As A Virtual Assistant Do You Create The Best Workspace?
Employers spend a lot of time and effort in creating the best workspaces for their employees. From coffee bars to complimentary lunches, happy hours, in-office massages, and personal trainers employers want to keep employees happy, meet their physical needs, and eliminate distractions, in order to boost productivity and retention.
Now employers aren’t just looking to create the best workspaces, they are also creating their very own coworking spaces. According to a Harvard Business Review article by Gabor Nagy and Greg Lindsay, Why Companies Are Creating Their Own Coworking Spaces, there are three reasons – transformation, innovation, and future-proofing.
Given all that employers do for employees don’t you think it is just as important for you to do the same for yourself? Your clients depend on your productivity and you depend on clients so you better retain them. How much transformation, innovation, and future-proofing are you doing for your business when it comes to creating your best workspace?
It’s your job as the CEO of your virtual assistant company to think like one. Your workspace plays a direct role in your business. It’s also how you take care of yourself. Taking care of yourself translates into taking care of your current and future clients.
Taking care of your needs isn’t just about the now it’s about the future. Your client’s needs will continue to change and evolve over time. The virtual assistant who can not only keep up but keep ahead of their client is the one who has high productivity and retention levels, invests in professional development, and plans for the future. Your workspace is a direct conduit for all these things.
One of my favorite places to work from is not where I work from daily. However, as the CEO of my company, I’ve made it my job to recreate this place. As the CEO of your company is it time to evaluate your workspace and determine how it fits into the future you have set for yourself? The end of the year is a great time to clean, declutter, and reinvent your space.
So what is one of my favorite workplaces? The Delta Sky Club. I affectionately call it my “happy place”. Now you may not travel as much as I do. Or even at all. That’s not important. What is important is to first determine what your best workspace looks like. Why do you like it? What does the workspace do for you? How can you recreate the same kind of environment no matter where you are?
The top three reasons “why” the Delta Sky Club is a great workspace for me:
- Energy of the people
- Excitement of travel
- Conveniences of the lounge
The “what” and the “how”:
Energy – I’m definitely a person who feeds off the energy of others. I don’t need to necessarily interact with them. Simply having others around boosts my energy levels. I think it comes from growing up in a house that was always filled with people. I find it comforting. In my home office, it’s just me and the dogs and it can get boring and even lonely at times.
How I create more energy for myself when working from home or anywhere where I’m not around people is to schedule the majority of my calls in the afternoon. This is when my energy level begins to decrease. I get my calls booked all back to back so I don’t have to start and stop my other duties like writing which take more of my focus.
With my energy levels back up again it is much easier to finish the day strong and know I can start the next day fresh instead of thinking what I should have completed the day before.
The continued growth of your business depends on how reliable you are. Not only to your clients but to yourself. Ending your days strong and starting the next day fresh is a key factor in setting yourself up for success. If you continually string together more days like this it has the compound effect of creating excellent long-term results.
Excitement – For some travel doesn’t bring excitement. It brings stress. I’m definitely as excited as a little kid watching airplanes take off and land. It literally makes me smile. As someone who once had a lifelong fear of flying, I’ve made a complete mental shift. It’s been about three years now and the excitement of flying is still as strong.
I reduce stress on travel days by getting to the airport very early and working interrupted in the Club. If something is urgent then I can take a call or jump on a video chat. I take the time to plan out my day according to where I am and what is available to me no matter if I’m traveling or not.
Studies have shown that the anticipation of looking forward to an activity can keep you excited and help you when you are having a rough day or week. Who doesn’t like to have something to look forward to?
Even when I’m not traveling I make plans and put them on my calendar. It’s important to always have something to look forward to. It could be as simple as watching your favorite movie and creating home movie night. Or visiting a local museum. A night out with friends. The point is to create your own excitement. Burnout never transformed any business positively.
Convenience – The convenience of the Delta Sky Club is one of my favorite perks. Whatever I need it’s always ready for me. From coffee to breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even a glass of wine to end my day. Plus, let’s not forget the businesses services offered.
We all need to make our lives more convenient. I tell clients when hiring a VA that communication needs to be super convenient or you won’t do it. The same is true for your workspace. In fact, studies have shown that if it takes you an extra twenty seconds to do something you are less likely to do it. Twenty seconds!
When at home the coffee is always flowing and pretty convenient but I may forget to eat or even skip meals because it’s not convenient. I may not feel like preparing anything which isn’t healthy and certainly won’t keep my energy levels up.
A little prep time ahead of the day or even the night before goes a long way. Don’t just make your client’s lives easier, make your life easier too. Set up your desk to be convenient. Whatever you need to get the best work done make it convenient for yourself. Be innovative in your own approach to convenience and figure out how to translate this to serve and support your clients.
Whatever you consider your best workspace do your best to create it. It could be completely different than mine. There is no right or wrong. Your workspace is very personal and should be what works best for you to give your best to your clients.
Where is your “happy place” to work and why?
Melissa is the bestselling author of Hire the Right Virtual Assistant and Become A Successful Virtual Assistant. To learn more about becoming a successful VA or be matched with a client looking for a VA just like you, contact Melissa here.
She has gained international recognition and has been featured in CareerBuilder, The Muse, Spark Hire, Thinkific & Woman’s World.