One question you should ask yourself if you are planning to improve your work performance is, “Do I have initiative?” Many virtual assistants may be skillful, but not all of them could have the initiative in many situations in the workplace. Some may give you useful business material, but cannot be relied on whenever you are not present. Hence, a lack of initiating an efficient action when deemed necessary.
If you want to develop yourself as a well-rounded virtual assistant, you should practice your initiative. This is one distinguishing feature that clients look for, given the fact they hired you to assist them both when they are around and the contrary.
There are different ways you could show that you have initiative, and these are surprisingly simple. Given below are a few examples:
Taking charge when necessary. Your client is not always available to handle the tasks in the workplace. There will be times that you will decide on his or her behalf. Nonetheless, of course, there are limitations to this. You have to confirm with your employer if you can make your own decisions regarding certain matters when he or she is not available. Although there would be surprising instances that you suddenly have to take a step without further approval, clarifying things out beforehand is a safe move for you.
One good example is when you have to provide a certain quotation for a customer. If you often get approval from your employer regarding this, but there came a time that urgency was required, you may provide a quotation as you considered fit. Simply ensure to put yourself in the shoes of your employer. Consider what he or she would decide to do in case he or she is in the same situation. This is when knowing your client’s personality matters a lot.
Understanding vague instructions smartly. There are clients, who would often provide you instructions that are quite difficult to understand. Due to rushing and upcoming meetings, some of them would leave you with unclear orders. In other words, you have to use your intellect to ensure that the output you will provide is what they need.
For instance, you were required to search for lamps, which could be offered by the company in the next quarter. Instead of providing your client a research, comprising all kinds of lamps, you have to consider the nature of your business. Does the company offer office supplies? If that is the case, then you may only focus on lamps that could be used in a workplace or home office. On the other hand, if your firm is focused on home improvement, then you could work on a broader search for lamps, which could be both for offices and house furnishing.
Avoiding procrastination. It is also an initiative when you work in advance to ensure that cramming would not get in your way. Be reminded that most clients prefer that you do not let things pile up. Urgent tasks will come sooner or later, resulting in more things to manage. Do not let delayed work ruin your reputation, which is more likely when you postpone activities unnecessarily.
Take advantage of your free time, whenever the season is not hectic. Furthermore, effective time management will help you be productive every day. Simply prevent distractions and keep yourself focused during your work.
Understanding your client’s situation. If you are an executive assistant for your client, you have to accept the fact that you will organize him or her instead of the other way around. Should there be a time you noticed that he or she is often struggling in keeping up with his or her appointments, initiative comes in by how you could solve this. Instead of letting your client simply ask you to input appointments for him or her, you may also create a system of reminders, so he or she would not miss any activity during the day.
Additionally, if your client is already burdened with tons of documents to complete, offer your help, even if he or she does not require you to assist.
The aforementioned ways are effective means to show your client that you can be trusted and relied on regardless of him or her being focused on other matters of the business. Simply practice taking initiative and you would soon be accustomed to the trait.