Trust me, I know people roll their eyes when they see this topic, because I used to be one of those people. The understanding of time management and time blocking is truly an art and is something that you must master to advance in your role.
I feel like I need to pause here and address a key supportive subject… The 80/20 Principle. The 80/20 Principle derives from Pareto’s Principle: 80% of the output from a given situation or system is determined by 20% of the input. In other words 20% or your activities will yield 80% of your results. For example, an Agent’s 20% should be Scripts, Lead Generation, Lead Follow Up, Appointments, and Negotiations. What must happen or the business may lose money/clients? The 80/20 Principle is important to understand because it can help you identify which tasks or activities to prioritize in moving the business forward.
Ok, let’s continue… Time blocking is simply the act of blocking out sections of your calendar to reflect your daily and weekly priorities (your 80/20). If we don’t put the most important things first, unimportant things can easily fill our time and distract us. Time blocking is a tool that, when used effectively, can aid you in accomplishing your goals and tasks consistently. – If it is not on your calendar, it does not exist. BOLD LAW
A few tips for Time Blocking:
- “White space” or empty space on the calendar is ok, but you don’t want too much of it. No more than 20% of your day should be white space. When you block each section of your day you’ll never wonder what you should be working on next. In an average 8-9 hour workday, this would look like leaving about 1.5 hours of white space at a maximum, and during this time you would follow up on any outstanding items that could not be completed while you were working at other times blocks.
- Color coding your calendar is an important way to see at a quick glance how high priority an item is, if it’s something that can’t be moved, or if it’s personal time (like lunch or appointments). A calendar that is all one color is not as effective as a color-coded calendar. You should have a minimum of 4 colors on a properly time blocked calendar – one for personal, one for 20%, one for 80%, and one for agent/team-related meetings/events.
- Stay Accountable to your time blocks! Don’t allow others to interrupt your time block. Make sure you share your calendar with your team to ensure they know what your priorities are. You also need to respect your OWN time blocked calendar.
If you find that you’re working more than your agreed-upon hours, or you’re not getting everything done in a typical day, your calendar is likely the culprit and not your activities and to-do list. Time Blocking and managing time effectively is one of the most important skills that separate good Admin and Agents from great ones.
“Time blocking is transformational for salespeople. It changes everything. When you get disciplined at blocking your time and concentrating your power, you see a massive and profound impact on your productivity. You become incredibly efficient when you block your day into short chunks of time for specific activities. You get more accomplished in a shorter time with far better results.” — Jeb Blount