Are Your Business Policies Documented?

Are Your Business Policies Documented?

Business Policies

Have you taken the time to document your business policies AND share them with your clients?

I know many business owners that have not documented their policies or shared with them with their clients. This can cause potential problems…

For instance, let’s say that you charge an “urgent fee” for last-minute tasks or projects. Now, you may have told your client but they may not have “heard” you or understood exactly what an “urgent fee” is or when they would be charged one. Imagine their surprise when they receive an invoice that includes an “urgent fee” of $75.00 (just an example)! They could be very unhappy to find out that you charged an extra fee to have their work completed by their last-minute deadline.

I highly recommend that you take the time to document all of your business policies AND share and discuss them with your clients. In your first meeting – go over them in detail, make sure they understand them and address any questions or concerns at that time. This way, there are no surprises. Add them to your Welcome Packet!

If you’re not sure what to include in your business policies, here are a few tips to help you get started:

  • Business Hours – include whether you work weekends or nights.
  • Rush or Urgent Fees – if you charge a fee for last minute tasks please be sure it is clearly documented what constitutes a “rush” fee and how much you charge.
  • Referrals – do you give existing clients a discount if they refer someone who becomes a client?
  • Average Turnaround Time – this is key for Virtual Assistants; what is the average turnaround time to complete tasks. Be sure to document that all tasks are different depending on complexity but you can give include an average.
  • Emergencies – how do you handle life’s emergencies? Do you have someone who covers for you while you are out of the office?
  • Holiday Schedule – what holidays do you or your team observe?

Your business policies is a living document. Be sure to schedule time monthly or quarterly to update it. Don’t forget to send the new versions to your clients and discuss any changes with them the next time you meet.

What do you think?

I’d love to hear your comments. Please take a moment to leave me a comment and share your thoughts.

Please share if you know someone who might benefit from this information. The share buttons are below the post.

If you’re looking for more details on how to start or scale your VA business including how to specialize by learning in-demand skills, join my FREE VA Training Vault. You’ll get instant access to how-to video training for Virtual Assistants that want to create a successful business.

Thanks for reading!

Enjoy your day – Susan

PS – All of these items should be in your contract as well. I have the separate document since we all know no one reads the fine print on contracts.

PPS – If you are a Virtual Assistant and are confused about what goes into a Business Policies document – check out my VA Biz Bundle.

Create Your Benefits Flyer

Create Your Benefits Flyer

Benefits Flyers: What They Are & Why You Need Them

Benefits Flyers 101

Traditional marketing tools like business cards and brochures are not enough to get you noticed in today’s noisy world. If you want to stand out in the crowd I recommend creating what I call a Benefits Flyer™.

What’s a Benefits Flyer™ you ask?

It is a flyer that lists the benefits & solutions your products & services provide.

Instead of telling people your “title” and handing them your business card or brochure (which by the way most people don’t care about – unlike Corporate America where titles are everything), share the benefits and solutions you provide.

So many people do not know what a Virtual Assistant is or they think that all Virtual Assistants are administrative assistants.  As you know, Virtual Assistant is a very broad term.  It can be someone who answers phones to someone who does programming.

I have used a Benefits Flyer™ for years when going to networking events. It grabs your audience’s attention by focusing on what you can do for them instead of who you are. You can also use it as a conversation starter or as part of your Elevator Speech.

Even if you do not speak directly with everyone who grabs your Benefits Flyer™ it still stands out! Most people take all of the business cards they accumulated back to their office and put them in a nice little stack to either follow up with later or add to their CRM. Well think about this, your Benefits Flyer™ is not the size of a normal business card so it won’t fit into a nice neat stack. Which means they will probably pull it out and look at it!

Get started on creating and using your Benefits Flyer™.

Create your Benefits Flyer™:

  • Start by doing a brain dump of all the benefits & solutions your products & services provide your Target Market.  For example:
    • Save Time
    • Save Money
    • Earn More
    • Peace of Mind
    • More Freedom
    • Business Growth
  • Create 3 – 5 bullet statements using the benefits or solutions from your brain dump. Remember, look at it from your client’s perspective – “what can you do for me?
  • Create a flyer in Word, PowerPoint, Publisher or any other tool you have.
    • I usually create my flyers using 4×6 or 5×7 for the paper size.
    • Pick what you like – remember you want it to be bigger than a business card.
  • Add your Logo and contact information.
    • Use either a phone number or email address.
  • Print them.  I would not do more than 20 at a time. This way you can test them to be sure they are working.
    • Print them yourself or have them professionally printed.
  • Put them everywhere!
    • Your car
    • Your briefcase
    • Your purse
  • Update as needed!

Using your Benefits Flyer™

  1. Take them everywhere with you!
  2. If you are out running errands, feel free to stop by local businesses and introduce yourself and leave your Benefits Flyer™. I would stop by the local businesses in the strip mall where I did my grocery shopping and leave my flyer. I even landed a couple of clients!
  3. Use them instead of business cards at any live events.
  4. Use them as a conversation starter. Instead of saying, “Hi I’m Susan Mershon and I’m a Virtual Assistant” (which normally loses people), use one of the bullets from your Benefits Flyer™. For example, “Hi I’m Susan Mershon and I save health coaches time & money by managing their social media needs.”  Trust me, now you will have their attention.
  5. Get out there and share your expertise!

Here are a few example Benefits Flyers™ that my wonderful clients agreed to share. Click the link below to download.

Sample #1

Sample #2

I’ve also created a checklist that you can use to help you get started. Click the button below to download a copy and start designing your own flyer today.

benefits flyer checklist

Are you using a Benefits Flyer™ or something similar? How is it working?

What do you think?

I’d love to hear your comments. Please take a moment to leave me a comment and share your thoughts.

Please share if you know someone who might benefit from this information. The share buttons are below the post.

If you’re looking for more details on how to start or scale your VA business including how to specialize by learning in-demand skills, join my FREE VA Training Vault. You’ll get instant access to how-to video training for Virtual Assistants that want to create a successful business.

Thanks for reading!

Enjoy your day – Susan  

Are Your Boundaries Clear?

Are Your Boundaries Clear?

Do your clients know your boundaries?

Are they clear?

Have you communicated to them?

Being in the service industry and hungry to get clients, many Virtual Assistants allow their clients to set their schedule instead of the other way around.  This is a problem in oh so many ways.

For starters…

  1. You are setting an expectation by allowing your clients to dictate your schedule.
  2. You will burn out!
  3. Your health will suffer.
  4. Everything else takes a back seat to your business.
  5. You start to resent your clients.

I left Corporate America so I could have more freedom.  I ended up working longer and harder for less money when I first started my VA business because I said YES to everything.  I quickly paid the price with my health and sanity.

Remember…

  • It is your business and you do not work for them. You are not their employee!
  • It is important for you to have a work-life balance –  you cannot work 24×7, I know I’ve tried.
  • You do not have to say yes to everything.  Say NO and stand your ground.
  • You started your business for a reason, remember what that reason is and build a business that supports it.

Setting boundaries is part of being a business owner as is learning how to say No!  If you have client’s that are not respecting your boundaries, it is time to have a chat with them and reset expectations.  Take charge of your own schedule.

Creating a Business Policies document is a great way to set your boundaries with clients. Feel free to check out my VA Biz Bundle that includes my Business Policies Template.

Have you set boundaries in your business? 

What do you think?

I’d love to hear your comments. Please take a moment to leave me a comment and share your thoughts.

Please share if you know someone who might benefit from this information. The share buttons are below the post.

If you’re looking for more details on how to start or scale your VA business including how to specialize by learning in-demand skills, join my FREE VA Training Vault. You’ll get instant access to how-to video training for Virtual Assistants that want to create a successful business.

Thanks for reading!

Enjoy your day – Susan

Starting a VA Business

Starting a VA Business

Where Do I Start?

Are you still thinking about becoming a Virtual Assistant but you’re a little hesitant because you don’t know where to start? Do you think you have the skills and the mindset all in the right place, yet you can’t find that first gear to set the wheels in motion. Fear not! We’ve all been there when we started our own VA business, so you are not alone.

Here’s a secret…The most important question you can ask is:-

“Where do I start?”

Already you have found first gear and you’ll quickly find out how smoothly you move into second, third and so on. By reaching out to other Virtual Assistants for their guidance you have just given your business a huge boost because the wealth of knowledge that will be shared with you will be amazing.

It’s also important to keep in the habit of asking questions. Nobody will ever think you are silly, annoying or a pain in the rear end. Instead, you will be giving others an opportunity to showcase and share their knowledge and prompt a thought to those that have not yet considered that element of their business.

Questions get you further in life and as good ol’ Dr Seuss once said:-

“Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple.”

So get out there and ask the ‘most important question’ you will ever ask in your VA business, and if you want to get in touch with me to ask it directly, I would love to hear from you. I have plenty of answers to share.

What do you think?

I’d love to hear your comments. Please take a moment to leave me a comment and share your thoughts.

Please share if you know someone who might benefit from this information. The share buttons are below the post.

If you’re looking for more details on how to start or scale your VA business including how to specialize by learning in-demand skills, join my FREE VA Training Vault. You’ll get instant access to how-to video training for Virtual Assistants that want to create a successful business.

Thanks for reading!

Enjoy your day – Susan

Changing Your Employee Mindset

Changing Your Employee Mindset

Changing Your Employee Mindset

When we leave our day jobs to become entrepreneurs we have to “unlearn” what it means to be an employee.  It took me a full year to rid myself of the employee mindset!  One of my clients gave me a much-needed kick in the pants.  She explained to me that I was not her employee and therefore did not need to share everything I did in my business.   All that time I was thinking she was my BOSS not my CLIENT – big mistake!

When you become an entrepreneur it requires a change in your mindset.  So, remember…

You are the boss; not the employee.

The buck stops with you!

You make the decisions – the decisions are not dictated to you!

Don’t look to your clients for direction.

You determine:

  • Who you work with
  • What you do
  • When you do it
  • How you do it
  • Where you do it
  • And for how much

Set business policies and stick to them!

Making the transition from employee to entrepreneur is a life-changing experience!

Take the time to embrace it. 

I’d love to hear your comments. Please take a moment to leave me a comment and share your thoughts.

Please share if you know someone who might benefit from this information. The share buttons are below the post.

If you’re looking for more details on how to start or scale your VA business including how to specialize by learning in-demand skills, join my FREE VA Training Vault. You’ll get instant access to how-to video training for Virtual Assistants that want to create a successful business.

Thanks for reading!

Enjoy your day – Susan

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