“Work smarter, not harder.”

This is the philosophy Ari Meisel, the co-founder of Leverage, had to adopt at age 23 after working non-stop for three years on a loft district in Binghamton, New York.

“I had lived a very unhealthy lifestyle. I was working 18 hours a day, I had racked up $3 million in debt by the age of 23, I was eating badly, I was drinking, I was smoking a pack of cigarettes a day, and broke my body in the form of Crohn’s Disease,” he said.

“I went from working 18 hours a day to one hour a day — that being the upward limit.”

That new reality spurred Meisel to create a new system of productivity that enabled him to get more work done in one hour than he would have in 18 — something that he follows to this day (although he no longer battling with Crohn’s).

Here’s how he manages his day:

  • Optimization: Take a hard look at how you do what you do. Utilize checklists, data analysis and tracking tools.
  • Automate: Use tools, such as Trello, to automate various daily tasks.
  • Outsource: This should be your last step. Don’t outsource simply because you don’t want to do something. Make sure it will actually increase your productivity and enhance your business.

Meisel says the automation process, if done right, can help brokers grow their teams in an efficient and scalable way, and reduce turnover with smart hiring criteria.

  • The Application: Meisel’s company used Wufoo, an online form builder, to create an online application landing page. The form asks for basic information along with a couple of test questions to determine if an applicant can move to the next step.
  • The Test: Leverage then uses Criteria Corp’s Higher Select Test, which determines if the applicant’s personality is right for the position they’ve applied for.
  • The Interview: Since Meisel’s team is spread out across the globe, he uses online video chat tools to conduct 10-minute interviews.
  • The Background Check: Regular background checks can take days to complete, so Meisel uses Onfido, an online company that can get results back in 20 minutes.
  • Sign Documents: Instead of signing paper documents, Leverage’s new hires sign everything digitally with Right Signature.

What ties these processes together is Trello and a tool called IFTTT, which stands for “if this, then that.”

If an applicant’s Trello card is moved to the next step of the hiring process, then IFTTT will automatically send an email to the applicant letting them know they moved on.

Meisel says automation is growing by the day, and tasks that were being performed by a human being a month ago are now being done by a machine, which can reduce your stress and increase your bottom line.

Email Marian McPherson

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