If you were born in the 1960’s, you’re part of Generation X. Gen X’ers are known for putting in hours at work. For them, there’s a very fine line between quantity and quality of work. Those born in the 1990’s probably think typewriters and pagers were monsters that hid under the bed. Advancements in technology have shifted focus toward efficiency. But it’s not just the tools. With the Internet, you can earn more and work less with the help of a real estate virtual assistant.
It’s great to own your business. No longer is your productivity measured by a salary and benefits which is probably the same as what your less-productive co-worker makes. You have more control over your time, finances and how your business operates.
And perhaps that is the problem; having too much control. In this day and age of digital technology where almost everything is done via mobile gadgets plus the accessibility of the Internet you have the conditions in place to make your business more efficient without compromising productivity.
The way to achieving efficiency is to begin relinquishing control. It all starts with the tasks that you need to do on a daily basis.
In the real estate business, you probably receive calls in the most unlikely of hours or situations. You could be in the middle of a history-making presentation, negotiating a sales contract or meeting with a big-time client for the listing of his property. Then your phone rings; again and again and again. Even in silent mode, the vibration can be distracting.
Or how about the time you needed a PowerPoint presentation made within 24 hours but you still had to review contracts and update the MLS? How many appointments have you missed? How many e-mails and calls were not promptly responded to? Were you able to pay last month’s bills for electricity and Internet service?
How many family reunions have you missed? How often have you cancelled dinners with the spouse or time at the public park with the kids? When was the last time you exercised? When was the last time you got 8 hours of sleep?
It may be the case that you may no longer be working 9-to-5 but putting in 14 hours, 7 days a week. Now take a look at your bank account.
Does your productivity equate to your earnings?
Productivity still equates to time. But it no longer equates to quantity; it’s what you do with your available time that matters. If you do work 14 hours a day, what is the breakdown of those hours? Chances are you probably don’t even track time.
Technology has given you the means to work less and earn more. You can accomplish this with the help of a real estate VA.
The “VA” stands for Virtual Assistant but it might as well mean “Valuable Asset” because the VA can change your life and career in the real estate business in positive and productive ways.
1. Distinguish Your Core Tasks from Your Non-Core Tasks
Core tasks are those that deal with the main enterprise of your business. In real estate that would include:
- Meeting clients
- Making presentations
- Attending auctions and open houses
- Negotiating contracts
- Building your leads list
Non-core functions are tasks that support the business. These include:
- E-mail filtering
- Appointment setting
- Calendar management
- Phone handling
- Preparation of contracts
Delegate non- core functions to your real estate VA so you can have more time to focus on the key areas of your business.
2. Track Your Finances
The number one reason why businesses fail is poor money management. There are a multitude of expenses in the real estate business.
Aside from operating expenses, you also have to fund marketing activities. Ad placements, design of marketing collaterals and online subscriptions to listing sites can accumulate and put a dent on your wallet.
Hire a Virtual Assistant with a background in Accounting and request for financial reports to be prepared on a weekly basis. These reports should include the cash flow statement and the cash disbursement schedule.
3. Delegate Specialized Tasks to the VA
The real estate business can be very competitive. You cannot afford to fall asleep on a prospect or forego activities that could add to your bottom-line. These activities include:
- Website Management
- Sales Follow Up
A real estate VA can manage a variety of marketing tasks from social media postings, creating designs for collateral, e-mail marketing, blogging and expanding your network.
You can find virtual assistants who can manage your website to make sure it is functioning at 100% and those with experience in doing sales follow up calls.
Remember it is possible that a prospect is dealing with more than one agent. The day you miss a follow up call could be the day that prospect becomes a client of another agent.
Once you have hired a real estate VA and delegated the non-essential tasks, here’s what you do:
- Identify your long-term goal.
- Break down the long-term goal into smaller short-term goals.
- Focus on accomplishing 3-4 goals every day.
- Dedicate 90 minutes per goal; 100% pure focus, no distraction.
- Accomplished or not, give yourself a 30 minute break then move on to the next goal.
By following this daily routine, you can accomplish 3 to 4, maybe even more goals in only 6 hours of work per day. Each small goal you accomplish brings you closer to achieving your long-term goal.
You can even afford to take weekends off and spend time with the family. How about that vacation or new hobby you’ve been putting off the last few years?
Hiring a real estate VA will not only help you find efficiency at work but also discover that there is more to life than just business.