Hire A Virtual Assistant And Have A Good Conscience About It
Understand the notion of ethics in business when you do learn how to outsource your work to freelancers all over the world. If you understand how to treat your VA the right way, you’ll have lots of success.
Whoever you are working with, wherever that person may live, treat them right
What is common sense for me, personally, sometimes gets ignored by others who are hiring virtual assistants, looking only for cheap work at possibly inhumane conditions.
I am not an encyclopaedia. But I have made real-life experiences with freelance workers from all around the world for many years now.
Outsourcing as a private person or a mini-business is way different than offshoring from a big enterprise. Still, the question: “what is business ethics in outsourcing all about?” is not only a duty towards your virtual co-worker, but also to your conscience.
The definition for business ethics when outsourcing can be boiled down to “treat others as you want yourself to be treated”.
Knowing the basics of Christian ethics in business is especially useful if you work together with virtual assistants from the Philippines. Even without discussing questions of faith here – there are many advantages for your business if you treat your online workers the right way.
Nothing beats the passion and effectiveness of a virtual helper who loves doing what he does for you. True loyalty cannot be bought.
I had the chance of meeting my full-time Virtual Assistant Jomvie in person in the Philippines. With him and other Filipinos, I made a first-hand impression of their manner to do business. If you really want to succeed in hiring Filipinos, you need to understand them well.
This is why I think the the combined view of my VA, Jomvie, and I will be helpful for you to understand Filipino business ethics.
Thinking Globally – Do your best to make outsourcing a win-win to both sides of the globe
The world is becoming more and more global. You can live in the US and hire someone from the Philippines, for example. But there are differences which you need to keep in mind.
Knowing about ethics in international business as an employer or a freelancer is a prerequisite to survive in this global world we now live in.
Attitude as an employer to your assistant
Think of global business ethics, which means that you need to be aware that your business partner lives in a country which is very different from yours. When you have a virtual assistant working for you, you need to know that they have a different…
- time zone
- attitude towards work and life
- cost of living levels
Attitude as freelancer to your boss
If you work for someone else, you are not only in it for the money. Always think about your business ethics and social responsibility that comes from
- the quality of your work
- and your work attitude.
If you only work for the quick money and instant gratification, you will fail in the long run. Learn how to do things well in order to live with satisfaction and success far in the future.
Bad business attitudes and lack of respect will hurt your success
Of course, there are many people who treat freelancers badly. Just because they live in a different, often poorer country than the employer does not mean that it’s OK to disrespect a virtual assistant. There are many cases of bad business ethics which can show you what not to do.
The top 3 mistakes for your outsourcing ethics in business you can make are:
- Lack of communication before, during and at the end of your cooperation. Worst case scenario: an employer firing his assistant without any further notice. Or a freelancer quitting the job without saying a word.
- Miss commitment- over committing but not delivering at all. This also goes both ways.
- Disrespect. Treating your employer (or assistant) as if he is stupid will come and bite you in the long run.
Of course, virtual assistants can also sometimes be at fault.
I started out as a private person trying out outsourcing for private projects only. I only recently started to think of me as a one-person enterprise.
That was also when I had to evaluate if my methods working with virtual assistants stood up to acceptable levels of ethics in business – which I am glad they did.
Honestly, if you spot any ethical issues on this whole website that looks cheesy, fake or slave-labor-ish, rush over and let me know!
My code of honor:
There is a strict set of rules I have set firmly into my mind of how I will treat my virtual assistants. I summarize it as my personal business ethics policy and try to live by it.
My virtual assistant from Pakistan as a case study in moral outsourcing
I have worked together with my virtual assistant for more than one year now. He does great work and is very affordable. The importance of ethics in business was clearer than ever to me when I started discussing having a virtual assistant working for me with my friends and met some difficult questions.
Since we share a high level of trust with each other, I profited from his experiences as a freelancer to ask some personal questions. This interview resulted in a thorough business ethics case study, all from the point of view of a virtual assistant from Pakistan.
Stay Tuned about global ethics in business for maximum success for your outsourcing business
I care about my virtual assistants being treated right. Still, it’s important to know what happens to ethics in business around us, especially in such a global world we are living in.
To stay tuned in, we’ll set up a business ethics news section. Head there to read about the newest pieces of information about ethical outsourcing from all around the world.
Timeless, must-read business ethics articles for any outsourcing business and cooperation will stay up as their own discussion pages. I’d love to see an honest, no-holding-back-discussion about the pros and cons of outsourcing going.
My History of Outsourcing
What is outsourcing to me, personally?
- A fun hobby
- A useful and effective method to leverage my time
- A way to accelerate my business and projects
It has been more than 3 years that I actively work with virtual assistants and outsource online jobs.
Read about the History of Outsourcing in a nutshell and my background with outsourcing.
Definition of outsourcing
Depending on if you are a private employer, a provider (or employee) or a big corporation, there are different ways to define outsourcing.
My answer to the question “What is outsourcing?” in a nutshell:
- Outsourcing is relaying a specific task to someone else via internet, one who is able to do the work faster and more efficient than you.
- Your valuable time is freed by outsourcing time-intensive and/or repetitive tasks, allowing you to use it more effectively: to make more money or to enjoy freedom from stress.
- The most expensive commodity you can have is time. Outsourcing is a way to “buy free time”.
Two things made outsourcing possible:
- High speed internet, connecting the world’s communication
- Globalization, which makes it possible to livein the US, but hire someone from India or other countries at local wages.
It is not about taking your job away!
Note that I am not talking about offshoring, i.e. taking jobs away from anyone here on
ideal-helper.com. I honestly believe that most normal, non-entrepreneur individuals could greatly profit from a personal assistant at their side.
If your boss in the US decides to introduce call center offshore outsourcing to his firm, this is another completely
Want to try out the waters without risks?
There is one big platform that allows you to “play around” with
outsourcing small and often fun tasks to other people is fiverr.com.
It is one of the first sites that allows you to let others
work for you on specific tasks – for the small price of five dollars (hence the
What is outsourcing 101 for beginners? Most probably Fiverr.
You may be a simple employee right now. But you can be your own boss now,
if you want to.
What is outsourcing from the perspective of a freelancer?
You can use your day to day skills as a provider or employer. What may seem very simple to you may be invaluable to someone else.
- Perhaps you are an expert of making videos and you do that for fun or as a hobby.Oryou have mastered how to render, analyze and optimize photos and can do
this “in your sleep”.
- The possibilities are only limited by your skills
Do you think you can outsource your skills?
Your motto as a successful freelancer should be:
“I am doing this service for you. If I don’t successfully do your work, you will get your money back. I will only get paid for good work.”
Everyone can participate in the outsourcing world!
Do you go hiking every weekend and you know everything of “your forest”? Do you think your knowledge would be useful for someone else?
I am sure it could be. And if you don’t find anyone who needs this knowledge directly around you, you can start and create your own website business about your everyday knowledge.
This is exactly what I did here on ideal-helper.com.
You can also voice out your opinion and experiences to a writer, a website owner or a blogger and get paid for your insights.
You wouldn’t believe what simple stuff you can do for an employer.
Go ahead and laugh when you see what was my first assignment when I started outsourcing to oDesk. To my defense, I am not really a web savvy at that time.
Think about it. There are people out there doing Data Entry jobs full time. You can bet that they are Excel, Word and office wizards.
You don’t want to invest the same
time into mastering a data entry skill if you can cheaply hire someone who has
already done so – and is burning to start working for you.
If you need some hard numbers…
There are some interesting outsourcing statistics out there. What is even more interesting to me personally is that there are more down-to-earth facts.
I interviewed some freelancers all around the world and discussed personal questions with them. This gave me interesting insights into their answer to the question “What is outsourcing?” that sometimes you will see that there are really differences apart from what you would expect. It was interesting to get a look “behind the curtains” of every different countries.
Especially, the comparison of the costs of living from different countries is always an eye-opener.
Suvidh is a CEO from the outsourcing service TasksEveryDay. He shares his insights about what outsourcing means for him and his service in an insightful interview video.
What is outsourcing – in action?
In my mini-blog below, I’ll showcase real-life outsourcing experiences.
Feel free to join the discussion or share your own experiences with virtual assistants below. From time to time, when I make a general observation or notable experience with my outsourcing, I’ll also put the article below.