Entrepreneur and CEO of GreenPal, Bryan Clayton needed to find a virtual assistant to help off-load his enormous list of tasks so that he could put focus back on the long-term vision for his company. Luckily, he found a perfect match, and three years later, they're still working together in harmony! Read more about Bryan and his experience working with his virtual assistant below:
What were you struggling with in your business that led you to begin working with a virtual assistant?
My disposition is to normally do everything myself, however when I received a $45,000 fine from the state of Tennessee due to failure to file a sales tax report on time I realize that I could not cover my bases myself and that I needed help. I guess you could say the day-to-day grind of bookkeeping and staying on top of deadlines was hard to keep up with as our business scaled, I hired a bookkeeping service at first but then realize that I could get a full-scale virtual assistant for the same money I was paying for just a standard bookkeeper.
Tell us a little bit about what you have delegated and how you work together?
I've been to several virtual assistants before got settled in with Marianne. She is in Latvia and helps me with all sorts of tasks doubling my effectiveness and stretching my time two fold. Over the course of three years I have managed to offload the following tasks to her:
- Bookkeeping and staying on top of taxing authority report deadlines
- Research for email and contact information for sales prospects
- Social media monitoring and interaction
- Excel spreadsheet data entry
Leveraging a virtual assistant takes an investment in time on your part. It's kind of one of those things you get out what you put in. So I look at it as I'm willing to invest 2 to 3 hours of training my virtual assistant on how to help me with redundant tasks that then free me up to do more higher leverage activities on a daily basis.
We use Skype and screen sharing tools to get on the same page on how tasks are to be accomplished. Other tools such as Google Docs and Google sheets make continuous synchronization with my virtual assistant and I seamless and headache free.
How has working with a virtual assistant supported your business, and you personally?
After I got momentum going with my virtual assistant it's almost as though it compounded my efforts in my business 2x. It's not just the time that my virtual assistant saves me, it is the opportunity cost of that time. Now I have three or four hour parts of the that I can invest on high leverage activities such as product planning, overall business strategy, relationship building, and maintaining a quality culture in our workplace.
What differences have you noticed in your business since you began working with a virtual assistant?
Before my virtual assistant I was "in it", and now I'm "on it".
Having a effective virtual assistant as my sidekick has allowed me to see the forest through the trees and better operate my business, be a better leader to my teammates, and better outthink my competitors because I'm not bogged down in the day-to-day minutia.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs seeking virtual assistants?
Don't approach your relationship with your virtual assistant as a set it and forget it type of thing. To cultivate a mutually beneficial and prosperous relationship with your virtual assistant you must be willing to continuously invest time with them and nurture them to become the sidekick that you know you need in your life.
Want to learn more about Bryan and his business? Visit their website here.
Looking to hire your own virtual assistant? Start here!
Bryan Clayton is CEO of GreenPal a digital marketplace a connects homeowners with Local lawn care professionals.