If there’s a book that has been a household name and helped define the pre-teens of today’s millennials, without a doubt and/or battling an eyelash, it would be J.K Rowling’s Harry Potter series. If you were reading this and grew up waiting for the release and reading the books, watching the movie adaptations, becoming part of the Harry Potter fan community, and “brewing potions” in Pottermore, I need not detail the storyline. What’s intriguing is that we found out that he may have had the virtual assistant traits as well.
Virtual Assistant Traits of The Story of the “Boy Who Lived”
The story of “The Boy Who Lived” is not only epic but is also rich with symbolism and values that shaped the lives of hundreds of millions of “Muggle” readers who are probably now in the workforce. Those who are in the workforce are probably virtual assistants (yep, that includes some of the people in our team). If you are among the growing army of [Filipino] online personal assistants, the following traits exhibited by Harry Potter (and his lot) can be a paradigm for you to become a highly effective and successful virtual assistant.
After Dumbledore’s death, the mission to hunt the Horcruxes fell to Harry’s hands completely (well, not without the help of Ron and Hermione, of course). It is a time of despair, and the weight of finding the means to end You-Know-Who’s regime is on their young shoulders. Even without Dumbledore to guide them, the trio still pressed on alone in their quest and succeeded.
As Harry, Ron, and Hermione, even if your employer is not around, you should be someone who can carry out tasks with minimum supervision. BUT can still generate quality output. You should prove to be a reliable Filipino virtual assistant by merely ensuring that your client can count on you at all times. Be someone who propels yourself to work on your own even if your superiors are not around.
Do you hide when you don’t know how to do something or if you are wrong? Are you someone who shies away from taking responsibility? Drop it now. Harry, as a teenager, deals with stuff that can be tough for someone his age, particularly in Deathly Hallows. If you come to think of it, your challenges as a Filipino virtual assistant pale when side by side with Harry’s. And hey, he makes bad decisions, too…remember Harry and Ron stealing the latter father’s flying Ford Anglia? Like them, a virtual assistant should also accept that sometimes, unfortunate mistakes can happens, and admitting his/her lapses and facing the consequences are the best steps to do to solve the problem. Doing so will also ensure that future mistakes can be prevented.
Harry is Dumbledore’s man through and through and loyal to his friends and ideals. As a virtual assistant, you have to ensure client retention and loyalty, too. Make sure that you give your clients reasons to come back and hire your virtual assistance services again. Most VAs can handle 2-3 clients given the flexible working hours. Avoid the tendency to neglect one client over another (or worse using another client’s technique for another client). Nurture the relationship you initially had and maintain it to create loyalty.
Harry errs on the side of modesty and is more conscious of his failures rather than his successes. All throughout the book, he is depicted as the kind that doesn’t let being dubbed as “The Boy Who Lived”. The repeating triumphs over You-Know-Who all go to his head. As a Filipino virtual assistant, you shouldn’t let ego affect your profession. Sure it helps to be informed about your accomplishments as it can help you get more clients, but if you are working in a team, like in our workplace’s setting, bragging about your achievements can be unnecessary and may raise some eyebrows. Remember: You-Know-Who’s overconfidence also became his weakness.
Harry seemed to carry the weight of the wizarding (and the Muggles) world on his shoulders fighting You-Know-Who from bringing doom. He also sometimes experiences breakdown (i.e., when he sees through the mind of You-Know-Who doing something evil and the loss of godfather Sirius & a mentor and almost father figure Dumbledore). However, with the help of his friends and supporters, he remained steadfast throughout the series and didn’t walk away to fight against evil. Just like Harry, as a virtual assistant, you should possess an unwavering enthusiasm to get every task done.
Virtual Assistant Traits — Bonus Trait: Be a Strategist.
Though you might see Lord Voldemort, a terrible wizard, we must admit that he is a great strategist. Bringing this quality to the table in a more positive light, you should, like Lord Voldemort, think outside the box and create innovative ideas to help your company gain a competitive advantage.
Although you can’t be a great wizard like Harry Potter and arm yourself with spells (and wand), you can definitely adapt his (and other characters in the series) qualities to be a highly effective virtual assistant. [And you can also go back to Dumbledore’s quote in this post’s image.]:)
If you are a small business owner looking to hire Filipino virtual assistants, you might find the above characteristics useful in narrowing your choices.