Time management is a struggle the majority of people face. As a real estate professional, you juggle multiple tasks, phone calls, emails and other to-do’s on a daily basis. Making the most of your time and avoiding time-wasting activities is critical.
Recent studies have shown that the average person wastes anywhere from 2-4 hours per day checking email, chatting with co-workers, surfing the web and commenting on their favorite social sites. With stats like that, it’s a wonder we accomplish anything!
Imagine how productive we might be if our time, tasks and day were better organized.
The challenge is implementing systems and tools that simplify your life without adding an additional layer to the process. Below we explore a few quick and easy ways to get organized and better manage your day!
1. Keep a Time Log
Whether you feel efficient or not, taking the time to track your average day can be eye opening. Keeping a detailed log of your daily activities for a 3-5 day period can offer enormous insight into the time wasters and low priority tasks stealing time from your day
How to Use a Time Log:
• Write down every activity and time spent on it whether it’s responding to an email or talking with a co-worker.
• After several days of monitoring your daily activities, analyze each of them. Determine where you wasted time or could have delegated a certain task.
• Minimize the amount of time you spend jumping from one activity to the next. If you’re not familiar with David Allen’s 2 Minute Rule, take a moment to understand the power behind this simple action and the impact it can have on your productivity.
2. Create To-Do Lists
A to-do list is a must to keep you focused and on top of those important tasks. It’s essential that you start your day with a fresh perspective and clean sheet of paper. Whether it’s a yellow legal pad, your smart phone or an old-fashioned organizer; get it out of your head and into a system that works for you.
Subscribing to the theory that “it doesn’t exist if it isn’t written down” gives you power over your to-do list. Creating a list is a mental exercise that eliminates the stress associated with feeling as if you’ve forgotten something. It also forces your brain to release that task.
We can only retain so much information at any given time. Having a consistent place to capture important information will increase your productivity and make it far less likely that you miss an important meeting or phone call.
3. Embrace Technology
Time management tools have the ability to improve your productivity by syncing between Outlook, Gmail, the cloud and your smart phone. Below are a few of our favorite techie time management options that are surprisingly easy!
Teamly can assist you or your team stay organized and concentrated on your most important tasks. Teamly not only allows you to set to-do’s for your appointments, dates and tasks, you can also track the status of each one and monitor your teams progress.
Keep your projects organized and everyone on your team on the same page. Discuss project details and keep your files all in one place. Basecamp’s calendar feature helps coordinate everyone’s schedules.
Never forget the milk or anything else with this simple but powerful app. Are you a Gmail user? Now you can manage your Remember The Milk tasks alongside your emails. Available as a gadget (with Gmail Labs) or browser add-on for Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome (connect your tasks with your mail, contacts, and events in Gmail).
What did we miss in the above list? Share your best time management tip!
To read this article on Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate’s blog, “Clean Slate,” click here.
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