Ah, it’s that time of year again; time to decorate the tree, or light the menorah, and spend time with loved ones. It’s that magic time of year when little ones walk around with grins from ear to ear with anticipation of events to come. No matter how magical the holiday season is, the fact is that for many small business owners, it’s a time of year that means stress. Everyone has gifts to purchase, feasts to prepare, decorating to do, travel to plan and so much more; add to that the fact that you need to arrange for replacements for vacationing staff, send gifts and/or cards to loyal customers and maybe even arrange for a staff party, and you have a great recipe for chaos.
There is really no need to let the holidays make you tense. There is a cost-effective solution to the surplus of holiday work that most small businesses experience. Most of the duties on your holiday to-do list are items that can be completed by a professional Virtual Assistant. Here are just some of the ways that a VA can relieve your stress this holiday season:
1. Have a Virtual Assistant order your gifts and/or cards. This is a task that can quite easily be taken care of virtually. A Virtual Assistant will even be able to send the cards out for you, and arrange to have the gifts wrapped and sent to your customers, suppliers, colleagues or employees without you ever having to lift a finger.
2. Do you have a holiday promotion you would like to publicize? Have your Virtual Assistant write a press release about it. A press release is a great way to generate publicity for your business and in fact, there are quite a few online services to which your VA can submit your release for free.
3. Does your business offer a solution to a problem that people commonly face during the holidays? Have a Virtual Assistant write an article about it. An article is an excellent way to drive highly targeted traffic to your website and generate some extra sales.
4. If you have a staff shortage during the holidays, but don’t want the hassle of placing job ads, reading resumes and conducting interviews only to hire someone for a few weeks, consider outsourcing some of the employee’s tasks to a qualified Virtual Assistant. A VA can be hired on a per-task basis, or can be contracted for a brief time during the holidays and after the holidays are over, the contract can be too.
5. A Virtual Assistant can make all the arrangements for a memorable staff party; from booking restaurants or halls and handling staff invitations, to directions and entertainment. A VA can take the hassle out of the staff party, so that you can just show up and enjoy yourself.
6. If you are planning a vacation during the holidays and need to have someone monitor and respond to your email, a Virtual Assistant can handle this as well. By either forwarding your email directly to your VA, or by setting up a web-based email account which both you and your VA can access, you can be sure that all of your important clients are well cared for in your absence.
The holidays should be a time of year that you look forward to, not that you dread. By getting the qualified help you need, you can alter your focus from business stress to family and enjoyment.