What is your time worth?
How do we eliminate distractions in the world of property management?
The concept of time management has been a long-standing conversation and while you cannot manage time itself, we can effectively manage how we use our time.
I’ve also found over the years that many property managers are “yes” people – we all like to have control and we don’t like to “let another down”. However, we don’t stop to think about the impact saying “yes” all the time can have on our emotional and physical wellbeing.
“Yes – I can do that for you.”
“Yes – I will find the time for you.”
“Yes – I can help you.”
However, there are only 24 hours a day and saying yes to everything will result in a breakdown or burn out, which is all too common in the world of property management.
When we are on a plane, the flight attendants always tell us to attend to ourselves before we help others… why is this? Because if you are blacked out, you can’t help anyone at all and you are now a risk to others.
Remember, every time you say yes to something, you have to say no to something else or you too will break down or burn out.
This is where we must learn to prioritise our tasks and our time.
Firstly, we need to remove and eliminate distractions, thus giving us more time to be proactive rather than reactive.
We now have so many tools to help us but in turn, so many apps to distract us.
A few tips that can HELP are:
- Give yourself some ‘Do Not Disturb’ time for those important projects
- Switch off notifications on your screens – they simply distract you from the task at hand
- Create a to-do list and work through it – there is nothing more satisfying than ticking something off a list
- Don’t try to remember anything off the top of your head – use your smart phone while on the go to book in appointments, set reminders, etc.
One of the best strategies I ever implemented into my life is the Eisenhower Matrix. This matrix will help you decide how to make decisions on what is urgent and important.
Using this matrix, you can work out what needs to be done and by when. What this means is you develop more control over your day and stop wasting time on those items that are of no great importance or urgency.
If it is important and urgent, this becomes your priority – this could be a flooding property you manage for example, which would need a quick response to engage with the owner and appropriate tradespeople to remedy the situation.
If it is important but not urgent, you can plan to do this when you have the time and resources to do it – this could be something like arrears, which we know are important but can wait until 10.00am.
If it is not important but urgent, you delegate this to the person it is important too – this could be a tenant who urgently needs their ledger for finance approval, which might be best delegated to your customer service representative or receptionist.
And lastly if it is not important and not urgent, eliminate it! This could be something as small as those hawkers that pop in selling paint ball vouchers – place a no hawkers sign in the window to eliminate this issue entirely.
So with these simple tips, you can take control of your day by changing your mindset to proactive thinking from reactive actioning. By eliminating unwarranted distractions, you will become more effective and efficient, and breakdowns and burn outs will no longer be on your PM life expectancy.