Many of us want to improve our productivity, but aren’t sure where to start. We’ve been told that it’s essential to work long hours, put our families and interests on the backburner and do twenty things at once in order to be successful. We vow to become more productive and get bogged down with writing lists and planning that we don’t get around to actually doing anything. As a result, we become so frustrated that we didn’t get done as much as we wanted to that we become tempted to give up. Before you throw in the towel, take a deep breath and change your perspective with the following tips:
1. Set your priorities. Your time is valuable. Setting your priorities allows you to focus on the people, tasks and activities that are important to you. Knowing your priorities will help you find the focus of your day.
2. Create a flexible schedule. Scheduling helps you create a plan for your day, and a schedule with some flexibility ensures that you have time to handle things that come up unexpectedly. Incorporate your priorities into your schedule and you’ll always be able to accomplish what you need to each day, whether your priority is to check in with all of your buyers or to make it to your daughter’s Tee Ball game.
3. Isolate the one task that you have to get done that day and do it. If you’re like most agents, your to-do list grows throughout the day. Instead of getting overwhelmed, pinpoint the one thing that you absolutely have to get done, and go from there.
4. Forget multitasking; focus on one thing at a time. We’ve been told that multi-tasking is essential to succeed in business. The more things you can do at once, the more you’ll thrive, right? Well, studies show that the more we multi-task, the less we actually get done. It makes sense, when your focus is spread over multiple tasks, it’s easier to miss something. When you focus on one thing, you can ensure that it gets done, and is done correctly.
5. If you’re not sure where to start, start with a short, easy task and move from there. Once you’re in the zone, you’ll find it easier to tackle everything else on your list. If you’re having trouble with your daily lead generating activities, call one of your favorite clients. Once you speak with them, it’ll be easier to call other folks on your list.
6. Break long tasks into smaller pieces to save your focus and productivity. Time-intensive tasks can be overwhelming. When it’s broken into smaller, more manageable pieces, it’s easier to accomplish. If this sounds familiar, it’s how we advise you to create your goals.
7. Work hard when you’re in the zone, and take breaks every 60 to 90 minutes. Research shows that people function best in 60 to 90 minute blocks. Schedule your day in 90 minute blocks, and commit to focusing on an activity or task during that time. When time is up, get up and stretch, take a walk, read an article in a magazine and relax until it’s time to start the next task.
8. Set deadlines. The best way to ensure that a task won’t travel from one day’s to-do list to the next indefinitely is to give it an expiration date. That way you have a target date to accomplish it. If you still find it difficult to complete these tasks, ask yourself why you’re putting it off. Which leads us to…
9. If it’s not your forte, delegate it. The most successful people delegate the tasks that aren’t their strength. If completing your monthly expenses is a task that keeps moving from to-do list to to-do list every day or every week, delegate it to someone who enjoys or is good at doing it, whether it’s your assistant, your accountant or your college-aged child who’s a whiz at spreadsheets. When you get this off of your plate, you’re able to focus on the tasks that are essential to your business that are your strength.
10. Write it down, especially if it’s important. How many times have you said to yourself, “Oh, I don’t need to write it down, I’ll remember,” and then you forgot. We all think that our minds are like steel traps—nothing gets out. Well, things do get out sometimes, which is why you should write your tasks down on a piece of paper, on your smartphone or on your computer. That way, you’ll never forget it.
Referral Maker™ real estate CRM software will help you to organize your day, track your activities and reach your goals. We designed Referral Maker to take the guesswork out of your daily proactive lead generating activities, so that you can build your relationships with your clients and have fun in real estate. Visit Referral Maker for more information, and to start your 30-day free trial.