Archive for August 11th, 2010

Another Idiotic Post About Virtual Assistants

Saw another idiotic post about Virtual Assistants come through on my Google Alerts.

Articles like these are responsible for miseducating the marketplace into thinking Virtual Assistants are some kind of substitute employee–which they are not.

It’s also why we have so many new people coming into this profession thinking they are substitute employees filling a position.

Just about every freaking article they read anymore talks about virtual assistants as if they were still working for bosses. They use terms of employment like job, position, interview, resume, manage, train…

These people are such morons.

Once and for all: Virtual assistance is not a job. It’s not a “position” on your “team.” It’s a business.

And because it is a business, not employment, it is not any client’s place to be providing job descriptions.

If that’s what they’re doing, then that person is an employee – a telecommuter – not a VA.

Virtual Assistants are service providers who run their own businesses and specialize in administrative support.

They tell clients how they can help them and what they can and will do for them (as well as what they can’t or won’t), not the other way around.

And virtual assistants and clients had both better get it straight because the IRS will catch you sooner or later, one way or another, if you don’t.

Getting people to work for you from home is not a license to misclassify employees and be tax cheats.

Virtual assistants, you aren’t off the hook either: run your business like a business. Stop allowing clients to treat you like an employee. It’s up to you to set them straight about how this works LEGALLY.

And by the way, contractor, subcontractor, independent contractor… those are all terms that mean the same thing:  business owner.

There is absolutely NO third classification where an employer gets to hire someone to work like an employee, but not report them as such nor pay taxes on them. NO SUCH THING whatsoever.

Someone is either an employee or they are a business owner, regardless of the term they use (e.g. freelancers, independent contractor, subcontractor — these are ALL the same thing).

And any business that farms out workers, virtual or otherwise, is called a temp agency or staffing agency and those workers they loan out to people are employees.