Hiring a VA is a Lot Like Potty Training

Services for Real Estate Pros with Marketing 4 Realtors

Hiring a VA is a Lot Like Potty Training when you think about it.

Typically when I write posts about my family, I start off by saying that I've got 6 kids.  That usually gives people quite a jolt so I like to say it first so that everyone can digest it and then get the shock out of their system.  (Yes, they're all mine.  Yes, they're all by my husband.)

One of our children is 2.5 years old.  He doesn't want to grow up - EVER. We had to forcibly remove all the pacifiers from the house in order to get him off of them.  We had to remove all bottles from the house in order to get him to drink from a cup.  We have to force him to put his own clothes and shoes on.  He wants to be carried around.  In spite of the fact that we have 1 year old twins, he insists that HE is the baby. (Just ask him.)

Well, the time has come that he shed the diapers.  As he sat on the potty chair, saying "I don't want to use the potty," it made me think of how getting to the point where you need assistance in your business is so much like being potty trained.

How Hiring a VA is a Lot Like Potty Training:

  • You don't understand why things have to change. You may realize that operating your business has become increasingly difficult in keeping up with administrative and/or marketing tasks but that's just the way it is, right?
  • You have a hard time figuring out just exactly what you're supposed to do.  The initial period of working with a new assistant is filled with uncertainty.  What can he/she actually do for me? How do I get tasks to them? What tasks should I turn over to them?
  • You don't want to change because you've always done it this way.  Resistance to change is normal for everybody!  However, there's that old saying to consider: "If you always do what you've always done, then you'll always get what you've always gotten."
  • It takes a little while before you start to figure it out.  Just as potty training doesn't typically happen over night, working with a Virtual Assistant does not become a synergystic relationship immediately.  It takes some figuring out to really get into a groove.
  • There are accidents along the way.  The bumps in the road (or pull-up) are typical.  Starting your VA on tasks that you have never given them before is typically where the accidents happen.  However these are simply learning opportunities!
  • Eventually, you figure out how this can be a good thing, a really good thing!  The lightbulb goes off and you realize that no matter how difficult and disruptive it may seem initially, this Virtual Assistance thing could be just the ticket!  Now you see that it will open up other possibilities for you and your business.
  • Success means you're on to bigger and better things!  Once the transition is completed, you can set new and bigger goals for yourself and your business.  The possibilities become endless!

Just as potty training can be a stressful, frustrating, aggravating event, the end results bring entirely different emotions - satisfaction, joy, and pride!  Don't let your resistance of change stop you from getting to the end result.  If you've been on the fence about contracting with a Virtual Assistant, go ahead and give it a try.  It is so worth it and can change the potential for your business!

~Renae - Market 4 Real!

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Comments (6)

Lindsey Hasford
Edina Realty - Elk River, MN
Bringing you home...

This made me chuckle! I have a 3-1/2 yr old that doesn't like to dress himself. My 2 yr old is going to be potty training very soon... great word pictures!

Aug 05, 2009 04:27 AM
Renae Bolton
Marketing 4 Realtors - Garfield Heights, OH
I'm your Professional Real Estate Marketing VA!

Thanks Lindsey! How is everyone doing over there?  And what is it with these kids who don't want to put on their own clothes? Then I have our one and only daughter in the bunch who doesn't want to put on anything you ASK her to wear. She always wants to put on something else! What's with that??


Aug 05, 2009 06:15 AM
Carol Lee
Dilbeck Real Estate - Oak Park, CA
Realtor - Agoura, Oak Park, Westlake CA Homes

Renae- what a funny post- I don't even know what to say about that one!  It is pretty Freudian, to relate using a VA to potty training- rentention, vs letting go, hmmmm.  When my youngest turned two, he insisted he wanted to wear "big boy" underpants.  After two days of changing wet clothing, I told him when he had a dry diaper he could wear all the ninja turtle underpants he wanted.  He was probably trained 6 months later. 

I am still at the do it all myself stage, but was just thinking about a VA.  Not sure at the moment how I would use one, but.....

Aug 05, 2009 05:11 PM
Renae Bolton
Marketing 4 Realtors - Garfield Heights, OH
I'm your Professional Real Estate Marketing VA!

Hi Carol! Thanks for visiting!  This is our 4th go-round with the potty training and I can tell you, I completely believe how frustrating it can be.  They want to wear the "big boy" underwear but they don't want to do what they have to do in order to keep them dry.

The "do it all yourself" stage is very unhealthy.  Not only does it not allow you to accomplish as much as you need to and want to do, but it stifles the potential of your business.  Take a look at some of my past blog posts about using a Virtual Assistant.  They should give you a good idea of how you can grow your business by contracting with a VA:

I hope these help!


Aug 06, 2009 08:16 AM
Brian Schulman
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, Lancaster PA - Lancaster, PA
Lancaster County PA RealEstate Expert 717-951-5552

Renae, I get your point (although I don't necessarily agree that we are like babies..)

Aug 07, 2009 05:12 AM
Renae Bolton
Marketing 4 Realtors - Garfield Heights, OH
I'm your Professional Real Estate Marketing VA!

You're right, Brian. Real estate professionals are definitely NOT like babies!  Unlike babies, most of the time REPs realize that there is a good reason for the change, even if they don't really like the idea.  Most babies just see the change as being change and unnecessary!


Aug 08, 2009 01:06 PM