Today’s tip is to get some help.
I know, we are supposed to be able to do it all. Keep the house looking like Martha Stewart just stopped by, have perfect children that we graciously shuttle to their activities, prepare gourmet meals, go out on dates with our spouses, take some time for ourselves and then be a top producer in real estate. All while wearing high heels and without breaking a sweat. Visions of Brie VanDekamp from Desperate Housewives keep popping into my head when I type that. Well, that just isn’t reality. Or at least not mine. The reality is that to do it all, you need help.
Help can come in lots of different forms. It could be a house cleaner, assigning the kids chores to help around the house, embracing technology to get things done faster, making use of the resources available to you through your office staff or hiring an assistant.
While hiring an assistant can be scary because of the additional financial commitment and knowing that you will be responsible for hiring and training someone I highly recommend that you take the leap. With technology being where it is today things get done a lot faster so you probably don’t need a full time assistant, but if you have someone taking care of the office work such as putting your mailings together and managing your listings it will be much easier to find time for those phone calls and face to face meetings. In fact, the first time I had an assistant I think that I succeed in spite of myself. I would come into the office and everything was taken care of so I had nothing else left to do but get out and see people and low and behold I started getting busier.
What if you can’t hire an assistant right now? First of all, put it on your goal list to have one in the next 6 – 12 months. Again, you don’t need a full time assistant, but maybe you have a girlfriend that is a stay at home mom and could use a couple of extra bucks and would be available 10 hours a week. Or maybe you find 3 or 4 other agents in your office and you hire a full time person and split the salary between all of you to make it more affordable. In the meantime start thinking about what you can have others do. Can the front desk person at your office lable and stamp your mailings? Can they upload all of the pictures to your listings and submit them to the various web sites? Are your mailings automated? I mail newsletters and postcards to my clients and they are both in a template form so that each time I just drop the information into the designated spots and everything is done. It takes me about 15 minutes to do a postcard which will come with all of the names and addresses printed on them as well as the bulk mail imprint and then my newsletter take about an hour. Note: Assistants are ONLY for in office work. They should not be used to interact with your clients. That is your job. Their job is to just take care of the time consuming non interactive stuff in order to free up your schedule to be face to face with more people.
Another thing that can be helpful is to decide which days you are available for evening appointments and on weekends. For me it is Monday and Wednesday evening and then Saturdays until noon. This way at home we know that those evenings are blocked out and Gary doesn’t make plans after work.