Virtual Assistant Podcast

Folks, this is it. This is the final episode of the Virtual Assistant Podcast. My goal when I started this podcast was to produce a show that would expose people in my community to the benefits that I have seen personally from hiring a virtual assistant, to answer people’ questions about this industry, and to lower the barrier of entry for those who might benefit from delegating tasks to a virtual assistant themselves.

I’ve spent months sharing my own personal journey and I feel that I’ve pretty much shared everything I have to share in this space at this point in time. I hope that you have enjoyed this podcast and I hope that you’ll check out http://PodcastAnswerMan.com and all my other podcasts at http://gspn.tv. Also, I’m sure I’ll litter this page with all sorts of other inks and buttons to all the other things I have going online.

I plan to keep the archives of these 38 episodes online as my gift to anyone who might benefit from them. If you think you could benefit from working with me in any of the services I provide in the field of podcasting, new media, and running a business online, please feel free to contact me at Cliff@Ravenscraft.org. Many Blessings!

This is episode is part 2 of 2 where I address the most common fears that people have when they consider hiring a Virtual Assistant. Below are the fears that people have expressed that I address in this episode:

– A little antsy about providing personal / financial information to some one out of my sight and possibly beyond extradition.

– Trusting someone with my confidential information.

– Trusting that someone else could learn my style and personality well enough to truly handle the work as well as I.

– Big mistakes. I feared that a VA would mess up in some terrible way damaging my business.

– Does the VA have a strong business background and technical savvy?

– Is the VA working full time from a professionally equipped home office or typing at the kitchen table while dealing with small children?

– Their website may look like they’re a dream VA, but anyone can put anything they please on a website and, if they’re in another country, who are you going to call to check them out? Even if they give you someone to call (unless it’s a senior partner in a large business or someone whose existence you can check) you could be calling their brother or aunt.

– The word “Virtual” is also scary as people cannot understand how it could possibly work. Most people are also unaware of the vast amount of technology that is available today which makes working with a VA a breeze and any experienced and skilled VA will have that technology at his/her fingertips.

– Anyone considering using the services of a VA must thoroughly research potential VA services until they find one that will be a good fit.

– I’ve been working with VA’s for 3 years. I suggest hiring from a company like contemporaryva.com. They have a boss to whom they answer as well as you. Plus they have a backup trained in case they out of town, get sick or quit.

– Experience has taught that VA’s go MIA for no reason at all at the absolute worst times like the middle of a launch or before affiliates have been paid . . . They tend to allow their personal lives to take priority and don’t have the safeguards in place that most business owners would.

– That they might divulge sensitive or proprietary information to others (i.e. competitors)

-That in the time it took to make arrangements with a virtual assistant, I could have the job done myself.

Right Click Here To Download

Special thanks to Contemporary VA for sponsoring this podcast. This is the firm I, personally, use for my own business. I would not have had the time to produce this show without it making financial sense for me to do so. Their sponsorship has made this show possible. If you get a chance, thank them in any creative way you can think of. If you desire, this is the link to their contact page.

Please call TODAY with your questions on our voicemail hotline at 859-795-4067. Or use your voice memo application on your iPhone to record feedback or questions. Simply email it to feedback@gspn.tv.

Know someone else who needs to hire a VA? Send them an note with a link to http://VirtualAssistantPodcast.com.

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This is episode is part 1 of 2 where I address the most common fears that people have when they consider hiring a Virtual Assistant. Below are the fears that people have expressed that I address in this episode:

– Paying for a virtual assistant.

– Having to re-do the work myself because the quality would not be what I would do myself

– Not using him/her for all the time I paid for.

– Not using my extra time to make more money to turn a profit and also pay for the assistant (i.e., working just to pay the assistant).

– Finding a VA with the requisite skills.

– Will they be responsive to e-mails and communicate regularly? (Every VA I’ve fired — 3 or 4 — have all been fired for being unreachable or unwilling to maintain regular contact…. never because they couldn’t do the job.)

– Will they adhere to deadlines?

– Having enough work for them to do or being able to explain exactly what you want and having them deliver it as well as you could do it.

-It also seems like the overhead of writing a description/instructions for some tasks might take longer than doing the task myself.

– As a small business person and entrepreneur, productivity and profitability are king. I think one of the biggest fears we have is that the time effort and money invested won’t pay off. It seems like a big effort to train someone and bring them up to speed.

– I worry I won’t have enough for him or her to do and that in the time I’ll have to take explaining everything I could’ve just done it myself, and done it better.

– That they’ll do it wrong, which will only frustrate and stress me out, not to mention misrepresent me.

– I will spend the time training them and they will leave.

– I hire virtual assistants to perform administrative tasks, but my biggest fear is hirng a V.A. to perform bookkeeping tasks. It’s something that I need, but I’m very reluctant to pass this along to anyone for fear of someone getting access to my account information.

– Hey Cliff, as an insurance agent (like you were in your former life), I’d really have to put some thoughts into what work assignments I could give them and not violate any of my state’s insurance licensing laws. All of our personnel that work with our clients are properly licensed. Not saying it couldn’t be done, would just have to be careful. You might have some unique insight into that since you are a former insurance agent and now use a virtual assistant.

-Another thought that comes to my mind immediately with a virtual assistant (or anyone on your payroll not working on your premises) would be the always subtle but recurring thought, am I truly getting “the work for the hours I’m paying/being billed for.” What accountability measures are/would be in place to ease that concern.

– Not sure of the cost, so no way to figure the return on investment.

Right Click Here To Download

Special thanks to Contemporary VA for sponsoring this podcast. This is the firm I, personally, use for my own business. I would not have had the time to produce this show without it making financial sense for me to do so. Their sponsorship has made this show possible. If you get a chance, thank them in any creative way you can think of. If you desire, this is the link to their contact page.

Please call TODAY with your questions on our voicemail hotline at 859-795-4067. Or use your voice memo application on your iPhone to record feedback or questions. Simply email it to feedback@gspn.tv.

Know someone else who needs to hire a VA? Send them an note with a link to http://VirtualAssistantPodcast.com.

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– My New Virtual Assistant Aimee
– How much easier it is to train the second time around, already knowing what can be delegated.
– Coming to the end of the of this era?
– My thoughts on LastPass as a solution for keeping passwords secure.

Right Click Here To Download

Special thanks to Contemporary VA for sponsoring this podcast. This is the firm I, personally, use for my own business. I would not have had the time to produce this show without it making financial sense for me to do so. Their sponsorship has made this show possible. If you get a chance, thank them in any creative way you can think of. If you desire, this is the link to their contact page.

Please call TODAY with your questions on our voicemail hotline at 859-795-4067. Or use your voice memo application on your iPhone to record feedback or questions. Simply email it to feedback@gspn.tv.

Know someone else who needs to hire a VA? Send them an note with a link to http://VirtualAssistantPodcast.com.

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In this episode, I share that I have made a decision on who will replace Andrea as my virtual assistant. I will share the list of questions that I used to interview virtual assistant prospects and what I was looking for as answers to those questions.

If you want to download my list of questions, Right Click Here To Download The PDF Document

Right Click Here To Download

Special thanks to Contemporary VA for sponsoring this podcast. This is the firm I, personally, use for my own business. I would not have had the time to produce this show without it making financial sense for me to do so. Their sponsorship has made this show possible. If you get a chance, thank them in any creative way you can think of. If you desire, this is the link to their contact page.

Please call TODAY with your questions on our voicemail hotline at 859-795-4067. Or use your voice memo application on your iPhone to record feedback or questions. Simply email it to feedback@gspn.tv.

Know someone else who needs to hire a VA? Send them an note with a link to http://VirtualAssistantPodcast.com.

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In this episode, I share that I just learned this week that Andrea, my virtual assistant, has given notice and after the end of the year, she will be leaving Contemporary VA to pursue another job opportunity that she couldn’t pass up. I share my thoughts on how I felt initially about this and how I plan to proceed with finding someone to take over the work that I had Andrea doing for me.

Right Click Here To Download

Special thanks to Contemporary VA for sponsoring this podcast. This is the firm I, personally, use for my own business. I would not have had the time to produce this show without it making financial sense for me to do so. Their sponsorship has made this show possible. If you get a chance, thank them in any creative way you can think of. If you desire, this is the link to their contact page.

Please call TODAY with your questions on our voicemail hotline at 859-795-4067. Or use your voice memo application on your iPhone to record feedback or questions. Simply email it to feedback@gspn.tv.

Know someone else who needs to hire a VA? Send them an note with a link to http://VirtualAssistantPodcast.com.

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I Hate Getting Forms In The Mail From Government Agencies!
I hate getting forms from the government in the mail. My CPA handles most of my business reports and filings. However, occasionally, I will receive a form in the mail that says stuff like if I have more than ten employees within any given month, I must fill out an annual report online and warns of very steep penalties if I don’t immediately respond.

What do you do when you get a form like this, where you are almost certain that it does not pertain to you, but you’re just not sure? Well, if you are me, you give it to your VA and ask them to look into it.

In this case, I simply set the letter down on my desk, and I used the JotNot Pro iPhone application to take a photo of the document. It then turned it into a “scanned” PDF document. This program can “scan” multiple pages by taking multiple photos and put them into a single PDF.

I then created a “case/project” in HighRise and attached this scanned document and asked Andrea to please conctact my CPA to see if I need to do anything with this. I then filed the form away and will wait till I hear back one way or another from Andrea.

Why didn’t I just call my CPA? Because I can never get them on the phone right when I need them and I don’t want the hassle of letting that document sit on my “to do” list.

Benfits of Hiring A Virtual Assistant Over An Employee
– A Virtual Assistant is almost always there when you need them.
– You only pay for the hours when you need your VA.
– No expenses such as benefits or vacation pay.
– No requirement for office space.
– VAs use their own equipment!
– They are always upgrading their education at their own cost.
– Virtual Assistants are almost always connected to other people who can help you.
– A Virtual Assistant can do things that you are not skilled enough to do.
– You can hire as many or as little Virtual Assistants as you want depending on how much work you have on your plate.
– Many Virtual Assistants are often willing to work outside normal office hours.
– There really are so many more benefits!

Other Questions Covered In This Episode:
– How far in advance should you let your VA know you need them to work over a holiday

Right Click Here To Download

Special thanks to Contemporary VA for sponsoring this podcast. This is the firm I, personally, use for my own business. I would not have had the time to produce this show without it making financial sense for me to do so. Their sponsorship has made this show possible. If you get a chance, thank them in any creative way you can think of. If you desire, this is the link to their contact page.

Please call TODAY with your questions on our voicemail hotline at 859-795-4067. Or use your voice memo application on your iPhone to record feedback or questions. Simply email it to feedback@gspn.tv.

Know someone else who needs to hire a VA? Send them an note with a link to http://VirtualAssistantPodcast.com.

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How Your Virtual Assistant Can Help You Survive The Holidays
1. VA can set travel arrangements for you.
2. You can give your VA your holiday card list and the VA can mail out your cards/newsletter.
3. Your VA can have gifts sent to your clients
4. If you’re planning a holiday party, your VA can get those arrangements set up.
5. Your VA can either shop online for you or at least find the sites with the best prices for your gift list
6. VA can search the Black Friday postings and alert you for the stores you are interested in.
7. If you are going to be doing a lot of cooking, the VA can look up some new holiday recipes for you.
8. VA can prepare your holiday ezine for you and make sure that’s scheduled to go out.
9. VA can send out “thank yous” for any gifts you receive.
10. Your VA can schedule tweets to cover the days that you won’t be online!

Other Questions Covered In This Episode:
– How far in advance should you let your VA know you need them to work over a holiday

Right Click Here To Download

Special thanks to Contemporary VA for sponsoring this podcast. This is the firm I, personally, use for my own business. I would not have had the time to produce this show without it making financial sense for me to do so. Their sponsorship has made this show possible. If you get a chance, thank them in any creative way you can think of. If you desire, this is the link to their contact page.

Please call TODAY with your questions on our voicemail hotline at 859-795-4067. Or use your voice memo application on your iPhone to record feedback or questions. Simply email it to feedback@gspn.tv.

Know someone else who needs to hire a VA? Send them an note with a link to http://VirtualAssistantPodcast.com.

Subscribe To The Virtual Assistant Podcast:
Zune iTunes RSS Feed

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* Not All VA’s Provide Equal Value
* Administrative VA v/s Experience Web Help
* The need to communicate expectations
* Milestone Reports
* Tracking Time
* How to avoid going over the amount of hours you have on retainer
* What to do when it’s just not working out

Right Click Here To Download

Special thanks to Contemporary VA for sponsoring this podcast. This is the firm I, personally, use for my own business. I would not have had the time to produce this show without it making financial sense for me to do so. Their sponsorship has made this show possible. If you get a chance, thank them in any creative way you can think of. If you desire, this is the link to their contact page.

Please call TODAY with your questions on our voicemail hotline at 859-795-4067. Or use your voice memo application on your iPhone to record feedback or questions. Simply email it to feedback@gspn.tv.

Know someone else who needs to hire a VA? Send them an note with a link to http://VirtualAssistantPodcast.com.

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Topics Covered In this Episode:
-How can my VA help with my podcast production?
-Can I hire VA to do job that I know little about?
-Tried out Manymoon.com. I give my thoughts.
-I upgraded to Highrise Plus Plan
-Andrea researching dental options for my daughter.
-My use of Mindmapping with Mindmeister.com

My Webinars:
Thesis Configuration Webinar: http://thesis-setup.eventbrite.com
Podcast Equipment Setup & Podcasting Workflow Webinar: http://studiosetup.eventbrite.com

Want to learn how to do effective Mind Mapping?
My friend and client, Jay Carter, is going to be doing a webinar on effective Mind Mapping. Thursday, November 11th Promo Code “GSPN” will get you 10% off!
http://gspn.tv/mindmaptraining

Right Click Here To Download

Special thanks to Contemporary VA for sponsoring this podcast. This is the firm I, personally, use for my own business. I would not have had the time to produce this show without it making financial sense for me to do so. Their sponsorship has made this show possible. If you get a chance, thank them in any creative way you can think of. If you desire, this is the link to their contact page.

Please call TODAY with your questions on our voicemail hotline at 859-795-4067. Or use your voice memo application on your iPhone to record feedback or questions. Simply email it to feedback@gspn.tv.

Know someone else who needs to hire a VA? Send them an note with a link to http://VirtualAssistantPodcast.com.

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Killer Phone Skills:
I share the story of Andrea calling the phone company for my parents’ insurance agency and how their Internet speeds got doubled without any additional cost!

Want to learn how to do effective Mind Mapping?

My friend and client, Jay Carter, is going to be doing a webinar on effective Mind Mapping. Thursday, November 11th. Promo Code “GSPN” will get you 10% off!
http://gspn.tv/mindmaptraining

A Potential Tool For Managing Projects:
I talk just a little bit about https://manymoon.com

How To Use Your VA To Get Free Stuff:

How I’m using my VA to contact companies to get free products to review for my podcast(s).

Right Click Here To Download

Special thanks to Contemporary VA for sponsoring this podcast. This is the firm I, personally, use for my own business. I would not have had the time to produce this show without it making financial sense for me to do so. Their sponsorship has made this show possible. If you get a chance, thank them in any creative way you can think of. If you desire, this is the link to their contact page.

Please call TODAY with your questions on our voicemail hotline at 859-795-4067. Or use your voice memo application on your iPhone to record feedback or questions. Simply email it to feedback@gspn.tv.

Know someone else who needs to hire a VA? Send them an note with a link to http://VirtualAssistantPodcast.com.

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