HireMyVA Podcast

HireMyVA Podcast 29 – Interview with Melanie Adcock

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Dave
00:00:00
Hello again, everyone. Welcome to the HireMyVA Team and Business Building Podcast, where we help you to reclaim your freedom through hiring and thriving with virtual assistants without breaking the most important bank… without breaking the most important bank, your bank. I can’t even say that again. Folks. I’m Dave Braun. I’m here with my partner, a great friend, Larry Broughton. How are you doing?

Larry
00:00:21
Hello David. I’m doing great. Yeah.

Dave
00:00:26
Good to see you again. You know what we’ve got this time. We’ve got another interview.

Larry
00:00:32
We’re getting great response from the last one. I think we’re going to be doing more of these.

Dave
00:00:36
Yeah. And it’s, and it’s fun too. So this one is with Melanie Adcock of Adcock Creative, and she has a great web design agency. And the, I think it’s in the Atlanta area, Atlanta, Georgia area, and even Georgia. Yeah. She went through our program. Yeah, it is. And then somewhere in Atlanta, Georgia, where, oh my gosh, this is so much fun. I’m so embarrassed.

Larry
00:01:04
She went through the program.

Dave
00:01:06
Yeah, she did. And she’s actually in our community now and helping out she’s been on, on some of our calls and given some great advice, but we did an interview with her a while ago and she has some really great insights. There’s a couple of them as, as a preview of coming attractions. One of the things that she did is that, and she tells us how to actually she uses free tools to manage her VA and how she kind of how she does that in some pretty good detail.

Larry
00:01:37
Yeah. I don’t want to gloss over the state. You kind of skipped right over it. But I believe that one of the most valuable elements of this program is the community and the regular calls that we do with members of the community where they can, why did you laugh at me?

Dave
00:01:51
No, no, no. I was just thinking of the regular calls. I’m like, you know, the next call that we on, I think I need a geography lesson or something

Larry
00:01:58
Because we’ll start doing little tests, but we do the regular calls where people can ask questions. We can interact with each other, live with each other and then they get recorded. And if you’re new to the program, you may not have found those yet, but that we do have all of the, the past community calls recorded and they’re great learning opportunities. And Melanie has participated in those and had some great tidbits, just like I can think of a handful of people that are regular contributors to those. And so take advantage of that resource. As part of this program, we are dedicated to helping people not just become great employers of the age, but being great entrepreneurs, just one more tool to help you out.

Dave
00:02:35
And what’s so important is while, you know, it’s our program and we guide everybody through it, which is great. But sometimes just hearing it in somebody else’s voice and seeing their success really makes a big difference. Maybe

Larry
00:02:50
I can do it too. Yeah,

Dave
00:02:52
Absolutely. So, yeah, she talked about the free tools, but then there was something else that she talked about. That was just, I mean, like you said, we’re in the, in the past one of our pro podcasts, when the midst of the pandemic and what happened at the beginning of the pandemic to some of her clients, by having a VA, she was able to respond to them and meet their needs. If she didn’t have the VA, there was no way. And, and so it allowed her to respond in a very unique time, in a unique way. And, and we’re going to hear about that in a sec. Yeah. Right. Let’s just do, let’s just jump in and take a, listen to this next interview with Melanie. All right. Folks. Here’s Melanie.

Dave
00:03:34
Well, Melanie, it’s great to see you again. And Melanie ad cock is an agency owner who brings her artistic skill and web development background together to help small businesses and nonprofits. She began her digital consulting career in 2010 and is now co owner of ad cock creative. She has a specialty known for creating beautiful church websites, providing excellent support to our clients and being a creative problem solver. And we’re going to talk about how Melanie has excelled with virtual assistants, but I’ve known Melanie for a few years now. We’re part of a mastermind group led by Nathan Ingram. It’s called advance. And we met together in Atlanta at one of the word camps. Right. Awesome. Awesome. Yeah. So it was great to actually see you there in person. All right. So let’s get going and talk about virtual assistance because that’s what our audience wants to hear about. So how long have you had a virtual assistant to help you?

Melanie
00:04:39
I hired my first one in April of 2018. After you telling me for over a year, I needed one.

Dave
00:04:47
Oh, okay. No, it’s my fault. All right. So that was, you said April, 2018. So it’s been been two years now. Okay. Very cool. And what was your work in your life like before you hired somebody?

Melanie
00:05:06
Insane. Crazy. I was working 14 to 16 hour days vacations. I had to work during vacations because I had nobody else to do the work. And I have weekly work that I do with all my churches. You know, there’s events, there’s sermons, there’s things that have to be posted all the time. At one point I had 14 projects and it was just me. So obviously I waited too long to hire somebody.

Dave
00:05:38
Well, but the important thing is that you did, right. So given all of those things that you were going through with all those projects, you said 14 projects and 14 to 16 hour days, and all that. And we had been talking about virtual assistants for awhile, having you hire somebody, like we said, but what was it that really made you pull the trigger to do it?

Melanie
00:06:01
Well, I knew, I mean, I could only do so much. And if I wanted to be able to take a day off, go on vacation and not worry about leaving the work behind. And I knew I needed the hand off a lot of the repetitive tasks that I was doing, and I just, I wanted more free time. And the only way I was going to do that is to have somebody else do the work. And I don’t know why I hesitated so long. Probably I think it had more of a trust issue thing, but, and then you have that little, you know, superhero syndrome that you’re gonna, you know, swoop in and save the day, you know, so, but I really knew that if I wanted to grow my business, I had to have more bandwidth and the only way to do that with the hire help.

Dave
00:06:52
Okay. So you, it sounds like it was just a combination of factors and it was like, oh, I’ve heard about this so long. I just got to jump in and try it. Right, exactly. Now you mentioned the trust issue. Let’s just jump into that. So, so we, you mentioned two things, the trust issue and the superhero syndrome or the hero. So we can talk about both of those, but on the trust issue, tell me a little bit more of what you mean by that.

Melanie
00:07:20
Well, you know, oh, do I hand over access to all my stuff to somebody I don’t really know now, do I? Nope. I still don’t. They log into websites through managed WP because I can add a collaborator. So I don’t give out passwords. I don’t even think about serial numbers. I have a base site that has all my serial numbers and everything installed. And then when I needed a dev side, I spin up a copy. There’s a few plugins that I have to manually go in and put the, the serial number in again. But yeah, he, my VA doesn’t have access to my serial numbers. And I still, I know there are some people that, that give that information out. I just, my husband doesn’t even have my serial numbers. So, you know, I just don’t want to have to deal with having to go back and relicense, you know, cancel license number and relicensed, you know, 80 sites and I’ve known people that have had to do that with, with VAs that, you know, posted their serial numbers, you know, out of spite and things like that. But there’s ways around not giving them that information. If I have to share a password I use last pass and I can give them temporary access to something without giving them the keys to the kingdom.

Dave
00:08:48
Okay. Okay. Well, that’s good. And that, and that’s fair.

Melanie
00:08:51
And that was probably my biggest stumbling block before hiring a VA was I didn’t want to have to give them access.

Dave
00:09:01
Yeah. Yeah. And, and that, that is a really big issue when it comes to just hiring any team member or employee is, I mean, how much do you trust them? It’s if, if your company grows big enough, you’re going to have to hire somebody that’s head of IT. Wow. If you hire the wrong person, that’s head of IT, they can, you know, they can really get ya. So it’s it’s so it really starts with hiring the right, the right people. And so far I’ve gone through a few, had several, several of them. And you know, the good thing is is that when you hire right, and you screen right. And talk to them, you get a pretty good sense that they’re going to be, you know, honest and trustworthy. And there’s things that happen along the way that you can really tell that are not.

Melanie
00:09:48
Yeah. I mean, I’m on my third VA, but my first, my first two VA’s maybe I’m on my fourth one. I can’t remember. But I remember one of ’em my very first one, you know, I helped him find another job and then cause he just wasn’t working out, but I knew somebody that needed a part-time person. And then the one I just had, I actually last year hired it had shoulder surgery. So I hired, I had let one go because he was actually subconsciously started subcontracting my work. It was very obvious. It went from being perfect to being like completely wrong. And it was obvious that he wasn’t doing the work. And so I had to let him go and I, it was close to the holidays. So I hadn’t, I didn’t want to hire during that time. And, and then I needed shoulder surgery.

Melanie
01:10:42
So I did hire somebody and I hired a developer thinking I really needed a developer and she was great. But when it, we started doing work, it was obvious that I needed somebody with design skills and she had none, she was great at building stuff, but she had like no aesthetic training at all. And you know, I even offered, but she just, she just didn’t have the gifts of design. But like I really needed that. That was my biggest time suck is do designing stuff because I’m a perfectionist and it was becoming an issue that it would take me too long to design things I needed to step away and not be so emotionally involved in it. And I’m like, so I really needed a designer. So after about, towards the end of this last year, I knew somebody that really needed a developer and her skillset fit him very well. And I told her, I said, I really need somebody with design skills, but this person needs somebody. Exactly like you. And so I introduced them and she went to work for them. And then I was able to hire my current VA. Who’s got excellent design skills.

Dave
01:12:01
Yeah. Well that’s, you know, there’s a, there’s a couple of key things in there that you said, one is like your fourth VA. And sometimes when you’re in the midst of like, you were, you’re just inundated and you just like need help and you can make a, and that person may be right for you at the time, but it can be a little bit of a process to figure out who you really need. And as your business changes and grows or shrinks or however, you may need to have a different type of a person at that point. And yeah, I’ve gone through several myself and just for various reasons. And you talk about, I think the term is ghosting where you had a VA have somebody else do the work. Yeah. And that happens here in the US it happens all the time, especially with remote work because you don’t actually know all the time if the person is doing the work now, I think you and I had been talking about that. There’s, there’s definitely a lot of good ways to figure that out. Like you said, it may not be obvious at first, but it will get obvious pretty soon, because like you said, one of the great ways to figure that out is what happens with the quality of the work.

Melanie
01:13:12
Yeah. He was doing this, that it was the same. Like I said, I have repetitive tasks each week with all my churches. One of them is putting on Mondays, is putting in Sunday’s messages, sermon series, you know, the sermon video, the audio, the notes and things like that. And I mean, he did it perfect for six months. And then the seventh month, it was like insanely wrong. I mean, it wasn’t just a few mistakes. It was like, this person had never seen this system before. And so for two weeks I was having to spend my evenings going back in and fixing. Then I had to go back and start checking everything and I called them on it. And then it was obvious. I mean, he lied. He was obviously wasn’t doing the work. And the thing is all he would’ve had to done do wish shared the video tutorials library that we had for that person to do it. Right. So, and it was obvious that it was, it wasn’t him.

Dave
01:14:17
Well, he, he’s obviously not a very good manager that’s for sure. Right?

Melanie
01:14:23
Yeah,

Dave
01:14:24
Exactly. Yeah. It’s, it’s, you know, that hiring of a virtual assistant and having them work for you is anytime you hire a team member, it could be. I mean, there’s always stuff that goes on. I mean, I’ve told multiple stories about how, like my wife had, she had her executive assistant and her executive assistant was at the Las Vegas shooting here a couple of years ago. She was suffering from, and I just it’s like, and that’s just kinda the nature of the game. But the thing is we have to, as business owners, we have to be willing to go through that. If we want to grow, if we want to go above and beyond where we’re currently at, it’s not, it’s not all roses, right. Nothing is all bunnies, rainbows and roses. And it’s up to us as the owners. We just have to be vigilant. Right. And watch. So, and then we talked about, you had mentioned the hero or the superhero in Durham, right? I think we all face that to a certain degree where we want to be the heroes for our customers. So tell me how that was hurting you or, and helping you in, in your business.

Melanie
01:15:38
That’s one of the things I still have to catch myself. I have like two big retainer clients and they pay me very, very well. There are two large churches once a church network of 13 campuses. And one is a large, large church with two campuses. And so one of them is very respectful of my time and, you know, they will only contact me after hours if it’s like some type of emergency, but the other one, I mean, they’ll post an email on Trello. They’ll post a task on Trello at 11:00 PM and wonder why I haven’t done it, you know? Yeah. And so we’re, we’re, we’re still retraining them and you know, I mean, I’ve worked for them for 10 years, so it’s like, well, are you crazy? And they’ll text me, you know, they had my phone number, so they they’ll text me. Well, I learned, you know, I, I have my phone on, do not disturb starting at 9:00 PM. And I told them that, well, well, we texted you to see if you got that. Well, you know, it was 9:00 PM and I have it on do not disturb. Well, why do you do that? I said, because you text me after 9:00 PM and you know, it’s not, it may be critical to you, but you know, the earth, you know, it’s not going to stop moving because something’s not posted to the website. Your lack of planning is not my emergency is what I tell them.

Dave
01:17:14
Oh yeah. That’s a great, your lack of planning is not my emergency. And sometimes I think sometimes I think our clients are in certain ways like teenagers, right?

Melanie
01:17:26
Well, my old clients, my ones I’ve had for like 10 years, the ones I had early on, they were so used to getting an immediate reply from me from email that if I didn’t answer them in like 10 minutes, they’d send up a follow-up email. And that’s been a reeducation process over the past couple of years since I got a VA that said, look, you know, I had somebody here that helps me and your task is going to them. So, so now if as the tasks come in and, and I sign them out to my VA, you know, I’ll just reply. We’ve got, you know, we’ve got your request and it’s been placed on the job board. I just ha I use text expander. So I just type in a code and it, it pops up the email out and I send it so I can, I’m becoming now I’m more of a project and management than I am actually doing a lot of the work, which, which is nice. I mean, if it’s something that’s, that’s really, really, really important then, and it comes in late on I’m up early out, the first thing I drink coffee and kind of go through my inbox. And, and if it’s something that has to be done right away, then I can just shoot it over to my VA. And he starts work at, at 5:00 AM. So by the time I get to my computer, it’s usually done.

Dave
01:18:51
And that’s, that’s one of the things is our M as we hire a VA our role changes, right? We go from, if it’s our first time we go from solo printer, we go from the person wearing the, from the E-Myth. We go from the person wearing the, what do they call them? The manager, the technician, and the entrepreneur. We wear all those hats. And then once we have VA, the manager levels has to start coming up in us. Right. And the technician goes down a little bit and it’s up to us how much that, how much we do that. Right. All right. Well, that’s very cool. So let’s go to the hiring process a little bit. When you went and hired your virtual assistants, the different times, tell us how that went for you say a couple of things that you think went really well, and then maybe something that you think could be improved upon.

Melanie
01:19:46
Well, I’ve, that process completely intimidated me, but I went through your course, hire my VA and, and you had all the resources and, and this is how you do it. And you had examples. So I had that framework to go by. And so what I did is I wrote up a job description and, and at the bottom of the job description, I put in an Easter egg, you know, to apply for this position, start the subject of the reply with, you know, this and that way you could just weed out the people who are just applying Willy nilly. And so I was very specific and, but I didn’t, I, I, wasn’t asking for the world, I learned that at the more, as I’ve gone down the process and hired in the next one, I’ve got to be, you know, I’m not looking for the unicorn that can do everything.

Melanie
02:20:43
This last one is I really wanted somebody with really good design skills that knew beaver builder, gravity forms and the plugins and beaver seamer, I needed somebody who could do those things, everything I know that other things can be taught. I really don’t need them to be able to write PHP because honestly, I don’t, I don’t do it too much. And if I need it done, I can do it myself. So mostly I just needed hands that could build enhance that could design and, and just having that, lifting that. And then I, as I read, I needed somebody who obviously was pretty good at English since I hired from the Philippines. So I kind of went through the, the first time I posted, I got like 96 responses in one day. I mean, it was like insane. And the last time I was, I think I got like 40 something.

Melanie
02:21:43
And I went through and you re read through their, their application and kind of got it down to like five that I offered a zoom interview with. And then when I taught, I talked to them and then I narrowed it down to two. And then you get, you know, you make your, you make your choice and of, kind of go with your gut feeling. And then I did, you know, a test. I want you to replicate this site, you know, this homepage and beaver builder, and I’m going to give you X number of hours to do it. You may or may not get done. That is not important. I want to see, you know, how you do it, what choices you make and just give them the assets and, and let them, let them go. And then, you know, then, you know, hire them on a trial basis. And so I learned all that from you. And it just made, now, now it doesn’t intimidate me at all. So having, having somebody kind of guide you through the process and give you examples, and I had a, I have a little contract, you know, it’s not legally binding to somebody in the Philippines, but this is what I accept expect. And, you know, here’s what I’m going to offer and, and so on. And, and it’s worked out really well. Awesome.

Dave
02:23:10
You know, and that, that process that you described works well, and we’ve refined it since then. Like one of the big things that we’ve done is what I’ve did the last time is having them, you know, giving them a task, recording myself on a video, giving them a task and have them record the video of themselves, walking through doing it and the solution

Melanie
02:23:35
That’s even better. Yeah.

Dave
02:23:37
So then without even having to, so, first of all, you’re seeing if they’re going to jump through another hoop, then the second thing is you’re going to get an idea of how they communicate. And then the third thing is you’re going to get an idea of how they can, you know, problem-solve, but here’s what I found out in doing that is that it works. It’s really good. But when you talk to somebody live, versus when they are recording something, it’s very different. It’s for some folks it’s very different. And, and I think part of that is, and that’s one of things we teach is when you interview people, how you try to put them at ease and, and all that down to the right person come through, because, you know, talking to us for them can be pretty intimidating. And they’re thinking, I need to, I want to get this job.

Dave
02:24:30
I want to feed my family the way we teach and how to write the job descriptions and putting the really critical things in there that set us above other people. They really want the job they really do. And so it’s it’s, and, and so we’re always, and that’s the thing about seeing how we all do this together as a community, we continue to improve how we do things. Definitely do so about managing your VA. So we’ve got in hire my VA, we have the prepare section. We have the higher section and we have the thrive section, right. So let’s get a bit, a little bit into the thrive section. How do you manage your VA? I mean, how often do you actually need, obviously it’s virtually, how often do you, are you guys chatting that kind of a thing? How often does that?

Melanie
02:25:20
We chat every day we use slack. So we, we chat back and forth with slack. Both of us use loom videos that is like, it’s so much easier to explain a task and a video than it is to write it all out. So all this kind of explain what we’re doing. And then sometimes we’ll jump on a quick call. Then we’ll, we’ll have a one-on-one, but because we both use loom back and forth and, you know, I, he can, he can do it and say, look, I’m not, I don’t understand, is this what you mean or what it works great. And we use Trello for project management. So I actually have a VA board and, you know, he knows the things at the top are top priority. And if I, if something comes in that needs to be done right away, you know, I just pinging him on slack and say, Hey, I just added a task. Can you pause what you’re doing? And jump in on that. I’ve done that twice today.

Dave
02:26:29
All right. So that’s cool. So, so the tools that you’re using are basically Trello and slack and loom. And then of course, when you guys get together, if you need to get on a conference call, you use zoom. Right. Okay. Very good. So think about, let’s, let’s talk about how your life is like right now. In other words, what’s the real difference you think having a virtual assistant does for you?

Melanie
02:26:57
Well, pre, pre COVID-19.

Dave
02:27:00
Yeah, yeah. Now, yeah. This, this will, this will pass.

Melanie
02:27:05
Yeah. Well, prior to the last two weeks, you know, I, I finish around five and, and you know, which, which was unheard of. In fact, it felt so strange to not be working, you know, late in the evening. And, but I’ve been doing some late works, late work in evening, but working on my stuff that I, I want to complete. And so it’s, it’s really, I, I can take a vacation now and then everything that comes in just goes to my VA. I’m still project managing a little bit because I still can’t. I can’t let go of that part, but I probably will this year with, with hopefully a little bit of downtime here in the next couple of weeks after Easter, since I have a lot of churches, and we’re all trying to figure out what they’re going to do for Easter, but yeah, the past two weeks it’s been insane.

Melanie
02:28:07
I’m helping the little churches who weren’t, weren’t prepared to, to go virtual my big churches who had to move everything virtual. And so I’ve kind of taken over doing all the church stuff and, but my VA’s doing everything else. And so I could have not done that without having a VA. So everything that comes in that he can do, he’s doing, and then I’ve kind of, I’m stuck with, well, my two big churches were really taking most of my time this week that I could not have done that. I mean, I would have probably been working until 2:00 AM every day and up at six, if it wasn’t having a, a VA the last two weeks.

Dave
02:28:54
So it’s, so it’s, it’s one thing, you know, you think in normal times, the VA helps you kind of keep a normal schedule, but then the other thing too, is having somebody on your team like that helps you to be able to respond to emergencies. So you, so really what it does. And I think Nathan had talked about this and I’ve heard it from my pastors too. It’s, it’s something that we really all seek and it’s, and a lot of times it’s, you know, it’s, it’s enveloped in the word freedom, but it really a better word in a lot of ways is margin margin, allowing us to be able to respond to emergencies, to respond to the fact that there’s the COVID-19 or the fact that I got to get my shoulder surgery done like you had, or, or, or just, oh my gosh, there’s a, not an emergency, but Hey, there’s once COVID-19 is done, Hey, there’s a cruise that we want to go on for a few days. You can do things like that when you’ve got some backup on your team. Otherwise, I mean, you really can’t.

Melanie
03:30:00
We were, yeah, we were, we were scrambling last week, you know, it’s all the church sites putting notices up because it, and setting up gravity forms for churches that didn’t have online giving. And, and I mean, we were, we had, we had a lot of little churches that, you know, of course when, when I built their website, I’m like, Hey, you really need to do online giving, oh, we’ll get, we’ll get around to that. Well, you know, they got around to it very quickly last week and they weren’t set up to do anything as far as live streaming. So while my VA did the work I set and, and wrote up a, an email on, okay, here’s the basics of how you do this through YouTube and Facebook, and here’s how you can do it and sent that out to them and then giving them the information for the, the emergency, the stimulus package emergency for nonprofits, sending that to them because they didn’t realize that they were eligible for that.

Melanie
03:31:06
And, and, you know, it’s really having that person doing the work has given me the freedom to actually actually interact more with my clients and help them and say, Hey, you know, you can do this. And, and reach reached out to the majority of my clients this week. And, and I know some people are worried about not having work come in, but if you’ve got those existing clients and of course, Nathan taught us well, and we have recurring revenue with website care plans that I don’t have to worry about my income. I mean, I definitely, we, we live on that. So even if we lost everything else and had no work coming in, we have enough money coming in to cover our bills. And, and I was already able to reassure my VA that, you know, as you can see, we’re busy and now I I’m showing by value to my customers and clients and saying, Hey, we’re here for you. And, you know, w we, what we did, but anything that’s COVID-19 related, you know, we’re not limiting on the amount of updates we’re doing. We’re not limiting to, you know, for small tasks a month or, or any time limits, you know, we’re going to be here, we’re going to do it. And so it’s worked out well and I couldn’t have done it without having a VA.

Dave
03:32:37
So having a VA helps you actually to improve your brand recognition in the eyes of your clients, it helps you to wow. Them so to speak, right? Yeah,

Melanie
03:32:50
Exactly. And I just launched a little tiny church website. They have 40 members in their church, brand new church. We launched about two weeks before this all hit. And they were one another one that said, you know, we need to do online giving, oh, we’ll set that up later. Well, we got on a zoom call last week. I walked them through setting up Stripe, okay, fill this out, fill this out. Here’s how you add me as a team member so I can finish setting it up. And so within an hour, we had a gravity form set up, connect to Stripe, and they could start taking online, online giving, and then, you know, did the training on how they can update the website. And they are, I mean, there’ll be a customer for a long time because I’ve taken the time to do that and, and sent them information to say, Hey, look, you know, I know you only have like three paid people from your church, but here, you know, you, you qualify for this, this emergency loan and you qualify for this. And, and they had no idea. So, you know, I they’ll recommend to me and that’s, I get all my work by referral. So my clients are my, you know, my business card bill, it’ll definitely lead to more work.

Dave
03:34:17
Fantastic. And it guy, there’s so many benefits in having a VA. So what would be your biggest advice? We’re going to close up here in a couple of minutes, but what would be your biggest advice to someone considering hiring a B

Melanie
03:34:29
Don’t wait, just to, I mean, I waited, I waited 18 months too long to do it, and it was all, but based on the trust issue and because I used managed WP that, I mean, that became a non issue. And once I realized like, oh wow, I can get them to log in. And, and they log into manage WP and they, I can delegate access. And what I did at the beginning is I only gave them access to the sites that they were working on. Right. And then after 30 days, when it proved that, you know, they weren’t a flake or anything like that, and they could actually do the work. And then I gave them access to all the sites. And I mean, it was, I shouldn’t have waited as long as I did. And I kept thinking, well, I had to be all organized before I hire a VA.

Melanie
03:35:19
I had to have my project management system down. I had to have all my processes done. And if you’re thinking about doing that the time now is, you know, get loom, get the loom Chrome extension and start recording everything that you do right now. And then you’re going to be ready. I still do that. If it’s something my VA hasn’t done yet, I just record a loom video and I have them all organized in folders. And I can just share it the first time I give it to him. And then I have a column on his Trello board that I post with the website. I have a card for each website. And then the links of those videos that are specific to that website go there. If it’s about series engine, which is what my certain system, I have a card there for series engine that has all the links of all the steps of series engines. And so if he forgets he has the resources, right?

Dave
03:36:19
Yeah. And that’s perfect. And you know, and one of the things about recording stuff, I am glad you brought that up is don’t wait, just start, start recording. Excuse me. It doesn’t have to be perfect either. If your recording gets 75% of the way there, and you can then only spend five minutes filling in the gaps, that’s better than spending a whole hour. Right.

Melanie
03:36:43
Exactly.

Dave
03:36:44
So that would be,

Melanie
03:36:45
Yeah, that picture’s worth a thousand words. A video’s worth 10,000, you know? And that’s, I use, I use loom probably a hundred times a day, I think.

Dave
03:36:55
Yeah. I mean, we, we highly, highly recommend it to everybody. It’s it’s amazing. Okay. Well, we talked about how to get a VA to thrive. That’s one of the best things to do. You got it there. So I think we’re done before we go. I don’t know if you have any questions you want to ask me.

Melanie
03:37:14
Well, I have one more thing I’m on the thrive part is, you know, don’t, don’t, don’t hire, don’t try to make your VA don’t be the square, trying to force a square peg in a round hole. I mean, I knew that my developer view, I liked her a lot. She was great following directions and she was great at building things, but I really needed a designer because that was my biggest time suck. And I was, I was having, I was paying her a developer rate, but she really wasn’t doing developing. She was building and I could have, I could have had a designer, which I have now at a lot less pay pay per week than a full-on PHP developer. So I couldn’t force her into a designer role because she just didn’t have the skills for that. And, but I didn’t feel bad because I helped her. I helped her find another job. I just didn’t want to say, Hey, you know, I decided I don’t need to anymore. So he’s my current guy. He’s really, really happy. I’m supporting his family. He’s got, you know, a wife and children. And he was really worried about this being, you know, that I was going to have to let him go. And I’m like, no. Yeah. So, but you’ve got to find the right person for the job. And then you’re both going to thrive.

Dave
03:38:43
Yeah. That’s a great, great point. And the other thing you brought up is that, I mean, you’ve helped other people get VAs and, and so that’s, that’s being part of the community. And that’s what we do is we help other people. If there’s somebody not right for you, they might be somebody’s right for somebody else. So it’s important to be involved in the community and our Hire My VA community. Okay. Anything else you want to mention? Awesome. Well, give yourself a plug. Tell the listeners where they can find a little bit more information about you or if they wanted to contact you.

Melanie
03:39:20
Well, I’m on Twitter, Melanie G. Adcock, Adcockcreative.com and [email protected] Well, if I can answer anybody’s questions about hiring, I’d be glad to.

Dave
03:39:36
All right. Well, thank you, Melanie. It was been great talking to you. All right. Well, help everybody got something out of this. I mean, I did, I will have a blast talking to folks and we will see you again. Next time. Remember, Hire My VA,

Larry
03:39:51
Dave, another great job on that interview, dude, boy, I’m just blown away at how much, how many tidbits we’re getting from these little interviews that we’re doing. And one of the things, it doesn’t surprise me listening to this thing after seeing, or having Melanie participate in some of these weekly calls that we do. But one of the things that I really took away from this is really quite powerful because you know, one of the tools that we encourage members to do is a three column exercise, identify everything you’re doing and the things that you love and things that you’re great at or great at then things that you love. And what I found really interesting is that Melanie was saying, there are some things that she’s really great at that she loves doing that became a time sock and that sometimes you get so seduced by that stuff.

Larry
04:40:36
And then on top of that, when you’re a perfectionist, you start neglecting some, some other very important urgent things and almost neglecting clients. Sometimes when all you do is focus on that. Right. Which was just a great reminder from, for me about, I try not to use the word balance very often because balanced really isn’t reality in the entrepreneurial world, but boundaries. Right. And so that she had to set up boundaries with her VAs by hiring somebody who’s really good at the design element so that she didn’t focus on that as much because otherwise she couldn’t run her own business. And there was a really powerful point.

Dave
04:41:14
Yeah. So it’s, and it’s, so what’s related to that. What’s also interesting too, is that she didn’t realize that until she got to the point where she was hiring somebody and finding, oh my gosh, this is so it’s, it’s just like the entrepreneurial world is hiring people is you have to try, you have to jump in. Cause you, you just don’t know what’s going to happen until you jump in and do something, right.

Larry
04:41:39
This is where, you know, we talk about the difference between teaching and having awakenings. That’s what this was for her. It was an awakening. Oh my gosh, look, what’s happening to my time. It’s being multiplied now. Yeah. This course, this program is about finding freedom, right. And this is a great revelation, a great awakening about how to get more freedom. It’s just stopped doing stuff. Let somebody else do stuff.

Dave
04:42:04
Yeah. Even if you’re great at it, whatever. Yeah, yeah. That’s right. Yeah. That was good. She had, she had a cool quote. It says, cause she was having some issues with clients and, and all I’m asking her to do stuff at all areas in it all at all times of the night. And she said, she tell her clients, your lack of planning is not my emergency.

Larry
04:42:25
I’ve heard that before. It’s a good one. And we have to train our clients how to treat us.

Dave
04:42:31
Yes. I need to improve on that too. Listening to her, talk about that. I was like, oh my gosh, I need to do that. And she, of course, as we alluded to, at the beginning of it, she talked about the free tools that she uses. She uses Trello, slack, loom and zoom for a lot of her, a lot of her training, recording processes and Evers and everything. So you can do this without spending a boatload of money. But the thing is that really caught my eye. One of the things that really caught my eye caught my ear. I guess when things are really caught, my ear is that, so she had a VA when COVID hit. And a lot of our clients she’s kind of called the church lady and a lot of our clients or churches and small churches. And so when COVID hit and they had to shut down and not have in person services and had to go online, everybody was scrambling and say, oh, how do I do this? What do I do? Can you do something for me? And because she had a VA, she was able to serve as her clients and actually respond to emergencies. Now she could only get so much done by herself. You know, she could, you know, work about off 80 hours a week or whatever, but having a VA allowed her to double herself and to really serve her clients in a time that really truly was an emergency. Well, I think

Larry
04:43:58
We get to the point when we have VA’s that are, how, how do I phrase this? When actually filling gaps in our, the skillset that’s required to run our businesses. It’s not just doubling our time and energy. It becomes exponential. It does at some point, you know, and that’s where I think that some of these, some of the folks that are going through the program now are realizing, oh my gosh, I need to change my business structure because my growth is outpacing. What my expectations were. Yeah. It’s a good problem to have. Right.

Dave
04:44:30
That’s a great problem. You know, and one of the things that I just thought of now, as you were talking too, is that, you know, so often we say, okay, you know, we hire a VA, they’re a team member and they have a regular hours and all that, but there’s no reason why on occasion, you can’t ask them to put in the extra time. Sure. And to work on a weekend or whatever, if you need it for a particular client or an emergency now of course, you’ve got to say, well, how are you going to compensate for them? You may give them some extra vacation or extra pay, however you want to do it. But remember now you’ve got that flexibility. And when you have some team members and you hire the right people, like how we teach and talk about motivation, integrity, and capacity, right. You will have people that will be willing to help on occasions. Right? Absolutely.

Larry
04:45:21
Yeah. That’s

Dave
04:45:22
Great. Yep. And then of course, one of the big things that she said, and that’s really common with people who actually finally pull the switch and get somebody to help them. She says, she said, don’t wait, don’t wait to hire somebody. She said, she put it off for a while. I bugged her to do it. And she finally did. And that changed her life. So folks, you’re listening to this, don’t wait to hire a team member. Do it ASAP. Yeah.

Larry
04:45:50
Yeah. Hey, you purchased this program. You joined the tribe because you want more freedom. That’s the way to do this. The way to do it. Yeah.

Dave
04:45:58
Cool. All right. Anything else, sir? No, it was

Larry
04:46:02
Really good. Thank you.

Dave
04:46:03
All right. Well, thanks again, Melanie, for being on. And I want to thank you all for listening to us. Cause remember, building a team is the way to reclaim your freedom. We are here to help you. It’s all, we’re doing this folks to help folks, three things we’d love for you to do. And we really would appreciate it. If you do it, you’d have our undying gratitude. So number one, subscribe to the podcast. If you haven’t already done. So. And number two, give us a rating, hopefully five star and then number three, go to hiremyva.com for more information on our course and community and all of our product offerings. Because remember even without experience, just like Melanie, you’ll learn how to prepare for hire and thrive with virtual assistants, Larry and I have helped a lot of folks and we’re continuing to help folks in our community. Now we want to help you too. So just go to hiremy va.com for more information.

Larry
04:46:53
Yeah. Okay folks. So glad that you’re on here, community is so important, but really do yourself a favor. Do the world a favor, do the community a favor, go do something significant today. All right, folks, go get them.

Dave
04:47:05
All right, take care. See ya.

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