In an ideal world you would hire a personal assistant that would stay with your company until retirement. You would only have to onboard an assistant once, and for the next twenty years you would never have to worry about teaching someone how to check your email or make bank deposits. But we don’t live in an ideal world. Employees come and go, priorities change and you are likely to find yourself having to onboard new team members at least every few years. So today I wanted to go over five processes that you want to go over with every new assistant.

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1. Key person list.

In your business life or in your personal life, there are certain people that really matter.  Who are the key people in the company that you’re going to talk about or ask them to help with? Who are the key clients that they should know about? When so-and-so calls or emails, they’re our number one client, or maybe they are perpetually late on payment and you really have to stay on top of them. Keep a running list of the key people that you want your assistant to know about and revise that list often as things change.

2. Business structure chart.

Many business owners run several businesses at once, so this could get confusing really quickly. Having a visual lay of the land to show your new assistant where everyone falls in the company structure will help them get acclimated to who does what. You don’t have to share this with everyone in your organization, but your assistant will need to know the information if they are going to do any work on your behalf.

3. Your work style.

We all have our quirks when it comes to work style. Maybe you are a visual learner and prefer to get written updates on tasks and projects. Maybe you like to delegate verbally, but want a follow up via email. Maybe you are very particular about your travel plans or tend to be forgetful about dates and need someone to remind you several times of important meetings. Whatever it is that makes you tick, put it in writing so that your assistant has an idea of what they are working with.

4. Your calendar preferences.

If you want your assistant to manage your calendar, putting all your needs in writing will help them get acclimated quickly. Do you like to have breaks between meetings or do you prefer to have them all back to back? Do you want notes included on the calendar or printed out and handed to you before important meetings?

5. Your business acronyms.

We all do it. You have shorthand names for everything. In my business we use acronyms like QCH, UBS, BCP….and the list goes on and on. To you, they all make sense because you have been using them day in and day out for years. But to someone new coming into your company it can be quite confusing. So do your assistant a favor and give them a cheat sheet on day one.

As time goes on, you will be able to train your assistant on more processes within your business but starting off with these five processes will help get started faster and start creating value for the business on day one.