A question that I get asked a lot is where to find, and then hire, an executive virtual assistant. With all the info out there about it, I wanted to put my own spin on this answer.
I mean, you could easily pop that into a Pinterest search and get thousands of results kicked back. Most of them, however, are incredibly generic.
When you’re looking to hire someone to support you as the CEO in your business, there are certain things you must look for. One of them is hiring an executive, someone who understands the high-vibe, high-touch world you operate your business in.
(Even if you think you’re still small potatoes…you aren’t! It is never too early to hire support!)
Here is my proven process that will take you from an overwhelmed entrepreneur to supported, badass CEO of your business to help you find and attract the perfect executive virtual assistant with a few, simple steps.
Step #1: Clarify the Chaos
Before clarity comes confusion. So in order to bust through the confusion of who you really need to support you in your business, you have to focus and get specific.
Brain dump everything you are doing. And not just in your business. Write down every little responsibility you have, from feeding the cats to trimming shrubs to writing Instagram copy to creating contracts.
Like I wrote in Three Mistakes to Avoid when Hiring an Executive Virtual Assistant, you’re next going to categorize it based on things that are your genius work, what you like to do, what you don’t like to do, and what you want to get rid of.
Now, this step is key: note the things that are slipping through the cracks or just plain aren’t happening.
This is going to be a really good indicator of where you need help and what areas aren’t getting the love they need. It’s possible you love doing something, but it isn’t happening as often as it should because there’s something more urgent or important that needs your attention.
From that list you’ve created and ranked, pull out the list of things you love doing and what your genius work is.
What are your clients hiring you to do? That’s likely where your genius falls. Is there anything from the list of “stuff that’s falling through the cracks” that you enjoy and want to make sure you’re doing?
And here, I’m not saying, “Things you think you should do so you want to keep them on your plate.” I said “The things you like doing that you aren’t anymore.” There is a big difference!
Why bother hiring if you’re just making a list of everything you aren’t doing and then…not doing anything with it. That’s called Making Yourself Feel Guilty for No Reason At All (and is not on your CEO schedule).
Next, from the list of tasks you want to delegate to someone else, mark the most pressing tasks you need help with. These are the things that are going to move the needle the most, so they’re the areas you most need to be supported in.
You may find that you need an executive virtual assistant, a graphic designer, housekeeper, or a dog walker.
I do this list with a lot of clients and they often find that the person they think they need to hire (a social media manager) won’t actually help them with the tasks that really need the most attention.
Finally, make a list of the qualities and the personality of the person who you’re looking to hire for the job. After all, you’re going to be spending a good amount of time with this person and trust her in your business. You gotta like spending time with her!
Step #2: Create a Job Description
Now that you’re in a place of clarity, you can start to formulate the plan of who you want to hire.
Use your list of duties this person will be responsible for and the qualities she must have to create your job description. When you merge tasks and personality, you’ll find a well-rounded, holistic view of the person you want to bring into your business.
Pro tip: add a personality test (Kolbe, Meyers Briggs) to further screen candidates. Not only will you discover if their personality compliments your own and how to best give them directions once you delegate to them, doing so will give you a barometer of how serious this candidate is.
If they balk at their first task (taking a personality test), what makes you think they will readily agree and support you once they’re in your business?
In your application, give clear directions and immediately eliminate ANY candidate that doesn’t follow them. Is that harsh? No. Again, if they aren’t paying attention to these details, what makes you think they’ll follow instructions when you hire them?
How she follows instructions in the application is a great indication of what kind of assistant or partner she’s going to be.
Step #3: Interview!
You’re almost in the home stretch. Once you’ve gathered applications of serious, qualified candidates, take a look at their personality tests results and see how they’d mesh with you. Look through their skills and make sure the tasks you identified as most pressing are going to be done well by them.
I recommend interviewing 3-5 people when you want to hire for your business. Don’t knee-jerk and hire the first person who applies. Talk to a few people, see how well you get along, and take the time to ask thoughtful questions with examples of how it’ll be applicable in your business.
Finally, choose one!
I’m telling you, this is a fool-proof method I’ve developed after helping clients and friends hire. While this is definitely going to work for hiring an executive virtual assistant in your coaching business, this will help you find a qualified assistant of any kind (someone to help with your graphics or shop for your groceries) in any business.