Hiring your first assistant: six steps to determine what you need

Hiring your first assistant: six steps to determine what you need

Fabienne Fredrickson
January 29, 2014

hiring-first-assistantIf you are ready to start delegating to an assistant, first let me congratulate you! This is an important and empowering step that will free you up to grow your business and attract more clients.

So how do you hire an assistant and figure out what they can do for you? Here are six steps to help you get clear on what you need.

1. Make a List of Tasks. Think about what you need help with more than anything. Spend a few days writing down every single thing you do in your business and in your life during the day. From picking up the dry cleaning to sending out letters, whatever it is – write it down. Keep track over a few days to get a good idea of what you really do.

2. Sort into Categories. You’ll discover things fall into categories. For example, categories might include: technology and social media, personal errands, office work and sending out mailings. This is what you can explain when interviewing assistants to see if they have the skill sets you need.

You may find you need a couple of assistants with different skill sets to cover all the bases. It would be unusual for a single individual to be good at everything.

3. Determine What You Can Pay by Task. Next to each item, make a note of how much you could pay someone to do this task for you. Some things will be $10 an hour and others might be $15, $20 or $30.

During each work day, you want to be able to focus on just two things between 9am and 5pm:
A) What brings in money
B) Marketing to attract more clients

Anything else could potentially be handled by a capable assistant.

4. Group Tasks to Get an Average Hourly Wage. Group tasks into categories by what you want to pay, take an average and then offer this as the wage. Whoever you interview and select can always counter offer by telling you that number is too low or say yes and take the job.

5. Number of hours per week. Give some thought to how many hours per week it takes you to complete your tasks. This will help you get a good idea of how much time you’ll need the assistant for and will help them understand your requirements.

6. Virtual Tasks vs. Working on Site. The last thing you need to figure out is if your assistant can work virtually or needs to get the job done in person. You may have a VA working virtually for technology related tasks and another who does your errands in person. The more you can delegate, the more time you have to devote to attract more clients.

Your Client Attraction Assignment
Once you complete this exercise, write up a brief job description which you can use to advertise for an assistant. This can also be used as your discussion points for the interview. When you have an assistant in place, you will have more time to attract more clients and bring in more money.

Now, if you’re just starting out and trying to fill your practice in the FIRST place, then follow a step-by-step system that feels easy and authentic to you. The Client Attraction System® gives you the most important things to do to set up simple, solid systems, so that you consistently fill your pipeline and continually get new clients. It’s all step-by-step, not a big mishmash of things. So, you do step one of the system, and when you’re done with that, you move on to step two, and so on. All the tools, scripts, templates, and examples are handed to you on a silver platter. Easy. You can get it at TheClientAttractionSystem.com.

  • I’d like to add that the tasks that you dislike the most, are mostly needed, are very time consuming, and require the least skill should go first! DUMP EM!

    Love the bit about what to focus on above Fabienne, the things that bringing money and clients.

  • Susan Moriello Curry

    Fabienne – you give great tips here by breaking it down. Simple is best! Even VA’s need assistants! Last year, as the founder and owner of http://www.adscoop.net, my main goal was to expand and bring on an assistant. I did reach my goal and brought 2 new people into the fold. It was challenging at times, because you always run into the old…..I can do it faster and better myself mentality, however, once you get over that hurdle it’s all peaches and cream after that! Now, I can comfortably focus more of my time and energy on what it is I do best….(something I always coach my own clients to do when they are working with me.) So taking your own advice sometimes is the best advice! Thanks for simplifying things so well! Sue

    • Thanks for your note Susan! Glad to hear you made the leap, and committed to making it work, even if it’s faster and easier at first to do it yourself. Sending you big hugs!!

  • Michael Santonato

    This is really great! And perfect timing! 🙂 Thank you!

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