As an efficient real estate agent, you will naturally attempt to handle 100 things simultaneously because that’s what you do; you multitask. However, are you really as productive as you can be?
Neuroscience research conducted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has proven multitasking is a myth. It turns out the human brain cannot operate tasks simultaneously. What we are actually doing is using different parts of the brain to switch back and forth between tasks and this constant switching depletes our brains of neurochemicals responsible for concentration and cognitive function. After even a couple of hours of work, if we find it’s challenging to concentrate, it could mean we have depleted our brains of those vital neurochemicals.
A recent Forbes article sites a 2001 article by the American Psychological Association which aims our attention toward proof that multitasking can actually undermine our efficiency. They suggest moving toward “single-tasking” by giving your full attention to one thing at a time and creating boundaries from the distractions around you. Their “be present” approach postulates the idea that efficiency could increase by 40% based off this scientific data.
In light of these facts, there are some strategic measures that will benefit greatly when restructuring your day for high-efficiency:
1.) Replenish Neurochemicals: Air traffic controllers are mandated to take a 15 minute to 30 minute break every couple of hours to recharge those neurochemicals. They must unplug completely from work-related activities. Whether you listen to music, exercise, or grab a bite to eat, unplug for a quick break replenish and stay focused.
2.) Time and Location Blocking: Assign specific times and places to do cold calling, email and phone call follow-up, social media management, and additional daily objectives. By physically removing yourself from potential distractions like your computer or shared work space where social interactions could curtail your attention, you can greatly increase workflow.
3.) Power Down: Turn off your phone during a listing appointment or when showing a house and give full attention to hear a client, read body language or other communication cues. Also, disable email alerts while filling out contracts or responding to other emails. Additionally, closing your laptop or switching your phone to Do Not Disturb mode while in meetings will keep you focused on important information so you won’t fall behind.
4.) Separate And Specify: Set your ringtones and text tones by the level of relational priority – clients have one tone, while family, co-workers, and your employer all have separate sounds. If you’re in the middle of something you can mentally allocate the appropriate attention depending on certain situations and life circumstance.
5.) Set Your Start: Start your day prior to typical business hours before distractions begin that is comfortable for you. Kerwin Rae, an entrepreneur, investor, international speaker and behavior specialist suggests that we have fewer distractions between 4:30 AM – 7:00 AM, thus rendering us to be more productive and effectual in our business.
So, next time, go ahead and pick up the phone to talk to the new client but leave the offer and new listing alone for a few minutes. They won’t go anywhere. And when it’s finally their turn, you’ll have the time and energy to show your excellence at a full 100%.