A lot of business owners get worried at the thought of training new staff, especially the virtual staff.
However, it’s not that hard. We can harness technology to simulate you looking over your Virtual Assistant’s shoulder.
At Global OfficeWorks, we have identified three ways of disseminating information in a clear, concise manner so that your virtual staff can learn quickly and effectively.
Virtual Assistant Training Trifecta
1. Written Instructions
Do not use E-mail. A project management system such as Asana tracks tasks much more efficiently. This should be an integral part of the communication between you and your virtual staff. So, it is in your best interest to learn how to write clear and concise instructions.
A few best practices include:
- Use plenty of bullet points.
- Use links to your Google Drive.
- Have one clear, overall objective per task, if possible.
- Give examples of what you’re looking for via screenshots, links, and attachments.
- Have your VA write the instructions back to you in their own words. This will make sure you are convinced that they fully understand the task, before completing it.
2. Audio Recordings
If writing is not your thing, then recorded training should be your best bet. Simply record your message on a smartphone or laptop using the preinstalled recorder, or software like Audacity for PC or GarageBand for Mac devices. Speak as if you were talking face-to-face with your Virtual Assistant and remember to keep each recording focused on one topic.
A few best practices include:
- Be clear and concise and avoid rambling.
- Create separate recordings for separate training subjects. It’s completely unfair to dump twenty to forty minutes of audio containing instructions for multiple tasks and projects for a Virtual Assistant. Save the instructions in separate folders by topic in Google Sites for easy searching later on.
- Label each audio file with a title that communicates the objective of the recording so that both yourself and your VA can search for and find it easily.
- Always save your recordings in your Google Drive Training Folder. They can be used to train future Virtual Assistants over and over again.
- Do not forget to utilize online chat platforms like Skype. They are great live audio training tools.
3. Video Recordings
Videos are the most effective format to use for training new Virtual Assistants. Information overload often occurs when the amount of idea to a system surpasses its processing capability. This enables your Virtual Assistant to review it again and again.
The good news is that you have a few different options here. You can simply record your screen while you do the task and narrate the tasks comprehensively. Screencasts work brilliantly for our Virtual Assistants for the following reasons:
- The visual and audio combination leaves little room for confusion.
- You can train on your own time and not worry about syncing schedules.
- Every time you create a new video, you are adding to a vault of training material for future Virtual Assistants to learn from and reference. This is especially important if the training is focused on a repetitive task that will always need to be done in your business.
- They are fun and are easy to produce!
The platforms we recommend are OCam, Camstudio, and Jing. Lastly, a live webcam training with your Virtual Assistant is a great way to train and build rapport. If you have more than one Virtual Assistant that you would like to train in this manner, you can easily all hop onto a Google Hangout or Zoom meeting, so everyone can speak and be seen. This session should also be recorded.
However, before you begin making a single video, I recommend checking out YouTube to see if the training you’re about to create has already been made.
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