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Starting a business is nothing short of exhausting.

We all love the idea of achieving financial freedom and the liberty to build our own schedules, but the path to getting there is often more than most of us bargained for.

There is always that list of tasks that you absolutely hate doing, but even more daunting than that list is figuring out how to get someone else to do it.

Sounds like a dream, right?

Having someone else do all the tasks you hate to do so you can focus on your passion in your start-up.

The number one pain point in the start-up world is not having enough time.

So, why not take the next five minutes to read through these steps and get yourself a virtual assistant (VA) to help you on the road to success.

I’m here to take one more of those tasks away from you and will make sure that you are fully equipped to utilize the best Canadian virtual assistant service to get your next VA by the time you get to the end of this post.

Step 1: Are you ready? 

One of the most important parts of hiring a VA or Canadian Virtual Guru is to ensure you know what you need.

Start by creating a list of all of the tasks that you dislike or do not have the skills to complete.

This can also include tasks that maybe you enjoy, but just take up too much time. You can check out a non exhaustive list of tasks VA’s can help you with here.

Once you have created a list of everything you think you will need, head on to step 2.

Step 2: Research

Now that you know what you need to from your VA to help your business grow, you need to do research on how you want to hire your virtual assistant.

Generally speaking, you have two options:

  1. Use an agency like Virtual Gurus to source you a VA tailored to the skills you need
  2. Find your VA independently

One of the best things about using an Agency is your time to finding the right VA is practically eliminated.

You don’t even need to conduct interviews, unless you want to.

If the VA assigned to you is missing a particular skill that you need later on, another VA is always around to help and you don’t have to do anything.

With an independent VA if they are missing a particular skill you would need to outsource that task somewhere else.

I know sound biased, but the key here is to save you time in the hiring process and the Virtual Guru’s can do just that.

Step 3: Sign Your Contract

When you decide between option 1 and option 2 you will be asked to sign a contract.

This is typical for any VA regardless of the option you pick.

Make sure you understand everything in the contract and ask as many questions as you need if something doesn’t make sense.

As a business owner you always want to make sure your information is protected regardless of who you outsourced it to.

Step 4: Get to know your VA

Now that you have a VA to take over all the tasks you don’t enjoy yourself, it’s important to remember that your VA is now apart of your team.

The more you get to know them and make them apart of the team more successful your relationship will be.

A virtual assistant is there to support you and the more they feel like a part of your team, the better they will do.

Your VA will also take the time to get to know you and your needs.

This will consist of either a phone call or a quick survey to assess exactly what you need.

It may include software where all tasks are housed to ensure everyone stays on track or could just be email communication.

It truly is up to you and your VA, but it’s important that you get to know another to ensure the relationship is strong.

Step 5: Communication

In today’s world, it’s sometimes a struggle to keep communication lines open when we never have a face-to-face opportunity.

In order for your virtual assistant to be successful, they need to know your needs, including how to communicate with you.

This involves answering their questions in a timely manner, providing all the information needed to complete a task, and of course being radically candid.

Stay open and honest with your VA just as you would with your employees.

Now that you are ready to hire your VA feel free to reach out to the Canadian Virtual Gurus.

P.S. If you are wanting to become a VA and stumbled on this article during your research to become a virtual assistant online check out this post or contact us today.

The post How to Hire a Virtual Assistant for Startup Success appeared first on The Virtual Gurus.

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It all starts with the drive to become an entrepreneur.

The thrill of creating a service or product that disrupts the industry with the sole purpose of bettering people’s lives can keep you going even through the toughest of times.

I know we have all been there.

Those moments where you struggle to get through the to-do list that’s a mile long while trying to strategize to keep your growth going.

Eventually you start to feel burnt-out and the list keeps getting longer.

If you are in this position, I want you to stop right now and add an item to the top of your to do list.

I know, one more item, but I promise you it will change everything for you.

Take out your pen and at the top of your list write the following:

  • Hire a virtual assistant

Next to the above, I want you to take a quick second to write “my secret weapon.”

YOUR SECRET WEAPON

Having a virtual assistant on your side is almost like splitting yourself into two.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could be doing two tasks at once and putting everything you had into them?

Well now you can, with some modifications of course.

Your virtual assistant isn’t your exact clone, but they will be able to help you tackle that to-do list with efficiency.

Better yet, while the virtual assistance is tackling those daunting tasks, you can focus more on your business and scaling up.

Hiring a virtual assistant from Canadian Virtual Gurus will put your mind at ease.

These virtual assistants can handle anything, including bookkeeping, website development, social media management and even customer service.

You get to choose how many hours you need and what tasks you need completed to help free up your time.

Another great perk of using Canadian virtual assistant services is that you are not limited to only one virtual assistant.

Instead you are a part of a bigger team.

Just like you, virtual assistants have their own expertise and won’t always fit your needs.

When they can’t help you, they reach out to the rest of the team to ensure you get an expert for every task you have.

Another great perk of having a virtual assistant is that they can help you create processes and procedures within your business.

Process is everything when it comes to a start up business.

Without them you will never be able to lean out your procedures in order to make your business more efficient and scale.

Your virtual assistant can even help you lean out your current processes especially for tasks that you want to keep doing yourself.

Your virtual assistant is exactly that, virtual; meaning you don’t need to break the bank for office space, technology, or worry about providing extra benefits.

All you need to do is keep your communication lines open and your to-do lists growing.

It truly is that easy to get a virtual assistant as your secret weapon to take away those pesky tasks and let you get back to working on your business instead of in your business.

The post The Virtual Assistant: A Startup’s Secret Weapon appeared first on The Virtual Gurus.

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Canadian Virtual Gurus by Krista Sylvester - 1w ago

We’ve partnered up again!

Virtual Gurus is growing and we want to make sure we take care of our virtual assistants so that they have the resources to move their businesses forward.

In this growth, Virtual Gurus has partnered with OWNR, who have graciously offered to do the following for all of Virtual Guru’s contractors:

  • Business Registration
  • Incorporation
  • AI Powered Logo Design for the business

In November 2017, Ownr registered its first business. Since then, they’ve helped launch 8000+ businesses in Canada. They believe starting a business should be simple, quick, and affordable. With Ownr, people can register their business in a few easy steps and for a fraction of what they’d pay a lawyer.

They’ve simplified the process of starting up, giving people more time to build their business, and saving money along the way.

Since Virtual Gurus’ virtual assistants have their own company, are their own boss, and they are an entrepreneur, this was the perfect opportunity to partner up.

“Partnering with Ownr will allow all of our freelancers to incorporate their businesses. Their success is our success. We are very entrepreneur-focused, we try to give resources to help all of our freelancers,” Virtual Gurus founder and CEO Bobbie Racette said.

“With so many Canadian freelancers on our team, it’s important for us to help them grow and sustain their businesses as well. We provide them clients, but they are the ones who do the magic.”

Making sure our virtual assistants are set up and registered as a Sole Proprietorship or an Incorporated entity is one of the vital steps to ensuring that success.

The post Partnership with Ownr appeared first on The Virtual Gurus.

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Should you delegate tasks?

Entrepreneurs, business owners, and CEO’s have so much on their plate.

Running a business means wearing many hats.

You know the saying – heavy is the head that wears the crown?

Sometimes that means you’re doing bookkeeping on holidays or updating social media instead of going to the gym.

Being a business owner means there is never a shortage of work, but at Virtual Gurus we are here to tell you it can be different!

Unfortunately, administrative tasks take most entrepreneurs away from doing the work that they love.

A business coach makes money coaching, not invoicing; a chiropractor could increase revenue by seeing more patients in their day, but not in updating their social media.

These tasks are important to running your business but are they actually YOUR business?

Delegating tasks to a Virtual Assistant means that business owners can focus on increasing revenue by getting back to the work that makes them money.

One of the biggest hangups experienced by new and prospective Virtual Gurus clients is determining what tasks to delegate to a Virtual Assistant and how to communicate their needs.

Here are a few things to help you decide what tasks can be delegated to your Virtual Assistant:

1) Make a list of jobs that take time, but don’t make money.

Ask yourself if it is absolutely critical that you do certain tasks yourself, and seek tasks that recur regularly, like monthly expense reporting or weekly social media posts.

Add to this list anything that you don’t specialize in – this could be a task that takes you hours upon hours to complete, but could take a skilled professional much less time.

Also look for anything that you avoid doing or where you are always feeling behind and missing deadlines.

Give yourself a time limit to make this list.

Set your phone timer for no more than an hour and get brainstorming!

Once you have your list, prioritize it. Using a method that works for you determine what is high, medium and low priority.

This list will help the team at Virtual Gurus find the best Virtual Assistant for your needs.

2) Be willing to delegate tasks, let go and accept help.

Begin delegating a small tasks to your VA, working your way up to bigger and bigger tasks.

This creates methods of communication and a work rhythm between you and your Virtual Assistant, setting both of you up for success.

Once this workflow is established, you and your VA will create and find efficiencies – like a well oiled machine!

3) Create a small time block in your weekly calendar where you can ponder what needs to be done in the upcoming week (think: Monday morning over coffee, or Friday last thing).

One of our clients calls this her Boss List – a brain dump of all of the things that are taking up hard drive space in her brain.

From this list she can peel off tasks for her Virtual Assistant to do.

If her VA can support her on 3 out of 10 tasks that’s great, but her VA can also cheer her on as the other 7 things get crossed off the list.

How would it feel to have this level of accountability and support?

4) Decide how to delegate tasks and communicate with your VA.

Is your email inbox already full to the brim?

Maybe communicating via email will create more stress, rather than ease.

Once you’ve determined the best way to communicate, be specific in your needs and expectations.

Be prepared for a few questions as your VA is learning and aligning with your processes.

Embracing your Virtual Assistant as a valued member of your team builds trust and allows your VA to flourish.

5) Create regular opportunities to offer mutual feedback with a regularly scheduled call.

Consider this a way to point out places where things are going really well or where things could be better.

Your Virtual Assistant wants to be a partner for you and your business, working toward the same goal of seeing you succeed.

Taking this time helps create clear performance standards and could lead to learning about more ways your VA could help you.

Using a few simple delegation techniques will set you up for success with your Virtual Assistant.

At Virtual Gurus, we want to help you succeed, feeling less overwhelmed in the process.

The post 5 Steps to Help you Delegate Tasks to your Virtual Assistant appeared first on The Virtual Gurus.

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Are you ready for Canadian virtual assistant services?

Entrepreneurs and small business owners are a special breed. They eat, sleep and breathe their businesses.

The most successful ones have a passion, tenacity and desire to do more and be more than just the status quo.

But for many, the idea of wearing “many hats” can get a little old, and quite frankly, exhausting at times.

We live in a world where there are unlimited online services at our fingertips. We can order our groceries, book a vacation and even meet a new romantic partner all from our laptops and phones!

Getting a little extra help for your business can be just as easy.

The Canadian Virtual Gurus is a rapidly growing business that is helping hundreds of businesses solve problems and save their precious resources; time and money.

Here are five reasons why hiring virtual assistant services could be the best decision you ever made for your business.

Time is your most valuable resource

As a small business owner or entrepreneur, you are likely stretched very thin already and often wish there were more hours in the day.

Or, more of you.

Where do you feel like your valuable time is wasted?

More often than not, the administrative side of your business can feel like a huge time-drain and not the most valuable use of your time.

How amazing would it be if you were given even just five extra hours a week, or 20 more hours a month??

Chances are, you would get a lot more value from this time if you could delegate those pesky administrative tasks to a trustworthy and efficient virtual assistant.

It’s cost-effective

Do you need a little help with business administration?

How about marketing and website maintenance?

Perhaps you don’t have the budget or the hours to justify hiring a new full-time or even part-time employee?

Can one person even do all of those things?

Hiring a Canadian virtual assistant for just a few hours a month is a cost-effective solution.

Get skilled help with administration, marketing, or even your website, from a whole team of highly-skilled virtual assistants.

You get to decide how many hours aper month without having to hire for each separate position.

Virtual assistant services are an extremely cost-effective solution for getting things done and on budget.

It will let you focus on the important things

Entrepreneurs start businesses because they have something special and unique to offer the world.

Chances are you didn’t start your business because you loved taking phone calls or scheduling appointments.

Most business owners hate getting bogged down by the day-to-day operations and administrative side of their business.

It can take the focus away from why you started your business in the first place!

Letting a virtual assistant take over those mundane tasks will help you remember why you started your business.

It just might reinvigorate you to make the improvements that you have been dreaming about.

It will improve your business

Small business owners and entrepreneurs are famous for wearing many hats each day.

One minute you could be scheduling a plumber to fix a toilet and the next you are trying to figure out ways to optimize your website for SEO!

Let’s face it, it’s not easy to be a master of selling, administration, marketing and accounting.

But, a team of virtual assistants with these specific skills can help you improve your operations and bring your business to the next level.

Virtual assistant services could help you progress your business in many ways.

It will help your peace of mind

As it is, your mind is probably always on your business, from morning to night.

It’s the first thing you think about when you wake up and the last thing you think about when you close your eyes at night.

But, would you rather be thinking about your future goals or your next vacation?

Being a business owner is stressful and your sanity should not be compromised by the little stuff.

Save your brain for the bigger issues at hand and delegate the tasks that you don’t enjoy to a virtual assistant – someone who actually enjoys those tasks!

So, there you have five amazing reasons to hire a virtual assistant today.

REACH OUT FOR A FREE CONSULTATION TODAY because it really could be the best decision you ever make for your business! Click here to get started.

Or, would you like to learn more about what we do? Well, then click here.

The post Five Reasons Why Hiring A Virtual Assistant Could Be The Best Business Decision You’ve Ever Made appeared first on The Virtual Gurus.

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Virtual assistance has become increasingly popular. More businesses are seeing the benefits of hiring Canadian virtual assistants. Reducing costs, increasing productivity, and flex time are just a few of the advantages of hiring a remote worker instead of a traditional assistant.

So, by now you have probably done some research and know what a professional Canadian virtual assistant is and does. If further information is required, read here (How To Reduce Your Work Load With Virtual Assistants and How Virtual Assistants Are Vital To Your Business Growth).

With that said, we are here to tell you what you should expect from a Canadian Virtual Assistant. In fact, we ensure all of our virtual assistants at The Virtual Gurus have these 3 qualities.

Competence

Competence is one of the major deciding factors when many companies hire new employees. It’s no different when hiring a virtual assistance in Canada or in the USA.

At The Virtual Gurus, we take the guess work out for you and hire only the best before matching you with your ideal remote worker.

To make your life easier, your virtual assistant is there to perform tasks, large or small, easy or complex, in a capable, efficient and professional manner.

Your virtual assistant will adapt to your preferred systems and processes, ask questions when needing clarifications and perform tasks with a high level of accuracy. They may even find more efficient ways of doing things for you.

Reliability

Unlike employees, virtual assistants are independent contractors who work from home and set their own schedules. Many have multiple clients.

While that might scare some people, studies have shown that people who work from home are happier. Happier employees means better results.

Our assistants are masters of navigating their schedules and you can be assured that they are accessible and will complete the work during the time frame required.

Character

Your virtual assistant may possess your confidential information such as user-names and passwords. Accordingly, it is critical that you have someone who is trustworthy, honest and aware of their responsibility.

We ensure strict confidentiality is followed and we have policies and procedures in place to keep your information safe.

We believe in our virtual assistants and hire people who are passionate about what they do, innovative in how they do it and loyal about their clients.

Click here to get started today! Want to learn more about what we do? Then click here.

The post What You Can Expect From A Canadian Virtual Assistant appeared first on The Virtual Gurus.

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So, you have decided to take the plunge. You’ve determined that you need a little bit of help in your business. Be it on the customer front or the digital back end or just helping keep your books clean. Whatever the reason, there’s always an “aha” moment when it comes to needing a Canadian virtual assistant.

However, when you break it down and think about it, it is a brilliant business move. To prove it, I have narrowed it down to 4 Awesome Business Reasons as to why you need a Virtual Assistant.

1) Escaping the Admin Wormhole

By choosing a Virtual Assistant, especially a Canadian Virtual Assistant, it frees up space in your mind that is all things administrative. Your virtual assistant could field customer service inquiries by phone or email, and they could assist you with CRM growth, Word-processing documents, organizing your digital files on the cloud, and so much more.

By asking your Virtual Assistant to do these tasks, this opens the ability to focus on other aspects of your business, at a reduced rate compared to hiring a full-time assistant.

2) Entrepreneurial Fresh Perspective

Having a Virtual Assistant helping you also provides you with a fresh perspective on what might work next. Keep in mind that virtual assistants are also entrepreneurs. They often have worked with other entrepreneurs and small business owners, and often have tips or ideas on how to do to be more efficient or find innovative ways of doing things. They also have some pretty great ideas, too, that could save you a significant amount of time and money.

3) Cost-Effective Business Growth Plan

This one is similar enough, though different from the entrepreneurial perspective. Virtual Assistants are great temporary resources for your business as you scale and grow. Looking to launch a new product, rebrand or even expand your marketplace – Virtual Assistants are there to help you at each step of the way. Virtual assistants possess different skillsets that don’t necessarily need training and they are ready to jump in and help, which saves you time and money so you can focus on the areas that need you most.

4) Time… Because you need more of it.

Time, as an entrepreneur, is precious. By deciding to hire a Canadian Virtual Assistant, you have made the most significant step you could – asking for help. Your assistant is there to keep your sanity – by delegating tasks to them, by bouncing ideas off them, by asking them to help implement your next big move. When your virtual assistant has your back, you have more time for you and your family to do the things that matter most to you.

These reasons are just the tip of the iceberg as to why your next business decision should be to add a Virtual Assistant to your team. By choosing an agency like the Virtual Gurus – a Canadian Virtual Assistant company who is growing globally and has a dossier of talented team members ready to jump in and help you – you are taking the next big step in your evolution.

What are you waiting for? Click here to get the ball rolling, or click here to learn more about what we do.

The post 4 Awesome Reasons To Hire A Canadian Virtual Assistant appeared first on The Virtual Gurus.

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Whenever you and your business are ready for growth, access to expert help is closer than you might think.

While you are strategic and purposeful in your approach; consider that hiring a Canadian Virtual Assistant might be a solution to multiple challenges.

The Virtual Gurus has solutions for every business challenge, and it all starts with our experienced and knowledgeable Canadian Virtual Assistants.

SCALE YOUR BUSINESS

Virtual Assistants can help you scale your business. Consider for example that while your volume of business is increasing, the turnaround time for deliverables is declining due to a lack of people power. Your solution: hire a virtual assistant to help keep control of your workload and efficiency.

SAVE MONEY WHILE HIRING THE CREAM OF THE CROP

Employing virtual assistants will keep your costs low and make your business more flexible. Virtual assistants have more flexible hours than any other kind of employee, and they require little training because they already have the experience and skillset required to complete tasks. In fact, many are already experts in communicating, organizing and planning. Connecting with a virtual assistance agency like The Virtual Gurus makes perfect sense when selecting new virtual assistants, because we select skilled virtual assistants based on their experience and reviews from previous and current clients, ensuring you only work with the cream of the crop.

BUDGET!

Using a virtual assistant will allow you to realign your budget. Virtual assistants cover their own expenses (such as equipment and benefits), which means you can inject funds into other areas of your business.

FREE UP YOUR VALUABLE TIME

When you hire a virtual assistant, you free up your most important resource: time. Delegating non-essential tasks to virtual assistants allows you to focus on business growth. Your assistant can provide you with calendar management, email filtering and sorting, bookkeeping, social media updates, CRM maintenance and much more.

WE’VE GOT THE SKILLS

Specialization and expertise are some of the biggest assets a virtual assistant has to offer for a growing business. Experts might be difficult to find in your locality, and figuring out who is reliable takes time. Thankfully, already vetted virtual assistants are the best at providing you efficient solutions and planning. Furthermore, you will be accessing a skillset that ranges from organization to design, from upgrading to connecting. This will allow you and your business to take lead in your business sector.

WE HAVE SOLUTIONS

As you can see, virtual assistants are an essential tool for growing your business. They allow you to reach into a pool of experts who can free up your time, lower your costs and provide your business with the flexibility it needs to adapt to increasing demands.

Most importantly, share your business vision and passion with your virtual assistant. You are establishing a relationship with skilled remote worker who can help you organize and plan in order to stay competitive.

Explore our website for more information and book your free consultation today.

The post How Virtual Assistants are Vital to Your Business Growth appeared first on The Virtual Gurus.

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When your workload gets too heavy, a remote Virtual Assistant just might be the right answer.

You’ve likely heard about the uprising of Virtual Assistants by now and probably even know a few people who have one.

Let’s look at what a Virtual Assistant does, then dive into how they can help to reduce your workload.

Here’s how Wiki defines a Virtual Assistant:

“A virtual assistant is generally self-employed and provides professional administrative, technical, or creative (social) assistance to clients remotely from a home office.  

Because virtual assistants are independent contractors rather than employees, clients are not responsible for any employee-related taxes, insurance or benefits, except in the context that those indirect expenses are included in the VA’s fees.  

Clients also avoid the logistical problem of providing extra office space, equipment or supplies.

Clients pay for 100% productive work, and can work with Virtual Assistants, individually, or in multi-VA firms to meet their exact needs.

Virtual Assistants usually work for other small businesses, but can also support busy executives.”

Now that you know what a Virtual Assistant IS, let’s talk about how they can help you.

Common Business Bottlenecks

Many businesses experience common bottlenecks that can chew up time and therefore cost you and your business money.

Your time is better spent on building your business while someone else is happy to take the time-sucking tasks off your hands. 

Here are a few ways your Virtual Assistant can help save you time and money:

Email & Calendar Management

Do you find yourself digging through piles of emails and constantly changing appointment times? These little interruptions throughout your day can take a toll on mental capacity (we only have so much brain power in a day) and drain your time.

Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to reach out to your new assistant and have them find an email for you? Or reschedule your meeting?

Inbound Calls

Many businesses receive constant calls throughout the day. If you can’t afford to hire an in-house assistant, then you’re likely left with taking many of the calls yourself, which adds up.

The great thing about hiring a remote worker is you only have to pay them for the time they spend working and not dead time.

Research

Research is vital for a growth-minded company. It also takes a lot of time and energy to do well.

Whether you’re looking for a rental vehicle, an Airbnb or competitor analysis, the right Virtual Assistant can help free up your time so that you can focus on moving the needle in a big way.

Data Entry

Tedious data entry, enough said.

Believe it or not, there ARE people out there looking for this kind of work and they actually really enjoy it!

Sidenote: Let us know what program(s) you use and we’ll match you with a skilled Virtual Assistant who has the time to take on new clients.

Social Media

I come across so many people that say, “I would be on social media more, but I just don’t get it.”

Or, maybe they just couldn’t be bothered. And I get it, it’s a lot to learn and if it doesn’t excite you, it’ll be short-lived.

That’s why you can hire someone to help you out. Find a great assistant who can take care of the image research, writing the copy, hashtags and scheduling. It takes a lot longer for someone who doesn’t do it on the daily.

Marketing

The ultimate goal with marketing is to create, keep and satisfy your customers. There are many levels at which you engage with your market and some of them can be handled easily by a VA.

Perhaps you can get help preparing lead magnets and setting up and managing sales funnels. Or, simply train someone to follow up with leads from your website. Whatever it is, at the end of the day it frees you up to do even more.

Website Design & Development

Nearly every business needs a website and they can be very costly. There are many designers and developers at various skill levels and talents. If you’re just starting out, it’s important to choose wisely so that you don’t end up down a nightmare tunnel of costs and broken pages. Or even worse, no website at all.

With a Virtual Assistant skilled in web design and development, you can look at them as more of an internal team member vs. going to an agency. They are there from the beginning and can support you after the initial build, too.

If you already have a website, but don’t really know how or want to make updates, that’s a perfect situation to hire an expert.

Conclusion

Hopefully, I’ve done a good job at highlighting some of the areas a Virtual Assistant will save you time and money by reducing your workload.

We provide Virtual Assistants for small to mid-size businesses across Canada and the USA.

It’s the age-old saying—work smarter, not harder. Book a free consultation today!

The post How To Reduce Your Work Load with Virtual Assistants appeared first on The Virtual Gurus.

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Every once in a while, you come across a book that changes the way you think and eventually the way you live.

The kind of book that permanently shifts your paradigm and you can’t stop thinking about it.

Arianna Huffington, founder of the Huffington Post and author of 15 books, has this to say on the cover…

“An essential read for anyone who wants to regain control of their health, well-being and happiness.”

The book is called ‘Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less’ by Greg McKeown.

–> Have you ever felt both overworked and underutilized?

–> Do you ever feel busy but not productive?

–> Do you feel like you’re constantly in motion, but never getting anywhere?

If you answered YES, then the way out is becoming an Essentialist.

As a Virtual Assistant company, we understand the value of delegating, but also the value of helping our clients understand what’s actually important.

Business owners often get tunnel vision and focus on what’s yelling the loudest at them, which quite often isn’t the most important thing to focus on. If fact, it may be so unimportant to the big picture that it could be eliminated completely.

“If you don’t prioritize your life, someone else will.”

Take control of your life so that others don’t

Essentialism lays out a road map that is systematic and easy to understand and to follow.

You’ll start out by learning how to discern the trivial few from the vital many.

This can be a painful process. We like to think that everything we do is important; I mean that’s how we ended up with this book in our hands, right?

What REALLY matters?

Are you focusing your valuable time and energy on who and what is yelling loudest AT you instead of what’s yelling loudest INSIDE of you?

The reality is that much of what we deal with on the day-to-day is noise an unimportant.

As Arianna stated above, health, wellness and happiness are results of cutting out everything that’s unimportant in moving you closer to your big, audacious goal.

Now, with this said, there will be trade-offs and a successful happy person is typically someone who has the mental and emotional ability to make hard decisions.

If you want to start, build and grow a business, then perhaps the trade-off is much of your social life. That may shift later on down the road, but today, that could be the reality.

Essentialism is about getting the right things done. It’s not about getting more done.

In the book, McKeown tells the story of Southwest Airlines (essentialists) and how they deliberately said no to everything possible to keep flight the lowest available. No meals, no preselected seats, and no first class service. When a customer purchased a ticket, they knew what they were in for. Critics lambasted Southwest saying that they couldn’t possibly be successful with this model, but Southwest prevailed and other airlines (non-essentialists) eventually tried to adopt their strategy WHILE maintaining their own and failed.

PLAY SLEEP SUBTRACT

My favourite sections are Play, Sleep and Subtract.

Play.

It’s not often you run into a business book that talks about the importance of play. It’s becoming more common, but most people still view play as unproductive, trivial and a waste of time.

The section title is called Embrace the Wisdom of Your Inner Child.

McKeown says, “Play expands our minds in ways that allow us to explore: to germinate new ideas or see old ideas in a new light. It makes us more inquisitive, more attuned to novelty, more engaged. Play is fundamental to living the way of the Essentialist because it fuels exploration in at least three specific ways.”

Now, I don’t know about you, but I sure feel good after a good game including sports, beanbag toss, cranium or even poker.

For those of you still challenged by the idea of play, it’s also a great antidote to stress. So if you’re interested in productivity then you also know that stress is the mortal enemy of being productive.

Sleep.

Here is another sore spot for entrepreneurs and overachievers.

I’ve heard about people talking competitively about how little sleep they need.

The title of this section is Protect the Asset.

Sleep is critical for mental, emotional and physical well-being. Lack of sleep WILL catch up with you… it’s just a matter of when.

The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute recommends no less than 7-hours per night for adults 18+.

Read More: https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health-topics/sleep-deprivation-and-deficiency

“The way of the non-essentialist is to see sleep as yet another burden on one’s already overextended, overcommitted, busy-but-not-always-productive life. Essentialists instead see sleep as necessary for operating at high levels of contribution more of the time.”

Subtract.

Have you ever cleaned out your closet and felt a massive weight lift?

The title of this section is Bring Forth More by Removing Obstacles.

Something I’ve consistently practiced throughout my life is purging. It feels SO good to let things go and make space for new.

This section also opens with a powerful quote from Lao-tzu,

“To attain knowledge add things every day. To attain wisdom subtract things every day.”

The biggest takeaway here is to first be clear and understand the goals and intents. In doing so, you’ll know which obstacles to remove. It’s fairly simple with your wardrobe, but when it comes to business more clarity is required. So, make sure you go through the clarity process first before slashing and burning.

Conclusion

This isn’t a book to read once and add to the shelf that collects dust. This is a book that I suggest you study and apply consistently to all areas of your life.

If you’re a virtual assistant then this book will help you both with managing your own life and workflow, but you’ll also be able to better assist and guide your clients.

Pick it up today and let me know what you think!! Click here to visit the website.

Please post in the comments below.

Until next time,

Jade

Is it essential that you get started with a Virtual Assistant? Even if you’re not sure yet, start the conversation today.

The post The Most Impactful Book I’ve Read in 2019 So Far appeared first on The Virtual Gurus.

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