C + E = S

by Marianne D’Alessandro

Over the past few weeks, I’ve had many similar conversations: entrepreneurs hiring people who go missing in action or just don’t deliver as expected.  I guess I don’t really understand it.  I can’t imagine taking on work and then not providing the expected service or at least, in some courteous manner, explaining the reason why I cannot provide the service and working out an acceptable solution.

Nonetheless, it happens.  As entrepreneurs, the know-like-trust rule becomes very important as does the expected outcome.  In my own virtual assistant role, I not only look at what I need as a business owner, but I look at what is reasonable, acceptable and expected by my clients.  Here are two key areas to consider when outsourcing:


  • Will you speak weekly, will you email, will you do video calls?
  • Communication is extremely important especially the first month or two.  You want to continue to build the relationship and know that the person is being attentive and understanding what you require.
  • If having calls, set them up in advance.  If using email, be sure the replies are prompt.


  • Start with time – how much time do you require and what hours/days do you expect the person to be available?
  • Set timeframes for the tasks/projects – set clear deadlines.
  • Discuss pricing and invoicing and be clear.  Using words like “up to” or “approximate”, can leave for very open, confusing and perhaps conflicting views of the final costs.

We all like to feel trusting especially when we work with other solopreneurs and entrepreneurs.  And I do believe most people have the best of intentions and sometimes life happens.  However, it is so much easier to manage a business when we plan for the “life happens”.

Whether you are taking on the project or hiring for the project, communication plus expectations will equal success!

Download my 40 Ways to Use a Virtual Assistant.


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