Accelerate

What One Free Hour Per Month Can Really Do for You

Posted by Red Butler Team on 02/ 20/ 17

 

 


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In many of our client case studies, you’ll see that employees at companies like Beats by Dre received an hour of Red Butler service as part of an orientation service. And while most employees would need more than one hour per month from their assistant to process emails, create content, manage receipts, and perform other repeatable tasks, we were curious: If you delegated only one hour of work to your virtual assistant each month, what could you actually do with that hour?


Turns out, you could do quite a lot! With one hour of time, freed from repetitive or administrative tasks, you could easily:

  • Write a simple business plan
  • Finally read that business book or take that webinar you’ve been putting off
  • Finalize the plans for a product or service
  • Meet with your employees or colleagues face-to-face
  • Plan your tasks for the rest of the month
  • Reach out to potential clients or new business partners
  • Update your portfolios
  • Learn a new skill or brainstorm a new idea
  • Catch up on the accounting books
  • Clean off your desk (a cluttered workspace is a known contributor to stress!)
  • Investigate a competitor or two
  • Invite a mentor or role model to lunch for a brain-picking session

Any of these tasks could easily be accomplished in one hour, and all of them have a direct impact on your business. Let go of a few tasks one time every month and choose something from this list, or your to-do list, to complete!

 

Protect Your Work-Life Balance in One Hour

One hour is also plenty of time to give your brain a much-needed break. Let us take care of cleaning up your inbox while you try one of these:

  • Give meditation a try
  • Plan a date for you and your significant other
  • Get in a workout to get some feel-good endorphins flowing
  • Brush up on a foreign language or other non-job-related skill
  • Text, email, or call a friend and don’t talk about work
  • Volunteer with a charity
  • Grab some coffee and people watch
  • Talk a walk, or enjoy your lunch outside
  • Get a massage
  • Catch up on your favorite sports team, or better yet, buy some tickets to the next game
  • Sign up for something brand new that you’ve been wanting to try
  • Read a book or a magazine that has nothing to do with work

Even if all you do is spend an hour clicking on funny cat videos on YouTube, it’s always a great thing to enjoy a little guilt-free time away from your work duties. Make this hour worthwhile, though, by using the time to improve some other area of your life. Focus on your health, your relationships, or your personal goals while Red Butler takes care of a few work tasks for you.

 

Imagine What You Could Do with More

These examples were all things that were easy to do in a single hour. Red Butler plans include much more than a single hour per month. Let’s say you chose the Red5 plan, which includes 5 hours of assistance every month. With one hour and 15 minutes every week, you could easily commit to that brand new yoga class you’ve been eyeing; make some serious improvements to your golf game with a regular practice hour at lunch; learn a brand new language or skill with regular weekly practice; and much more.

If you’re ready to find out what you could do with an hour or more every month of free time, contact us to learn how we can make your plate lighter.


 

Ready to give Red Butler a try, there are no contracts or hidden fees. Don't forget to use promo code 2017 to get 50% off your first two months on any plan.

 

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Topics: Productivity Tips, Virtual Assistant

How to Decide What to Delegate to Your Virtual Assistant

Posted by Red Butler Team on 02/ 13/ 17

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Today’s worker is more overwhelmed than ever, with surveys over 90 different countries showing that two-thirds of employees are so overworked that they’ve mentally checked out of engaging with their work in a meaningful way. This is one of the reasons that Red Butler exists.

 

Our team of virtual assistants helps you and your employees feel less overwhelmed, making it easier than ever for your team to reenergize and reengage.

 


Despite this alluring fact, you’ll probably notice from our client case studies that not all employees who are offered an hour of Red Butler assistance, take it. One of the reasons that we believe this happens may be because employees just don’t know what to delegate to us. After all, everything on your plate has been on the top of your to-do list forever, right?

Here are a few ways that you can use to decide what to delegate.

 

Technique #1: Re-Prioritize

When you have no idea where to begin delegating, you may need to start with a totally fresh list of priorities. To start, simply group your tasks into categories or areas of business, and decide which are things that no one but you could possibly do. Be honest – are you really the only one who can draft blog posts for your website, or can you pass along topics and keywords to a competent copy writer and review the material later? Just choose what you must do yourself, and place those items at the top of your list.

Next, take a look at the items that you don’t necessarily have to do yourself, and decide which things are the most important. Which items will move your business forward today, and which are simply things that help maintain flow and productivity? Move the most important tasks to your list. Finally, you are left with items that others can do, and that aren’t essential for your business right now. These are great items to pass along to a virtual assistant.

 

Technique #2: Evaluate Your Time

Another way to decide what to delegate is to evaluate what you’ve been spending your time on. Are there tasks that shouldn’t take you long, but you seem to be spending more than 10% of your day on? If you tend to get distracted when maintaining the company social media profile, or email and calendar management takes you forever due to constant phone calls and other interruptions, why not pass these tasks off to an assistant?

 

Technique #3: Get Rid of Anything Repeatable

All businesses have certain tasks that must be done again and again. Not only are these tasks usually related to administrative tasks, they eat into your time and your energy. These are perfect tasks to assign to a virtual assistant from Red Butler. You spend your time moving your business forward, and we’ll take care of those pesky little background tasks that pop up every month. Examples of repeatable tasks include filing receipts, organizing invoices, responding to emails or calls, managing regular calendar items, and generating spreadsheets.

 

Technique #4: A Little of Everything

The best solution for deciding what to delegate to your virtual assistant may be to use all of these techniques. Figure out your priorities so you know what you don’t want to delegate. Evaluate your time so you know how much a personal assistant can really save you in time. Get rid of those repeatable tasks so you can focus.

 

With all three of these techniques, you are likely to eliminate quite a few tasks off your to-do list, helping us help you. Don’t let yourself stay overwhelmed while we’re around to help.


 

Ready to give Red Butler a try, there are no contracts or hidden fees. Don't forget to use promo code GETRED to get $100 off your first three months on any Red15 Plan or higher.

 

Get Started  

 


 

Topics: Productivity Tips, Virtual Assistant

How To Clean Up Your Inbox Once and for All

Posted by Red Butler Team on 02/ 06/ 17

 

 


 

How many times have you been to tempted to just "Select All" and send your Inbox contents straight to the trash?

 


There are times when even the most important emails feel like a waste of time. In fact, inbox management is one of our most requested services at Red Butler for that very reason. Cleaning up your inbox is definitely a chore, but if you need to do it right away before you start contemplating a hermit’s life on a lonely mountain top, here are a few good tips:

 

Mass Delete, but Do It Right

One of the easiest ways to take care of a busy inbox is, of course, to mass delete. But before you go deleting things willy nilly, it’s a good idea to perform two quick steps. First, search your inbox for anything from your current project, or containing keywords that you know you’ll need to save (such as “financial reports”).

Save any emails that you need to keep in a separate folder, or back them up to a service like Evernote. Next, perform a search for the phrase “before:YYYY/MM/DD”. Choose a previous year or month that is far enough back to ensure that you’ve already finished those projects or tasks. Delete everything that pops up and voila! You are well on your way to a cleaner inbox.

 

Make Labels Your Friend

If you use Gmail, or any other email service that allows you to label your incoming messages, then this feature should be your new best friend. You can create custom folders and stash away incoming messages so that your inbox remains blissfully empty. Don’t need to look at that project bid till your scheduled time later? Into the project folder it goes. If your email app allows you to filter messages by sender, you can easily set this task up to be automatic, so that certain messages go straight to the right folder, rather than to your inbox. 

Gmail is an excellent service for this fact alone. Users can create 5,000 different labels, and even make sub-labels inside of labels. Perfect for complex projects and large corporations.

 

Opt Out of Reply All Chains

Sadly, there’s no easy way to truly opt out, besides asking to be removed (and thus setting off another round of replies). Instead, simply mute the conversation. Gmail and most email apps have this feature. Look for it under the tab that says “More” in Gmail. While the replies will still get sent to your inbox, taking up some of your storage space, you won’t have to see them. 

Remember that if you’re ever trying to clear out your email for space, be sure to check for any muted conversations that you can delete.

Gmail also has a handy feature that allows you to see at a glance if an email was sent to just you, or to a group. Enable the “personal level indicator” in Settings, and you can easily skim for emails that require your personal attention. 

 

Don’t Use the Public Address 

If your business has an email address that is publically posted on your website or social media accounts, don’t use this account for most of your business emails. Instead, allow that address to catch inquiries, and move the conversation to your email address as needed.

This type of account can be easily managed by our team at Red Butler, in addition to your regular email address. Learn more about how we can help you keep your inbox tidy and organized by checking out our service menu or contacting us today.

 


 

Ready to give Red Butler a try, there are no contracts or hidden fees. Don't forget to use promo code GETRED to get $100 off any Red15 plan or higher for 3 months in a row.

 

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Topics: Productivity Tips, Virtual Assistant, Email

5 Quick Tips for Managing Your Calendar

Posted by Red Butler Team on 01/ 30/ 17

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One of the most dreaded tasks in the office is managing the ever-present calendar. Your work calendar is full of meetings, reminders, tasks, errands, deadlines, contact information, and much more. All of this makes it an essential part of your day, but keeping it totally up to date with all the frequent schedule changes can make you feel like you’re glued to your device.

One of the things that we do at Red Butler is manage calendars for busy CEOs and leaders. Here are some quick tips for managing this chore that we’ve seen work time and time again:

 


 

1. Group Tasks into Blocks

Often we see calendars that are overflowing with small tasks, making our clients’ lives much harder. But the secret isn’t getting rid of some of these essential tasks – it’s learning to do them more efficiently. For example, do you make phone calls or answer emails multiple times every day? Block off a significant portion of time once per day to do all of your calls or emails. You’ll work faster, and have more focus during other parts of your day to do other tasks. This method works for every type of task you do. Group like with like and get it done all at once.

 

2. Remember to Schedule Time Off

There’s an old business saying that tells busy entrepreneurs, “If it’s not on your calendar, it won’t get done.” This applies to everything, not just your business tasks. If you want to take a longer lunch, get home earlier, or work out in the mornings, put it on your calendar and stick to it. It’s much easier to turn down a business meeting or a few extra hours on the clock when your calendar is giving you a convenient excuse to say no.

 

3. Condense Meetings

It’s become so ingrained in the corporate culture to hold hour-long meetings that you may not even realize you’re following that pattern out of habit rather than need. Unless you have a significant amount of discussion that needs to take place, most business meetings can be condensed. If you give your team a deadline of half an hour, they’ll cut the small talk and get right to the point. Just because your calendar automatically defaults to hour-long blocks doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to take back those lost minutes. Even 15 minutes here or there can add up.

 

4. Perform a Regular Assessment

Periodically, it’s good to step back and assess your time, just as you would your company’s financial statements. Instead of reconciling with your bank account, reconcile your calendar with your goals and company mission statement. Are you spending your time on tasks that truly matter? If not, how could you change it? If your time is filled with meetings that could be condensed, calls that an assistant could be making for you, or repeatable tasks that could be put on autopilot, it may be time to make some changes.

 

5. Delegate Your Calendar to a Virtual Assistant

Finally, one of the best ways to truly manage your calendar and get out from under the ongoing chore is to delegate it to a virtual assistant. Calendar management is just one of the things we do here at Red Butler. Use Google, Outlook, or any shared calendar app, and we can access it, organize it, set up conference calls or meetings, contact your clients on your behalf, and much more.

We’ll make sure that everyone in your appointment book stays on task so that you can, too. We can also help you keep on track with your own goals, supporting you in your business and your personal life.


 

Ready to give Red Butler a try, there are no contracts or hidden fees. Don't forget to use promo code 2017 to get 50% off your first two months on any plan.

 

Get Started  

 


 

Topics: Productivity Tips, Virtual Assistant

Why 2017 is Your Year!

Posted by Red Butler Team on 12/ 29/ 16

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Let's face it, we're all asked to juggle more these days. Some people will carry the load and sacrifice quality, and you can make the decision to get the support you need and deserve.

 

After 10 years in business, Red Butler has crafted an all encompassing and feature packed virtual assistant solution. This is your time. Our year end sale will give you 50% off for 2 months with promo code "2017".

 


 

1) Recurring: Set it and forget it. Rely on Red Butler to take over tasks like data entry in Quickbooks, expenses, file organization, client check-ins and more.

2) Receptionist (BETA): Coming soon - Red Butler will soon not only make your calls, but answer your calls as well. Rely on our team to take your messages, handle your calendar and patch you in.

3) Calendar: Meet Taylor, your new calendaring receptionist. We'll check your calendar, organize all appointments, confirm attendees, set up conference calls and more. 

4) Travel: Our travel experts can research, organize and book you or your entire team's travel plans. With internet competitive fares and upgrades, Red Butler has you covered.

5) Research: From marketing research, to hiring, competitive analysis, digital strategy and more, let us get you the data to help make informed and immediate decisions. 

6) Perks: The Red Butler Perks Card activates upgrades and experiences around the globe. From room upgrades to a greeting from the chef, activate relationships a decade in the making 

 


 

Ready to give Red Butler a try, there are no contracts or hidden fees. Don't forget to use promo code GETRED to receive $100 off your first three months on any Red15 Plan or higher.

 

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Topics: Productivity Tips, Red Butler News, Virtual Assistant, Promo Code

Introducing Hourly Plans

Posted by Red Butler Team on 05/ 17/ 16

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Red Butler is thrilled to introduce Project Hours. Now, you can purchase hours from Red Butler, without a monthly recurring subscription. Buy hours that last for 90 days - great for projects, deadlines and the general support you need to get more productive.

 


 

What you get :)

- Buy a group of hours in packs of 3, 5, 10 or 20 hours at a time. 

- Share your hours with team members you invite to your account.

- Time does not expire for 90 days from your purchase date.

 

What you don't get :(

- No technical integrations (Gmail, Outlook, Calendar, DropBox, etc). 

- No Dedicated Account Manager or access to dedicated travel teams.

- No email, scheduling, calendar, calls or recurring task support or services.

 


 

Project hours are a great way to meet deadlines, delegate research tasks and try out what it's like to work with our professional Virtual Administrative Assistants. Click on the link below to regsiter with Red Butler - no credit card required. Feel free to poke around and add your hours at anytime. You can also upgrade to a monthly plan at anytime.

 

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Topics: Productivity Tips, Red Butler News

Congratulations! You found...

Posted by Red Butler Team on 03/ 15/ 16

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Research is rewarded.  Good job hunting you found a promo code! We would like to offer you 15% off your first month.  Just use discount code SAVE15. (Valid for new clients only)

 


 

We appreciate you reading our blog, and hope you enjoy our services.

 


 

We know that there are a lot of options out there and Red Butler greatly appreciates that you're taking the time to make an informed decision. Red Butler has been established since 2005, we understand the challenges you face. Request a personal consultation to see if Red Butler is a good fit for you today! 

 

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Topics: Productivity Tips, Red Butler News

How a Snack Basket Can Drive Teamwork

Posted by Red Butler Team on 03/ 07/ 16

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For team building to be successful, the team needs to be comfortable with each other and have good working relationships.  If you feel like you are part of the team, but still don't know your co-workers well enough, we have a fun suggestion anyone can do.

 


 

Everyone loves snacks. Our suggestion is simple.  The easiest way to get co-workers (and vendors too!) to stop by your office space is by having a snack basket in your office space. Not just any snack will do- it has to be something you can showcase on your desk in a large container.  Let everyone know you have delicious treats available. Here are a few ideas:

1. Mini candy bars- These are nearly impossible to resist and they have very few calories, so most people will be comfortable indulging.

2. Red Licorice- If you want a perpetual line to your workspace, this is possibly the best option. This delicious treat is available in giant tubs of individually wrapped pieces, and very few people can resist.

3. Fruit-infused water- if you want to provide something healthier, set up a water bar with fruit infused water in a large container with a spout.

No matter what snack you choose, you can be sure that your co-workers will be stopping by your office space to have some and you can use the opportunity to say hello and have a quick conversation, which in turn will help build a stronger team and increase productivity. 

 


 

Since 2005, our high-performance executive clients have helped Red Butler continuously improve our service model. Today our clients enjoy the service quality of an experienced in-house executive support team for less than the cost of one additional hire.

 

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Topics: Productivity Tips

How to Recharge at Noon

Posted by Red Butler Team on 03/ 01/ 16

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A productive day at the office can be brought to a screeching halt with a morning full of distractions and interruptions. Typically this happens late in the week as the weekend approaches. We have a few suggestions on how to get back on track following a difficult morning, and to make increased productivity a reachable goal every afternoon.

 


 

When your day gets off track, you want to do something to prevent your entire afternoon from being unproductive.  Here are three things we suggest to turn things back around and make your afternoon more efficient: 

1. Leave at noon. Go somewhere for an hour for a working lunch away from the office. If your meal is protein-packed and low in carbs, your afternoon will be more productive.  Send your calls to voicemail for an hour unless you are expecting an urgent call.  Use the time away from the office to schedule your afternoon with three things you must get done before the end of the day, and start working on the most important.

2. Delegate everything else in your inbox when you get back from lunch.  If you delegate it to Red Butler, it will get turned around quickly.  Our executive virtual assistants can tackle just about anything you send over. Here is how you can get started. 

3. If you must work late,  focus only on one task at a time.  Do not allow distractions to sidetrack your efforts to get things done. 

Once you step away for an hour, you should be able to refocus and have a more efficient, productive afternoon. Read here for another idea on how to make every week more productive.

 


 

Since 2005, our high-performance executive clients have helped Red Butler continuously improve our service model. Today our clients enjoy the service quality of an experienced in-house executive support team for less than the cost of one additional hire.

 

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Topics: Productivity Tips

What to Do The Hour Before The Doors Open

Posted by Red Butler Team on 02/ 24/ 16

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Most people work most efficiently when they are not distracted. Therefore, productivity goals can be more easily reached if you have a large chunk of undistracted time to get things done. This is challenging in today's world, since we are never "away from the office"- our cellphones keep us connected 24/7. So how does one reclaim distraction-free work time? We have a simple suggestion.

 


 

Go to work an hour before "opening time", but turn your cellphone off. Use this hour to sort and prioritize your inbox,  take care of a project on your computer, or work on a large project without distractions.  If you will be tempted to check email or surf the internet, use an app which will lock those programs for a specified amount of time. 

On Mondays, plan even more time if you have a very intense week ahead of you.  Get to work an hour and a half early to do your planning and prep.  Don't forget to delegate everything you can to Red Butler's executive virtual assistant services.  Here are some ideas of things you can delegate. Also, make sure you take a lunch break so your afternoon is also productive.

By taking some extra time before the day "officially" starts, you will be setting you and your team up for success. 

 


 

Since 2005, our high-performance executive clients have helped Red Butler continuously improve our service model. Today our clients enjoy the service quality of an experienced in-house executive support team for less than the cost of one additional hire.

 

Get Started

 


 

Topics: Productivity Tips, Best Practices