THE

FANCY HANDS BLOG

Happy camper.

Fancy Hands client Michelle, who works under the name Bombchelle (cute, right?) wrote a great article about how she's using our service.

Path to Productivity.

Joel Kelly, an enthusiastic client of ours and one of our favorite Tweeters, wrote this article on Medium and we'd like to share a part of it:

 

My path to productivity

Delegation Salvation.

Espree Devora, founder of SaveBusinessTime.com and Fancy Hands client, wrote a great post on The FoundersCard blog about all of the ways she delegates. Here's what she has to say about Fancy Hands (I added two of my own notes, in parenthesis and without italics): 

Worth It.

It warms our hearts when people blog about their experience as a Fancy Hands client. Here's what Keith Korneluk has to say:

"Quick. Make a list of the top ten things you have to accomplish this month but have absolutely no desire to start or finish them. Now take that list and circle the tasks that could be accomplished if you were a Hollywood celebrity with a personal assistant. Got the list?

Great.

Guess what? You can have that personal assistant working for you without the burden of paying them thousands of dollars and selling your underwear to TMZ. Because your assistant is in the cloud.

Enter Fancy Hands.

Sanity, reclaimed.

Fancy Kids.

I don't have kids, but our founder Ted does, and if the amount of times his son has ruined a road trip or a night of sleep by throwing up is any indication, it seems like being a parent can be quite a challenge. 

Our clients with children rely on Fancy Hands to help them with all of their kid-related inquiries. Here's a sampling of their recent requests:

The pre-work of the work.

How many cows are there in Texas?

That's just one of the questions that Fancy Hands client Kate, of Prepwise.com, has asked her assistants to research for her. And then she sent us this email:

I logged in to place another request, but realized you may not hear often enough how appreciated you are.

The service is great and admittedly so is the price point. Thanks.

Also, big kudos to your user interface team. I recently had to build another site (which is NOT my bag), and was reminded how unsung cohesive design is. Your design aesthetic works for me. This dashboard is perfect. Nice contrast with the tasks remaining and reboot date. All above the fold. Clean. Simple. Pleasant design really does make it nice to return. Thanks for all you do.

-High five from The West Village, NYC

I reached out to Kate further and she added: 

The question I had when I signed up was, "Will I really need 25 requests? What can I possibly need every month that they can do?" You'll see I've used most of my requests most months.

One call, two ways.

One of our clients' favorite requests to ask of their Fancy Hands assistants? 

"Make this phone call that I've been dreading." 

Frequently, the calls will have something to do with a service account of some kind, like a cable or phone company. 

We can handle those calls in two ways. 

Example #1 - Patching You In: 

Dear Fancy Hands,

Can you call Time Warner Cable and tell them that I've been without my HD channels for two weeks now?

Please schedule an appointment for a technician to come fix it - anytime next week on a weekday morning is fine.

And please negotiate a credit for my lost service as well.

I'm around all day and I'll look out for your call - please patch me in on my cell phone and I'll verify my permission for you to speak on my behalf. 

The important things to remember when requesting a patch-in are: 

  • Please give your assistant a window of time that you'll be available for the call. 
  • Remember to answer an incoming call from a number that you don't recognize. 
  • Specify which phone number on your account (if you have more than one entered) you'd like them to call. 
  • Specify, if you'd like your assistant to make a service appointment, a few times that work for you. If you have your Google calendar linked to your account, they'll drop the appointment in for you once it's confirmed. 

Your assistant will call the company, hold until they get a real person on the line, then patch you in so that you can give the customer service representative your account information, and let them know that you authorize your assistant to speak on your behalf. 

Then you can hang up and be on your way while your assistant handles the call for you. 

Example #2 - Including Your Information:

Dear Fancy Hands,

Can you call Time Warner Cable and tell them that I've been without my HD channels for two weeks now?

Please schedule an appointment for a technician to come fix it - anytime next week on a weekday morning is fine.

And please negotiate a credit for my lost service as well.

My account number is 876-50843 and my security password is 4531. The address and phone and name on the account are all mine that you already have in your system but I am around on my cell phone today; you can patch me in if there are any further qeustions. 

We may still try to patch you in if there's a hiccup (Did you forget that the account is actually in your wife's name? They don't have any appointments next week, is the week after acceptable for you? etc.), so if you let us know in your request that you're available for a patch-in, that will help us expedite your job. Otherwise, you'll receive an email detailing the outcome of the assistant's call and they can call the company back once they've received an email answer from you. 

Whichever way you prefer to have your assistants place these kinds of calls for you, we can eliminate that nagging "man, I still haven't called the cable company" thought that comes to you in the middle of the night. 

The truth about help.

Stacy-Marie Ishmael wrote this blog post about signing up for Fancy Hands: 

After years - years - of dithering, I signed up for Fancy Hands sometime around midnight on the Tuesday of a week during which my calendar, my inbox and my immune system all seemed to be conspiring against me.

It was similar to the situation that prompted me to sign up for Task Rabbit last year: three months of being silently mocked by the bag of clothes I'd earmarked for charity and which I failed, every single day, to deliver to Goodwill.

I quipped then that as I've gotten older, I've become more willing to exchange money for time. This continues to be true.

In the 19 hours or so since I coughed up for their basic service, the virtual assistants at Fancy Hands have:

Change is hard. Stress is harder.

Gabriel Weinberg is the CEO & Founder of DuckDuckGo, an angel investor, and the co-author of Traction

He wrote this blog post about his experience as a Fancy Hands client: 

"I find myself recommending virtual personal assistants to people quite frequently (among other services). I personally use Fancy Hands. (No, they did not ask me to write this post.)

I don't think many people I've recommended it to have converted, however.

It's a way of life change, and those are hard to make. 

"What do use it for?" is the standard question. To answer that question more effectively, here are my last twenty tasks (abridged):

  • Find me a high-quality black yoga mat on Amazon Prime.
  • Find me replacement hardware for this Restoration Hardware table.
  • Schedule an oven repair given these error codes.
  • Make dinner reservations tonight.
  • Schedule our regular painter to come out and give us an estimate.
  • Schedule our car to go in for a recall and mirror replacement.
  • Find out why our corporate filing never went through.
  • Find the gross profit margin, revenue and # of users for a variety of tech companies.
  • Buy us a membership at a local kids museum.
  • Sign us up for sewer insurance.
  • Help me find an interview of Ira Glass interviewing Terry Gross.
  • Get a kick-plate for our new fridge, which was missing from the packaging.
  • Research co-working spaces in Brooklyn given some parameters.
  • Figure out how to replace the glass on a phone cheaply.
  • Figure out how to replace a custom wood vent in our house.
  • Schedule our other car to go in for a battery and radio fix.
  • Find a place to donate some specific furniture to.
  • Schedule our regular electrician to come out.
  • Fix a messed up order with Verizon FIOS.
  • Schedule a shower door company to come out and give us an estimate.

These are all from the last six weeks. We just remodeled our basement so there is a bit more house stuff, but generally I use it mostly for:

Scheduling (reservations, estimates, etc.).

Web research (purchases, lazyweb, etc.).

Making any phone calls possible I don't have to make (orders, support, etc.).

Arranging travel (booking, what to do, etc.).

Fancy Hands also has a common requests page.

If you're on the fence, I suggest buying an unlimited plan somewhere for a year. That will really commit you up-front and force you more than otherwise to make that way-of-life change."

We agree with Gabriel about way-of-life changes being difficult to get started.

We find that our biggest hurdle as a service provider is to

  1. provide our new clients with as much information as possible so that they totally understand how we can simplify their lives, and 
  2. get new clients to actually use the service once they sign up. 

It's frustrating to join Fancy Hands, pay for it, and not use it. 

So sign up...AND jump in! 

Good Grooming.

Gone are the days when women would handle all of the wedding planning and men would just show up at the altar.

In today's world, weddings require teamwork. 

Fancy Hands client Bellowser was a groom who got in on the action, and he added Fancy Hands to his party planning team. Our assistants can handle all of the research and legwork that you don't want to do or don't have the time to do.   

He wrote about his experience here

323 minutes saved.

"I love your service. It's changed my life, and I keep finding new ways to make it useful.”

Fancy Hands customer Chris sent this comment into our support team. Feedback like this makes our day, of course, because our goal is to simplify our customers’ lives and leave them feeling less stressed. 

Chris has made: 

  • 96 requests

His Fancy Hands assistants have: 

  • Placed 177 phone calls 
  • Spent 323 minutes on the phone 
  • Sent 10 emails

Chris allowed us to share some of his recent requests with you all.

Valentime.

I mistakenly called it "Valentime's Day" when I was little. 

Whatever your feelings are about the holiday, it is, in fact, Valen-time.

Weddings & Whiskey & Whatnot.

Fancy Hands customer Karell has an exciting year ahead of her - she’s getting married in August! Her Fancy Hands assistants have been helping her with all of the planning and research that goes along with that, as well as with various other curiosities that have come up! Here’s what Karell has asked lately: 

We're thinking of having our friend be the officiant for our wedding ceremony that might take place in Yonkers, NY. Can you please tell me what requirements they need to be a legal officiant there? Can you especially confirm if a person ordained online is valid to be a legal officiant?

Mind-blowingly great.

Architectural/engineering/construction blogger & podcaster Matt Handal shared his love for Fancy Hands: 

One of the biggest challenges many marketers have is too many things to get done but not enough time to get them done in. And it’s often the “little things” that clutter our to-do list, like setting up appointments, editing word documents, researching information, etc.

But what if you could get just one more task completed per day? How much more productive would you be? How much more valuable would you be to your organization?

Superfan.

Kai Davis is a Fancy Hands power user. Check out his blog post that sings our priases: 

"It was 9am and I had just climbed onto a train to San Sebastian, Spain, with the clothes on my back, with no place to stay and no clue what was waiting for me in San Sebastian.

Help with the hustle.

 

Our customer Zach Silver wrote a blog post and titled it: 

"Fancy Hands – a service I couldn’t live without."

Zach integrated Fancy Hands assistants into his life, and it has made everything easy breezy in a world of creezy.

('crazy' doesn't rhyme there, just go with it, k?)

Here's what he has to report: 

Thumbs Up.

Have you noticed these "hand-y" icons next to your completed tasks? 

Mother's Helper.

Fancy Hands client Marley is a busy lady. She’s a nanny for big family in Los Angeles. The father in that big family just so happens to be a very successful actor and producer. Famous; that’s what I’m getting at, ya'all. He’s super freaking famous. 

So on top of the high stress that comes with the responsibility of caring for children, Marley also has to dodge paparazzi and fans like Frogger danced between eighteen-wheelers. 

Fancy Hands works really well for someone like Marley, who has research needs on a regular basis, but doesn’t have the time to sit down at the computer for hours a day poking around. 

Here are some requests that she logged with Fancy Hands recently. 

Awkward phone calls.

True story: when Fancy Hands founder & CEO Ted Roden needs a status update from an employee and he's in the mood to be funny, he has a Fancy Hands assistant call them and ask them for it. 

Our engineer got this call this morning: "Hi Kurt, it's Mandie. When will the new version of the iPhone app will be ready to test drive? Thanks."

Delegation at its finest, and laughs all around the office.

No Hourly Fees

Basic

Less than $1 a day

5

Requests

per month

-25%

Professional

Most Popular

15

Requests

per month

-25%

Premier

Best Value

25

Requests

per month

-25%

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