You have a story to tell, and now you want to find the audience to listen. Having a VA help you with the behind the scenes work of growing your speaking career will benefit you in many ways.
In the past I have written about several of ways a virtual assistant can help you launch your speaking career. But ultimately, no matter how skilled your VA may be, you are ultimately in control of whether they will be successful at booking gigs on your behalf.
Ask yourself these questions to make sure you’re setting your virtual assistant up for success.
Did You Set Clear Expectations From the Start?
Having a “getting to know you” meeting with a new VA is a great way to communicate your preferences and desires as a speaker. In this first meeting, give your VA as much information as possible, so they can understand where you are coming from and where you would like to go with your speaking career.
Here are some topics to discuss at this meeting:
- Your Motivation for Speaking
- Your Goals as a Speaker (short term and long term!)
- Your Target Audience
- What Topics You Prefer to Speak About
Use this as an opportunity to mention your favorite speakers and your ideal opportunities. The more information you give your VA the better!
Have You Given Your VA Access to Your (Updated) Calendar?
There is nothing worse than finding the perfect speaking gig and doing all the legwork to book the event, only to find out my client will be on a family vacation in Aruba!
This might sound obvious, but having access to my client’s calendar is absolutely critical. Not only do you need to share your calendar with your VA, but it also needs to be constantly updated with both work and personal obligations.
Remember, you are paying for your virtual assistant’s time—by the hour. Every time I research an event for a client only to learn that they have a conflict I didn’t know about, I’ve wasted time that they are paying for. Do yourself a favor, and make sure you’re giving your VA what they need to make the most of your billable hours.
Are You Willing to Take Baby Steps?
In order to build a speaking career, you must first build a name for yourself. Be willing to think outside of the box when it comes to accepting opportunities. Remember: it’s a marathon, not a sprint!
Accepting smaller opportunities like guest appearances on podcasts and webinars, participating in Blab talks, or even guest blogging are all great ways to build a network for yourself and get your name out there. These might not quite be the keynote speaker opportunities your dreamed of, but little by little they will help you build credibility and connections.
You have a lot to offer! It’s time to get your name out there!
Do You Communicate With Your VA Regularly?
One of the most helpful things as a VA is when my client sends me an email and says, “Hey Kimberly, this opportunity looks interesting. Can you check it out?” Short messages like this let me know what my client is interested in, and helps me find other opportunities that are similar.
Think of this like training your Pandora station or Spotify playlist. The more feedback you give your VA about what you like and don’t like, the better they can tailor future recommendations to suit your needs!
In addition to frequent email communication, consider setting up a weekly meeting with your VA to discuss opportunities and be sure you are on the same page.
Are You Protecting Your Relationships?
As a VA, I can do all of the behind the scenes work. I can find opportunities, get contracts signed, send emails, but when it comes to the actual speaking day—it’s all on you!
Put your best foot forward at every speaking event. Be respectful of the event organizer and show up on time! There is nothing worse for your reputation than being unreliable. Be sure to gather the contact information from people you meet at the event and share that information with your VA so they can keep in touch. After all, even with a virtual assistant working behind the scenes, building your network happens still happens one relationship at a time.