We’re always looking for ways to better ourselves, ways to set ourselves apart from the crowd - whether in our personal or professional lives. At times we get discouraged along the way because we take such a complicated approach to it, but we’re here to break it down for you in three (3) simple steps. It’s time to level up and do it the easy way!
The first step is to identify the skills you need to improve on or gain. Self-assessment is always the first place to start when thinking of any kind of improvement. You can do this by answering a few simple questions:
Take a few minutes to complete our quiz to see what area you might want to focus on first. If you've already made up your mind, then let’s get into identifying some of the key skills that will give you a professional (and personal!) edge!
Communication skills are at the base of all interactions - personal and professional. Being an effective communicator entails more than just enunciating or projecting your voice well. It requires you to know how to address the different types of people you interact with, listening to what they have to say in order to craft appropriate responses.
Improving your communication skills will help you improve other skills such as negotiation, problem-solving, critical thinking and interpersonal skills. All these areas are key to being an effective leader.
It doesn’t matter what role you play within your organization - strong leadership skills will always give you an edge. Some of the marks of a leader (and strong leadership skills!) are the ability to take accountability, remaining level headed under pressure, being solutions-oriented, being decisive and being able to command the respect of others. There are many benefits that come with honing your leadership skills that go beyond getting that promotion you’ve been eyeing😉 It allows you to stand up for your team or an idea, you’re better able to influence others which is quite handy in navigating the various personalities you encounter. With these new skills you will also be considered more reliable, thus getting you more responsibility within your job.
Repeat after me: "Everything is a project. Every project needs managing". That is by no means an exaggeration, especially in the world of work. With so many moving parts in each task, there are many ways things can slip through the cracks. By effectively managing a project, you minimize the possibility of this happening and allow yourself to catch it early, if it does happen so you can do damage control. The first step in effective project management is being organized. This means identifying the project at hand, breaking down the steps to complete it and delegating tasks where necessary. Here, your leadership and communication skills will come in handy in helping you manage your team. There are many online tools that can help the process flow smoothly, so a little tech know-how will be an added benefit!
It’s time to crack the code on technology! It can ether be the enemy or your greatest ally - if used right. With so many social sites out there that seem to just eat away at our time we often forget what useful tools are available at our fingertips. Many project management, accounting apps and software can help you reduce your workload in a few clicks. Being able to connect with clients via communication software, makes for better interactions and helps keep them in the loop, as you execute tasks on their behalf. These communication tools can also help you tap into a fast growing resource - virtual personal assistants, who can help you do more, in less time.
So, ready to move on to the next level? Keep following!
Our Account/Production Manager, Emjae, is a self-proclaimed wordsmith who fell in love with words thanks to Dr. Seuss. She's an avid reader and a recovering screen junkie, and is fueled by coffee and sarcasm. Her work ranges from recounts of her adventures as a mom, her take on trending topics and deep pieces that she weaves from experiences and sheer imagination.
2018 is most definitely the year of the side hustle and superwoman! So many of us have jobs, side hustles, dreams of #GymLife while still maintaining an active social life and family balance. Without proper planning, it can be challenging to not end the week feeling drained. There are simple steps you can take to reclaim your time and maximise each moment to create a day that’s not only effective, but also enjoyable.
1) What do you spend time on?
The best way to start the process is to figure out what you actually spend your time doing. How? Google search and iOS/Android app stores are your best friends! There are several free and paid time management tools available that will track your time based on tasks. The beauty of tracking your time is that it forces you to place a value on your time, and this will help with re-prioritizing your obligations.
2) Plan your time!
Nothing beats the pull of a well-thought-out to-do list; trust me, your brain will thank you. Go ahead, start by planning for tomorrow, today; this is a great way to schedule your time, while keeping track of what you need to get done.
3) Stop procrastinating.
Let’s be real, the stress of having to deal with several last-minute tasks is not worth it. Try to develop the habit of doing tasks as soon as you can; this will save you headache in the long run. Just do it!
4) Learn to say “NO” to things that you don’t want - or need - to do.
Your time is precious, and you should guard it. Try to save it for the things you wholeheartedly want to do or think that are absolutely necessary. Think it through, is it worth it? If yes, the next step is to plan for it.
5) Do something just for yourself.
Self-care is key! You will be more motivated to get things done if you are your best possible self. There are so many ways to get a bit of self-care into your weekly, or even daily routine. Make a list of things you like to do to relax, and work them in.
6) Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
You don’t have to handle everything by yourself. There’s no shame in getting help. Delegating tasks will help you to maximise your time and preserve some energy while getting all your tasks done in a timely manner. Virtual Assistants are a great way to achieve this. You can have someone personally dedicated to your needs for a few hours per day. Think about what you could do with all that extra time.
7) Be gentle on yourself.
Above all else, be gentle on yourself, acknowledge your limitations and set boundaries. At times this must be done even with the persons closest to us. The guilt we place on ourselves as women of not being able to do it all, or spend enough time with those we love can eat away at us, however, you cannot pour from an empty cup. Acknowledging that 'BALANCE' may continue to be an illusive aspect of our lives may actually be the first step in attaining it. Know that it's OK to not have it all together and realize that the journey to creating balance, is in itself an act of balance and you are already more than half way there.
Don't let the pressures of life steal your joy. Reclaiming your time will be one of the best decisions your ever make!
One thing we hear all the time, from persons who say they need a Virtual Assistant is that they don't know where to begin in assigning responsibilities and tasks to their VA. So to solve that problem, we created a very simple ans short guide to get both you and your VA going.
You're welcome! :)
I quit my job in less than 4 months after hiring my Virtual Assistant and became a full-time Entrepreneur! It has been one of my best business investments to date.
Starting and maintaining your own business is stressful and time-consuming, we all know this. Often times as Entrepreneurs we get caught up with the 'little things' and the frustration builds as we find we are too often 'majoring in the minors' and sometimes even loosing focus of the big picture.
It's easy to become absorbed in the 'small stuff' which feel like a never-ending pile of to-dos that prevent you from reaching your primary goals for your business, and as much as we know we need help, we may not be in a position to afford full-time help. That's where a Virtual Personal Assistant or a Virtual Agency like Business Chic is able to lessen the load and give you more time.
What's a Virtual Assistant?
Virtual Personal Assistants, aka VAs are able to facilitate tasks for you from a far. VAs may have more than one skill, but generally they are either men or women who prefer to provide professional services online, rather than in a traditional office setting. Many VAs are professionally trained in their respective fields or have work experience in their preferred area of practice.
What kind of tasks can I give a VA?
VA tasks can vary from data entry, general administration like checking emails, accounting to more complex tasks that you may have found yourself absorbed in doing or researching like; figuring out how to optimize your website for search engines, social media management, proposal writing to even flyer design and web maintenance.
Here are a few tasks you can give to Virtual Staff, to help you take off a few hats and focus on what you do best!
Benefits of hiring a VA:
COST! Since VAs typically charge by the hour, work around their personal schedule and do so remotely - rates for VAs are quite affordable, plus there are no additional costs to your overheads. No need to worry about getting a bigger office space, an additional computer or even office supplies. VAs are also Independent Contractors, so there is no worry about having to pay a monthly salary with the required taxes.
Is there a benefit with going through a Virtual Agency?
Yup! Virtual Agencies like Business Chic have a qualified pool of persons who work with them virtually. This enables you, the client, to have multiple tasks managed by one or several specialized and qualified VA to fulfill your needs at no additional cost, while the 'agency' manages each VA towards your project's completion.
So what are you waiting for? Sure you can keep doing it all, but when will you be able to achieve that illusive work-life balance if you are always working on the 'small stuff'? The time you spend working should be focused on profit-building activities and leading your business forward with the passion and drive you know you have, but weren't previously able to give fully.
Talk to us about hiring your VA or let us build a customized solution to meet your needs.
IMG Credit: #WOCinTech