The COVID-19 craziness has caused people to stress out and scramble to work remotely. This crisis is pushing everything forward technologically. Why not hire a virtual assistant (VA) to scale your property management business?
Today’s guest is Daniel Ramsey of MyOutDesk. Daniel is a real estate investor/broker who loves doing deals, and property management is a way to connect with others and create communities. But he also wants time to take a vacation with his family!
[02:52] MyOutDesk: Property managers find talent to inexpensively scale their business.
[04:05] MLS Porn: Scrolling through new investment properties on the market.
[05:05] Remote Reality: In 2018, 5% of America worked remotely, now it’s 50%.
[07:58] Work Culture: Maintain good team, quality interaction, and customer service; and reduce operational/overhead costs.
[15:00] Steps to Scale: Assess business, compound leverage, develop plan, craft outcome, start interviewing, launch, and training.
[25:48] Match Values, Not Personalities: Define who you are as a person and company.
[33:15] Go Remote Guide: Tips for working remotely with new technology.
[35:08] Push vs. Pull Leadership: Communicate, don’t micromanage.
[44:15] MyOutDesk Mission: VAs need to be indispensable and irreplaceable.
Go Remote Guide (text MOD to 31996)
Jason: Welcome DoorGrow Hackers to the DoorGrow Show. If you are a property management entrepreneur that wants to add doors, make a difference, increase revenue, help others, impact lives, and you are interested in growing your business and life and you’re open to doing things a bit differently, then you are a DoorGrow Hacker.
DoorGrow Hackers love the opportunities, daily variety, unique challenges, and freedom that property management brings. Many in real estate think you’re crazy for doing it. You think they’re crazy for not because you realize that property management is the ultimate high-trust gateway to real estate deals, relationships, and residual income.
At DoorGrow, we are on a mission to transform property management businesses and their owners. We want to transform the industry, eliminate the BS, build awareness, change perception, expand the market, and help the best property management entrepreneurs win. I’m your host, property management growth expert, Jason Hull, the founder and CEO of DoorGrow. Now, let’s get into the show.
Today, we have a really cool guest. He is Daniel Ramsey, over at MyOutDesk. Daniel, welcome to the show.
Daniel: Thanks for having me, Jason. I’m so glad to be here.
Jason: Daniel and I were talking a little bit in the green room chatting up a little bit about what’s going on. It’s a little bit crazy right now, with COVID-19 and Coronavirus, and all this stuff, the real estate market looks scary. We may get into that a little bit in the show, but our topic today is using a virtual assistant to scale your property management business with MyOutDesk. Before we get into that, Daniel, what I want to hear about your background, your entrepreneurial journey and that should lead us right into the inception of MyOutDesk.
Daniel: Yes, sure, man. I love the show. I’m really grateful to be here. I agree, I’m a real estate guy. I love doing deals and property management is just such a great way to connect and create community, and also, it’s a great place for deal flow if you’re a buyer and want long-term wealth. I love being here. I’m a real estate investor, myself, real estate broker, contractor, mortgage guy, developer, broker, this is my world. I love it.
In fact, you’ll love this story. My wife and I, we’ve got two little girls who will drive in the neighborhood and I’m like, “baby, baby, open house, I gotta go look at it,” and she’s like, “fine, just go.” I’m a real estate guy, I love what I do. We help property managers basically find talent and inexpensively scale their business. The topic is timely.
Our business was started because I had a need in my own real estate practice. I hired a virtual assistant. I was like, wow, this works. My wife and I went on our honeymoon, and as many entrepreneurs, I brought my laptop on my honeymoon. I’m in Guatemala in a rainforest, and I’m at the bar at like [1:00] or [2:00] in the morning and the bartender in Spanish is making fun of me. He’s basically saying things like dumb Gringo, his wife’s here, beautiful woman just married, why is he still working? At that moment, I knew something had to shift in my world, and that’s when we started to scale and really use leverage at a high level.
Jason: I would imagine that most of our partners as entrepreneurs go through quite a bit, and they don’t always appreciate us doing things like that.
Daniel: My wife calls it MLS porn for me, because at night, I’m scrolling through all the new investment properties that came on the market. I’m really lucky to marry her, and she’s understanding. But at the same time I wanted to stay married, and I wanted to have a kid, and a family, and I knew I needed leverage in my business. I wanted to be able to take a vacation.
Jason: I’m sure you have kids at home right now.
Daniel: That’s right.
Jason: Me too, it’s crazy. One of them just came in to hand me an Xbox controller so I could give them access because I control that, crazy. I’m on air, they don’t care. They’re like, dad, this is important.
Daniel: This is the deal. This is what we’re in, and it’s crazy timing because we have this call like a month ago, and we’re in a crazy place. In 2018, 5% of America worked remotely, 5%. Last week, that number went to 50%, in one week.
Jason: The rest are probably not even working.
Daniel: Yeah. Here’s the thing, as a company, one of the things that we’ve been doing is we’ve been remote for 13 years, 100%. We’re about 1300 people. If you’re listening right now, we figured out how to scale a business remotely with 1300 people, and serve clients like property managers, real estate brokers, investors, flippers, that’s what we do.
In the last couple of weeks, we’ve helped more companies just understand the tools required, what systems you have to put in place, how to communicate with your people when they’re not physically in your office. We put together a whole like go remote guide that we’re going to give away in the show, basically, just to help things like what you just said.
We were just on a conference call with our largest client and his two and a half year old son just, hey, daddy, I need more Cheerios. This is just how it is now.
Jason: Yeah, that is what it is. There’s all these funny videos you’ll see online where you’ve got like some guy on the news and his kid walks in, in a diaper, and then the wife’s crawling on the floor because she thinks she’s not on camera trying to pull it out, these things. The world we live in, we’re fathers, we run companies, there are moms that run companies, and I don’t think there’s anything that needs to be hidden.
It’s not like there’s something shameful that you have kids or that you have a personal life. For those that are watching this or listening, just own that. It’s totally okay, everybody likes to see that you’re a real person anyway, instead of just a suit and a tie stuck behind a desk all the time. It’s a lot more relatable I would imagine. I’ve got four kids. I’m slightly insane, I think, and it’s crazy, and they need to be quieter, hey guys be quieter.
Daniel: That’s awesome.
Jason: I started my company Open Potion the corporation back in 2008 right around the time everything was falling apart then. I’ve just worked from home. I’ve been virtual, my team members are in Toronto, New York, wherever. We’ve got some in the Philippines. A while ago, there’s always a stigma connected to those that were remote, especially if they were not in America.
I think that we’re going to see some crazy shifts that are going to be happening. One, every company that’s like, “We can’t have people working from home, how will we know that they’re actually going to do work?” These things, these concerns, now you have to. If you want them to work, they’re working from home. Your office is shut down, you’re not doing business.
Everybody’s figuring out in this new environment, and they’re scrambling. I’m sure companies like Zoom are just going to go gangbusters, but this is the new world that we live in. I think it’s going to push everything forward technologically which is exciting, and it’s going to cut out a lot of bullshit. All the fluff that was just bloated in companies is just eating up resources, like people are just going to realize after this why do we need this $20,000 a month office space for this big corporate building?
All these things are going to be shifting, and we’re going to have this new culture as a result of everybody being forced to stay indoors and work from home. I think that’s going to open people up to the idea that, hey, I can have team members and they don’t have to be right geographically near me. I can find the best that are anywhere, and find people that are lower costs, and figure this out. People are going to be a lot more open that have been closed to it before.
I imagine this will be really good for companies like yours, to be able to help people out and help people see that you can still maintain a really good team, and quality interaction, and customer service, and you can lower your operational costs, or at least make a more healthy cash flowing business by reducing some of these overhead expenses that you have in the company.
I was hanging out on a really great course with training over the last few days with a financial coach. One of the phrases, I don’t know who said it but he made this joking comment that overhead walks on two legs. Basically saying people are the biggest piece of overhead a lot of times that we might have in a company.
I want to point out, that was a really humble intro you gave, but in the written intro I have here you’ve got 10 years of experience serving more than 5000 clients, including over half of the real trends, top 10 Real Estate teams.
Jason: Your company has already got a who’s who list of clientele as far as real estate businesses go.
Jason: You’ve built real estates’ number one staffing company, and it says you’ve worked with some of the top clients in the industry from sales organizations like the Mark Spain team to tech providers, like the Zillow Group, Keller Williams, and RE/MAX, and so you sound like you’re a pretty cool connected guy as well.
Daniel: Maybe connected. I don’t know about cool, though. What we do, and I love this. We have a property manager who’s in Austin, and I really love this guy.
Jason: That’s where I’m at.
Daniel: Okay, cool. You guys are neighbors. He manages half a billion dollars of commercial real estate, and he’s like one of these guys that’s just freaking brilliant. I’m like, hey, what are you doing? He’s like, I’m sitting with my son and looking at deals. He’s middle age, and he’s really had a lot of success, but he called us because he had four property managers, a bookkeeper, and an office manager. Five people running half a billion of real estate, and he’s like, hey, my people are overworked. I’m worried that nobody’s taking vacations. Everybody works on Saturdays and Sundays, and our systems aren’t tight.
Jason: Burnout is coming.
Daniel: Exactly. They had a system that didn’t have all the information in it. They had basic terms, but every lease is different. Some tenants are paying for maintaining their HVAC, some are not. He had all of these leases that nobody had actually put into the system. Every time somebody called and said my roof is leaking, he’d be like, okay, we’ll call you back, and then they have to dig up the lease, and we have the lease and say, who do we call? Is it our responsibility, or is it their responsibility? Five hours later, they’re responding to what could be a really big deal like damage everywhere for the tenants.
We started working with him about two years ago, and we started helping him with SOPs, Standard Operating Procedures. We started helping them take their leases and get him into the system, which is any basic scale a business grows, a business scenario.
We gave him a book like an AP, AR person, so now his really talented bookkeeper who’s managed his whole financial world for his entire career has time in her day to think strategically, and save money for the company. What we did is all the property managers got in the system. We basically gave them somebody to run their system so that there was a person who could enter data and just make sure the system was clean.
The bookkeeper got an assistant, and now all of a sudden he’s poised for what are some phenomenal growth years that he’s had in the last couple of years. It didn’t change his world. It really didn’t, because we’re $21,000 a year for a full-time employee. If you think about that, half a billion dollars making all the rents, literally for almost $100,000 now he’s not going to lose his team.
That’s our story. That’s what we do for really big companies like Zillow, and all the way down to small investors who own 5 or 10 properties and just need somebody to help the day to day, keep things running.
Jason: Let’s get into how this process works. Let’s take a typical listener of the show, they’re probably maybe a property manager, entrepreneur. Maybe they’ve got about 200 to 400 doors that they’re managing, largely single family residential. They might have a property manager by now or two. They’ve got maybe somebody having maintenance coordination, and everybody on their team is telling them that they’re maxed out on time, because that’s what always happens. Every team member is maxed out on time, and they feel like I can’t afford to hire anybody right now. Every appointment back on time, and then they call you up.
Let’s go through the process here of what it would look like maybe for one of these clients to start a conversation and work with you.
Daniel: Sure, Jason. I don’t want this to be a commercial for us. What I want to do is if you’re listening right now, like what the steps that I’m going to go through are the steps to determine how to scale your business. Even though these are our steps, you can actually write these things down and go through the step by step process. Whether you hire us or not, this is the process that we know works, because we’ve done it 5000 times.
The first step is just really assess your business. We do a strategy call with all of our clients where we do a one on one video conference, just like you and I are right now on video, and we go through things like who’s on your team, what are your systems. When I say systems, like where are you putting all the information?
Do you have a voice phone system so that when people call, you can transfer that number around. A lot of property managers do but some actually don’t, and you can imagine during this Coronavirus what happens if you’re a property manager and you had regular phones tied to an office that you can’t go to anymore.
What do you do? We’re looking at who’s on your team. We’re looking at what your systems are, what tech do you have right now to operate, and then we’re looking at what your processes are. Talk to me about what happens when you have to turn a tenant over, talk to me about what happens when you put a property out to lease, what’s the step by step process. Who owns that process, and so we’ll go through those three things in our first strategy call and really identify what’s your highest value leverage, and we have this process and I liked it. I love thinking like this.
Leverage can be just like compound interest. You can have compound leverage, meaning you as the business owner, or your managers, or the people on your staff can offload some of the not very valuable process based day to day repetitive stuff that you just don’t need to do, and then you get two or four hours back of your day, and then you can take those hours and help build your business, and then you get a compounding effect with leverage.
That’s the next step is what do we need to do to start taking advantage of compound leverage? If you or your team gave up some stuff, how would you then drive revenue for your business or increase your value for your customers? What would you do to really scale and grow if you got half your day back?
Jason: You do the strategy call. You figure out team systems attack, you’re going over their processes. You’re identifying the highest value leverage, I think it’s a cool idea of compound leverage. And then what would you do next? What would you recommend next?
Daniel: It’s developing your plan. From that guy that owns half a billion dollars in property to the person who’s got 100 homes, every single person has opportunity. It’s standard blocking and tackling in business. We’re doing a needs analysis for you. We’re saying, okay, what do you need to do now, or who do you need to hire on your team now? It’s always been developed with the plan moving forward.
Any company like ours who says, oh, we’ll just hire somebody for you tomorrow, be scared. Just be scared, because as an entrepreneur, leverage is your biggest swing, it’s where you can get the most value for your dollars, you really have to be strategic about it. Step two is what’s my plan? What systems do I need in order to do this virtual thing like what we’re talking about going remote? Who do I need? What do I need? What conversations need to happen for my internal team?
What planning do I need to make? Let’s create an outcome statement. You could call step three crafting an outcome. Another thing that’s unique about our businesses is we don’t do job descriptions, areas of responsibility. I don’t say anything wrong, there’s nothing wrong with that, but what we do is we create outcomes. For instance, when I hire somebody, I’m hiring them to grow my revenue, I’m hiring them to save money, I’m hiring them to own an entire process for my business. We will help you craft and create a plan that really adds value to your business, so that you’re getting a 3 or 4 times return on the $21,000 that you’re going to pay us.
Jason: You’re crafting an outcome, you’ve developed the plan. You’ve done the strategy call, you develop the plan. You’ve crafted this outcome, and then what’s the next step?
Daniel: At that point, we know exactly what you want to accomplish. As a company, what we’ll do is we’ll take that outcome, we’ll craft a series of interviews with somebody who has experience doing that thing. One challenge that we have in the outsourcing virtual assistant world is you can go on Upwork and hire somebody from India for $3 an hour, and that’s what most people think about when they think of outcomes, or outsourcing, or virtual assistants.
The thing is we’re a virtual professional company. We are very strategic, we hire people who’ve done it before, who’ve been there before, who have served that outcome in the past. If you need somebody to answer the phones and be a prospector for you, or handle like client calls or tenant calls. We’re going to find somebody who they’ve been 10 years doing that. They may not be property management, but they’ve been 10 years on the phone handling concerns and being a support mechanism for businesses similar or very like yours.
The next step is to get three to five people right in front of you, so you can interview them, and you can choose somebody who is a great cultural fit plus an expertise and experience.
Jason: I love the idea because I think cultural fit is the most important piece to look at first. A lot of people, well, they’re great for this job. They look great on paper, they know how to do this job, but if it’s not a good cultural fit, and I find as an entrepreneur if you don’t feel comfortable around them… There’s a great book by a really cool guy called Steve Sims called Bluefishing, and he talks about it in it. He calls it The Chug Test. He’s like, what I want to go chug a beer with this person, if the answer’s no, like then there’s a disconnect, there’s a problem. He uses the chug test with clients and different things.
I think on our team, it’s really important that everybody on our team exists to lower our pressure and noise. They exist to help move the business forward towards our outcomes. If there’s resistance there, or discomfort there, and you’re adding more and more team members like that, you’re building a business you don’t even feel like being involved in. It’s very important, I think, for us as entrepreneurs to be really conscious of how we feel around our team members.
Daniel: I can tell you I’ve hired people before and you have it too. If you’re listening right now, it’s interesting because I think this is a mistake that we make as entrepreneurs, we either hire people that we really like, or we hire people who know the job, and have expertise or experience doing the job. The reality is you need both. You’ve got to enjoy them, or at least feel like there’s a fit in who you are and what you think, but they also have to be an expert at what they do, or a professional in our world.
I can always tell when I’m talking to somebody who understands growing and scaling a business because they say what you just said, Jason. I appreciate it.
Jason: I’ll add, I think one of the biggest mistakes I’ve seen entrepreneurs make in trying to grow, or scale their business, or hire in their team is that the biggest mistake we make is that we try to hire somebody like our self a lot of times. We have a natural rapport for people that are like us. In NLP, Neuro-Linguistic Programming, they teach if you mirror or communicate at the same pace of these sorts of things, then you can build artificial rapport, or build real rapport perhaps really quickly. But, the challenge is we also tend to have a blind spot and hire people that are like us.
A lot of times, the people that we need to do a certain job, or not the entrepreneurial, visionary, cowboy personality type, or whatever personality type you are as an entrepreneur. You might need a different personality type for that role, and sometimes we’re trying to get people like us, which we don’t even want to do those things, and we’re trying to put them into that role. We need to find people that love and enjoy doing that particular thing that we don’t want to do. Somewhat, they need to be different from us, but we need to be able to have a relationship with them that feels comfortable and feels good and that we value. We enjoy being around them or having them on our team.
Daniel: Some things I’m going to add because I’m a nerd. I love people, I love growing and scaling. I think there’s another possibility which is when values match. If you’re very clear about what your values are as a human and a business, then you can be with somebody who maybe doesn’t match up with your personality, because you feel like you at least have that commonality and value.
Jason: You guys trust them.
Daniel: Yeah, exactly. One of our values as a family is we take care of our people. I teach my kids, we don’t give up. I naturally gravitate to people who care about people, and who have a bit of grit. Defining who you are as a person and defining who you are as a company, and having those values can help you in selecting somebody who you may not love hanging out with, but there’s a value match, and they have an expertise match. Things just jive as a company.
Jason: I find that’s one of the biggest flaws that I see in property management businesses, probably any business. As entrepreneurs go from the stage of solopreneur to building a team, they build a team around them but they’re operating like a solopreneur. They’re trying to micromanage them. They’re viewing these people as people that are supposed to be extensions of them in some way, and instead of building a team around them, of people that are taking things off of their plate and their jobs to lower their pressure and noise, they’re hiring people for jobs, people for roles they think the business needs instead of what they need.
In order to hire a team and build a team around you that is what you need as an entrepreneur, there needs to be clear values. Those need to be defined. That’s one of the foundational things we coach clients through is getting clear on their business, why we get entrepreneurs personal why, how those connect, creating, figuring out their core values. If they don’t have that, they don’t have culture. Culture comes from the entrepreneur, and it’s the business that is supposed to exist to serve the entrepreneurs needs in some way, and it’s also supposed to exist to solve a problem in the marketplace.
If they have those things in alignment, it significantly affects their ability to close deals and create trust. That speeds up rapidly. If they don’t have that, then not only are they having challenges with that, but they also have a team around them that they have to micromanage, that they always feel like they have to tell what to do, and that are not believers in them or in the business because they’ve never given them anything you believe in.
Having a team of believers feels great. You feel like you’re Iron Man. You feel like you’ve got the super suit, you’ve got all these people supporting you. We had an issue this morning, there was a client that had a product or something and they were frustrated or upset because they didn’t do any of the work and they didn’t get the results, obviously. They didn’t do some things that needed to be done, didn’t show up any calls, that didn’t do anything.
We want this client to get a result. One of my team members is brilliant at coaching and helping clients just feel the negative energy and transform it. He’s just a brilliant coach in that, and he talked to this client for like 60 minutes. The client was like, okay, I’m excited to work with you guys, I’m not going to sue you now. My approach probably would have been a little bit more hardline and hard nosed.
I’ve got another team member, and he deals with the clients directly. He’s super diplomatic, and I’d be like just do it this way. But he’s like, why don’t we say it like this? I’m like, that’s better. Our team members protect us. They protect the business, especially if they believe in you. You always feel like you’re being supported. God, it is so stressful. It’s worse having a team than being a solopreneur if you have a team that isn’t there to believe in you, to support you, and lower your pressure and noise, it’s worse.
Daniel: Agreed. Agreed.
Jason: You want to talk about the next step? You’ve got this outcome crafted. I love that idea because ultimately what matters is results, the outcome is what matters. A lot of people will hire just to fill a wall. They’re like, “We need this.” They think that’s the outcome, we solved it, we got this person.
The real outcome is them helping the business achieve a goal, achieve the outcome, that’s involved. I like the idea of crafting outcomes. What’s next?
Daniel: You know what? I have to follow it up with the outcome. I want clarity for your audience around why we do that, it’s really important. When you have a person coming into it and you give him a job, they could do a job and not get a result.
Daniel: That’s the challenge. When you craft an outcome and there’s massive clarity between you and the employee about what the outcome is, how to do the job is well informed. It’s like, “Look, we are going to need you to book X, Y, and Z so that the clients have this result.” They’re like, “Well, I booked it.” Yeah, you booked it but the client didn’t get this result. This is a challenge.
Outcomes just align the interests of the entrepreneur business owner and the employee so that the coaching conversations and the interactions are super, super, clean. There is some responsibility on the entrepreneur because I can’t say, “Look, I want to fly to Pluto one day. I’m going to hire you to help me do that.” That’s just not a possibility right now.
We have a lot of clients here who are like, “I don’t know how to do that. I need to hire somebody. Daniel, can your virtual professionals help me?” I’m like, “Absolutely not, we can’t help you. You don’t even know how to do it. How would we know if you don’t know?”
The military has this great concept, “You can’t give one unless you have one.” They don’t promote from outside. You’re not going to get a two star General who used to work at Coca-Cola, they’re not just going to make him the general. They have a process of rising through the ranks because that experience is so important.
When our clients say, “Hey, I want to try this thing out.” We’re like, “Hey, we can’t help you because we’re not a try-it-out company. We’re a professional organization that helps entrepreneurs get time freedom in their life and high caliber leverage.” We’re not going to experiment something with you, we’re not going to try to create the shift that’s going to go to pluto. We just don’t know how to do that.
That’s some clarity on the outcome.
Our next step after an outcome, we start interviewing. Then, it just moves into the launch which is why we have the Go Remote gift for your audience which is really timely because 50% of the world is now working at home. How do you do that? What are some of the technologies? How do I communicate?
Jason, you’re going to love this one. You and I, we’ve been working remote for a while. Most people would be on a chat platform, “Hey, I got to go to the bathroom.” Nobody wants to see that, but we’re all humans. What do you say? In our Go Remote guide we’re going to give out, you type ‘bio.be right back.’ It’s just a little bit better to see that on a chat platform in your corporate office, maybe 100 people.
We’ve got a lot of tips, tricks, what’s the right etiquette, and all that. After you interview, which is about a launch, that’s probably where all the magic happens—the first 90 days.
Jason: Yeah. I just saw on Facebook, it went viral, that all these people are working from home now. People are doing Zoom meetings and stuff. Some lady in her team of 20 or 30 people on a Zoom call forgot that her camera and her mic was still active while she was going to the bathroom. She said, “I’ll just go to the bathroom,” and took things with her. How awkward would that be? They need to understand some basic etiquette dealing with this new technology.
Daniel: Sure. The fun thing about it, we’re all humans. We all have kids, we all go to the bathroom, we all need a lunch break, and the rules are different now working at home. If you find yourself as a manager or an employee, you have to hyper communicate now because nobody can see if you’re actually working. If you find yourself as a leader, you have to give people the benefit of the doubt, and really communicate, communicate, communicate. This is a time unprecedented in history. Nobody can plan for needing to take your entire team remote in a matter of seven days. It just can’t be planned for.
Having a little bit of grace as a leader, and also increasing your communication for your employees as a leader is really super important right now.
Jason: Yeah. One of my coaches, Al Sharpton, gave me the idea that the best way was push communication rather than pull in which as a leader, you don’t have to go to hold them, stand over their shoulder, and ask them, “Hey, did you do this? Are you doing this? Where’s this at?” That’s pull communication. You’re always trying to get things from them but you set up systems in which the system, they’re reporting, submitting things, and providing the information to you so you’ll feel comfortable, and you don’t feel the need to micromanage them that way.
Daniel: That’s a great point. Part of our onboarding is helping people understand what a start of the day report looks like and the end of the day report looks like. Each of our folks, 1300-ish, 1200 or 1300 people, are doing a start of day report where they’re like, “Hey, these are the seven things I’m going to accomplish today.” And an end of the day report, “Hey, those seven things I knocked out five of the seven. I did three others and these two are pushed to the next day.”
Again, if you’ve got those communication systems well-oiled, one of the things because we’ve been virtual for so long, we have a tech platform where all of our virtual professionals enter their time. They start their day and they do their start of the day report in our system. At the end of the day, they report in our system. It keeps tabs and track of our virtual professionals so that we have a system of knowing, “Hey, they took a break.” They enter into a system, “I’m taking my lunch break,” or, “I’m taking my 15 minute break.”
We have a system that reports to our clients everything they do throughout the day. Our clients can login to that portal and just see it. We’ve been doing that because that’s normal. Now, everybody’s like, “Hey, how do I do that?” That’s another example. You just have a start and end of day report so your managers and your people have a clear way of communicating what their day looks like.
Jason: Yeah. That same coach I mentioned, I once asked, “How do you know if somebody in your team is a believer?” He just said, “They’re getting their work done. You’ve got the outcomes and the things they’re supposed to be doing. They’re reporting that they’re getting these things done. The performance is there and you’re getting the results that you want. You don’t have to micromanage them, you don’t have to live in fear. They’re getting things done.” That’s ultimately what you want. You want to pay money, you want them to help you make more of it. You want them to get it done.
Strategic call, development plan, crafting an outcome, interviewing, and you said launch. The launch is then setting, you’ve got these systems in place. For your clients, they can login, they can see what the team members are doing.
Clarifying question. There’s two types, I’ve noticed, of assistant companies or outsourcing companies where they’re like, “Hey, we’ll answer your phones and we’ve got 50-100 people here in a call center. Some random ones are going to answer the call.” Or, you’ve got Raymond who’s assigned to your phone and he’s going to do this, he’s going to do this job for you. Maybe you could help the listeners understand what MyOutDesk and this relationship looks like.
Daniel: Yeah, make sense. The first example is for major corporations. Our business is designed for SMBs—Small and Medium Sized Businesses. We think of us like an extension of your business. You get to interview them, you get to onboard them. They report everyday to you. It’s like, “Hey, Jason. I’m here. Daniel’s here. I’m ready to login. I’m going to rock it. Do you need anything today? Here’s my start of the day report.”
Every single day, they login. We typically do Monday to Friday. Some of our clients will have multiple schedules depending on coverage needs. LIke over the weekend, late night calls, or emergency phone numbers. Just think of us like an extension of your business. We’re giving you leverage. We’re a real estate staffing company that is specific to property managers, brokers, busters, mortgage companies. Our whole world is around helping you grow and scale.
After the launch, it goes through training. Most entrepreneurs who ever hired somebody realizes that in the beginning, I liked this X. If you’ve been watching us on video right now, I’m doing an X. In the beginning, it’s low value because they’re brandnew to your business. They don’t know your culture, they don’t know your customers, they don’t know your value proposition. There’s just not a lot of value in the first two weeks.
At some point, the value goes up. The amount of time you have to spend with somebody is high in the beginning because you need to tell them everything that’s in your brain. That all of this tribal knowledge that you need to impart and give to them. You might already have it documented, you might not.
The first 90 days is really teaching them how you want them to serve the business. Communicating, giving around like, “Hey, here’s how to use our system. Here’s the training platform. Here’s all the team members. Here’s all the systems you need to learn.” The first 90 days, it’s just getting them up to speed. After that, typically our clients are recording a 60% or 70% savings with the exact same result they were getting prior. It’s pretty awesome.
Jason: Now, these team members, is it hourly or are you dedicating a monthly? Fulltime? How does this tend to work?
Daniel: There’s a couple of things. We’re different. Obviously, they’re virtual professionals so they’re working full time. We’re a subscription based business. You pay us, we pay them. We also carry their healthcare, their vacation time, and all their benefits. Most companies, they’re making a very razor thin margin. Honestly, 90% of what you guys pay us, what our clients pay us, actually goes to benefits for their virtual professionals—benefits, vacation, health plan, we do conferences. We have an entire support system, team, tech, and all that kind of craziness.
The point is they’re our people. We’re helping you get up to speed so they can help you grow and scale your business. At some point, we all become a team. Meaning, the company is here to support the virtual assistant, support the client, and everybody wins. That’s what I love about working here. I’m going to help people find jobs in the Philippines, that’s where we operate. I get to help businesses scale and grow. It’s like the coolest place to be especially because we’ve helped over 5000 clients. I’ve gotten to see growth plans, org charts, systems.
It’s just so exciting every day to see so many Small and Medium Sized Businesses really see under the hood—profitability, who’s on your team, what are some of your struggles. It’s just really awesome for me and my team because every day, we’re just serving our community.
Jason: Love it. What are some of the frequently asked questions that people have that maybe we haven’t covered? That somebody might be asking during the process?
Daniel: A lot of people are like, “What does my commitment look like? How long do I have to stay in contract?” I’m a real estate guy and very firmly believed in value. We don’t lock our people into any long term contracts. Every two weeks, every single one of my clients is voting with their credit card, honestly.
Imagine if your business, 100%, runs on adding value for others. That’s how our business works. One of the missions that we’ve embraced at a really high level is our virtual assistants or virtual professionals need to be indispensable to your business. That’s the guiding light, it has been from the beginning. If they come in and they take things off of your plate, you have all this time freedom, all of these opportunities to crack, and grow your business, then we just created an indispensability, it is irreplaceable. That’s our whole mission as a company. We’re really excited.
Jason: Very cool. Do we talk about pricing? What is it going to cost? Typically, I know that the people listening, that’s the big question. They’re like, “Can I afford this? Would this make sense for me?” Most of them are thinking, “I can barely afford the team I have now. Is this something I can do to get to that next level? Maybe this will help me bridge that gap.”
For example, in property management, what I call the first sandtrap is the property manager that’s maybe broken about 50 doors, they broke that barrier there. They’re between 50-100 doors, they can’t break the 100-door barrier. They’re operating as a solopreneur, they can’t afford to hire their first team member. Their pricing is too low, they’ve taken on too many crappy properties to manage. They’ve got a lot of leaks. They’re trying to figure out, “How do I get ahead?”
They can change some of these other things but one of the things is, “I need another person.” Maybe you can touch on that and give people an idea of what they should budget for and make this work.
Daniel: Step one, three, or five, is 100% free. If you’re listening right now and you’re like, “I need support,” or, “I need help,” I just want you to jump on our website, myoutdesk.com. Just go and schedule a consultation, go through the process. Worst case scenario, we walk away as buds. We high five each other, say, “Congratulations,” and we walk away. Best case scenario, we find a way to make it a win-win where you’re getting time freedom back into your world and you’re able to focus on growing and scaling your business.
If you decide to move forward with us, I always like to say, “Look, it’s $400 a week. It’s $400 and some change.” It’s not a super expensive value proposition in our world. It’s $1747 a month, all in—benefits, vacation time. Like an entire team supporting you. All the systems and processes that we’ve developed over the years will help you.
This Go Remote guide we’re going to give out is 12 pages and 5000 clients later worth of really good this-is-how-you-run-a-remote-team guide. We’re going to give everything away for free because that’s what we do. Including our time, energy, and effort.
We were just on the news last week. We basically gave out consultations to help business leaders, C-suite people, and entrepreneurs figure out how to go remote. There’s this bottleneck in California. Everybody got shelter in place. California went down, people were scrambling. We helped our insurance broker, we helped our attorneys. We were just helping people figure this out and give them some confidence in this.
If you’re listening right now and you think this might be an avenue, I would just encourage you to reach out because it costs you nothing but your time. You’ll walk away with a lot of value.
Jason: Another major issue right now is the cash crunch. Every business is feeling a cash crunch. Cash is just shortened, people are laying people off. Companies are furloughing people, their team members can collect their employment insurance. This is a painful time period. They’re having to figure out how to cut expenses. Some businesses will not be the same after this.
This might be another option if they’re having to layoff staff and they’re not able to fund or keep cash flow positive. The big challenge then is how do we keep some sort of level of service? How do we still deliver to our clients if we cannot afford that overhead anymore, and we need to lower the overhead.
For those listening, that’s what you need to do right now, to cash crunch, and solve that problem. If you can be healthy there, then you can get on some higher level problems to deal with like how do we keep the […] economy or what not. You’ve got to solve the immediate cash crunch issue. That might be an SBA loan, that might be some of these things coming out. Maybe having a conversation with your team might help facilitate that.
Daniel: We have a good friend of mine who owns a recruiting firm. One of her right hand women has a 1 year old and a 3 year old. They’re all at home. She needs support now, not tomorrow, because she’s contractually obligated to add value to her clients. If she doesn’t, they have the opportunity to walk away and cancel. We’re seeing a big uptake in people who are like, “Hey, we’re having staffing issues right now. I’m not sure. We need support in X, Y, and Z.” We’re happy to go through that process with somebody and say, “We can help you here,” or, “No, this isn’t what we specialize in but these people are your best option.”
There’s a lot of companies like ours. There’s lots of resources out there where the SBA thing, that’s one of our free gifts in the Go Remote right now. When we give that away, we have a guide to getting the SBA disaster loan there. We have a guide for what’s happening with the taxes right now. We have a guide for what you are saying to your clients right now in this weird, uncertain time.
You can’t say you want to buy or sell, this is an odd time to be a sales person but it’s a great time to have conversations, ask questions, and connect people on a human to human basis. We put together a little guide for people in that space. We should give it away. What do you think, Jason?
Jason: Let’s do it. How do we get it?
Daniel: All you have to do is text MOD—MyOutDesk—MOD to 31996. Anybody that wants it can go there. You’ll get a link to our Go Remote stuff, all those free guides are down there.
Here’s the other thing, normally, you understand marketing, we date our content. Normally, we help people register and do a bunch of stuff so that we know who they are. Because of this disaster and because of everything that’s happening in the world, when you text MOD to 31996, we’re giving that stuff in a Word format. Meaning, you can take the Go Remote guide, put your logo on it, and give it away to your customers and clients. You can put your logo on our disaster recovery plan.
We have a CEO mindset conversation. It’s time to adapt your value proposition for your customers because we’re in a new world right now. All that stuff is given away free because we’re all in this together. The biggest cure for the economy right now is businesses and entrepreneurs staying productive.
Jason: Right. I’m texting it right now so I can check it out. It’s 31996 and I just do MOD.
Daniel: That’s right. I can’t wait to see Jason from across my phone. It’s going to be awesome. There we go. Boom! “MyOutDesk is your partner in going remote!” That’s exactly it, brother. Right there.
Here’s the thing, we were on TV. I think it’s an important message. I think we can wrap it up with your audience with this one thing. As entrepreneurs, as business leaders, it is our job to stay productive. It’s our civic duty right now. Our economy is going to be challenged. The people at the bottom who have the normal middle class jobs, they’re going to go through pain. As a leader in my community, my job is to help everybody I can stay as productive as possible. That’s what’s going to shift, that’s what’s going to change this world.
That’s why we put together a guide. That’s why we’re giving it up free. I hope it’s valuable to you guys, your audience, and Jason—even you guys.
Jason: Awesome. I just did a training just last week. Property management and property managers are going to be even more critical during this time than ever before. This is an opportunity for property managers to plant seeds for the future. I taught a concept called Care ROI. Right now may not be the time to focus on financial ROI but Care ROI will lead to that in the future as things shift. In turn, people will remember. Because emotions are heightened right now, anything that we do, and it actually takes a communication that we do as an entrepreneur, as a business owner, will be magnified times 10 in the mind of our customers or consumers because emotion is what creates memory.
It’s the difference between what you were doing the day before 9/11 or the day on 9/11. People’s memories are very different because of the emotions attached. Right now, you have the opportunity to get a 10x ROI on positive things that you do out to your customers, to your audience, and your potential clients. That is massive.
Everyone listening, make sure you checkout the training that I did and leverage that Care ROI. I want to thank you for coming on and doing this even though it’s crazy right now. I honor you for putting out this awesome guide to help people out. That’s awesome. I look forward to having some more conversations with you in the future, Daniel.
Daniel: Jason, thanks for your time, man. We really appreciate you today.
Jason: I’ll say one more thing, Everybody, businesses exist to solve a problem. That’s why businesses exist. If the business is not solving a problem, it’s taking people’s money and not delivering results. There’s no higher purpose or cause that entrepreneurs can do right now than to solve people’s problems and to also make money. Making money helps you help the economy, it helps everybody. It helps you help your team. Find ways to help people solve their problems and to make money.
I don’t think there’s anything wrong. Some people try to guilt and shame right now. They’re the people that are just taking from the system, don’t worry about them.
The other thing I’ll point out is if you’re an entrepreneur, you don’t like your business, you’ve been looking for your out. You’re an entrepreneur, this is your perfect out. This is the perfect opportunity to choose out of your business and just not do it anymore. You have the perfect excuse.
For the rest of us that are driven, that we’re passionate about what we do, if you are a property management entrepreneur, you’re still wanting to grow, still wanting to be part of the community, check us out at doorgrowclub.com. Get inside our Facebook group community there. There’s lots of helpful things going around, property management trying to solve problems for each other, and figure out what to do with things. Make sure to have a conversation with us at DoorGrow. Our goal right now is to plant those Care seeds, ROI as well, and help you out in any way that we can. Check us out at doorgrow.com.
Daniel, thanks again for coming and hanging out.
Daniel: It’s been my pleasure.
Jason: All right. We’ll let you go.
Everyone check out his website. It is myoutdesk.com. Make sure to do the text message thing. Until next time, everybody. To our mutual growth. Bye, everyone.
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