Lakefield, MN, January 05, 2010 --(PR.com
)-- Every new year, getting organized is one of the top five resolutions set by Americans. Yet, within just weeks many find their goal tossed by the wayside. According to one virtual assistant, it doesn’t have to be that way. Creating a system and getting help to stick to it is the key.
“With January National Get Organized Month, it is the perfect month to get organized and start your new year off right,” says Staci Jansma, owner of Your Online 24/7 Virtual Assistant. “Just about every organization - whether it's a business office, a school, or even a home - could benefit from better organization and a virtual assistant can help to keep a lot of the typical clutter away.”
Virtual assistants (VAs) are professional office assistants who provide office services and support without being physically present by using the Internet, fax, and telephone. Since much of their work is done online, they can work locally or globally. Founded in May 2009, Staci offers a variety of services including e-commerce solutions for your shopping cart setup including autoresponders and affiliate programs, promotional marketing through articles and press releases, transcription for audio and video, setup of social media community, and administrative services.
According to Jansma, technology has actually made the problem worse. She points to a recent survey done by National Public Radio that showed 75% of respondents say that since the advent of e-mail and electronic data and document storage, their family and personal paper and filing has increased (19%) or stayed the same (56%). “What people need is help building systems to offload certain tasks that are causing the chaos,” she says. “By optimizing workflow, you can increase productivity, reduce stress, and heighten profitability.”
She offers the following tips to help business people organize better:
· Keep all your information in one place. Many people who use a computer for work have a to-do manager, a contact manager, a project management service, a wiki, multiple email accounts, lists, multiple online documents, or one of the many other services available for managing our information. “The trouble is that all those systems can make things a bit disorganized,” says Jansma. “You can simplify this and keep yourself organized in one simple step: keep all your information in one place, start with a Gmail account for email and then, add a Google Friend Connect widget to your website – to keep in touch with your future connections.”
· Stop the interruptions. “Even the best intentions to get organized can go awry if you are continually interrupted by clients and colleagues wishing to talk to you either by telephone or in person,” says the virtual assistant. “The best way around this is to schedule your organizing during off hours, if possible. If not, schedule an appointment with yourself to focus on this activity, and during this time, let your calls go to voice mail and close your door to unscheduled visitors, if necessary.”
· Use rules to tame your email inbox. “Does it take you nearly all day just to sift through them to find out which ones you need to deal with now, which ones can be dealt with later, or which ones are just junk?,” she says. “Then create rules that filter important emails, such as from customers or clients from newsletter subscriptions. Or begin to unsubscribe, if you are not reading the email and think you will get to it and you don’t – then just unsubscribe.”
· Think delegation for elimination. Business owners should be focused on the big picture items that grow your business. “What you should not be doing is worrying about getting your invoices out, mailing products, providing troubleshooting help, scheduling your time, and all those other administrative duties,” says Jansma. “In fact, the more time you spend on all the minutia of running a business, the less time you'll spend on tasks that can actually grow your business. That’s why delegation to others, including a virtual assistant is vital.”
For more information on organizing and delegation, contact Staci Jansma.