With the average worker checking their email inbox around 30 times per hour, it’s no wonder we have time management issues in our daily lives. This is just one example of a distraction constantly vying for our attention!
The point is, everyone gets distracted and, for many people, time management is a serious issue. Many advisors’ plates are overflowing to the point they can’t keep their priorities straight. The whirlwind of thoughts and tasks to accomplish can pull us in until we’re spinning out of control. When that happens, we tend to freeze. It paralyzes us. We’ve all been there, and for some it’s hard to dig out.
Here are three questions to ask yourself if time management is an issue:
Question #1: What are your current distractions?
Question #2: Where is the whirlwind happening on a daily basis?
Question #3: What’s the one thing you need to solve first?
Take time now to answer these three important questions. Simply reflecting on the questions and jotting down your answers should provide some good insights, but here are three proactive steps you can take to progress beyond mere insights.
Tip 1: Define Your Role
It is also important to think about and define your role. Where do you want to spend most of your time? What are you best at? If you’re a rainmaker, you should be out there making connections, prospecting and spending time with your A+ clients, not doing operational or administrative duties around the office—you can hire someone else to do those things. Be clear about your role within the firm, and then make sure the majority of your time is devoted to those activities in which you thrive.
Tip 2: Prioritize and Time Block
Once you’re clear about your role, prioritize and time block. What’s most important to you as an advisor that needs to be done first? Whatever that may be, make it your only priority and block out time to make sure you complete it. Once it’s completed, you can move onto your next top priority.
Tip 3: Take a Deep Breath
As an advisor, you obviously have many priorities and distractions will arise. But when the whirlwind of thoughts, worries, and distractions starts to pull you in, stop, take a deep breath, and determine your top priority. Sometimes all you need is to take a moment to gather your thoughts and refocus yourself on accomplishing your number one priority.
Tip 4: Lift Up and Move the Needle Forward
As busy as we are and as many distractions that present themselves to us on a daily basis, there really should be no excuses. The key is to overcome those challenges and to keep your top priorities and goals in mind, i.e., the productive things that move the needle forward for your practice. If it’s not moving the needle forward, then it’s only a distraction. To help you get off on the right foot in determining what productive items you should be doing, click here and enter the code “productivity” to download our Productivity Management System.
The most important thing to remember is to work on your business, not in the business. If you don’t have that perspective, then you’ll always be caught up in the whirlwind.
Checking your email 30 times an hour is the type of whirlwind you’ll want to escape!
– Related on ThinkAdvisor: 5 Secrets of a Top-Performing Advisor