The world is returning to pre-pandemic levels of activity, but one thing that looks like it’s here to stay is remote work. There are many reasons for an organization to adapt a hybrid/remote work policy, and job flexibility is just one. Having a VA or virtual assistant is one of the things that enable teams to work seamlessly from different locations. But a virtual assistant can be overwhelming, especially if it's your first time doing so. With all of the different options available, it can be tough to decide which one is right for you. Considering virtual assistant skills is a great place to start.
To know what skills you must look for, you need to figure out what kinds of tasks you need help with. Do you need someone to handle your email correspondence? Do you need help with scheduling and calendar management? Or do you simply need someone to handle general administrative tasks? Once you know what kinds of tasks you need help with, you can start looking for candidates with skills that match.
How Does Hiring a Virtual Assistant Help?
Hiring a virtual assistant can also help improve your work-life balance. If you're always working long hours and never seem to have any free time, hiring a VA can help change that. With a VA taking care of some of your responsibilities, you'll have more time to focus on your personal life and hobbies. You'll also be less likely to burn out from working too much.
If you're thinking about hiring a virtual assistant, keep these benefits in mind. A VA can save you time, help improve your work-life balance, and free up your schedule so that you can focus on more important tasks. When you delegate tasks to a VA, you can focus on growing your business and taking care of your clients.
What Virtual Assistant Skills Should I Look For?
The best virtual assistants have top-notch skills aligned with their client’s needs. Different VAs have different functions, but really good ones would have a wide variety of skills. Here are essential virtual assistant skills to look for in your potential hire.
Virtual assistant skills involving information
This group of skills is one of the most important for a virtual assistant. After all, a big part of their job is to manage the information coming in and out of an organization. They should be able to understand, interpret, and appropriately convey this information to different parties as needed.
One of the most frequently used virtual assistant skills is oral communication, or the proficiency of interacting verbally with people within and outside the organization. A good virtual assistant should be able to handle phone calls, meetings, and other events that require verbal communication.
They should also be able to take accurate notes during these interactions. Virtual assistants should also be proactive in asking clarifying questions when they don't understand something. This shows that they're not afraid to speak up and that they're willing to learn.
Being a good writer, simply put, is being clear and concise in your written correspondence at work. This includes email, instant messaging, and other written interactions. A good virtual assistant should be able to write in a way that is easy to understand and free of errors. Furthermore, VAs should be able to keep track of different deadlines and make sure that their client is on top of them. They should also have a system in place for organizing and storing important information so that it can be easily retrieved when needed.
Attention to Detail
When you are detail-oriented, it means you can focus on and understand complex information. It also includes the ability to spot errors and make corrections as needed. This is one of the more crucial virtual assistant skills because they need to be able to understand the work that their client is doing. They should also be able to keep track of deadlines and follow instructions carefully.
This is the ability to understand and interpret non-verbal cues such as body language, tone of voice, and facial expressions. This is important for VAs because they need to be able to understand how their client is feeling even when they're not speaking. This can help a VA understand what their client needs and how best to provide it.
Essential virtual assistant skills involving operations
This group of skills is important for VAs because they need to be able to assist with the day-to-day operations of an organization. They should have a good understanding of how the organization works and be able to identify and solve problems as they arise.
Time management is the ability to prioritize tasks, set deadlines, and manage one's time efficiently. This is important for VAs because they need to be able to juggle multiple tasks and deadlines at once. They should also be able to plan and avoid missed deadlines and last-minute rushes.
When you’re organized, you have a system. In work, that means having a way to sort and deal with different tasks, files, and deadlines. It also includes the ability to create and maintain an organized system. This is important for VAs because they need to be able to keep their client's work organized. They should also be able to find things quickly when their client needs them.
When you’re good at making decisions, you’re able to solve problems quickly and effectively. This is important for VAs because they need to be able to troubleshoot issues as they arise. They should also be able to come up with creative solutions to problems so that their client can continue working efficiently.
Providing assistance and support to buyers, patrons, or clients is another vital skill for VAs. This includes handling customer inquiries, complaints, and requests. A good virtual assistant should be patient and have excellent communication skills. They should also be able to think on their feet and come up with creative solutions to problems.
Virtual assistant skills involving technology
This group of skills is important for VAs because they need to be able to use technology to assist their clients. They should have a good understanding of different software programs, applications, and platforms.
Knowing how to use different software programs, applications, and platforms is an advantage for a virtual assistant. ‘Software’ includes everything from word processing and spreadsheet applications to project management tools and customer relationship management (CRM) systems.
A good virtual assistant should be able to learn new software programs quickly and efficiently. They should also be able to use different software programs to complete tasks such as creating reports, managing projects, and tracking customer data.
Besides software, VAs must also know how to use different applications to complete tasks such as scheduling appointments, sending emails, and managing customer data. A good virtual assistant should be able to use different applications to complete tasks quickly and efficiently. They should also be able to learn new applications as needed.
VAs must also know how to leverage platforms such as social media, website design, and video conferencing. A good virtual assistant should be able to use different platforms to complete tasks such as creating and managing social media accounts, designing websites, and conducting video conferences.
Finally, VAs must know how to use and troubleshoot different networks such as the Internet, email, and VPNs. A good virtual assistant should be able to connect to different networks quickly and efficiently. They should also be able to troubleshoot network issues as they arise.
Essential virtual assistant skills for collaboration
Virtual assistants need soft skills as well. The term "soft" is a misnomer because having these skills makes a person interpersonally intelligent. Knowing how to deal with people is one of the most valuable things a virtual assistant could have; here are skills that help a VA navigate social and professional relationships.
Discipline & Self-motivation
Self-motivation is knowing what to say to yourself so you stay on task and complete assignments on time. Meanwhile, discipline is about motivating oneself to keep working even when it's challenging. This is important for VAs because they need to be able to work independently and stay focused on their work. They should also be able to meet deadlines and keep their clients happy.
This is the ability to make sound judgments and decisions. It includes the ability to weigh different options and choose the best course of action. This is important for VAs because they need to be able to make decisions quickly and effectively. They should also be able to troubleshoot problems as they arise.
Creativity is not just for artists. When you come up with new and innovative ideas for processes, that’s creativity. It also includes the ability to think outside the box and come up with creative solutions to problems. This is important for VAs because they need to be able to find new ways to complete tasks and meet the needs of their clients.
Another crucial trait for VAs is flexibility. VAs must be comfortable to change plans on the fly and rapidly course-correct. This is important for VAs because they need to be able to adapt to the ever-changing needs of their clients. They should also be comfortable working in a variety of industries and with a variety of people.
Even if they’re not executives, VAs must be leaders. They should know how to take charge and provide direction. It includes the ability to motivate and inspire others to achieve their goals. This is important for VAs because they need to be able to take charge when necessary and provide direction when needed. They should also be able to build strong relationships with their clients and coworkers.
Reliability & Integrity
This is the ability to be depended on and trusted. It includes the ability to keep confidential information safe and to follow through on commitments. This is important for VAs because they need to be able to be counted on by their clients.
They should also be honest and have strong moral character. A virtual assistant with integrity is someone that their clients can trust and depend on, and this kind of person is valuable in any organization they join.
Love for Learning
Finally, a great VA is a lifelong learner. They must be continuously learning new things and keeping up with changing technologies. Love for learning is important for VAs because they need to be able to stay up-to-date on new tools and technologies. They should also be able to learn new skills quickly and efficiently.
Hire for the Right Virtual Assistant Skills
Not only will hiring a virtual assistant save you time, but it can also help you free up your schedule so that you can focus on more important tasks. When you delegate tasks to a VA, you can focus on growing your business and taking care of your clients. This is because you won't have to worry about the small tasks that can easily be handled by someone else.
Wing helps you find a VA with the right skills for your team. Get in touch with us today to learn more!
Aya is Wing Assistant’s blog manager. When she’s not wrangling content briefs, editing article drafts and handling on-page SEO, she is crafting messages for Wing’s other communication materials. Aya writes about SaaS startups, marketing for startups, search engine optimization, and pop culture.