Minutes are a real estate agent’s most important currency, and there’s a sweet spot between planning too much and not planning enough. When you lose control of your calendar, you can find yourself without enough time to hold appointments, fit in new clients, invest in your own health and be with your family.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by your calendar, these planning hacks from Jeff Thibodeau, former team leader and Realtor and current consultant and investor at HBTN Investments, will help you prioritize your activities and make the best use of your time.
1. Plan your week
Many people never plan their week or they plan each day as they move through it. Failing to plan your activities is a recipe for disaster.
Instead, plan for the upcoming week before the end of the current week. Make it a point to know by Friday what you’ll be doing each day of the upcoming week.
You might also benefit from a calendar meeting with the other people in your life so you can coordinate family commitments, personal priorities, and other demands on your time. Including the people who count on you to be around, especially outside of work, goes a long way in keeping those relationships in a very positive space. Any real estate agent who is married or has a significant other will know what I mean.
2. Schedule the things you want to do
The fun things that you want to do shouldn’t dominate your calendar, but they also shouldn’t be completely overlooked, either. It’s a necessary part of real estate that we take appointments we don’t want to take and schedule meetings we don’t want to have.
Add things to your calendar that are meaningful to you personally to make sure that you’re seeking some level of balance between personal and professional.
3. Schedule the things that can’t be moved
It’s important that you protect the non-negotiables in your life, like picking up the kids from school, going to your kid’s recital, or making it home for dinner with the people you love.
Schedule all the things in your calendar that cannot be moved so you can build your days around those priorities.
4. Plan your appointments and lead generation activities
Because these activities are the key performance indicators for your business, you must prioritize them to keep yourself on track. You must know the following numbers about your business:
- How many appointments you’re scheduling
- How many appointments you’re going on
- How many people you’re talking to
Fit in your lead generation activities and your appointments to ensure that they don’t get superseded by something else. And if you’re thinking that you don’t know when your appointments will be until a day or so before, add an appointment block to your calendar anyway.
Reserve several two-hour time blocks back-to-back to give you time for these meetings. Even if your appointments don’t seem like two-hour meetings, schedule them anyway to allow for travel and other factors. These scheduled blocks will also prevent your appointments from turning into three- or four-hour meetings and will protect you from a calendar that runs your day instead of the other way around.
5. Fill in the open areas
In the remaining hours of your day, schedule admin tasks, phone calls, contract writing, appointment prep and other activities that must be done.
6. Don’t delete things from your calendar
Sometimes business will require you to shift your activities for a client or some other requirement. If you must show a house during a time that was earmarked for prospecting, look at your calendar to see if you can move that prospecting work to another calendar block. It’s ok if you can’t, but do your best to protect those money-generating activities.
Scheduling your days and your weeks will protect you from the feeling of overwhelm that happens when your calendar, and the demands from other people, are dictating your day. Scheduling will help you establish a routine that will keep you in control of your activity and your business, and ultimately in control of your success.