Time management. They are two words you have heard endless times, but rarely inspires change in your approach to business. At the top of most real estate agents new years resolution is the desire to improve their time management skills and become more effective. But how? - Here are 9 time management tips to improve your efficiency and effectiveness.
1. Value your time: Every person should know how much their hourly rate is. They should think of themselves as a contractor that needs to invoice for every hour. By doing this every action will force you to ask. Is this task that I will spend working on either going to provide me more value than my hourly rate OR contribute to a bigger goal that will pay me more than my hourly rate. If the answer is no, then don't do it.
2. Keep your digital items clean: Make sure you can easily access the main tools you need for your work. Install items such as MailTab to improve the efficiency of scanning emails, and decreasing the amount of open windows. By flicking between screens less, you will save a lot of time, which is effectively money.
3. Plan your time around you: It may sound weird but look at each 24 hour block and ask yourself, when are you most productive? There's no point conforming and forcing yourself to work core hours when your effectiveness is just not at its highest level. Take key factors in to consideration such as dealing with clients and calls being required to be done in core hours, but other than that work to your strengths.
4. Set expectations: One things few agents do is set client expectations, and by not setting expectations that are constantly trying to answer the client the moment they ask a question, putting unnecessary pressure on your time. Explain that any questions, will be answered by 8pm that evening, which provides you the time to research and come back with an answer, rather than to have a preliminary conversation immediately and lose twenty minutes.
5. Structure your message bank: Carrying on from number four, having an effective message bank is key to time management. By making sure that you ask the right questions in your message back you can ensure you have all the required information to do research and go back with an answer, rather than questions. The next level is to employ a service such as Air Office and have them recite a script for each specific call. If it's an enquiry, if it's a client etc. This way you will have very specific messages which will help you in saving time responding.
6. Have a sensational CRM: Your CRM should be able to tell you the following details: Clients you have spoken to in the last 7, 30, 60, 90 days as well as the clients you haven't spoken to in the last 7, 30, 60, 90, 365 days. It should also tell you the notes on each client, where has the conversation been left and what is it they are looking for. You should also be automating e-newsletters, weekly updates, response to lead enquiries etc. Tools such as Agentbox and their CRM can help with this.
7. Plan your meals: Your meals can be either a routine, day by day experience or optimised. There are two ways to optimise it. Firstly is to cook your meals in large batches, and have an abundance of food on offer when you require it. The second option is to plan your meals as client meetings, you could really structure four client meetings a day without losing any time. Breakfast, a mid morning coffee, lunch, and dinner. By doing this you build rapport and don't use any further time than what you would have originally.
8. 80/20 rule: 20% of clients will make you 80% of your money - focus on spending time with them, and know where they are in your pipeline. Don't focus on making 200 calls a day if they won't turn in to leads, you're better off working with quality rather than quantity.
9. Build a team: Building a team is important to managing your time. Set up an account on eLance and build a team around what you need, copywriters, email marketers, designers, etc. Then, start with them building your personal brand and content. Have them design a weekly newsletter for you that is on trend with your company's image, however unique to you. Also have them start building out a blog for you. Send weekly emails to your clients, and fragment your lists to ensure that each person receives the right update. If you can go hyper-local with your content, you are more likely to keep people engaged. Suggested emails are, apartment updates, first home buyers, higher end properties.
By putting in to process these tips, you are certain to free up a lot of time, and by having that time you can start by heading back to the things that will make you money, letter box drops, calls, meetings etc. Try out a few at a time and gradually work all 9 in to your process and see the changes it makes.
Want further tips? Get in touch so we can give some tailored suggestions to your specific team!
About the Author:
Todd Schulberg handles all things marketing for Homely.com.au - Living and breathing property, Todd has a keen interest in the movements in the market and how agents can utilise new tools and technology in order to be more connected. Using all things social, Todd suggests different ways that agents can engage and think outside the square with their marketing approach.