Working Around the Holidays as a Virtual Assistant
One thing I get asked a lot is “How do you take time off during the holidays as a VA?!”
In a business where I can literally work anywhere and anytime, it can be hard to set boundaries. I WANT to be there for my clients. Plus, it’s sort of like teaching….when you take a day off, sometimes it’s more work trying to catch up or prepare everything for the sub in advance!
Plus, working through some of the down days in the holiday season can actually help me get ahead or catch up on some courses I’ve taken.
Here’s my top 3 tips for working around (and through!) the holidays as a virtual assistant:
1. Communicate Early & Often with Your Clients - Let them know your working schedule as soon as you know it and remind them of it leading up to the actual holiday. Your clients will appreciate the heads up and also that you are setting boundaries and aren’t available 24/7 for them. That speaks professionalism and that you prioritize your family and time solely devoted to them! I also put it in our contract that while we have flexible hours, we are not held to requests made after normal business hours and we’ll get to them within 24 hours.
2. Work Ahead - I emailed my clients before Thanksgiving, letting them know which days I would not be working and would be unreachable. I worked my butt off to get two weeks of content done for some clients so I wouldn’t have to do work during my time off. As them for what they would need during your break and if you can work ahead. This will help them get their act together (if they’re last minute people) and allows you to not feel guilty about relaxing a bit.
3. Outsource - Can you have a team member take on some of the tasks you are taking off from? You must realize they want to celebrate as well, but if they are your assistant and would like extra money, this might be the perfect compromise. It gives you a break, blesses them, and keeps your clients happy.
All in all, I love what I do so I rarely take a day 100% off. There’s always a quick task I can do or an email I can send that takes zero time. On my 4 days of during Thanksgiving, I did some research for our business, kept up on social media for us and did some brain dumping for new programs. I like that I can work if I want too, but I don’t HAVE to during this time. This has allowed me to put more creative juices into play as we grow our own business.
Do you take time off during the holidays? What does it look like for you?