When building virtual teams, trust is a great asset. When team members trust each other, reaching goals and growing the business becomes a much smoother process. That’s why creating long-term relationships with reliable virtual assistants is such a crucial step to creating a remote team. Trust is natural in teams that have worked with each other for a long time.
The Limit of Ad Hoc Freelancers
There has been an increase in demand for ad hoc freelancers. And while working on ad hoc projects has its benefits, there are limitations. When all you need is a one-time marketing campaign or a website to go up, freelancers might work.
But much of business goes beyond ad hoc campaigns. If you really want to grow and scale, you’ll need a team. And building a team requires you to work with the members of that team- whether offline or virtual- for the long term.
There are many benefits to hiring a long-term virtual assistant. Some of them include:
- You save time and energy from having to explain your business and processes. Explaining your business processes and identity is a must when you onboard someone new at work. So when you work with virtual assistants on a long-term basis, you only have to explain it once as opposed to doing it over and over again when you hire project-based freelancers.
- Your business grows as your virtual employees grow. When your virtual staff learn something new, your business benefits. When they become better at what they do, your business benefits. That’s how a long-term relationship often works.
- You save money from recruiting. Recruitment can cost you a lot of money. Finding leads, putting out ads, setting interviews, and hiring headhunters are just a few of the costs you don’t have to shell out regularly when you commit to hiring someone for the long term.
So if all these benefits come with long-term relationships with a virtual assistant, why don’t more companies take this option? One reason: Risk. Hiring someone long-term is risky, but there are ways to minimise, even remove, those risks. Here are steps you should take to build solid long-term relationships with reliable virtual assistants.
1. Create a win-win situation
Building relationships for the long term means finding ways that both parties win. Too many times, clients and virtual assistants are overly preoccupied with finding ways to benefit from a working relationship without considering the other party’s needs. Healthy long-term relationships with reliable virtual assistants require that both sides seek the common good.
2. Set the right expectations early on
Knowing what is expected from the beginning helps avoid disappointment. When we know what is expected of one another, it helps us achieve more together. Communicating expectations builds a necessary clarity for clients and virtual employees to grow together.
On the client’s side, you should let your long-term virtual assistant know things such as what their deliverables are and what realistic goals and targets they should shoot for. It’s also important that you communicate to your client what time they can speak to you and what information or tools they need to get tasks done.
3. Seek healthy conflict
Conflict is not always bad. In team expert Patrick Lencioni’s “5 Dysfunctions of a Team,” he shares that there is healthy conflict and that healthy conflict is necessary for team success. Healthy conflict involves challenging each other’s ideas and bringing the best out in a conversation. When we do this, we actually achieve more together. Results, accountability and commitment are the direct results of healthy conflict.
4. Work with an outsourcing agency
One of the best ways to retain people is to make sure that you take care of your staff. When you work with an outsourcing agency, they become your human resource department and take care of your staff for you.
At Outsourcing Angel, we have found success in retaining amazing virtual assistants. Some of them have been working with us for several years. An agency exists so that you don’t have to stress and worry about losing good people. We take care of them so that your virtual staff can take care of you.
Long-term Relationships for Long-term Success
Too many companies today are fizzing out to the realities of their respective industries. Many businesses plateau or even close after a few years. I’m sure you don’t want that to happen to your organisation. Building for the long-term avoids that from happening. So by building long-term relationships with reliable virtual assistants, you’re setting your business up for future success!
Do you want to work with a reliable virtual assistant on a long-term basis? Reach out to us today. We’d love to help you find a virtual employee you can trust for many many years to come.