Welcome to Part Two of our Virtual Assistant Domination Series! Last episode we talked about where to find virtual assistants, and today we’re going to get into the nitty gritty of training VAs.
If you can properly train your VAs, you are going to seriously leverage your time. Whatever you don’t have time to do in your business, a VA can easily pick up the slack. They can be the person you pass the ball to when there’s just too much on your plate. You just have to prepare them for the job, and that means giving the proper training.Whenever you’re giving tasks to a VA, it’s got to be measurable. You need to figure out some way to measure it so that you know it’s being done. Click To Tweet
For us, proper training is done with what we call a “video training library”. We share the tech we use to make these videos and how to share them with virtual assistants across the globe. What’s great about these videos is that they give you something you can use over and over again to train new assistants. Training videos also create a line of communication between you and your assistants, which is absolutely necessary if you want to have a successful VA.
Communication is critical to having success with your VAs, no matter where you find them. There are so many tech tools you can use to keep up with your VAs and talk to them in real time, and we share a couple of our favorites today. With so much technology at your fingertips, there’s no reason not to get a virtual assistant. Technology makes it so much easier to manage and communicate with a virtual team, and your real estate business has the chance to grow exponentially if you just try it out.What you want in a virtual assistant is a driver, they take responsibility and then they have accountability. Click To Tweet
2:04 What’s Cory’s favorite podcasting app?
2:50 The weather is getting a little weird
4:54 How to leverage your time with a VA
6:30 Joe’s Training Philosophy
8:34 The tech Joe uses to train new VAs
13:46 The safest way to share your personal information with VAs
19:16 Creating a video training library
21:00 Joe shares his Podio on this podcast for the first time ever!
27:40 Where to find high-quality and affordable VAs
33:10 What is a daily check-in and scorecard?
34:55 Communication is critical
38:27 Tune in next time for Part 3 of our Virtual Assistant Domination trilogy!
39:20 We answer questions on Facebook Live
Joe: Hey guys. Welcome. This is Real Estate Investing Tech Show. The Real Estate Tech Show, actually. I’m Joe McCall, I’m with Cory Boatright, and you’re in the right place. We’re going to be talking about all things tech. This is the show where we talk all things tech as it relates to real estate, as it relates to real estate investing.
Cory and I have been doing deals for a long, long time, and we’re both certified tech geeks and nerds, and we’re proud of it. We’ve got plaques on the wall that say that we are tech geeks and we love technology and we’re nerds. A lot of you listening to this, you know what we’re talking about. You are, too, right?
Cory: Absolutely, man. Nerds unite!
Joe: We are recording this as a future podcast episode that will be released at realestatetechshow.com as a podcast. If you haven’t subscribed to our podcast yet on iTunes, go do that right now, or Google Play, or Stitcher, or wherever you can find us. What’s your favorite podcasting app right now, Cory?
Cory: Probably Cast because I can get on the browser, I can speed it up as twice, so I can listen to the podcast on my browser or on my phone, so Cast.
Joe: By the way, if you’re watching this now on Facebook Live, please share it with your friends right now. Give us a like.
Cory: Stop right now. Everybody share, share, share. Hit the share button.
Joe: I’m actually sharing it right now as well.
Cory: Yup, I’m sharing as well.
Joe: Give us a like, give us a thumbs up. Let us know that you like the show, or you hate it.
Cory: Don’t do that. If you don’t like it then just don’t share it.
Joe: Just do it right now. Cory, talk about something, talk about the weather real quick, and how many earthquakes have you had in the last couple of days?
Cory: I actually haven’t had that many this year so far. Believe it or not though, Oklahoma is one of the leading states in the United States for earthquakes. Actually, we were I think, the leading state in 2016 and leading into 2017, but in 2018 we’ve been a little light. From some of the fracking, that’s all debatable, but I believe that it’s true. That’s been interesting, but we’ve been having actually a lot of fires here lately, Joe. We need rain and we’re supposed to get some tonight.
We’re getting these massive fires like California’s been getting these massive winds that are blowing 40-55 miles an hour and just blowing constantly, and it’s so hard to put out these fires. That’s kind of sucky, but we’re going to get some rain, I think, tonight and the next day, so that’s good.
Joe: Well, I’m sharing everybody right now, realestatetechshow.com is our website and on there, if you go to realestatetechshow.com, you can download our toolkit. Cory and I have this free PDF that we give that shows you our favorite tools that we use in our real estate investing businesses and show you how we use them and what are our tools are.
You can also get it by texting the word TECH—we think this still works—38470. You text the word TECH to 38470. We’ll send you back a link that will give you a place where you could download our favorite top 10 favorite tech tools that we use in our real estate investing business, a really valuable thing.
Today, we’re going to talk about virtual assistants. Our last episode, we talked about the ‘How To Find Virtual Assistants,’ didn’t we?
Cory: Yes, we went into kind of the broad stroke, but today, we’re really going to get a little bit granular on training. I’m excited all about today because virtual assistants have been more of a tool. I am seeing more investors really lean into and it’s smart because you are leveraging your time whenever you’re working, whether it’s a virtual assistant or any assistant, you’re leveraging your time.
Whenever you don’t have time to do something in your life, it’s because you prioritize things in a way where these things that need to get done, it just doesn’t make sense for you personally to do those things anymore. That’s okay because at some point when you’re building a team, you have to hand off the ball. You have to say, “Man, you’re much better at doing this thing than I am,” or when you sleep at night, what’s great about virtual assistants, Joe, is they’re working typically whenever you’re sleeping at night. There’s a benefit from that, too.
I’m excited about what we’re going to talk about. We’re going to talk about the check-in cart, we’re going to talk about the scorecard. I think a lot of people aren’t using virtual assistants that way. We are going to talk about how to train a virtual assistant to be an absolute assassin for you. We’re actually going to give you one of our favorite resources. Joe and I have two of them and even some other specials things to go along with that. I’m excited talking about the more granular part of training of virtual assistants, Joe.
Joe: This is super easy. So many people complicate it, it doesn’t need to be complicated. This is what I do, my philosophy is I’m just going to train my virtual assistant enough to get them going, but I actually want my virtual assistant to write the process manually for me. I just do enough to get them started, to get them going,but I tell them, “Listen, in case you got sick, in case you quit, in case I need to get more help, I want you to create a detailed process diagram, or a document, or whatever, of what you’re doing, so I can give it the the next person to help you.”
So many people get trap and stuck with thinking like, “I’ve got to know how to do all of this. First, myself before I can actually train somebody else to do it.” That’s just not the case. If you’ve ever had a course that you bought that digitally was collecting dust and just like, “Man, I want to get through that, but I never have,” and if you ever thought about just giving that course to a virtual assistant and say, “Hey, I want you to go through this and start implementing it.” I did that with bidding on HUDs a couple of years ago and it worked great.
Cory: That’s awesome. We actually went another step further on working with our VAs. We would pay them to go on and listen to webinars for us, Joe. We have so many webinars on Thursday and Wednesday, and if you have a life, you basically set all these webinars up in training, so you have to figure out a way to leverage that information, so let a virtual assistant to go and listen to the webinar, and then take down and do screenshots of the webinar, kind of deduce everything down to summary and send it over, man I’m telling you that saved a ton of time.
Joe: That’s a good idea. Okay, Cory and I have a mind map here that we worked on and we’re just going to talk briefly on this podcast about how we train our VAs. Cory, I’ll show you how I do it real quick, it’s super simple. Then you can say how you do it.
I rely heavily on two tools, two things: Google Docs and Screencast-O-Matic. A little bit of Doppler.
Cory: Droppler, yes.
Joe: The main thing is Google Docs and Screencast-O-Matic.
Cory: I guess, it’s Screen-O-Matic. I don’t think it’s Screencast-O-Matic, is it? I think it’s Screen-O-Matic. It’s a very, very good tool because you can edit in that tool. You can get it free but you can also get paid version of that tool as well. It’s Screen-O-Matic, Joe, isn’t it?
Joe: Screencast-O-Matic, because I’m at video. Do you know how many videos I have right now? I have 367 videos on Screencast-O-Matic. Everyday at least I’m recording a couple of little videos, sending it to my tech guy or my virtual assistant or my local assistant or friend.
I just hired somebody on Upwork yesterday to download some stuff from one of my membership sites. I have it already kind of built out on the membership site, but I want it in a Google Drive folder. She’s going in and I did a nine-minute long video just showing her what I want to do and I posted the job on Upwork, I had 57 people apply, I filtered it and I’ve found the best three. I sent them a little video of what I want done, hired the best one I thought could do it, and at $4 an hour, it’s going to take her probably—I have so much material on this thing—a good 40 or 50 hours to do all of it. She has to create all of the folder structure from the menu of the membership site, so she’s downloading and uploading it into Google Drive. But anyway, Screencast-O-Matic, I have 621 videos in Screencast-O-Matic.
Cory: Wow. Actually, you know what? You’re right, it’s Screencast-O-Matic, but the funny thing is? If you go to Screen-O-Matic, it goes to Screencast-O-Matic, so they say the domain.
Joe: Google Docs. Let me just tell you, when I did this six years ago and I still use this document today. Let me give you an example. I like to do a lot of marketing on Craigslist. I will go find rentals in Fizbo’s on Craigslist and I take the phone number and the information from the ad and put it into a Google Sheet, and then send them a text message or an email. I got it set up where my VA does that for me. She only puts positive responses into my Podio for me to call them.
Long time ago, what I did is I just sat down and I started bullet-pointing on a Google document, step one, go to Craigslist, go to this link. Step two, do these search parameters. Then I put on there—I did this with the bulleted list—this is the URL to go to. I want minimum three plus bedrooms, I want minimum rent of $950. For a negative keyword, a negative apartment, it takes out any ad that has the word ‘apartment’ in it, and then I gave the VA a URL.
By the way, let me backtrack. On the top of the document I always put what my purpose or goal is for what I’m doing. I want my VA to know why are they doing this and why is it important. These are the goals that I’m looking for. I say, “The goal is everyday I want you to scrape 30 phone numbers and put them in this spreadsheet. I’m going to send them marketing. The goal is to find deals and I want you to do a minimum of 30 a day and I want you to update the spreadsheet or whatnot.” I give them the information of the results that I’m looking for. Then I go step-by-step. Just do the best I can. I know I’m going to miss things or not get it perfect.
Then step three might be take the phone number and put it into this spreadsheet. I already have the Google Sheet, so I can share a link to that Google Sheet with the VA. Then I say, “All right, then you put this information here and this information.” I have the date, the Craigslist title, the Craigslist link, phone number, the email, et cetera. And then step twelve is send them a text message. I indent in and I give them three different text messages to send. I give them instructions on how to send it from Vumber and CallRail. Mainly Vumber for sending and receiving.
Cory: You let them log into your Vumber to send it?
Joe: In the Google Doc I put my username and password to Vumber.
Cory: You don’t have any challenges doing that because there’s somebody listening right now and go nuts. What if they misuse that, Joe? What if they do something that is potentially going to hurt me? How are you trusting this person that’s over thousands and thousands of miles away with this information? How would you answer that?
Joe: Well, first of all they can’t see my credit card information in Vumber. Most membership sites they asterisk out the credit card information. They can’t get that. Sometimes you just have to trust your VA. I use Upwork a lot, so Upwork takes screenshots. I have usually three or four days to review their work and approve it. They have a good resolution place center in Upwork where if they weren’t doing the work and they said they were, I can dispute it and Upwork will give me the money back or not take the money and then penalize them. Upwork does good a job. You pay about 10% fee for that, but Upwork does a real good job of managing that. It also tracks their screenshots to show that they’re actually working and it tracks their mouse and keyboard activity.
What I do is I list all of this out as best I can on a Google Doc. Then I start Screencast-O-Matic. What Screencast-O-Matic does is it just record your screen and it records your voice. You can have a record a webcam video if you want, but I normally don’t. What I do is I open up the Google Doc and I say, “Hey guys, I’m going to show you what I’m doing here,” and I just walk through the Google Doc step-by-step, bullet point-by-bullet point. I actually demonstrate what I want done. I say, “All right, you click this link and it goes to Craigslist.” I show them me going through Craigslist. I click on an ad I say, “This is what I want,” and I show myself actually copying and pasting he information that I want in a Google Sheet, I put the date here, I put the rent amount here, the title here, the URL here, and all that. I do three or four examples and then I do an example of me sending a text, do an example of me getting a response and putting it into Podio. When it’s done—usually it’s a 15-minute video or something—I’ll upload it, Screencast-O-Matic will give me a URL. This is really important. You take that URL, you copy and paste it at the top of the Google Doc.
What I love about technology so much is now I’ve got this Google document, that when I hire a new VA, all I need to do is share with that VA a link, a read-only, a view only link to this Google Doc. They look at the Google Doc, there’s a video link at the top, they click that, they watch the video, they can read the document. Everything they need to do that task is on one Google Doc and it’s protected. It’s view-only and if that VA quits, if I need more help or get another VA to do it all you do is share with them that one Google Doc and my entire process and procedure is there.
Now, this happens a lot where I might have forgotten something or the VA asks some questions and I, “Oh, it’s a good idea.” I do a video real quick on how to whatever that answer to the question. Then I’ll put that new link, the new video up there as well. Sometimes, I’ll have five or six videos.
Cory: And you’ll make an FAQ for it underneath that. Yeah, perfect.
Joe: Not even that fancy, but when a new VA comes in, they’re going to see this Google Doc, they’re going to see a link to five different videos there, they’re going to watch all of them, and they’re going to know immediately what they need to do. There’s zero training involved, it’s just super easy. I love it.
Cory: I love how easy that you explain that, too. Just to summarize that, here’s what people think whenever they do these videos. “Oh my God. I have to record this video. How am I going to train? What if I mess up?” That’s not the right attitude to have. The mindset is, “I’m going to record one video, one time, and it’s going to be there forever.” If you ever want to update it, you can update it with those FAQ little videos.
One thing that’s interesting what you said, Joe, I think that’s worth repeating is you create the bullet point list first. Why would you do that? The reason is because it helps keep you on path. Whenever you’re recording the video, it keeps everyone on the same path. You’re not going around saying a bunch of stuff and fluff. You’re just saying step one, you’re going from your bullet point. Step two, you’re going here. Step three… And now, you have everything is matching up on your Google Doc and in the video.
Joe: This is important, too because people think they got it all perfect before they start recording the video. That doesn’t happen at all. What often happens as I’m going through this, I’m like, “Oh, I forgot this.” While I’m recording the video, I’ll just type in a new bullet point and then I’ll explain that. If I forget to write down something they need to copy and paste it into the spreadsheet, right then and there in the Google Doc while I’m recording the video I’ll add that in. It’s not that it has to be professionally done or perfect. They see it as I’m doing it. Isn’t that cool?
Cory: That’s great. We create this thing called video training library, which is exactly what this is. You’ll have different categories, different folders in your video training library. I recommend as well, whenever you record that video on Screen-O-Matic that you upload it into Dropbox or some other place that you have the hard video, that’s something that we do as well. You have basically a backup of that video, but Screen-O-Matic is great because you get the link, and the link is going to be crucial; one, just to send it over to your VA just like that, so they don’t have to worry about downloading anything. They can just get the link and deal with it. That’s actually really great.
Inside Screencast-O-Matic, you can edit the videos, too. Anybody that has questions about editing or things like that, you can go in and you can add little titles, little things inside the video very simply without having extra software. It’s all done inside of Screencast-O-Matic, another benefit of using that tool. It’s inexpensive, too. Less than $50 a month,I think for Screencast-O-Matic. Different plans that you can have inside there. But again, you want to take your video from there—at least we do— and we put it inside Dropbox, so we can have our own basically on the server side.
Joe: I’m going to one-up you, Cory. I’ve got something better. I don’t know if you’ll be intimidated by this or blown away or you’re going to roll your eyes. Let me show you this. I’m going to share my screen with you. This is the first time ever for the Real Estate Tech Show Podcast.
This is my Podio. Don’t share this with anybody. We have an app called Procedures. I have 160 in here. We just created an app in Podio called Procedures. Here’s an example. This was six days ago. One of my assistants, we’re doing this thing where we’re using this software something. We sent a Slack message training our VA on how to do this. My assistant did this, step one, step two, step three, step four, step five, and then we did two screencast videos right there, posted that in the Procedures in Podio. We’ve got 160 of them in here of Infusionsoft stuff, book order stuff, MLS hacks. My team does this for me. This is awesome. I love it because now, when there’s something that we’re going to be doing more and more of, not just a one-time thing.
My team then says, “All right, everything that is a procedure for later on was created in here.” I just hired a new operations manager and the first thing it is, is they sent her here and there’s a procedure for everything and she was blown away like, “This is amazing.” When anybody buys my course, we send them a thank you card and some brownies. There’s a procedure right here for that and it shows step-by-step how to do it. We use a company called SendOutCards. By the way, you interested in talking about a network opportunity? Network marketing?
Joe: Just kidding. I don’t do that, but we do SendOutCards.
Cory: Joe, can I share my screen as well? But I got to be careful what I’m sharing, too.
Joe: It’s so weird. I share my screen all the time with my coaching students, but I never shared it before on a podcast on Facebook Live with a whole five million people watching.
Cory: I’ll just share this really quickly. Can you see my screen? We have one called SOP. It’s very similar here. This is my team. We created all SOP sales stream, acquisition training, operation training, marketing training, HR training. We have everything inside here and it’s just tagged.
Cory: You can see this right here. It’s just really easy to have everything inside of Podio.
Joe: The cool thing about this whether you’re doing Google Docs or Podio, you can share it with your team and then remove access as well. If your person quits, you can remove their access, you can change the view only links, so that they can’t see it anymore. It really helps you protect this stuff. Let me tell you this, too. You noticed when I showed you our SOPs, I didn’t create any of those.
Cory: I like that. That’s cool.
Joe: I don’t want to be an expert on all that stuff. I want my team to do it. I can do it myself, but once you get to that level of micromanagement, you’re not focusing on the highest and best use of your time.
Cory: Same as my team. My team created all the SOPs but at the end of the day you need to understand that if you don’t have a team—there’s a lot of people that are just a one-man-show—and this is especially important, this is an excuse. You can just go in and start creating these SOPs and it doesn’t take a lot of time to do it.
In fact, you’d be surprised if you just said, “On Thursday, I’m going to create as many SOPs I possibly can for my business,” and see how many you can get done. You’d be absolutely blown away by the leverage that this gives you because now you have something that is a specific way of how you do something and it’s repeatable which is great, it leads to automation later on when you can repeat these things and you have this practice that’s going to help you create more automation in your business.
Joe: A lot of students come to me, they buy my course, they go through my steps and it’s like, “This is awesome, it’s amazing,” but they get overwhelmed, they’re like, “How am I going to find a VA to do that.” The answer is super simple. Just send my videos to your VA, have your VA watch it, have your VA create the SOP themselves. You don’t have to know how to do all of the stuff that I’m teaching you. I get it, I’m a tech nerd and a geek and I like diving in and I want to know how to use Screencast-O-Matic and I know how to use Google Docs and share these things and all.
You don’t have to know that. You could just give the VA the training video of whatever course it is that you bought. Go to YouTube and do a search for ‘How to use Click2mail.’ Go to YouTube, just search for ‘How to use Click2mail,’ find a good video, send it to your VA, and say, “Hey, figure this out and write an SOP on how to to do it. I want to send this letter to these people. Go figure it out.” That stuff is easy for the right people. You don’t have to know how to do all of that.
Cory: You use Upwork, but there’s one that we use called vaservant.com. Depends on what you’re paying for, I think our reps are a little bit more expensive than the $3 and $4 reps that you were referencing and you can get a lot—like you said—through Upwork, but VA Servant actually works on specifically a lot of real estate activities for us. Highly vetted and if you go over there, fill out a form, they will actually give you a quote on your service.
I believe right now, there is a promo, if I’m not mistaken, for two-week free trial with them, but you have to commit to a package. Whatever package, a full time or part time, you need to commit that for, I think, at least a month. But you get two weeks of using them, finding the right VA, so I highly recommend you check out vaservant.com.
You have one as well, Joe, that you prefer or you just tell them to go to Upwork?
Joe: Yes and no. For years, I’ve been recommending different services. Sometimes, they get too busy. I bring them too much business or something and I get people a complaint like, “Oh, they’re not returning my email. Their VA suck.” I kind of stopped referring other companies. Although, for my coaching students, I do give them access to the same VAs I use today.
I use this VA, this guy is an American, lives in the Philippines, he’s got a team there, and I don’t even talk to him. I talk to his main VA, and he has a bunch of people under her, and they’re super cheap. I don’t mark it up. I only do that for my coaching students. She actually trains them on doing the stuff the way that I do it. That’s what we do.
There’s so many, there’s a lot of really good services out there. onlinejobs.ph, Upwork, Fiverr. I found VAs before on Fiverr. Want to get a book published or written or whatever? You can find people on that. I’ve used Fiverr before for skip tracing and for scraping websites.
Cory: The grey hat?
Joe: Little grey hat. That’s a great way to put it. I would find somebody on Fiverr to go scrape some data from an account website somewhere, and he built my direct mailing list. I wish I could tell you. Maybe I’ll tell you when when we’re offline. I’m telling you, this data that we got for this one county that’s really hard to get. We had to stop the direct mail because we were getting so many calls. It’s because this list is almost impossible to get.
Cory: Perhaps nobody’s been calling them, so you’re the first.
Joe: Nobody. Oh my gosh, it was amazing. It was overwhelming. But anyway, we found that person on Fiverr and then we gave him a little job and then we contacted them privately to hire them to do a bunch of more stuff for us outside of Fiverr.
I just found a service today where if you’re writing a book, this is a company that a lot of my friends use. It’s called Reedsy, reedsy.com and this is a company, a website that a lot of book editors, ghost writers, designers, book designers help people finish their books.
Cory: Cool, I like that.
Joe: There’s a lot of services out there. We have some mutual friends that have VA staffing companies, there’s a lot of options. What I recommend doing is if you’re wanting to hire a good VA, find somebody that is using VAs right now and ask them, “Hey, where did you find your VAs? Do they have friends that are looking for more work?” A lot of these VAs will have actual friends that they can refer to you to work for you.
If you have a good VA, chances are their friends are good VAs, so I get a lot of VA referrals from other good VAs that I have. Does that makes sense?
Cory: Absolutely, yeah. There’s a lot of different resources out there to get VAs like you said. Robert Nickell, a friend of ours in our mastermind group, he has great VAs. There’s different levels of VA kind of competence level as well, so depending on what your budget is and kind of what you want to accomplish, you need to pay attention to that.
Obviously, you probably don’t want to have somebody that is going to code a site up and all that and paying them $3 an hour. You’re probably not going to find the best talent there. There’s a lot of administration type of task, they don’t take a lot of time. They just basically learn from a video and that can give you back a lot of your time.
Let’s talk about the daily check-in and the scorecard, Joe, because I think that’s cool with the VA service as well. A lot of people probably aren’t using that.
Joe: Whenever you’re giving tasks to a VA, it’s got to be measurable. You need to figure out some way to measure it so that you know it’s being done. For example, before they’ve got to send out 30 text messages a day and it needs to be done by 10:00 AM. In that example, I give the VAs a scorecard, it’s a spreadsheet and they have to update it with their numbers. How many ads did they scrape? How many text messages did they send? How many emails did they send? And how many responses did we get back? The VA just fills that out.
Everything that the VA do for you, you should have some kind of scorecard that they can report on their numbers. It needs to be measurable. You can’t just be vague like, “Do research,” or whatever. It needs to be like, “Research so many—”
Cory: I’m going to interject something here because for discipline of execution is probably the process of what is easier to say on this, so basically from X to Y by Z. From X to Y by Z. A very simple formula to remember here on the scorecard. From X, where are you now, to Y by what time? What deadline? It needs to have a deadline that is associated with it. If you can keep that kind of formula, man that’s the way to keep accountability.
Joe: Really, really good and we talked about this before on the last episode. Communication is so critical to having success with your VAs. People think sometimes that if I just send them work, they’ll do it, they’ll take care of it, and I’m not to worry about it, but no. You have to communicate with them, and especially at the beginning, you need to be talking to them every day on Skype or on Zoom, talking to them, “How did it go? What you get done? What were some of the challenges, roadblocks?” You’ll find if you’re doing a lot of Craigslist marketing, Craigslist has these CAPTCHAs that, if you’re in there there too much you have too many CAPTCHAs. You have to think about changing your IP address or whatever.
A lot of times if you’re using VAs in the Philippines—I’ve talked to Filipinos about this, I don’t want to stereotype—culturally, sometimes it’s hard for Filipinos to tell you there’s a problem that this isn’t working because there maybe—
Cory: They don’t want to insult you. They don’t want to make you feel bad. That’s part of that culture like everything’s okay. They don’t want to create issue. They don’t want to create a problem because their economy of scale over in the Philippines is much, much different obviously than here in the US. Anything that is going to affect, if something is not working out right is going to be potentially weighing against how much money they’re going to make.
You have to basically have that conversation upfront that says, “Listen, I know that this isn’t going to be perfect. I know that there’s going to be challenges. I know that there’s things like that. Where it’s going to work better is if you tell me as soon as possible something isn’t working. That’s actually going to be something that’s going to make us more money, not take away from much more money. In fact, if there’s something that you find that big enough thing, there might even be a bonus involved.”
You change the mindset around that this person needs to be telling you when there’s something wrong, when there’s something that’s not right, when there’s something that isn’t as efficient as even as you say it is in the beginning, and making them steer the ship, making them be the driver of that thing. That’s the key thing. What you want in a virtual assistant is a driver. Don’t find somebody that is passive. You want somebody that’s a driver, they take responsibility and then they have accountability. That’s going to be one of your better types of VAs. Wouldn’t you agree with that?
Joe: Yeah, definitely. You’ve got to schedule these calls. At first, starting it everyday. You’ve got to talk, even if it’s for a couple of minutes. Talk to the VAs—Skype or Zoom, and just say, “How’s it going?”
I have the VAs email me in the morning, “This is what I’m going to be doing today,” email me at the end of the day, “This is what I did,” update the scorecard, maybe it’s a link that they give you to the Google Sheet which has the scorecard in it, but there’s got to be that regular communication.
After a few weeks of things are going well, you maybe just talk to them just once a week. But you’ve got to communicate with them. You’ve got to have that regular communication with them.
I add my VAs into my Slack account, to my channel. We have an actual specific channel for the VA and we’re constantly communicating with our VAs and telling them what to do. If it’s important, my team tags me on it so I can see an unread tag message in there.
Communication is so important and almost 9 out of 10 times when people complain about problems that they’re having with their VAs, it’s because they’re not communicating with them enough. It’s just like a regular employee. You’ve got to communicate with them is basically what I’m saying, bottom line.
Cool. I think that’s good enough for now. Our next episode, Cory, we’re going to be talking about marketing, right?
Cory: Marketing with VAs, right. That will finish up our Virtual Assistant Domination Part Three. That will finish that up. That will be a great training. Definitely go back and listen to the last episodes we have, part one, this will be part two, but I think we’re up on the website right now at Real Estate Tech Show, we have 11 episodes. Is that right, Joe?
Joe: Right now, we have 11 released as we’re recording this. I think this is episode 14. If you’re watching us on Facebook Live, this is actually live, it’s not being recorded.
Cory: That’s right.
Joe: You’re pretty special watching this right now.
Cory: They’re always special. Okay, do you want to ask any questions? Maybe we’ll take one or two questions. If anybody has a question about VAs or anything that we just talked about, we’ll just take one or two questions and then we’ll get off here.
Joe, I can’t see the screen because it will pop—
Joe: One guy is asking here, “Do you have a VA training course?” I do, but I’m not sure if it’s open right now but you can go to easyoutsourcing101.com and I have a little $297, I think. It might be $97 or something. Just say it’s $497.
Cory: Joe, we’ve got to make a VA training course. We have to do that.
Joe: We already have.
Cory: You have one, but I’m saying we ought to make one, too.
Joe: We should. I’ve been using VAs for years and years. I know you have, too, Cory. You’ve probably been doing it longer than I am. I think you’ve been in the real estate game longer than I have. We should talk about that. If you are interested with that I have it’s Easy Outsourcing 101. Check that out.
Cory: Anything else? Any other questions in there, Joe?
Joe: I’m looking at the wrong place here because we’ve shared this now and it’s in a bunch of different places. Any other questions? Guys, if you like this, come on, share it, give us a thumbs up, let us know, and leave us a comment. I don’t see anymore questions here. If you’re watching this is a replay later on go ahead type your question down here as well. We’ll do our best to get it and answer it.
This has been really good. Let’s go ahead and end it. Guys, if you want our favorite tech tools, it’s a PDF Cory and I put together. Cory has his top five, I have my top five, and they’re different. They’re 10 different awesome, amazing tools, and we give you this PDF that shows you how we use it and what we use it for. You can get that at realestatetechshow.com or text the word TECH to 38470. We do have a question here I see from Steve.
Cory: All right, Steve, what is it?
Joe: Steve says, “I’m fairly new to wholesaling and I have considered getting a VA. Would you recommend waiting until I’ve been doing this for a while? Thanks.” Steve, that’s an age-old debate that I’ve had for myself like, “Do you spend money on marketing or on a VA?”
My first reaction is you should be focusing your all of your money, resources, and attention on marketing, getting the phone to ring, getting leads. But as soon as you can, hire a virtual assistant because you’re going to be finding when you’re first starting out you’re doing all the $5 an hour activities and you need to eventually, as quickly as possible, get to a point where you’re focusing on the $500 an hour activities. As soon as you can, hire a virtual assistant to help you.
There’s only three things your VA should be doing. Marketing, making sure that your marketing is going out the door, updating your CRM, and doing all your follow-up. That’s the only thing that your VA should be doing and if you’re in there, checking, scratching your notes on a yellow pad of paper at the end of the day, trying to decipher your notes and putting them into your CRM, trying to remember, “When was I supposed to send that follow-up email or that offer or contract.” That’s $5 an hour activity. You shouldn’t be doing any of that. Your VAs should be updating your CRM for you. They should be sending out the marketing for you. They should be doing your follow-up for you.
I would say, if you’re just getting started, put every dollar you can into marketing, but as soon as you do your first deal maybe, hire a full-time VA. It’s $500 a month to get a really decent, good data entry admin assistant. What would you add to that, Cory?
Cory: I think it’s great advice. I remember the first time that I hired somebody, I know we talk about this like it’s no big deal, Joe, but that was a scary moment. That was a very, very scary thing. Giving up control of something and hoping that somebody was going to get it done. Hopefully from watching this training today, Steve, you understand that that’s not the case.
You actually can go through and make a bullet point list of the things that you need to get accomplished. You record that video and then you give it to someone. Before you hire them or anything, now they come back and they tell you, “Yes, I feel competent enough to be able to do this activity.” That’s when you send them the PayPal or however you’re paying them on your card.
I’m telling you, that change of mindset was very big because now you still have the control per se, but you’re also delegating in the smartest way possible. To be successful in your business, long term, at some point you will have to delegate. It’s not a question of if, it’s a question of when.
If the question really is when do I delegate, when do I get a VA? It’s just like Joe said, as soon as humanly possible. Whenever you close on that first wholesale deal, take a little bit of those profits out and put it towards having a virtual assistant work with you and start there. I think that will be the way I’d do it.
Any more questions or are we going to be done here?
Joe: Guys, if you want to see Cory’s haircut pictures, follow him on Facebook, and if you want to see me with some earbuds up my nose, follow me on my Facebook wall and you’ll see a picture of me doing that.
Hey, I have to go. I haven’t had lunch yet and I’ve got a coaching call in 10 minutes. It’s been great, Cory, I appreciate you.
Cory: It has been great absolutely. All right, we’ll talk soon.