It happened again, my wonderful virtual assistant got promoted and someone else is taking over. When this happened 2 years ago, I panicked and had a very bad couple of days scrambling to figure out what I was going to do. This and the fact that I realized that stress was an enormous component of my Crohn’s Disease lead me to start less doing as a way of reducing stress by freeing up my time, and optimizing and automating as much of my work flow as possible so I could rely less on the human element. At the time I had been working with an assistant in India named Christy. She was amazing, she worked for me for over a year doing everything from scheduling doctors appointments to preparing quotes for my businesses and ordering construction materials for real estate projects. She knew everything, my social security number, credit card numbers, how I liked my coffee (even though she never had to prepare a cup). What was I going to do? After I calmed down and came up with a plan I asked her to send me a list of everything that she did for me on a regular basis. After two days she sent me a list of about 50 things. 10 of them were no longer particular relevant, another 10 could be combined into 2 tasks. 20 of them could now be completely automated by software or apps that didn’t exist when she started working for me. Of the remaining 10, I could easily train someone to do them and even created template emails for repetitive tasks. Fast forward a year – I had tested over 23 virtual assistant companies at that point (some before Christy and some after) and had optimized my tasks every step of the way. I finally settled on Fancy Hands as a non dedicated assistant service. I figured if I could make it so my outsourcing could be managed on a one time basis by a person with no experience in my business and who I would only communicate with one or two times, then I would be incredibly streamlined and never have to worry about an assistant quitting or being promoted again. Working with an on demand virtual assistant and making that process as efficient as possible, means that when you do work with a dedicated assistant you’ll be like Q on Star Trek. Fast forward 6 months – I was informed this evening that Chelsea, my assistant from Zirtual, is being promoted. My reaction was one of happiness for her and sadness for me, not at the thought of having to go through this process again, but simply because she was such a wonderful addition to my business and life and I’ll miss working with her as a person. I use template emails which describe all of my tasks in great detail so anyone could sit down and follow the “Manual of Ari” and do the things I need done. I’m looking forward to working with my new assistant and have no doubt there will be no hiccups in the transition process.