One of the biggest draws of virtual assisting is the ability to work from wherever you would like. While many immediately think of the day to day idea of working remotely, there is also the situational events such as taking a vacation as a virtual assistant that may be a new experience for virtual administrators.
Virtual assisting and vacations have been a major discussion as more people jump into the realm of virtual administration as a job. Now you no longer are bound to a 9-5 job and have to wait to request vacation days to go elsewhere in the world.
On the flip side, how do you approach going on vacation as a virtual assistant and what considerations should be made? There are many different ways to look at vacations as a virtual but here is a look at the arguments of working vs. shutting down while on vacation and how both should be approached.
Staying online during vacation:
Sometimes, you just can’t afford to shut down the laptop which means taking it on vacation is what you will have to do. How can you enjoy yourself while being on vacation and working? It isn’t as hard of a balance as you may think but there are some steps you want to accomplish.
1) Let your clients know you are away, but working. This at least gives them a heads up that you may be in and out and can work with you to find that sweet spot of working and relaxing.
2) Once on vacation, think of how you spend your day at home. WHat times do you go out and what times do you stay in. Potentially use this formula to figure out when you will be working and when you will be away from the computer. If after 7 pm you are normally in, then schedule that time to be your work time.
3) Schedule time for you and make sure that your vacation isn’t completely work related. If it is, then you end up regretting the vacation and will not have taken even the slight amount of time to decompress. Although clients need you to work, they also need you to work at the best of your ability. Taking some time for rest and relaxation is actually the key to coming back bigger and better in your work.
Unplugging and going without work for vacation:
Sometimes, you may want to travel without your laptop or may have to if you are going overseas and will be without the data to hop on any device. This is a type of vacation that needs a little bit more work than a vacation you still plan on working during, but still is a beneficial part to recouping and coming back to work ready to take on all your responsibilities. Below are steps on how to approach a workless vacation:
1) Give advance notice to clients. If you have one or five clients, you need to make sure they all know and all are onboard. Although everyone needs a vacation, as virtual assistants, you need to plan it during a slow time when all are okay with the gap in work.
2) After your clients have agreed to the vacation, find a way to either finish work before you leave or be able to pick it back up after vacation without stressing too much. You could do a double the week before and be done with it or even work out an agreement with your client that you will do the double open return. Most would opt for the former because then all work is done prior and not weighing on your mind, but each virtual assistant works differently.
3) If there are other virtuals within the group, potentially reach out to them to see if they can cover you during this time and in return, you will do the same for them as well when they need to go away. If you are the lone virtual, then this information need not apply.
4) If you are going to ask to be offline, then stay offline. Asking for time away as a virtual can be daunting, but if you are able to swing it then take full advantage of it. An occasional check-in to emails is okay but advised against to train your mind to relax.
These are just a few suggestions and tips regarding going away and being online or offline with your clients. For any further information, visit Meadows VA School to learn how to best approach travel and working as a virtual assistant.