What do successful businesses have in common? Quite frankly, it is the presence of individuals who work together and help the company they serve to succeed. Any entrepreneur would know the value of their employees. Without them, paperwork will be more tedious, hours will be longer, and the work load will be a lot heavier. Indeed, if the bosses are the backbone, it is the employees who are the lifeblood of the company.
Yes, employees may be employees but if they aren’t motivated enough, you would not be able to see desired outputs. So how do you motivate staff who are on the other side of the screen, considering you’ve never met them in person yet? You can be nice and all, but making use of a few virtual staffing tips to motivate employees is a game changer.
Other than being nice, it is likewise important to go the extra mile just to motivate them (and yes, there are a lot of ways how you can do it.) Obviously, they are located in a different part of the globe so the options for you are limited and you can’t just give them a pat on the back or thumbs up to raise their spirits.
There are a lot of great virtual staffing tips and perhaps, the most important thing to practice is understanding what motivation really is.
Motivation is the inner force that drives individuals to accomplish personal and professional goals. It is the spark that inspires a person to behave in a purposeful manner.
In general, motivation is driven by 4 main emotional needs and they are:
- The drive to acquire
- The drive to comprehend
- The drive to bond
- The drive to defend
The drive to acquire – Why do we work? Simple. We work to fulfil the needs of our family and extended families in times of need. For your virtual employee, every opportunity that would allow him/her to earn more is a motivation that satisfies his/her drive to acquire.
The drive to comprehend – You may not see it with your own eyes, but you can surely make your virtual employee smile and happy. Let them know how they contribute to the company and that you value their hard work and dedication. Being able to respond to a worker’s drive to comprehend is a sure-fire way to motivate them as it defines the role they have within the company.
The drive to bond – Fostering a strong bond between virtual workers is quite a challenge because of location, but it should not be an excuse. To do this, make sure that the work environment you are in is a friendly, inspiring place where work is not just a set of tasks and routines, but a great experience.
The drive to defend – It is everyone’s natural instinct to protect and defend what is theirs. What does this mean for your virtual employee? It means that every once in awhile, you have to give your employees the opportunity to prove their worth. Motivate their drive to defend and see how your people reign over the most difficult of tasks.
Moving on, here are some of the perks you can consider to grant your VAs as they cover all 4 motivational driving forces.
Health Care Benefits
One of the best things to grant your Virtual Assistant is Health Care. If you’re concerned about the rates, some countries, especially third world countries, offer a lot of health care incentives at much cheaper rates. Reassess your VA based on performance and tenure. If he/she merits this kind of a reward, have the person inquire for the rates and then email the information to you. Decide how much you’re willing to cover. Health care is one of the virtual staffing benefits they will surely appreciate as this is something everyone will eventually take advantage of.
Your VA will be so glad to receive bonuses for a job well done. Look through your VA’s performance every six months. Do you see improvements in his/her work? Was he/she able to meet what was required of him/her or even exceeded your expectations? If your VA was able to finish a project ahead of time or able to develop a business strategy that benefited your company, that surely deserves a treat. Your VA will be motivated to work harder and better knowing that she can get rewarded because of a job well done.
Being able to work together through the years paved the way for a good relationship between you and your Virtual Assistant. Hence, it would be safe to say that by now, you are already treating each other as family, and families don’t forget each other’s birthdays. You can send your VA a gift card or a voucher which can be used online to buy something. Additionally, you can book your VA a room for an overnight stay in a hotel. You can also send actual gifts – a mug, tumbler, or a new cell phone, whichever you prefer — whether it’s simple or fancy, your VA will be happy.
Another great reward idea for your online employee is granting holiday leaves. Note that your official holidays may not be the same for your VA’s. However, you can use this time to give them something extra: a double pay perhaps or a half day at work so they can also enjoy special days offline with their family. You want your VA to know how much you value their work-life balance by giving them their holiday breaks.
Create avenues where your virtual team can help each other. The fact that you can turn to someone for help is a nice feeling that brings a boatload of benefits. Encourage work collaborations. Encourage friendships. If you can, schedule team buildings where you and your team can really bond and be socially invested.
One of the most effective virtual staffing tips is to provide training for your workers. Even if they are willing to learn, not all of them can afford the training fees. You need to provide them the means they need to succeed. Being able to provide adequate and timely training gives your virtual staff the confidence to take on more challenging tasks, hence driving them to give their best.
No doubt, saying thank you can go a long way. But it wouldn’t hurt if you grant your employees simple rewards and incentives. It is something you can’t miss to include in your agenda – even before you hire a virtual assistant. Aside from the fair compensation, these thoughtful little gestures will not just make your virtual employees happy at the workplace, it will also increase their loyalty and dedication to you as their favourite boss.
Do you need any advice on how to reward your Virtual Assistants? Let us know in the comments below and we will certainly get in touch.