.
  • Research on Pricing – Pricing can be a deal breaker in real estate. The VA can research pricing trends via online home valuation sites or by conducting a 6 month Comparative Market Study or CMA. The price range will give you an idea of how much to price your home.
  • Prepare and Review Contracts – Finally, a VA can have a contract of sale reviewed and prepared for you. This will include current legislation on the sale of property in your city state.

With a real estate Virtual Assistant in your corner, For Sale By Owner will be much easier and convenient. It will also be more rewarding because you will be able to increase the net returns on the sale of your property. Most importantly, you will be able to put more attention on your property and have it sold faster.

how a virtual assistant can help

How a Virtual Assistant Can Help Your Business and Make You Happy

Entrepreneurs are among the hardest working people in the world. Not only because they have to; but they want to. Entrepreneurs can’t help doing everything they can to help their business. After all, they are by definition risk takers. And sometimes that can be the problem. In the end, they’re burnt out, tired with nothing to show for it. If this sounds familiar, you may be interested to know how a Virtual Assistant can help your business and make you happy.

1. Manage Your Time Better

As an entrepreneur, a typical day means having a full plate. You have so many things going on and tasks to attend do. When your business is gaining traction, it seems like 24 hours is never enough.

By hiring a Virtual Assistant, you can delegate all non-core or non-essential tasks so you can focus on the main functions of your business. You would probably like to spend more time working on an idea or a project. A Virtual Assistant will make sure you can work in peace.

2. Manage Your Costs Better

When you’re starting out, money will be an issue. Your budget is tight. You don’t have access to funding. You plan to allocate your budget to cover your day-to-day activities until such time business can support itself.

But you need help.

A Virtual Assistant will not break your budget. You will not incur additional costs in monthly expenses other than the Virtual Assistant’s fees which are calculated on a per productive hour basis. This means you only pay for the hours worked.

3. Reduce the Risk of Business Expansion

If the signs point toward an uptrend in sales but you are unsure if this is sustainable, consider hiring a Virtual Assistant.

Remember that you only pay the Virtual Assistant for hours worked. If they are on break or have no shift, you don’t pay him or her. You also don’t pay the Virtual Assistant any type of benefits.

Therefore, the cost of hiring a Virtual Assistant is very low. If the uptrend is not sustainable, you can simply discontinue the services of the Virtual Assistant and maintain operations according to scale.

4. Increase the Level of Productivity

When you are able to focus on the core functions of the business, you will increase the level of productivity.

The cost savings generated from hiring a Virtual Assistant can also be used to fund projects and other departments such as marketing and promotion.

Finally, virtual assistants are paid per productive hour but often work with deadlines. You can be rest assured the Virtual Assistant will meet the deadline without compromising the quality of work!

5. Reduce the Level of Stress

Lastly, but probably the most important benefit of hiring a Virtual Assistant, you can reduce the level of stress.

You can trust that the Virtual Assistant can do his or her job without much supervision. Just like Blogging superstar Tim Ferris, you can check up on your Virtual Assistance once in a while.

With more time for yourself, you can be with your family more frequently, exercise and stay healthy or just relax.

Hiring a Virtual Assistant will certainly take a load of your shoulders. You will see the contribution of the Virtual Assistant not only on the quality of work but on the quality of your life as well.

stay focused as a virtual assistant

3 Tips on How to Stay Focused as a Virtual Assistant

Working as a Virtual Assistant has many privileges. You get to work at home, manage your own time and you do not have to deal with the hassles of the daily commute. But these privileges can be a source of distraction. Here are 3 tips on how to stay focused as a Virtual Assistant.

1. Set Your Schedule for the Week.

Before you set your schedule for the week, you must commit to it and this happens at the end of the previous week’s shift.

Some clients purposely schedule a weekly re-cap with their Virtual Assistant to address unresolved issues, pending concerns and problems that may come up in order to find immediate resolution.

If your client does not schedule weekly re-caps, take it upon yourself to evaluate the work week that was. Review your tasks and see which ones were not completed and determine the underlying conditions.

Next, review the list of upcoming tasks and prioritize these in order. Always double-check deadlines and see if you are falling behind. Finally, plot down next week’s agenda on the calendar.

Once this agenda has been noted, leave some room for adjustment. Deadlines can always change. Most importantly, commit to the schedule.

2. Only Use Work-Approved Technology.

As a Virtual Assistant, your bread and butter are the wonders of technology. You need your PC, your mobile phone and potentially, a laptop or tablet. But it’s not only clients who will consistently contact you on your PC or mobile phone.

Family, friends, prospective clients will try to touch base with you for personal or professional reasons. If you are committed to your schedule, these could only prove to be distractions.

One way to manage this is to use only work approved technology. For example, use a PC that is dedicated only for your work. This means:

  • No access to social media
  • No access to websites that are not related to work
  • PC is only fitted with required software programs

Virtual Assistants use Skype frequently. But so do their family and friends. You should post a message advising people of your schedule and to reach you via e-mail or phone text. Click the “Do Not Disturb”, “Unavailable” or “Offline” features of Skype to get the message across.

3. Use Focus Blocks.

Focus Block are clusters of time periods that you set aside specifically for the task you have to perform. The length of a focus block would depend on your ability to maintain concentration. On average, people can do up to 90 minutes of uninterrupted work. But it would really depend on your personal capacity.

A focus block is followed by a period of rest; usually equivalent to 30% of the time spent on work. So if your focus block is for 60 minutes, you can have a break time of 18 minutes.

Use the 18 minutes to check on your e-mail, phone messages and social media, eat, take a toilet break, nap or get light exercise. Do whatever you need to do to get your mind back at work for the next focus block.

Generally, you should approach your work as a Virtual Assistant as a true professional. You are being paid the second you log in. Thus, your client deserves full and undivided attention. Or if you work on the basis of deadlines, you have to make sure you hit it consistently.

It is not difficult to stay focused working as a Virtual Assistant as long as you remain committed and dedicated to the tasks you need accomplished.