If you are having trouble getting things accomplished over the course of a day, here are some tips to help you increase your daily productivity:
1. Make lists: How can you tackle your day if you don’t know what to do? The most fundamental thing you can do to increase productivity is to make lists. You don’t need a fancy app or color coated chart to get started. In fact, most phones offer great calendars that work just fine. Every night before you go to bed, make your list for the next day. This way you can hit the ground running as soon as you wake up. Start with the most important tasks first. Even if you are not a morning person, this task will weigh on you with everything else you do during the day. It is important that you finish the task to completion. Sending an email and waiting for a response is not the objective. There are times when you need to wait, but don’t put off important items. List everything you want to do during the day, and do everything you can to do it.
2. Delegate tasks: The quickest way to grow your business is by relying on other people. Most investors are control freaks by nature. They want to do everything themselves, even if they aren’t as skilled as the people around them. Letting go is a big step, but it is necessary for your business. If you have a contractor that you trust, let them make some decisions. You can eat up a few hours of your day driving to and from a property, evaluating the situation and figuring out a solution. For the most part, when you are done, you will wonder why this was such a big deal. You can’t be in multiple places at once and do everything on every deal. Even if you have figured out how to balance your time, you are giving up future deals for it. The best way to build trust is by letting the people around you do their job and listening to their expertise. That is why you have a team in the first place.
3. Focus on one goal: What is the one main thing that you want to focus on? It could be a rehab deal that you have been working on for weeks. It could be getting a new deal to contract. It could be getting a new marketing campaign off the ground. Whatever it is you need to commit to getting it done. Much is made about the ability to multitask. Multitasking is great, but very few people do it well. It defeats the purpose if you only do a little bit on several different tasks.
3. Don’t get off track: Life happens when you least expect it. As you are making your to-do list for tomorrow, your tenant may tell you there is a leak in the basement. There will always be items that catch you by surprise and need to be dealt with immediately. Give it your proper attention, but don’t be consumed it. The rest of your business is not going to stop for anything. If you dedicate all your time to one issue, the others will lag. When something new comes up, you should first evaluate just how urgent it really is. Flooding in a basement or foundation problems on a rehab are important enough to drop everything. However, not every new issue needs immediate attention. This doesn’t mean you ignore the problem, but don’t put it in front of your more important tasks.
4. Avoid distractions: Today’s technology can be a blessing and a curse. It is a blessing because it has made real estate investment much easier. The curse is that you have potential distractions every time you pick up your phone. Even a seemingly productive task like checking emails can be a 30 minute break. If you get caught up on social media, the next thing you know you are doing nothing for an hour or more. The best way to stay focused is to avoid this all together. Give yourself a few blocks of time throughout the day where you can look at emails, texts and social media. If something was truly urgent, someone would call you the rest can wait for an hour.
Efficiency often equals productivity. As an investor, there is nobody looking over your shoulder telling you what to do. It is up to you to get the most out of your day.