Organization is one of the top reason’s that many real estate agents and small business owners seek out a virtual assistant. They’ve been trying to “do it all” and end up disorganized with unfinished projects, and it’s more common than you think. Where do you start, though, to organize your business to become more productive?
Start with your schedule, and stick with it, and things will begin to fall into place. However, there’s so much more. Let’s discuss a few ideas.
Become More Productive – Organize Your Business
- Schedule it. As I’ve mentioned, you’ll want to start with a schedule. With one in place, you lose the haphazard feeling you get when you sit down at your desk … that sinking feeling where you wonder where in the world to start. Prepare a rough draft of what you want to accomplish. You’ll be tweaking your schedule – it will be a work in progress as you add or delete completed tasks. A great place to create your schedule is with a project management tool like TeamWork, Asana, etc. I’ve written two blog posts on using a project management system. You’ll find them here and here. Just don’t put this step aside for later. With a system in place, it’s easier to add a task here or there.
- Don’t ditch the notepad. OK, it’s crucial to have an online project management system as I just mentioned, but don’t ditch your notepad and pencil. There are times, especially when you’re working with more than two or three closings and needing to coordinate dates and times, when it’s more practical to have your notepad handy. You can quickly glance at it and see where you are on that particular transaction. You’d be surprised at how many assistants and agents who have said they still rely on post-its and notepads.
- Invest when necessary. If you need to invest in a tool that will make your business more efficient, to become more productive, invest. Services that will enhance your business or take the load off of your shoulders will pay off in the long run. Many who have moved from free and low-cost systems to paid systems never look back. They feel the payoff is well worth the money spent.
- You can’t control it all. Trust in those you have put in trusted positions. With the right checklists in place and a small investment in time, you can put your mind at ease that everything’s running correctly. If not, you can quickly correct it.
- Be selective with shortcuts. Customers like timelines. You’re there to provide quality services and you know how much time you need to get those results. If they want you to take shortcuts and you know it will result in a lack of quality, politely tell them so. They should appreciate your honesty.
- Brainstorm. Have weekly or monthly meetings with your team to brainstorm. If they feel you value their input they might step up to the plate and surprise you.
- Plan on interruptions. They happen, and there’s nothing you can do about it. Whether you work in an office or you work from home, you’ll have interruptions. If you schedule time for interruptions, you won’t get behind when the inevitable happens and someone or something interrupts you.
- Start your day planning your day. Even with a schedule, you need to take a few minutes, well maybe more than a few, each morning to plan out your day or you’ll forget about that last-minute task that came in at the end of the day yesterday.
There’s so much more that I could mention here. The list could go on and on including creating action plans, not letting your email get the best of you, taking time for yourself so you feel refreshed when you sit down at your desk, organizing your desk before you leave the night before, and how to work smarter. Completing the steps mentioned above won’t steer you wrong. It’s not that difficult to become more productive. If you need help with your business organizing efforts, get in touch with me and we can talk about how I might be able to help.