#402 – Mail-Right Show: How to Hire The Right Real Estate Virtual Assistants 2023
How to Hire The Right Real Estate Virtual Assistants 2023
Are you struggling to find reliable real estate virtual assistants for your business? Look no further.
Our latest show is packed with proven techniques to revolutionize your hiring process in 2023. Learn how to identify the right candidates, assess their qualifications, and ensure a seamless integration into your team.
#1 – Intro
#2 – Project Management tool
-a- Notion – https://www.notion.so/product/projects
-b- Monday – https://monday.com/
-c – ClickUp – https://clickup.com/
#3 – Prospecting and Time-Saving List
#4 – Writing Job Description
#5 – Paid Trial
#6 – Interview
#7 – Onboarding
#8 – Final Thoughts
The Hosts of The Mail-Right Show
Episode Full Show Notes
[00:00:10.800] – Robert Newman
Hey, welcome back, everybody, to The Mail-Right.com show. It’s episode number 402 today, and we’re talking about how to hire the best real estate virtual assistants in 2023. Once again, it’s my fearless co-host who is producing the show has picked this wonderful topic for us. I have hired hundreds of virtual assistants effectively, so I definitely feel like I have something I can contribute to the subject. Before we jump into what will be a great discussion on the subject, I said subject twice. John, why don’t you go ahead and introduce yourself to the people who are listening to the show?
[00:00:52.460] – Jonathan Denwood
Thanks, Rob. Yes, I’m the joint founder of Mel-Wright. Com. We are a CRM, our IDX website with lead generation. Email and text is provided. We’ve got a lot to offer. We love you to become part of the family. Back over to you, Rob.
[00:01:13.980] – Robert Newman
Beautiful. Okay, so first of all, we are going to… Well, my name is Robert Newman. I’m the founder of a real estate technology company called Inbound Real Estate Marketing, or Inbounddem.com for short. You can learn a lot more about me and the services, but basically, we do SEO design websites you own, and we do a lot of things within that field. I’m known for it. I’ve been known for it for a long time. He is probably one of the most experienced still practicing real estate online marketing consultants that exist in the US at this point. I’ve been doing it for 15 years. Want to learn more about me? Go to inboundrdm.com. Now onto the subject at hand. I’m just going to read John’s beautiful intro. Are you struggling to find some reliable help to help you with your business? I use virtual assistants, ad nauseam. And the reason that you want to talk to us about using virtual assistants is there’s many places in the world that for five or six dollars an hour. You can hire incredibly dedicated, incredibly talented, incredibly proactive people who will do things like post all your pictures for you, tag those pictures for you, and edit those pictures for you.
[00:02:27.610] – Robert Newman
In some cases, you can even hire a relatively decent video editor for under $8 an hour, which by the way, you can’t get that service in the United States for under $50 or $60 an hour. So when you start talking about all the things that you might do, well, that’s what I think of when I think of real estate virtual assistants. John, what did you mean when you said do an intro and let’s talk about how you would use virtual assistants?
[00:02:51.730] – Jonathan Denwood
I basically agree with most of what you said. I think what you said is based on experience. I’m surprised at the early rates you’re quoting to get good quality help based on my experience, but it does really depend on what they’re doing for you. But based on my experience, what you get is you can get a quality candidate at a rate of about 50% of what you would pay natively in the USA. That’s just my rough, but it’s dependent. But you will get somebody if you’re in the onboarding process, and this is partly why I wanted to discuss this, I know that you’ve got a lot more experience than I do on this, but I’ve got a reasonable amount, but you’ve got more experience—is you’ve got to be very clear what you’re looking for, what the priorities are, and you’ve got to have an onboarding process. Otherwise, it’s probably not going to go that great.
[00:04:16.520] – Robert Newman
All true. The quality of the help that you get for the hourly rate that you get it is going to be based a tremendous amount on your personal experience. When people come to work for me, they get extremely detailed step-by-step videos on the task. I take the complicated part out of the equation for them. They show up, watch a few videos, and are generally properly trained. They have people that they can message on Slack for direct input. Should we feel differently? We have also usually provided, this is what a high-quality result looks like for the task. I mean, everything is usually covered, everything. We rarely get any questions back at this point. When you hire somebody with that much direct and detailed information, yeah, they are usually willing to give you a very strong quote. It also helps when you take the time, as I have done, to build up a profile on the places that you’re doing your hiring out of, whether that’s Fiverr or Upwork or wherever you’re going to find your staff. I generally have five-star ratings up the waso. In Upwork, I’ve got I’ve spent close to a million dollars there.
[00:05:31.640] – Robert Newman
It’s a crazy amount of money at this point. So when people look my company up, they go, they are dying to work for us at whatever rate we tell them. But that part of that is just based on our strong, strong reputation that we built on the platform. We can get more into that at some point here, but John opened up this dialog about hiring virtual assistants with the idea of, okay, what tasks would you either have them manage or how would you manage those tasks? He listed off a couple of project tools that he would use, which is Notion, Monday. Com, and ClickUp, which is funny because you pick three very popular ones. I’ve only used one of the three. We attempted to migrate our entire team over to Notion and found it too complicated. It was too complicated for people to understand, too many buttons, and too many places to go, and we moved off it and stuck with Base Camp. But Base Camp is a project management. Notion is, I would call it, a team-up. Team projects are one way to a good way to go, and operations tool is another good way to say it.
[00:06:40.910] – Robert Newman
It’s a higher level tool that extends deeper into the area of organization. It’s navigatable and clickable. But when we looked at our dashboards, they were maddening. We all collectively agreed we didn’t want to go in that direction. Monday. Com I’ve never used, and ClickUp I’ve never used.
[00:07:04.080] – Jonathan Denwood
Yeah, I haven’t used Monday. I’ve used Notion and I’ve used ClickUp. I’ve used base camp like you. In my own operation, we don’t use base camp. We use something called Free Camp. I’ve been using that for about four years now, but I have utilized and I agree with everything you just outlined, you just got to find it’s a bit like talking about what’s the best real estate CRM. There isn’t such a thing. It just depends on the circumstance. Notion is extremely popular, but it’s complicated because you can do a ton of different things. Personally, when I was utilizing it, I preferred ClickUp, but it does a load of stuff. There’s others. There’s a lot out there. But in general, if you’re going to utilize a virtual assistant, you do need some online project management tool of some kind. You don’t have to. You can just utilize email or you could just utilize Slack. We utilize Slack a lot, but we don’t utilize it as our project management tool. But you need something. I think if you’re going to be serious about it, you need something a bit more than an email.
[00:08:44.210] – Robert Newman
My advice to everybody listening to this show, if you’re going to hire a virtual assistant, be ready and cognizant of the fact that you should be able to hire them with them, the understanding that you can describe the task, that you’ve done the task at least once that you know what you want done. The very minute you start telling anybody at any price what it is you think you want done, but you have no idea how to do it, you’re in trouble, okay? I have hired people at $80 an hour, and I’ve hired people at $4 an hour. Believe it or not, I’m being honest with you, John, and everybody that is listening to this show, I would not make this up. I have gotten just as good of service out of the $4 an hour person as I have often good times gotten out of the $80 an hour person. The level of the quality of the result I get is usually directly in proportion to how well and how much I’ve described the task down to the last nuts and bolts of what we’re doing. Like if I can give somebody all the details I want, I usually get flawless performance, especially out of overseas resources.
[00:09:50.190] – Robert Newman
I stay away from India. I stay away from Pakistan. I’ve tried both of those countries ad nauseam. I’m not saying I’ve never found a good resource there. I have, but I generally have to hire five or six for every one that I keep. I don’t bother anymore because Macedonia and the Philippines have both given me two to one in terms of the resources and the level of revenue that I’ve gotten. For every person I talk to, I find at least one other person. When I find somebody that clicks with my team and we take on board, usually there’s a huge amount of durability in terms of my team and my resources. Most of my people in the Philippines have been with me for four, five, in some cases, six and seven years, and there’s no turnover. There’s only turnover when we try to hire somebody new, and in the first five or six months, whatever problem might happen comes to the surface. I’ll tell you what, John, I’ve only run across one consistent problem out of the Philippines, which is where we get lied to when we onboard somebody and they have existing contracts. When we start to notice their work is shoddy or sporadic, and we asked them, we said, Hey, we were hiring you with the understanding that you were going to be a full-time employee and we’re not getting good results.
[00:11:14.970] – Robert Newman
Every single time it’s like, Oh, yeah, well, we have another job. We have another contract. They got busy and we’re doing that. It’s like, Well, we asked you that question.
[00:11:27.650] – Jonathan Denwood
[00:11:29.210] – Robert Newman
All right, prospecting.
[00:11:32.530] – Jonathan Denwood
And- Sorry, I just interrupted you. Sorry, go on.
[00:11:37.090] – Robert Newman
I was going to move on. Did you want to add something to the project management a little bit?
[00:11:40.600] – Jonathan Denwood
I just found that most of the staff, there’s a difference between general virtual assistant and a lot of the people I’ve been hiring, most of my experience, I’ve got a bit of experience with Fiverr because I was looking for more Pacific skill-orientated IT skill. I tend to use Upwork. But my Pacific, I tend to put effort in the job description and then I research the people. Instead of just putting it out for people to come to me, I outreach to a target. I’ve already researched people and I normally whittle it down to about five to ten candidates, and I tend to go with the upper level of upwork. I fluent English, got a track record, at least two years track record. Most that got between four to five stars have actual written reviews that don’t seem to be made up. I tend to do more research before I leave and then I outreach to them, and then I always have a Zoom, an initial Zoom with them, and then they all… And there’s other things that I’ve put in the show notes, but that’s the process that I’ve gone through. It’s helped a lot, but you can still be lied to and you can still find the person you wonder how they got such good reviews because their work has been…
[00:13:29.270] – Jonathan Denwood
I found some excellent people, but I found there doesn’t seem to be any middle road. Either they’re really good or they’re really rubbish. That’s my experience.
[00:13:39.450] – Robert Newman
I would agree with that. I tend to have a black and white experience, but just like any company, there’s a difference between black, white, and superstar. I’ve hired on about 50 people for Inbound rem, and I have about five superstars. The superstars are people where I look at them and I go to myself, John, I’ve worked with people who’ve made $80,000 to $100,000 here in the United States, and these people are more dedicated and better at their job. That’s a superstar. That’s somebody because this idea that only US resources can provide an incredibly high quality result is, in my experience, rubbish. As a matter of fact, I feel like US work and work ethic has been declining in the last 10-15 years. That’s my experience. I lay no claim to saying that for everybody. I’m just saying that in my experience, that’s been what it is. My team overseas, especially the five people I mentioned, I mean, these are people that always have their phones on, answer like digital messaging 24 hours a day almost. If they’re awake, I’m getting a response or my clients are getting a response, go way out of their way to learn new skills, read everything I send them, study everything I send them, and not only that, but learn from them.
[00:14:58.000] – Robert Newman
Like my SEO guy right now is probably as good as my brother who went off to make a very high income after being trained by me here in the US. He’s that good, and yet he’s in the Philippines. Now, his only downside is he doesn’t speak great English, which is disappointing. But to be honest with you, I am not complaining because I pay him one-fifth or maybe even one-tenth of what that person would be as a US resource. Holy cow. Will I take a little bit of broken English over that? Oh, yeah. Without a question.
[00:15:39.690] – Jonathan Denwood
Two of my chief developers are based abroad and they are fantastic, but I get them at a very good rate. I treat them extremely well. I pay their invoices straight away and I’ve never sensed they’re abused with their time records, but they don’t speak good English. But I have US-based project managers. I don’t now project manage. I have one or two project managers, but they’re US-based because I feel the clients expect it and it just makes it easier. That’s how I split it up. It’s black and white, but you can get some excellent people. Those two developers, they’ve been with me about six to eight years.
[00:16:38.500] – Robert Newman
Are you not saying what part of the world they’re from intentionally?
[00:16:42.160] – Jonathan Denwood
No, they’re from Vietnam.
[00:16:44.340] – Robert Newman
[00:16:44.560] – Jonathan Denwood
Employ a whole family. That seems to be just hired one individual, but he has a whole… I don’t think he’s working for me solely, but I think I’m probably one of his customers, but he’s got a whole family operation.
[00:17:07.280] – Robert Newman
Well, John was kind enough to reveal to him. I have to admit to everybody listening to this, and we’re going to come back and I’m going to detail out my hiring process, and then we’re going to move on to the next question. We’ll be right back. But as we go to break, I’m going to say the following. Listen, John has been much more explorative than I have. Over the years, I’ve worked through the call center. My call center experience, I work with the Philippines. I’m not kidding when I say I’ve worked with thousands upon thousands of people from that country. If any of you listening to this show happen to be a second-generation person from some other part of the world, like Argentina, Chile, any of the South American countries where the dollar stretches further, it would be worth you, like Mexican, it’d be worth your time to you to maybe focus on those countries where you know the culture and you know the people, but can get a better rate on the resource. I work in the Philippines because I know the culture really well at this point. All right, with that, we’re going to be right back.
[00:18:10.850] – Robert Newman
Stay tuned, ladies and gentlemen. We’re going to knock your socks off with virtual assistant information. All right, we’ll be right back. Do you want quality leads from homeowners and buyers right in your own neighborhood? Then you need mail right. It is a powerful but easy to use online marketing system that uses Facebook to generate real estate leads at a fraction of the cost you’d pay from our competition. We stand behind our work with a no-question-asked 30-day money-back guarantee. So don’t delay. Get started today. Go to mail-right. Com. Welcome back, ladies and gentlemen to episode number 402 of the MailRight podcast. Today we’re talking about the best way to hire a virtual assistant in 2023. Here’s how I do it. I did start with Fiverr and Upwork, first and foremost, true transparency. I don’t stick with those anymore. The head of my overseas operations goes straight to job boards in the Philippines, and we get a lot of great people there. It goes to schools, universities, and other local places. But since I don’t speak Tagalog, I don’t handle those ads. When I do hire on Upwork, what I do, or I post the same ad on LinkedIn occasionally, what I do is I write an ad just like I would here in the US with a very detailed job description.
[00:19:26.780] – Robert Newman
The more detailed, the better. And then I put the ad up along with a range of hourly. I usually get a small percentage response because in my ad, John, I’ve moved to the direction that you’ve already moved, which is number one, you must speak fluid English. That eliminates a lot of people right there. Then number two, I usually say you must have an incredibly strong track record. Generally speaking, most of my top people have five-star ratings. I generally don’t have anybody.
[00:19:58.010] – Jonathan Denwood
Who’s had- I’ve learnt the hard way. That’s what my approach is. Yeah, I totally agree with you.
[00:20:06.860] – Robert Newman
I agree with what John said. I read every review. If I’m going to take my time to do an interview, I’m going to read every single review. I don’t care if there’s five or 500, I’m going to read them all.
[00:20:17.080] – Jonathan Denwood
If they’ve got no negatives, alarm bells start reading because if they’ve got any volume, if they’re all five, and it’s like dealing with reviews in general folks, if they’re all five star, that’s a problematic for me. If they’ve had a dispute and I look at how they responded to the feedback, and I’m actually quite interested how they responded with a semi-bad review and what they’re saying about it, I find that more informative than just a list of five-star.
[00:21:01.770] – Robert Newman
Totally agree, except I’m going to go slightly different. Ladies and gentlemen, this is a terrible secret, and it is a secret and it is terrible. I have nothing but five-star reviews. That sounds great on paper.
[00:21:14.450] – Jonathan Denwood
Yeah, but you’re superb.
[00:21:15.860] – Robert Newman
But John is correct. No, I acquiesce too much. I acquiesce too much. I have done… I’ve been blackmailed for a consistent across the board, never deviated from five-star review in 14 years. I’ve been blackmailed more than once, as a matter of fact, and once or twice egregiously. I think that I’ve made a mistake, John. No, I’m not saying that for a fact. I’m being deadly serious with you. I think I’ve made a mistake. I think that I’ve spent too much time and too much money in circumstances, and I agree with you 100 %. Probably better had I let them turn into a bad review so that I could then respond online and bring my problem-solving skills to the surface, as opposed to having nothing but five-star reviews over a long track record. It appears like I’ve never had a bad experience. That’s not true. I have had unhappy customers and challenging customer service issues. Yes, I’ve managed to keep those away from my profiles. But does that mean that those clients were always inevitably happy? No. Some of the time it meant that I just handed them back money I probably shouldn’t have handed them, and they had no real good reason to post anything against me.
[00:22:33.860] – Robert Newman
I don’t agree with that. I did the work. I shouldn’t have done it. Do you see what I’m saying?
[00:22:37.680] – Jonathan Denwood
Yes, I do.
[00:22:38.900] – Robert Newman
Okay. Ladies and gentlemen, the next thing that we’re going to talk about again, this is due to John’s incredibly good producing skills. We’re going to talk about prospecting and time saving. John, I have a lot to say. I could say a lot on this because this is what I’ve done for 30 plus years as a career. Why don’t you go ahead and leap in and I’ll finish it out?
[00:23:01.200] – Jonathan Denwood
Well, I think it’s about what we said in the first half. This is only my attitude. I think to get the individual that can do both of this is probably depending. You need somebody that’s got a lot of experience and you’re probably going to be paying them a bit more. I think prospecting and tasks that are time-saving are two different buckets and they attract two different type of people. I think that applies domestically and that applies offshore. I think you need to work out which bucket you’re looking for and don’t mix them up too much. But I’ll be interested in what you think because you might feel I’m totally wrong, but that’s just myYou’ll.
[00:24:00.600] – Robert Newman
Find that some resources have multiple skill sets. Like the guy that is the head of my overseas operations, he started off as a lead chaser for me. That just people I talk to, like when I started him in Boundary, I had 800 contacts from seven previous years of doing real estate marketing and sales and account executive work and leadership and all that different jazz. He called them. He was calling them for me. That was his one and only job. It was like a two-paragraph sentence. Robert moved on from so-and-so, would you like to talk to him? That was it. Super simple. Within, I don’t know, two weeks, he was like, Can I do this? Can I do that? Let me do this other thing. Let me do this other thing. I think that John ultimately is right. I think that the resource that you have, depending on what business it is like, how do you want to run your real estate business? My advice for all of you is to figure out every single task that you can possibly offload to somebody who’s a much less expensive resource, images, video editing, anything related to a transaction that’s not critical.
[00:25:06.640] – Robert Newman
Like do you have to.
[00:25:09.200] – Jonathan Denwood
[00:25:10.860] – Robert Newman
Client lists? Anything that can be done by anybody else you want to have somebody do it, but you don’t necessarily find all of that in a single resource. Reading and editing emails is perfectly possible from people from other countries, but maybe not the same person that’s going to be the salesperson following up with your leads, like calling, like an ISA. You do generally find people with different skill sets, which I think is what you were saying, right? Okay, I don’t disagree with that. But if you should ever find somebody… I’ve got two people on staff, John, that have had previous real estate experience, and they were both really deeply connected virtual assistants to real estate agents, and they were doing a lot of different things for those agents. If you find a resource who says that they can and then starts to step up, don’t slow them down just because you think that they can do one bucket’s worth of stuff. Try them out and see, because some resources can do many things. Writing a job description. What do you mean by that? Somebody writing your job description? Are you writing one for.
[00:26:19.710] – Jonathan Denwood
Somebody else? I just look at what other people have written on Upworks and then I get about four or five of the descriptions. I look at bits that I think I’ve been done. I use AI to help me write it and I spend a bit more time on it than I used to because it’s important. If you can’t write a decent job description, you’re in trouble because this isn’t going to work out that well. This isn’t going to go well if you can’t even write a precise time. If it ends up being like war and peace about 15 paragraphs, that’s enough of sign that you’re in big trouble.
[00:27:09.300] – Robert Newman
Correct. When you do your job descriptions, make sure that you use bullet points, that you’re succinct, that you do the who, what, when, why, where of the position. Direct, detailed, and broken up into bullet pointed pieces is best in my experience. A paid trial. What I think that you meant by this, John, is that you wanted to take somebody on board and essentially tell them upfront, Listen, we’re going to try you for a week. We’re going to pay you for that week, but you need to understand that we’re looking at your work, examining your work, and if it doesn’t measure up, we’re not going to keep you on. Is that what you meant?
[00:27:43.640] – Jonathan Denwood
In a way, but it depends on what they’re doing for you. I’ve got a lady I’ve hired and she’s on a three-month trial, but she’s doing a Pacific fin for me and she’s got a lot of experience and a good rating. But the gig is that I paid her half for first month upfront, because she’s going to have to do a lot of initial research. She’s going to have to do. Then I’m going to pay her the half at the end of this month. But probably we’re going to discuss how she’s got on and I’m going to pay her for the second month because in my opinion, I’ve got to give her at least two months to work out what she’s doing for me.
[00:28:35.780] – Robert Newman
Hey, everybody who’s listening to the show, raise your hand if you want to work for John.
[00:28:39.740] – Jonathan Denwood
Wow. I don’t.
[00:28:42.840] – Robert Newman
[00:28:43.710] – Jonathan Denwood
Of that. No, but basically, you’ve got to be reasonably generous. These people are from the third world that a lot of them are relying on your income. You’re actually, in my experience, you’ve got to be… There are people that are going to rip you off. They’re going to take a paid trial and they’re not going to produce anything. You are going to be ripped off. But I’ve made the decision that I’m looking for quality people and they’re going to be treated as quality people, and I expect them to treat me as a quality employer. That’s why I tell you that.
[00:29:31.960] – Robert Newman
Probably good advice on every measure. I make somebody step through a multistep interview process and towards the second or third steps where I’m telling them that I want them to learn something and then I’m going to test them. I pay them for the learning and I pay them for the test. I may or may not do that upfront. It just depends on the resource that I’m talking to. But I absolutely tell them that the testing part of the trial process is paid. You go out there, you do the research, come back to me. We do another… Usually, we do two or three Zoom calls, and by the time I’m done, I have about a 95% stick rate after I go through my interview process. So generally speaking, every once in a while I get it wrong, and when I get it wrong, I reallyget on.
[00:30:16.960] – Jonathan Denwood
[00:30:17.490] – Robert Newman
I just want.
[00:30:20.300] – Jonathan Denwood
To point out one thing, and it applies to business relationships, personal relationships, and with this, the warning signs are there from the first interaction, the first interview. Normally, the warning signs, if you’ve got any process, the warning signs are going to be right there for you. You’re going to, initially, because you’re pushed for time for other factors, they’re very pleasant, they’re very attractive, they’ve got a good story, they’ve got… There’s loads of factors, but unless they’re a total sociopath and their expert manipulates a liar and they’re a narcissist as well, it’s normally all out there in front of you. You just don’t want to see it, and this is going to be here. After you’ve hired a few people, you should then get feeling for it and it’s going to be all there for you to see. It’s just if you don’t see it, it’s because you don’t want to see it.
[00:31:39.700] – Robert Newman
Well, I’m going to say this. John put down a lot of great subjects, but when you’re hiring somebody on either you or somebody on your team needs to take the like hiring new people is a hell of a commitment always. The idea, though, is that long term they will eventually really be worth ten times as you put it into them. But having said that, all new people, all work needs to be reviewed originally if you’re concerned about quality or the quality of their work or the quality of the diligence of their effort. Once with a resource from Pakistan, as it turned out, we hired on this brilliant kid or seemingly brilliant that was a coder, and he seemed to do a great job. He got by me, and he got by the lead developer of my company. Then we discovered that 80 % of the work that he was doing, he was doing with an auto-clicker on his keyboard. He wasn’t doing any of the time tracking. The second that any of us watched any of the like a single days worth of his work, we realized he was using an auto-clicker because he hadn’t figured out how to put a human being there.
[00:32:43.800] – Robert Newman
So it wasn’t even all that clever, but we’re all there about it. He just put in a good effort the first 30 days. We stopped paying attention, and then he started using an auto-clicker. It was crazy. We obviously had to let him go. He was doing okay work when he did the work and terrible work when he didn’t. All right, ladies and gentlemen, we’re going to get to our final… This is the final moments. We’ve actually already overextended our time here. We’re into minute number 32, and we’re going to talk about onboarding and our bonus content today is going to be… Is going to be final thoughts. For me, onboarding is actually these days with other people that I’ve trained. Onboarding in the past, when I was still doing it myself about five years ago, was teaching people how to use the tools that we were using, which is Slack, Basecamp, and I did that a lot through video. If you’re not using Screencastomatic, if any of you are not familiar with the thing that records your screen, boy, howdy, are you going to find this all much more complicated? Because what I did, you can use Loom, you can use any number of different tools.
[00:33:56.530] – Robert Newman
All I did was when I had the time, which was after hours, I would create a video saying, this is how I use base camp, and this is how I do this, and this is how I do that. I never had a problem training resources, then they’d ask me the questions the next day via Slack, which I would answer, and then we’d be off to the races, but I did take the time every time to do, this is what I want you to do, this is what that looks like, let me know if you have any questions. I just record it. That’s what I did for onboarding. What did you do?
[00:34:33.080] – Jonathan Denwood
Yeah, just very… Because I had one guy, he’s now with me. He’s with me now four years. Funny enough, he lives in Pakistan, but he was educated in England and he did his degree at Oxford. He’s English and he’s written English. Well, it’s bound to be better he’s written English. But he deals with a couple of clients we have that are Salesforce and he’s a Salesforce programmer administrator, and he does some other things for me as well. I’ve got some other staff where I haven’t onboarded him because they’ve got a ton of experience. But in this, if you’ve got certain processes that you want doing, you need to follow what Robert said. You need to video them and have some notes and have something to give to them. I’ve seen so many agents and they’re getting through domestically and virtually so many assistants because they don’t provide any guidance, any onboarding and they wonder why it goes pear-sharp really quick.
[00:35:51.320] – Robert Newman
Correct. I agree with that 100%. The quality of your results will be based on the quality of your input at the beginning of the process. That is 100 % my experience. I wish in everything that I do, John, that there were major hacks. There are no major hacks. I can only tell you that I’ve learned from experience. Doing all this work upfront absolutely saves time in the long run, improves the quality of my results, makes people stick with me longer, and does everything that you want. But it does take that time upfront, and you just have to make it if you want to hire somebody, including all the way up to if you can’t do a phone call or a task, then you have to find something that’s been recorded by somebody else that looks like it might be the right thing to you and hand that off. I don’t care if you haven’t done it. If you don’t like any of our advice, fine. Youtube is rife, and so is Vimeo, for that matter, and how-to, and I can go on and on. There are plenty of places where people have created videos that explain a process like optimizing an image, finding a likely credible source, coming to my YouTube channel, stealing my content, handing it to your assistant, and saying, do this.
[00:37:07.250] – Robert Newman
Start somewhere, give them something.
[00:37:10.600] – Jonathan Denwood
You’ve got to give them… Especially, it applies domestically, but just based on my experience, the only element that it does is that they’re very, very experienced in a particular niche. But in general, if you don’t give offshore people guidance, and I call it onboarding, it’s not going to go well. You get these people say, You all go off, get a virtual assistant, and they’ll do everything for you, blah, blah, blah. They’ll be off on that’s rubbish. It’s BS. It’s just dribble, isn’t it, Robert?
[00:37:51.770] – Robert Newman
For the most part, I’ll say this, though, and this is my final thought. No joke, everybody listening to this show, I built my entire company of Oversea Resources. And generally speaking, this is what I found. I get twice the effort for half the price. That is my experience, hiring hundreds and hundreds of people, twice the effort for half the price. It really has to be something specific or very, very, like, I just have to have a US resource. I have one other US resource besides me, and he’s the head of my content team. He handles the tone for all of our writing for every writer in the company, and I pay him quite literally ten times more than I pay anybody else. That’s the only one in the entire cadre of the people. I have 23 people. He’s the only one. I need him. That has to be… Nobody else can nail the tone or the acronyms or the local flavor when it comes to attitudes in the US like you had, I just have to have that person with that knowledge, and that’s why I use them. But everybody else and everything else, no exceptions, I’ve managed to find people overseas that have worked out just fine.
[00:39:09.490] – Robert Newman
That’s my final thoughts, and I think you should do the same for your real estate business, whether it’s chasing leads, publishing images, handling communication like standard mundane day-to-day communication with clients, arranging your appointments, managing your calendar. I can go on and on. If you aren’t thinking of a way you can use a virtual assistant, you’re not thinking hard enough.
[00:39:31.280] – Jonathan Denwood
Yeah, I think, obviously if you’re struggling, you can’t. But if you’re starting to get traction as a real estate agent, I think you should attempt to hire a virtual assistant earlier than later and find one that can work with you, that you can build some relationship because then you won’t be in this manic situation where you’ve got more clients than you know what to deal with. The service levels are going to hell. You’ve got a leaky bucket situation. You’re getting leads in, but you’re losing… It’s just a bad situation. If you can get a virtual assistant in early and then later and get your processes so it doesn’t all go to hell, the better you’re going to have a better experience.
[00:40:24.700] – Robert Newman
Agreed. All right, ladies and gentlemen, that’s the end of our show. We’ve done the best that we can to give you some of our thoughts on hiring virtual assistants, some of our overall opinions about hiring virtual assistants, and some of the tools virtual assistants can theoretically use. You know what? There are entire companies, businesses, and entrepreneurs who do nothing but this. So we just scratched the surface. Ultimately, if you’re making above $80,000, let’s call it, which is very generalized, but let’s just pretend $80,000, $150,000 if you’re here in California, and you know that you feel overwhelmed and busy, that’s really all it would take for me to say, I spend what, $500 a month for a full-time person, maybe, that does everything that I don’t want to do. I mean, only you can answer the question of how valuable your time is to you, but I’ve reached a point in my career where if it’s 10 minutes and I can offload it to somebody, I do it. Full stop. No questions. I do it. I offload it every time. I’ve traveled to another country so that I can offload most of the sales work I do. I stayed there for two months to find the right people to make sure that I found a high-quality person.
[00:41:37.290] – Robert Newman
So I’m really serious about it. Whatever you can do, get it off your plate. Let somebody else do it. If you have to teach and train them a bit, great. But ask yourself the question, How much do I value my time? My answer is it is the most valuable resource I have, and I want as much control over it as I possibly can get. If you’d like to learn more about me and our services, go to inboundrim.com. John, if people would like to learn the same about you, where would you like them to go?
[00:42:02.810] – Jonathan Denwood
I’ll just go to Mail-right. com and you can book a demo, and it’ll either be me or my co-founder, Adam, and we’ll show you the MelWright process, and we can have a chat, and we can see if we can help you. Back over to you, Robert.
[00:42:18.130] – Robert Newman
Beautiful. Well, that’s it then, ladies and gentlemen. That’s our show. Hopefully, you got something valuable out of it. Who knows? But we really hope that you did. All right, take us offline, John. Thanks for tuning in, everybody.