Every virtual assistant wants to create results for her client. Every client wants the same. But when the client’s budget is tight, what kind of outcomes can you realistically expect for only 5 or 10 hours a month?

This is where a lot of client-VA relationships go sour. Yet a lot of good things can come out of those hours if used the right way. Some tips for helping you leverage a limited virtual assistance budget:

1. Communicate expectations regularly. “Set it and forget it” doesn’t often work with a virtual assistant. Instead, treat your VA like a key player in your business, even if she’s only billing you for a few hours a month. Ideally, you should be telling your VA what you want to achieve each month, ahead of time. Then ask your VA for an honest assessment of what can and cannot be accomplished with the time and budget allotted. This doesn’t have to be a state-of-the-union discussion; an email exchange can work just fine.

2. Keep the momentum. When time and money are limited, it can be a challenge to sustain progress and in turn see real results. However, this can be overcome to some degree. Retaining your VA on a consistent, monthly basis, rather than booking her time willy-nilly with no real plan, makes a world of difference. Your virtual assistant needs to be in the loop and stay in the loop in order to feel and be invested in your business success.

3. Pick your battles. A virtual assistant can get a lot done if you delegate projects that are of manageable scope. That means they have a clear beginning, middle, and end. For example, my VA is organizing a blog book tour for me. This is very achievable with minimal input from me, while not eating up a ton of budget.

As I always say, I can’t change the world for five hundred bucks, but I can change your world enough to make it worth the money.

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