Hi Kally,

Everyone is lamenting how hard is to find a job in the economy these days. I have a different problem. I need to find a personal assistant for myself. As our company is small, we don’t have a dedicated HR person to do the hiring so I am on my own here. The last PA I had been great, she was with me for 6 years before she quit to be a stay home mum.

Now I know the pay is not fantastic because the firm is so small (we only have 10 people in the office) and the work is not exciting or challenging. The work in fact is simple, some filing and invoicing, flight and hotel arrangements, taking messages and running some errands. I couldn’t find anyone suitable who is willing to fit in the position.The only decent one I managed to find, worked only for a day before doing a disappearing act on us the very next day. We are also not asking for someone with experience or a degree holder, just a person with good positive attitude and decent responsibility with good organization skills.

As I struggle to do everything my own, I’m drowning here as the work kept piling up. Any quick fix you can advice me here?


Lorna D*

Hi Lorna,

I have a good and bad news for you.

Good news is that you can have a quick fix. There are agencies out there who can match you with a part-timer or a freelancers with your job descriptions. Since your work sounds simple enough, you probably can make do with a freelancer until you find someone suitable. Alternatively, you can also go online and locate a suitable freelancer for a virtual assistant who will help with simple tasks as long as they are not confidential. I find that virtual assistants usually comes with full of experiences just that their situation limits their movement very much at home but that shouldn’t affect the quality of their work. You can find them here at Fiverr and Upwork.

The bad news is that finding the right person takes time. You might need to hone and guide a person to suit your needs as well as to work as good as your last personal assistant. You are right in saying you should be looking at the person’s attitude and responsibility instead of relying just on paper qualifications. Sometimes giving a person without proper education a chance will go a long way for you because they will be grateful for the chance and return in favour with their loyalty and willingness to adapt and learn.

You might not know it but the freelancer that you hire might turn into someone permanent if the package is attractive enough. I wish you all the best in searching for the right one!

Thank you for writing in and sharing your problem.


10 replies on “A Word of Advice: Need to Hire

  1. Great advice as always, but I have to ask one question, which comes from my own frustrating experiences in the past: When you are looking for another PA, are you more inclined toward hiring women than men? I know it’s a blunt question, but it’s also an honest one. There have been more times than once in my own past when I applied for some position traditionally filled by females… I don’t believe I ever even got my foot in the door. So, anyway, just wondering! Cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It shouldn’t matter with gender for the position of PA. I guess it all boils down to personal preferences. Having a PA means, you’ll be working with the person very closely and perhaps having that person learnt your habits, even handling your personal affairs. So a female boss might be comfortable with a male PA going through her personal life and yet a male boss probably finds it hard to get a male PA to buy trinkets for his mistress and flowers for his wife.

      But I have met male PAs that impresses me, they are capable, sensitive and most of all streetwise and usually have wider networks.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I have read the two letters with joy. The advice you’ve given is sound. It brings some questions to my mind: Is it possible to get partners for your blog who are working in other parts of the world? How does one go about it? How do they work? Who defines the terms of work? I ask this because I have been thinking of the possibility of getting partners for my blog around the world. Can you answer these questions?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Ngobesing,

      It is possible to get partners to contribute to your blog. It depends how much control do you want to have over the content they write.

      You could, for example, source for similar inspirations like yours on other blogs and ask if you can reblog them like what I did on my guest post column or you can hire freelancers by the number of words and dictate them on the topics that they can write.

      Both options you will have control on the content you want to publish.

      The third option is to invite freely to your readers and allow them to contribute to your articles like some of the bloggers invite their friends to write however, you will have little control of the content. You may set some guidelines and rules but because these folks are writing because you invited them so some respect are due to them.

      You will need to weight your options and consider what directions your blog is to be before you execute. Hope these options helped you!


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