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Ten great tasks to delegate to a Virtual Assistant today

Barnaby

Barnaby Lashbrooke

Founder and CEO of Time etc, author of The Hard Work Myth

9 minute read

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Whether you're a solopreneur or run a large company, a virtual assistant can help your business run more efficiently and take a load off your plate.

It can be hard to decide what to delegate to a virtual assistant. A good rule of thumb is if it is a task that only you as the business owner can do, don't delegate it. If it is a task pretty much anybody can do (especially with instructions or a little help from you), you can most likely ask your virtual assistant to take it over.

Even with that rule of thumb in mind, it can still be hard to give over control of parts of your business to a virtual assistant.

Here are ten ideas for high-impact tasks you could delegate to a virtual assistant today. If you don't have a virtual assistant, head over to our free trial page to grab yourself a free hour of virtual assistant support.

1. Schedule Management

You're busy running your business, and managing your schedule takes up more time than you realize. You can easily spend two or three hours a week scheduling client meetings, internal meetings, appointments, and conferences.

It takes up a lot of your time and energy that can be better spent on tasks that will grow your business.

Schedule management is a basic task that everybody can do. If you give your virtual assistant a set of guidelines on when to schedule certain appointments, they can take over and schedule all your appointments for you.

The only thing you need to do is make sure you update your schedule with any personal appointments or time away from the office.

This helps your virtual assistant properly organize and manage your business schedule to work with your personal schedule.

2. Writing Email Newsletters

We live in a digital age and every successful business has an email list and sends regular email newsletters to their subscribers.

Email newsletters are normally short, but they can take a surprisingly long time to write. This is the perfect task to delegate to a virtual assistant. As long as your give them an outline of what the newsletter should contain, they can draft and schedule your weekly email newsletters.

Depending on the email software you use, your virtual assistant can even add users to certain groups based on who interacted with specific emails to help you send them targeted emails in the future for similar products they may like.

3. Source and edit Product or Social Media Photos and Graphics

No matter what your business is, you need photographs for some aspect of your business. This could range from anything from product photos for your website to photos for social media. You need any photos you're using on your website or social media accounts to look good and represent your business in a positive light.

Sourcing and editing photos and other graphics is a tedious task that eats up a lot of time. As a business owner, there are better ways for you to spend your time than sourcing and editing photos and other graphics. It is a simple task that you can feel comfortable passing to your virtual assistant.

4. Follow Up on Outstanding Invoices

If your business involves invoicing clients, you know how annoying and time-consuming following up on outstanding invoices is.

As soon as you send out an invoice, you can pass the task to your virtual assistant.

They will track the payment, follow up after a specified amount of time if it hasn't been paid, and let you know when payment is received.

It helps you get paid faster without the headache of managing and following up with multiple outstanding invoices.

Your time as the business owner is better spent doing work that you can invoice in the future than trying to track down payment for work you've already done.

5. Manage Your Social Media

There is no doubt that you need a social media presence to be successful, but it is a time suck- especially if you have a presence on more than one social media platform.

The degree in which your virtual assistant is involved in your social media varies, and it depends on your comfort level.

You can ask your virtual assistant to write social media captions, schedule posts you write yourself, or reply to and like comments from your audience.

You can even ask your virtual assistant to create any graphics you post on your social media.

No matter what degree of involvement your virtual assistant has in your social media, it is one of the best tasks you can delegate to them.

You're able to post all the content you need for your business without interrupting your day to post on social media and potentially going down a social media rabbit hole and later realizing you spent an hour on a 20-minute task.

A virtual assistant is probably in a better position to reply to comments quicker than you as well. They can monitor your social media account for an hour or two after a post goes live and reply to comments immediately. This boosts your engagement and helps your social media accounts grow.

Your business wins in multiple ways when you delegate at least a portion of your social media management to your virtual assistant.

6. Market Research

As a business owner, you know that you have to stay on top of up-and-coming trends as well as the habits of your customer demographic to be successful. You need to know what people are interested in, what they're talking about and what your competitors are doing.

Market research takes a lot of time, and that's why it is a great task to give your virtual assistant. A virtual assistant can research and prepare a quarterly or annual summary of any market changes that impact your business. They can identify key trends in your industry and changes in your core demographic and the overall economy.

Because it's foundational research, your virtual assistant doesn't need any specialized skills or access to a paid database to find the required information and prepare a report for you. The information your virtual assistant provides you can help you take your business to the next level, give your customers what they need and blow past your competition.

7. Respond to Customer Support Emails

If you sell a product or service of any kind, you're going to have a bunch of customer support emails that need to be dealt with on a daily basis.

These can range from a customer being locked out of their account to a customer requesting a refund. Customer support emails need to be replied to in a timely manner but normally don't require any specialized knowledge to handle.

Your virtual assistant can take control of your customer support emails and free up a significant portion of your day - escalating anything critical or complex to you.

You need to keep your customers happy, and replying quickly to their customer support emails through your virtual assistant is one of the best ways to do that.

8. Book Your Travel

Covid-19 changed the way we work and travel, but as the world opens back up, you'll probably be shocked at just how long it takes to book flights and hotels for vacations, business trips, and conferences.

After researching the best areas to stay in and finding flight options that suit your schedule and budget, you can easily spend three or four hours and this is a great task to pass to your virtual assistant.

They'll do the time-consuming research, review checking, and price gathering - leaving you free to make a decision and get booked later.

9. File Management

It is incredibly easy for your online files to become disorganized and a mess. The more organized your online information and files, the quicker and easier you can find whatever you're looking for.

Whether you use Dropbox, Google Drive, or another online platform, your virtual assistant can manage and organize all your digital files.

They can create their own organizational structure or organize your digital files however works best for you.

After the organizational system is in place, you can either save any new information in the proper area or forward it to your virtual assistant to organize.

If you have physical files in the office that need to be organized, a virtual assistant can help you with that as well.

They can create an organizational plan and prepare file labels and information sheets. Once they are created, you need to find someone in the office to organize the files, but it won't take long since the upfront work was done by your virtual assistant.

File organization may not be the most obvious task to delegate to your virtual assistant, but it can make a huge difference in your business.

10. Website Maintenance

Your website is vital to your business's success. It is often the first point of contact with customers, and you want to leave a good first impression.

Your website needs a regular injection of content in order to give visitors the best impression of your business and, of course, to keep Google happy.

A virtual assistant can take over the basic management of your website including planning, writing and publishing content. It doesn't require much knowledge of WordPress or coding, but having a properly maintained website can make all the difference for your customers.

If you run an online store, your virtual assistant can update product descriptions and prices, ensure all your plugins are up-to-date, and reply to any website comments or contact form submissions.

Conclusion

I hope you've found these task ideas helpful - don't forget that your mission as a business owner must be to free up as much of your time as possible to spend working on your business, not in it. I hope this list of tasks inspires you to delegate today!


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About the author

Barnaby
Barnaby Lashbrooke is the founder and CEO of Virtual Assistant service Time etc as well as the author of The Hard Work Myth, recently recommended by Sir Richard Branson. Barnaby is a Forbes Columnist on productivity and is also an accomplished entrepreneur, selling more than $35 million worth of services.

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