The way to interact with other people, to do business, to work, is not the same as before. Now, thanks to technology and social networks, we can connect with people we never thought we could talk to. We know different cultures, ways of thinking, customs… our vision of the world has gone from being unimaginable to COMPLETELY POSSIBLE.
Business alliances are no longer just local for any small entrepreneur. Now, with a single click and with a good schedule, you can connect with a client in Istanbul at 9 am and with another in Rio de Janeiro at 10.
Those of us who were born around the ’80s, have been adapting and learning from this wonderful evolution, those who were born in the ’90s, were born with the technology integrated in their lives, but many others who established their businesses before, are probably facing a rather heavy transition moment, in which the processes are changing from in-person to virtual, from manual to automated… and they are not only learning about how many applications have been created to precisely help optimize these systems, but they are also getting used to establish these international relationships that I mentioned before.
The advantage of being a Virtual Assistant is that precisely, you can take your clients’ hand and integrate them into this new universe.I, as Transition Strategist, see how changes generate a lot of stress in my own clients. Mainly, when something has been done in a certain way for a long time, and now it has to be done in a whole different way.
This is why I want to share with you the following 5 elements that will help your virtual boss navigate this virtual world.
1. Establish confidence at all times – This step is the foundation of everything for your business as Virtual Assistant. Your client may feel an affinity with you for the blogs you write or for what you share in your social media but the truth of the matter is that your client doesn’t know you. Most likely, the person who is hiring your services is not in the same country where you are and honestly, it’s really difficult to trust a stranger nowadays. Your clients don’t know if you’re really going to do the job or if you’re going to receive payment and never answer back again. Be honest about the things that you can help with. If this is a person who’s not used to virtually working, I strongly recommend you to never offer a service you don’t master. This way, you will prevent future trusting problems in case you weren’t actually able to do something you promised.
2. Ask about their own methods – Take an interest in the processes that your clients have followed up in their business up to now. Investigate, learn and pay attention to the enthusiasm or frustration that they reflect. This will help you identify where you will start helping them.
Do not discard all the methods that your clients use at the beginning just to demonstrate how efficient you can be. Remember that it is not about you, but about the client. The changes must be gradual and of course, approved by your clients at all times.
Start by automating or updating the most important processes and add others little by little and over time.
If your client wants you to book-keep on a classic excel sheet, do it that way. Later, when your boss has much more confidence in you, you can explain the benefits offered by this or that book-keeping application and suggest that new process. Your client will say ‘yes’.
3. Keep the communication fully open – Email, Skype, Zoom, Facetime, Messenger, WhatsApp … open all possible channels with your clients.
Make them see that even though you are in different time zones and maybe even in different continents, you’ll be there for them when they need you. For your clients, there is nothing more worrying than not knowing if you read their messages, in which they kindly asked you to do a certain thing. Remember that you should make your clients feel like they are the only one even if you have another 20.
4. Train your clients – That’s right. You will also have to serve as a mentor so that your clients become better clients. For example, if they don’t know how to use Google Drive to share documents with you, use an hour of your time to explain how it is used and what are the advantages of having everything in one place.
By training your clients, you help make your work more efficient and save time and effort.
And last, but not least,
5. Ask for feedback – Have at least one video call per month, not only to talk about the goals related to that period but to ask if everything is going well; if they feel comfortable with the new system that you added to their processes.
Listen to what they have to say but above all, analyze their non-verbal language, always look for areas in which you know you can help reduce the overwhelm during this transition to the virtual world. Add, adjust and remove accordingly.
Let me know how it went 😉
Really incredible tips from Diana! THANK YOU so much! Diana is a Transition Strategist, coach & mentor and her mission is to help people who struggle with adapting to change, identify where feelings like fear, resistance and denial come from, and realize that these can be transformed into hope, empowerment and freedom. You can follow Diana here: