Being a virtual assistant requires a similar skill set as an in-house executive, personal assistant. A virtual assistant requires a set of soft and hard skills to succeed. When choosing a virtual assistant for your business you should always consider the set of skills you and your business need. This post will present some of the things you should look for when hiring a virtual assistant.

Here are some of the soft skills you should be looking for:

• They know you intuitively. Intuitive people commonly have very good empathetic abilities, meaning they can sense what others are thinking and feeling. They anticipate what you will want and need. They know your likes and dislikes. This form of unconscious intelligence comes from years of experience.

• They care. Because they care their attention to detail is second to none. They care about you and your wellbeing and might even let you know if they think you are overworked.

• They are highly organised. A great virtual assistant creates systems and processes and turn chaos into order. They are fast learners and always find the most efficient ways to do things.

• They are discrete. They have access to a lot of confidential information and therefore they must be discrete.

• They have excellent communication skills. They are natural communicators and great at listening. They keep information flowing.

• They are self-starters and decisive. A virtual assistant should be self-motivated and take initiative to do the necessary work without guidance from her boss. A great virtual assistant does not need to be micromanaged.

• They remain calm under pressure. This means they are highly resourceful and great problem solvers.

Hard skills a virtual assistant must have:

• Good planning skills. Virtual assistants handle travel coordination and event management of differing levels of complexity.

• Data management. A virtual assistant should be able to manage and maintain a high number of records and data.

• Software and apps. A virtual assistant should be familiar and keen to learn standard tools e.g. Microsoft Word. And should be keen to keep updating his/ her skills regularly.

• Batching. An important technical skill that successful virtual assistants use is known as batching. Rather than multi-task between the various needs of clients, they complete as many similar tasks as possible. Email management is one type of batching that frees up time in between other tasks.

Final thoughts…

Now that you have decided that your business needs a virtual assistant you should start by puting together a list of skills and qualities you and your business need. Look for a combination of both, soft and hard skills. Soft skills are character traits and interpersonal skills a person comes with. Hard skills are learned and honed over time.

We, at Global Virtual Partners, are passionate about helping busy executives and businesses achieve their personal and professional goals.

We assist all kinds of businesses, be it online or traditional, find great value and profit through the use of virtual professionals. We deliver value for our clients by making processes smarter, organisations more efficient and customer experiences better. We understand business and offer client-focused solutions. Our success depends on developing strong, valued relationships with existing and future clients.

If you would like to discuss virtual office assistance and administration support in more detail, please contact us on 020 7993 2370 or email