Almost every small business owner knows what a virtual assistant is. You may not know exactly where to find one when you’re ready, but you know a VA is readily available to help you. What you may not know is there are also virtual office managers available to you as well, sometimes referred to as online business managers. How do you know which one you need?
Here are five qualifiers to consider before diving into the world of virtual help.
Are you looking for a task completer or a manager?
A VA is focused on completing tasks for you but is not necessarily concerned with helping you manage your business. A virtual office manager is focused on the entire business, and how he or she can free up your time and help you take your business to the next level. A virtual office manager is looking at all the moving pieces, making sure all are under management.
How many areas of your business need assistance?
Some business owners just need help with a few tasks, like CRM management or social media. However, when you reach a certain level (somewhere between $100,000 and $250,000), you will require assistance with a lot more areas of your business. A virtual office manager is skilled across most areas of business. It’s not uncommon for a virtual office manager to manage your bookkeeping, marketing, event planning, social media, and anything else required to run your business.
Are you focused on your operational systems?
Mike Gerber, author of the E-Myth, says “The system is the solution.” He explains that your business needs to be systems dependent, and not people dependent. Your operational systems need to be evaluated, structured for efficiency, clearly documented, and run like a tightly oiled machine. This is not the specialty of a virtual assistant. However, a virtual office manager is skilled in business operations, creating processes, and managing these systems while you are out drumming up
Do you need help with strategy and big picture thinking?
A virtual assistant is good with the day to day details, but a virtual office manager, because of her business experience, has an added element of looking at the big picture. A virtual office manager can help you strategize and ask questions to spark your thinking. Many clients that hire me are looking for my expertise, and ability to steer them in the right direction. These small business owners want someone they can bounce ideas off, and see additional perspectives they might be overlooking.
Does it take a team to operate your business?
At some point in your business, you will not be able to operate alone. It will take one, five, 10 or more additional team members to help you manage and grow your business. Whether you with contractors or additional employees, a virtual office manager is accustomed to managing teams of people. One of my clients, an eye doctor, has two offices and a team of five employees. Not only am I responsible for managing my own workload, tightly required to oversee the team and make sure they are on track with their responsibilities.
Both a virtual assistant and a virtual office manager can be extremely helpful for the small business owner. However, you need to know which one you need, both short-term and long-term. If you are looking for a business manager, skilled in business operations and strategy, and managing teams, then you are ready for a Virtual Office Manager.
5 Reasons You Should Hire a Virtual Office Manager Instead of a Virtual Assistant
May 5, 2017