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This book made me feel intrigued, curious and now excited to use in the near future.
This book has all five stars in it’s Amazon rating.
Virtual Freedom is 296 pages long paperback and 7 hours, 17 minutes long audio
It is advertised on Amazon as follows,
“Entrepreneurs often suffer from “superhero syndrome” – the misconception that to be successful, they must do everything themselves. They are not only the boss but also the salesperson, HR manager, copywriter, operations manager, online marketing guru, and so much more. It’s no wonder so many people give up the dream of starting a business – it’s just too much for one person to handle. But outsourcing expert and “Virtual CEO” Chris Ducker knows how you can get the help you need with resources you can afford. Virtual Freedom is the step-by-step guide every entrepreneur needs to build his or her business with the asset of working with virtual employees. Focusing on business growth, Ducker explains every detail you need to grasp, from figuring out which jobs you should outsource to finding, hiring, training, motivating, and managing virtual assistants.“
So, what are three things we can use from this book?
3 Things You Can Use
1. The Different VA types
This book is all about virtual assistants and using them to grow your business. There are seven different kinds of VAs:
- General virtual assistant (GVA) (full-time: $500-800 a month, $3-4 an hour)
- Audio / video editor ($500-1200 a month)
- Content writer ($500-700 a month)
- SEO / web marketer ($650-850)
- Graphic / web designer ($700-1200)
- Web developer ($700-1400)
- Mobile app developer ($800-1400)
If you are running a business and would like to grow and expand your influence and sales numbers, and are past hiring on a project by project basis, then hiring virtual staff is the direction that you may want to head in.
Now maybe you aren’t big enough yet to hire a whole team of virtual staff, but you are tired of working through all of the tedium to get through to actually producing your content and making sales — well Chris Ducker has a solution for you:
2. The GVA
The general virtual assistant. The personal assistant from across the sea.
The people Chris Ducker calls, “Superstars.”
These people will keep you from doing that things that you shouldn’t be doing. As Chris Ducker says, “they allow you to start working ON your business, instead of being trapped, working IN it.”
Like I mentioned before, these are the least expensive options but they provide the most value. Take for example a few of the things that they can be responsible for:
- Email Management/Filtering
- Booking appointments with clients
- Following up with clients/customers (sending thank you and other reminder emails)
- Calendar Management
- Research on certain topics for blogposts, newsletters or others
- Personal errands (purchasing gifts for loved ones / family members online)
- Hotel and Flight Booking
- Transcription (transcribing voicemail, video or audio, podcasts etc.)
- Creating basic reports (reports on weekly tasks, deliverables, sales)
- Preparing Slideshows (Powerpoint Presentations)
- Set-up Social Media Accounts (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Youtube)
- Manage and update Social Media Accounts
- Filter and reply to comments on your blog
- Participating in discussion forums or message boards (more promotion!)
Make a list of the things that you shouldn’t be doing and outsource these things so you can work on growing your business!
How to manage a team/person — let alone people thousands of miles away?
Well, there are a few basics to consider, starting with:
Rewards and Incentives:
Set company goals, like a sales goal, and reward the team/person if your goal is met. More tenured employees should get larger rewards to both teach loyalty to the newbies and to build trust amongst your team members.
The type of rewards you use matter too. It is likely that your virtual employees will appreciate cash much more than some sort of gift — as they are probably one of the main providers in their household. You can reward them with prepaid cards or gift cards.
Reports and Meetings:
Don’t micromanage but make sure to get weekly and maybe daily reports of what they are getting accomplished. This will keep them accountable.
Have weekly/monthly meetings with your VAs on Skype or something to go over goals and talk about whats going on in the business.
Don’t give any money accounts and passwords away. If you need your VAs to make purchases for you, set them up with prepaid PayPal accounts or prepaid cards.
With each new team member you add to your roster, start with a 30-90 day trail period to make sure that they are the right fit. You should always mesh well with your teammates and if you don’t then go out and get another one.
A Few Words:
There’s lots more to this book too like all kinds of different web applications to streamline your virtual management process along with different cultural considerations and the final bonus chapter describing the 10 most common pitfalls of the new virtual manager. If you decide that hiring a VA is something that you are interested, I highly recommend getting the Virtual Freedom book by Chris Ducker.
Chris Ducker also runs Virtual Staff finder; a hub in the Philippines dedicated to finding the best VAs for you. If you are interested, check it out at Virtualstafffinder.com.
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