Have you ever wondered about the benefits of using Trello in your VA Business?  Well, I was scrolling through social media the other day when I came across a new service from Maria Watson, The Details Director called The Trello Lounge; so I reached out to her and asked would she write a guest blog about the benefits of using Trello in your VA Business. You see, when I was still a VA I used Trello with some clients and can totally see the value of it, but I have never taken the time to really understand all of the elements of it – so I reached out to Maria and asked her if she would be kind enough to share some of her knowledge with you and thankfully she agreed. (Phew!)

If you’re not already familiar with Trello, it’s a project management & collaboration tool which is based on the principles of Kanban (a Japanese method for managing the creation of products) it provides a very visual overview of projects using boards (one for each project), lists (e.g to do, doing, done) and cards (which represent tasks).  The idea being you move the cards (tasks) along the lists to completion. But there is sooooo much more to Trello and a lot you can do with Trello to keep you and your VA business organised. If you’re visual and like to see the big picture, but also need to keep track of the details and often lose your desk to post-it notes, you’ll love Trello.   

Oh, and bonus – it’s free! 

Today I’m going to share 4 benefits of using Trello in your VA business to not only help you but to also add value to your clients:

Everything in one place! 

When you’re working on lots of projects for lots of clients it’s not unusual to end up with information, documents and lists stored and scattered in different places.  

Opening and searching in different apps takes time, time you could be spending getting stuff done.   

One of the wonderful aspects of Trello is that it allows you to store everything in one place! No more logging into 5 systems to do work for one client! 

I know what you’re thinking… but I already use [enter cloud storage system of your choice] I haven’t got time to move all my documents to Trello and what if I don’t like it and have to move them all back?  Or… my client won’t use anything other than Dropbox, there’s no way I can use Trello. 

Here’s the neat thing…   

Trello links with dropbox, google drive and loads of other apps you may already be using so you don’t need to move anything.  Within a few clicks it’s accessible from Trello. 

 You can even invite your clients to join your Trello projects so that absolutely everything is in one place… but more on that later.  

You don’t have to rely on your memory…ever! 

With added features such as checklists, due dates and Power-Ups* such as calendar and card repeater you can literally download your brain into Trello and be reminded what to do and when to do it.  

DUE DATE & CALENDAR – Each time you add a card (task) to one of your Trello Boards (projects) you can add a due date then hop over to the calendar view to drag and drop to move the tasks around and organise your week. You can also sync to main calendars such as iCal, gCal & Outlook.  

CHECKLISTS & CARD REPEATER – Take all those processes and details of how you perform each job for a client on a regular basis and set them up as repeating checklists.  Free up your mind and when the job next needs doing it will pop onto your Trello board and you can work through it step by step. You won’t miss or forget a thing and if (when!) you get distracted you can quickly get back and know exactly where you left off. 

The magical thing is you can do all of that ^^^^ within one card (task) so you’re not faced with ALL the details.  You just see the title of the task. The how-to check list is hidden away until you need it. 

*Power Ups – one of the many things I love about Trello is that it’s not packed with bells and whistles you feel guilty for never using (or understanding). You start off with the basics (and they cover most things you need) and you add fancy bits (in Trello these are called Power Ups) as and when you need them (still for free!). 

Communication, collaboration & visibility for you AND your clients 

Ever been so busy or engrossed in your work or had one of those crazy days that just don’t go to plan, when your client “checks in” for a progress update? 

Gahhhhhhhhhh! It feels awful.  You’re beavering away and you don’t always get a chance to update them.  Some clients don’t mind at all but others feel more reassured when they can keep track. 

Trello has the solution.  You can add your clients to you Trello boards (projects) so that they can see progress for themselves.  

The brilliant thing is, once you invite them in you can then bring all your communications into Trello and avoid emailing and messaging in various places. 

Your client can see what you’re working on and when you’re scheduled to work on it.  You can chat and leave notes for each other. 

You can also assign tasks to each other.  If you need information simply make a note and assign it to them and vice versa. 

If you’ve noted down all your processes as noted in above, they also have access to those.  If you can’t work for some reason they aren’t left in the lurch and know how to do the tasks and have a clear view of your work and project status at any point in time. 

Don’t worry you have full control of which boards and projects you add them to. It doesn’t have to feel like a big brother situation.  It’s just a really great way to communicate & collaborate in one place, allowing you to save time, give your client even more trust in you and add extra value to the service you’re providing.  

It’s an extra service you can offer your clients

Once you’ve mastered using Trello to organise your own business it’s something you can offer to do for your clients.

If they’re juggling lots or projects or carrying around their processes in their head, you can help them to get more organised using Trello.

If you’ve been using it with them for the work you do, they’ll already be used to the format and are more likely to embrace it. 

You secure more work and more trust and they free up even more time!

If you like the idea of using Trello to organise & streamline your VA business you can sign up and get started at http://www.trello.com/ and watch their free tutorial videos here

Maria Watson The Details Director - The Trello LoungeAbout Maria: 

I’m Maria Watson (The Details Director), I help service-based business owners to use simple systems and create simple processes to bring calm, order & organisation to their life & business.

My clients are at their best when delving into the creative, people focussed, innovative stuff that comes naturally. I’m at mine when I’m organising & simplifying the details of overwhelming, chaotic or complex projects & situations. I can flit between the big picture and the details with ease and have an inherent, inborn obsession with tidying up messes, straightening out creases and making things run as smooth as possible.  My absolute favourite tool to do this with, is Trello!

If you’d like to connect and learn more, come on over to Linkedin where I “live” and share Trello & Business Organising Tips on a daily basis.

If you’d like to work with me and  learn more about how you can use Trello to organise your VA business you can join The Trello Learners’ Lounge – doors close on Friday 27th March.