What is a Welcome Packet?

What is a Welcome Packet?

What to Include in a Welcome Packet

 

So, you’ve decided you wanted to work from home as a virtual assistant. That’s awesome!  So what the heck is a Welcome Packet? Continue reading below and I’ll explain it all to you.

Since that big decision, you’ve been networking like a fool for your first client. Hanging out in Facebook groups, going to networking events, telling your friends and family to the point you’re starting to feel like you’re bugging people with your pitch.

But a virtual assistant without clients is – well, not really a business.

You need clients!

And then one day, you get an email – someone wants to chat about how you can help their business.

Whoo-hoo!

So you have that discovery call and you’re feeling like you knocked it out the park. You said all the right things and shoot, you even sent a thank you email afterward.

Now, you wait.

And wait.

You refresh your email countless times, waiting for a response.

And then it happens — you get an email. You’ve got a client!

Holy Moley!

But don’t celebrate too much because you’re not done.

There’s something you need to put together for your new client – and that’s a welcome packet.

What is a welcome packet?

The welcome packet is a PDF that contains important information about your business that may or may not already be in your contract.

Is a welcome packet required?

Well, no not really. I’ve just found that having all of the necessary information in a separate PDF file is handy not only for you but for the client as well. And we’re aiming for simplicity here, folks!

What’s in a welcome packet?

Glad you asked!

Here’s what your Welcome Packet can include:

 

  • A personal note from you, welcoming them on board. Start on the right foot but including a note from you: how excited you are to work with them and how you plan to make a difference in their business, something along those lines. Keep in mind that some clients may be working with a virtual assistant for the first time so you may have to a bit of hand-holding to ease them into the water. It’s okay – a kick-butt virtual assistant doesn’t just do the work: they also educate their clients.

 

  • Work expectations. Spell out when you will return phone calls and emails. Do you have a 24-hour turnaround during business hours? Will you make recommendations and offer solutions? Tell your client what they can expect from working with you.

 

  • Your office hours. If you don’t spell out your office hours, I can bet my bottom dollar that at some point you’re going to have to talk to a client about working outside of your hours. I’ve seen it happen time and time again. This is where educating a client GENTLY about what a virtual assistant is (a business owner in partnership with the client) and what a virtual assistant isn’t (an administrative worker solely who is on-call and dedicated to their needs only). Make it clear what your hours are and stick to them. For example, my business hours are Monday – Friday, 6 pm-9 pm, Saturdays from 10 am-5 pm. I’m closed on Sundays and the last Saturday of each month. Period. Which brings us to the next matter:

 

Important Facts to Add

 

  • How will you handle “rush” jobs? OK, life happens sometimes and things pop up that need immediate attention. No problem. But if it’s happening over and over, then it’s time to put some processes in place to keep that from happening. Planning will save you lots of time and headaches. Discuss and note how you will handle rush jobs. Let’s say the client gives you less than 24-hour notice to complete a project. It’s okay to charge a 25% surcharge. Again, make sure it’s indicated in your welcome packet, as well as your contract, to avoid problems later.

 

  • How you will handle referrals and if you provide a referral incentive. In the virtual world, referrals are golden. Do a great job, your client will tell someone else and BOOM! You’ve got a new client. But you want to thank them, right? Maybe a gift card or a couple of complimentary hours.

All the important facts

 

  • Your business processes: how you will protect passwords and confidential information, etc. The online world can be a scary place with all this hacking foolishness. And your client is trusting you with the back-end of their business. That’s huge! You want to reassure them you’ve got systems in place to protect their confidential information – may be shredding confidential data, keeping passwords private, that kind of thing. Give your client some peace of mind.

 

  • Your subcontracting process, if applicable. You may get to the point where you become so busy with work that you’ll need to bring on a subcontractor. Or, maybe you don’t have the skill set to complete a project. Let your client know how you will handle this type of situation (the subcontractor will do the work but you will check it over thoroughly to ensure it meets your approval). Remember, this is YOUR business on the line.

 

  • Invoicing process. This little nugget of information is probably in the contract you sent to the client but it doesn’t hurt to share it in the welcome packet. Reiterate your hourly rate/retainer amount, when you will send an invoice and when payment is due.

 

  • Your contact information and how you prefer to be contacted. I’m cool with getting texts from my client so they have my cell phone number as well as my email. Maybe that won’t work for you so tell your client your preference.

 

Whew…that’s a ton!

 

Add in a get-to-know-you sheet: the client’s address (so you can surprise them a gift from time to time), birthday, spouse/children info, if applicable.

Isn’t some of this information already in my contract?

It’s highly possible. But let’s think about this for a second: most people don’t thoroughly read contracts. We should but we don’t. We read the most important part – how much we’re making/paying and kind of skim over the rest. The welcome packet outlines IN A SEPARATE DOCUMENT a lot of what’s in your contract. The difference is that your client will probably read your welcome packet.

You don’t want any excuses (“I didn’t know that was in there because it’s so buried in the contract!”) Nope, we don’t want that!

What else do you need to bring on a new client? Well, you can get all that outlined in a Trello board. If you’ve been around these parts for a while, I compare Trello to Post-its on steroids! Seriously, I can’t get enough of Trello because it keeps me super organized.

A Trello board dedicated to onboarding every new client is a must. You can set it up step-by-step, include what you need to do to ensure a smooth start to your working relationship with every client.

 

GET YOUR CLIENT TRELLO BOARD HERE

 

So, I hope this information helps you. Let me know if you need anything else.

Here’s to your success!

 

 

 

De-cluttering Your Mind

De-cluttering Your Mind

Don’t Forget to De-clutter Your Mind

 

One of the things you notice when you start de-cluttering is how so much of the clutter in your house reflects the clutter in your mind. If you’re hanging onto clothes that don’t fit, or the ugly vase your mother gave you for Christmas.

Sorry mom…

Or … how about the exercise bike you might get around to using, you don’t just have a problem with too much stuff?

YOU have a problem letting go.

Chances are you’re also hanging onto a whole bunch of bad feelings, ill-founded assumptions, old grievances, and future worries.

Ok … so what?

 

If it feels good to de-clutter your house, it feels even better to de-clutter your mind. Really? Humm…I gotta think about that!

Definition

declutter[ dee-kluht-er ] SHOW IPA verb (used with or without object) to remove mess or clutter from (a place). to organize and prioritize (one’s commitments, material possessions, etc.): Declutter your calendar and spend more time with your family.

 

Here are some useful expert tips to make some space in your mind.

 

  1. Use some meditation techniques

 

You don’t have to do the full sitting on a cushion in a darkened room thing to benefit from meditation techniques. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, some simple breathing techniques can help you calm down and focus.

For a few minutes, focus only on your breathing and nothing else. If your mind wanders or gets back into the worrying groove, you must put that aside and come back to focus on your breath.

 

  1. Write it down

 

It can help to write down anything that’s on your mind. Once all those worries are down on paper, you can prioritize them and work out a plan to deal with them. You can also assess them to identify what’s essential and what isn’t.

When you can see what’s important, you can focus your energy and free up some of that mental space!

 

  1. Stay in the present

 

Brooding over the past and worrying about the future take up a lot of space in your mind and achieve precisely nothing. Let go of regret over past mistakes or resentment of past slights and move on. Keep your focus on what you can influence right here, right now.

 

  1. Do one thing at a time

 

Multitasking is not only overrated (it’s very inefficient), it also leads to greater anxiety, and you never do any one thing properly. Focus on doing things methodically and thoroughly. As you finish one task, move onto the next.

 

  1. Control all the incoming data

 

We talk about being available 24/7 and the 24-hour news cycle, but there is only one person who can control that. You. You can choose to switch off your computer, smartphone, and tv and control the amount of data your brain is trying to process.

 

De-cluttering your mind will pay off in all sorts of ways you hadn’t imagined. You will be more productive, less stressed and more motivated. Cha-cha-cha!!

 

Feeling better now? YOU’RE NOT?? 

 

Ok – we need to talk! Like right NOW!

How to Maintain a Decluttered Home

How to Maintain a Decluttered Home

How to Maintain a De-cluttered Home

 

So you’ve followed all the advice and de-cluttered your house. Woah…so proud of you! But … all too soon, you realize that you have clutter creep. So tell me then, How to Maintain a De-cluttered Home, get my drift?

 

Stuff is starting to build up again. Maybe you ended up replacing some of the stuff you got rid of or maybe everyone isn’t pitching in to keep the house de-cluttered.

 

Here are a few simple, quick habits that all family members can do to keep the house de-cluttered.

 

Deal with mail immediately—

The last thing any of us want to do after a long day at work is dealing with the mail. But since it has to be done, do it immediately.

  1. Throw ads and other junk mail directly in the trash or recycling bin.
  2. Put bills and other important papers in the specified place and shred sensitive information that doesn’t need to be filed.
  3. To make this even easier, make all your bills, banking and other statements paperless and get your name on the “no junk mail” list.

Before long, there will be very little mail to deal with at all.

 

Nightly pick-up routine—

As you gather in the living room in the evenings, each family member brings stuff with them—a mug, a glass, a snack plate, an iPod, a hand-held video game or homework.

  1. Have you ever noticed how frequently that stuff stays in the living room, making it cluttered?
  2. Set a new rule that each night before heading to bed, everyone picks up everything they brought into the room that evening and puts it back where it belongs, in their out-the-door basket, for example.
  3. It takes 2 minutes to do and keeps clutter creep to a minimum.

 

Add a coat rack and baskets—

As soon as the family walks in the door, they are likely to take off coats and backpacks, set down lunch boxes and briefcases, all right in the entryway where they will be tripped over for the rest of the evening.

  1. To keep this area decluttered, add a coat rack and a basket or cubby for each person in the entryway.
  2. Get family members used to hanging up their coats and putting the other stuff they bring home in a designated place.
    • Like their out-the-door basket

It will take a little time and a few gentle reminders, but everyone will eventually appreciate the new peace that a decluttered house exudes

 

Eliminate your junk drawers—

This may sound undoable, but it really isn’t. Have a place for everything, including the small items that tend to end up in a junk drawer.

  1. Get small containers or better yet, upcycle some with the kids, and keep these small items separated and organized in drawers.
  2. Things like batteries, paper clips, rubber bands, twist ties, etc. all have their own place in a drawer or two.
  3. Take a rubber band off the Sunday paper? Put it immediately in the correct cubby hole before sitting down to enjoy the paper.

 

Seriously – hoping these tips help! Have a wonderful day. 😉

Oh, by the way…need help making decisions? Contact us here, let’s get on a call and find your solution.

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