Many people struggle with punctuality. Being late once or twice happens to all of us; however, if you’re constantly late, it can damage your reputation as a professional, as it makes the other person feel as if you don’t respect their time. This isn’t the impression you want to leave with current and potential clients or even friends and loved ones. Although it may be difficult at first, with practice you can adjust your habits and learn to be more punctual. Improve your ability to be on-time with these tips:
1. Be realistic about your time. People are often late because they underestimate how long it will take to do something. People who are chronically late may think, “It’ll only take me about 10 minutes to drive across town in heavy traffic.” That’s not realistic.
Punctual people are more realistic with their time. They’ve timed the journey before or they make the journey often enough where they know that it’ll take at least 45 minutes, and they may even build in a 10 minute buffer to ensure that they make it on time.
Get Punctual Tip: Time how long it takes to do the things you normally do, and track this information for a week. Write down everything from brushing your teeth to your commute to delivering Pop-Bys. Once you start tracking how long things really take, you’ll be better prepared to give more accurate time estimates.
2. Time-block your schedule. When you organize your day into 90-minute blocks of time, you know how you’re going to spend your day. Sure, other things may come up that demand your attention, but for the most part, you know what you’re doing. Sticking to the schedule you made for the day will help you keep track of your time, which will help you to be on time for your appointments.
Get Punctual Tip: Use a timer. Use a kitchen timer or the one on your smartphone, and set it for 90 minutes. When you hear the jingle notifying you that time is up, be sure to move on to the next project or task.
3. Be prepared. The difference between the punctual and the chronically late often boils down to preparation. Punctual people have developed the habit of preparing ahead of time, particularly for activities that they know may take up a chunk of time such as packing their lunch, buying Pop-By items to deliver to their databases, etc. Preparing ahead of time prevents them from being late to appointments—they’re not trying to squeeze a few time-consuming activities into their productive time as they already did them beforehand.
Get Punctual Tip: Create a routine. If you find yourself running behind in the morning, try to streamline your tasks by preparing the night before. Choose your outfit, put the coffee grounds and water in the coffee maker so that you only have to press a button in the morning, pack your lunch and put it in the refrigerator, get the kids’ lunches and outfits ready, put important paperwork in your bag or briefcase and set it by the door, etc. The more you can get done the night before, the easier it is to ease into your morning and less chance you’ll have of running late.
Referral Maker™ real estate CRM software makes it easy to maintain your schedule. The Dashboard of Referral Maker gives you an at-a-glance view of your to-do list, your appointments and your lead generating activities. You’ll always know what to do, who to call and what to say. Visit Referral Maker for more information and to start your 30-day free trial today!