Just because you’re paranoid … Trust in the Virtual Workplace

Written by: Penny Cooke | Posted on: | Category:

I've written in a previous post (you can read it here) that confidentiality, honesty and integrity are Big Things for me. They’re part of my core values. So I was perplexed, to say the least, when I found about cubicle mirrors or “rear view mirrors” for the office. I totally get it that people don’t feel comfortable with their back facing into a room – I don’t, I will always sit with my back to a wall wherever possible (I was asked about this once – see ** below!). I particularly didn’t like it when people could come and look over my shoulder and see what I was doing on screen… And no, that wasn’t because I was doing something I shouldn’t but when I was working on confidential subject for The Boss! Also, I can get so deep into a subject or project and not be aware of what’s going on around me that I will jump out of my skin if someone speaks unexpectedly.

In a couple of the articles I read, office workers were using these mirrors so the boss wasn’t able to sneak up on them – and catch them playing Solitaire or surfing Facebook. Others have said that because they used headphones, they could see if someone was approaching them. Err – wouldn’t work for me if I was deep into that project I was working on… I’d be more inclined to go with the “so no-one can see that I’m doing what I shouldn’t” reason.

But could one actually improve productivity? Well, yes, if you’re more comfortable in your work environment, it can improve your attitude and perhaps your productivity, too.

Although I’m not sure how The Boss would react to seeing rear view mirrors popping up around every cubicle…

But it all boils down to trust, doesn’t it? And trust needs to be earned.

And so I refer you back to my blog about confidentiality, honesty, and integrity. Finding a Virtual Assistant that you will trust – not just with confidential business matters but perhaps with personal financial information – is key to your business success. Exercise due caution, but don’t let your concerns about bringing in an “outsider” rather than a direct hire blind you to something – someone – that can free you up to do the things you need to do to grow your business. Someone that can save you time and save you money.

As ever, if you’re thinking of working with a VA to help with your admin, your email and diary management, proofreading, anything and everything – do your research. Check out their LinkedIn profile. Are they on Facebook? Do they have a website? Do they have recommendations that you can, if necessary, check out?

So, if you're considering outsourcing some of your administrivia, give me a call. See what I can do for you – help you focus on what you do best, and leave the rest to me.

* I jokingly said, “Because I’m afraid that someone will sneak up and stick a knife in me”. “Why on earth would you think that?” “Because someone did”. Cue horrified looks and gasps around the lunch table, everyone talking at once. I waited a beat or two, and then “Actually, the person who stabbed me was me”. (I’ll save that story for another time!)*

Image by Peggy und Marco Lachmann-Anke / Pixabay

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