Are you on the fence about whether or not you need to hire an assistant? Do you have an assistant, but aren’t sure what tasks to delegate to them?
The following list of tasks will help you equip and empower your assistant – or hire one – so you can free up your time and energy.
After all, wouldn’t you rather focus on tasks you enjoy doing, and are actually paid to do? Delegate the following 11 tasks to an assistant and see what happens.
1. Organize and Filter Your Inbox
Wouldn’t it be great to have someone filter out all the non-urgent, and likely unimportant emails in your inbox before you even open it up? There are some emails you never need to see, and many that can be taken care of by your assistant. Let them organize, filter, and manage your inbox.
2. Manage Your Email List
If you have an email list you communicate to on a regular basis, odds are you use an email management system to do so. Whether you use ConvertKit, ConstantContact, Aweber, InfusionSoft, MailChimp, or something else, it’s a lot of work. If you don’t use one, you could definitely benefit from setting one up. But wouldn’t it be nice if you had someone on your team who could manage the process?
You should be able to draft your content, send it over to your assistant, then forget about it. They can edit and distribute it via your email automation system.
3. Book meetings and phone calls
Scheduling a meeting seems like a simple task, but it can quickly turn into 4 or 5 emails or text messages sent back and forth with a meeting yet to be scheduled. A good assistant knows your calendar better than you and can work with the other person’s assistant to set up a meeting. Stop wasting time looking for openings on your calendar. Focus on which meetings you need to have, and the content of those meetings.
4. Organize Digital Files and Manage Backups
Do you really want to spend half an hour trying to find that one document from 3 years ago? An organized file system keeps you on task and saves you time and energy.
Keeping your files backed up prevents a disaster if your computer decides not to wake up one day, or if you drop your phone in the toilet. Have your assistant set up and manage your file organization and backups using Dropbox, G-Suite, Time Machine, etc.
5. Book Travel (Flights, Hotels, Rental Cars)
This may seem like an obvious task for an assistant to handle, but I spoke with one executive who said he still books his own travel. He thought it’d be simpler to keep doing it himself because he has so many personal preferences when it comes to traveling. I encouraged him to teach his assistant to book travel the way he does, and to be gracious if she makes a mistake or two. After all, a good assistant will learn from their mistakes and not make them again.
If you’re in the same boat, the next time you go to book a flight or hotel, think about all the projects and tasks you could work on if your assistant were handling it. Especially the tasks you love – and are being paid to do.
6. Create Slide Decks
Building a slide presentation may sound fun to you. Until you start dealing with formatting issues, finding the right images, and exporting the final deck in a format that works on any device or software. Your assistant can handle all the grunt work while you focus on the content.
Stop pretending to be a graphic designer and let your assistant build your presentations. If they’re not a graphic designer either, give them permission to outsource certain design work to an actual graphic designer as needed.
7. Research for Blog Posts, Newsletters or Slide Decks
Speaking of slide decks, that presentation you’re working on may need some supporting stats to take it to the next level. An assistant can find those for you while you’re working on the rest of it.
Or maybe you’re drafting a blog post and need an infographic that drives home a point. An assistant can help you find one, or again – they can find a graphic designer to create a unique infographic for your content.
8. Content Management (Social Media, Blog, etc)
An assistant can manage your Blog, but also Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, SnapChat, and other social media accounts. Wouldn’t it be nice to write content, then let your assistant break it up and schedule it across all your platforms? Say goodbye to formatting blog posts in WordPress or Squarespace. Comment moderation? They can do that too.
How much time could you free up to write more content if you didn’t have to distribute and manage the content yourself?
9. Take Notes in Meetings
A good assistant should take notes in meetings and follow up with action items for you and other attendees. This is especially true for the most important meeting of your week.
10. Various Personal Tasks
Sometimes you’re out of town and need someone to meet the plumber at your house while your wife is picking up the kids. Or maybe you need your car taken to an auto repair shop while you’re in a day-long board meeting. Whatever random personal task it is, having your assistant take care of it can help you stay focused at work.
That said, be sure you’ve clarified expectations with your assistant. You should have included “personal tasks” in their job description. You don’t want personal tasks to surprise your assistant and complicate the relationship. Always be clear up front!
11. Attend Meetings on Your Behalf
This is one of the most valuable things you can have your assistant do. There are many meetings that are informational in nature, and no major decisions are being made, so your presence is not required. Sometimes you can ask for an email update informing you of the meeting’s content.
However, there are times you need someone present in the meeting. Maybe you want to know what the overall tone of the meeting was – were people excited to be there, or did they seem miserable the whole time?
Or maybe you simply want to assess whether or not the meeting was necessary. In these cases, you need a person to attend and report back to you. Your assistant is the best person for this job. They know what you are looking for and are not afraid to report back with honest feedback. Don’t be afraid to send your assistant to meetings on your behalf.
There are many more tasks I could add, but this is a good start. If you have an assistant, do they already handle all the above for you? If not, why not?
If you don’t have an assistant, what’s the number one reason why you haven’t hired one yet? Let me know in the comments below or shoot me an email. I’d love to hear from you!
If you need one-on-one help finding an assistant or developing your current assistant, I can help! Learn more about my coaching services here.