As a financial advisor, your hours can get long. It can get discouraging. But it doesn't have to be that way. Here are 4 easy productivity hacks for financial advisors.
You and I both have the same number of hours in a day as John F. Kennedy. What we don't have in common with him, is how productive we are in those same hours. There are mountains of productivity tips and tricks out there. We know that we've been guilty of spending hours glazing through productivity books, but only finishing with a feeling of improvement. Don't worry. I've been there.
So that you can do more in less time (and go to that green golfing course, have a grill with your family, or just rest your eyes!), I'm going to share a few productivity hacks that I've implemented as a daily routine.
Document It All
Hold up! Don't eat your notes. But the monkey is doing one thing right.
Throughout your work week, keep a memo pad and pen with you at all times. When you think of an idea or something you have to get done, write it down. You might have the best memory in the world, but having things to do floating around is not kind to your brain. Jot it down and put it away.
I like to have 3. The first is a to-do list of work related tasks such as asking for referrals, or financial planning. The second list is for more administrative, minute tasks that don't take a lot of brain power. For example, to follow up on a prospective or book a meeting with a current client. The last list is for your personal use. This is where you jot down to do the laundry, or to pay your child's hockey fee.
Break Things Down, Prioritize, and Schedule
When I say everything, I mean it. Once you get the hang of a structured routine, you won't need your notifications to constantly remind you. You won't suddenly feel like you're drowning in work.
Before leaving the office on Friday, take that memo pad of yours and clean it up. Prioritize by urgency, then by importance. Estimate how long each task is going to take. If you have one large project that you have to complete for a current client, break it into smaller steps. With this, open up your calendar. Book them all in! Treat your work time as if you're scheduling a meeting with a client. Your time is as valuable as theirs. This way, you'll keep yourself accountable and only be working on one thing at a time. This will help you complete that task faster and better.
Have a task like checking your emails, daily? Schedule in one hour in the afternoon. According to Julie Morenstern's book "Never Check Email in the Morning", you'll never recover if you start your day by responding to emails. Leave it to the afternoon and take multitasking out of the picture.
If you have 3 lists like me, book them in order. First, the work to-do list. Second, the administrative tasks. And third, your personal reminders.
Go Take a Walk
You may think that working another 20 minutes will help you finish that compliance report. What will is actually the opposite. Get off your seat, and out of the office for some fresh air. Look at something outside your computer monitor. And if you have the time, go for a short walk! Move your body and clear out your head. When you get back at that compliance report, you'll feel refreshed and your mind will work like a well oiled machine. A 5-minute break will shrink a 30 minute dabbling to 15 minutes of productive work.
Forgetting to give yourself breaks? Check out the Chrome extension, Posture Reminder or the app, Stand Up! The Work Break Timer.
All in all, the golden rule is to simplify. When a problem arises, cut off the fat and focus on one thing. Handle that one thing without thinking of all the tangents. Then, simplify and solve the next one thing. Your mind, but also your body will thank you. Not quite sure where to start? Look into the art of mindfulness. Try out a few exercises to see if it works for you.
Sometimes, hammering at a project that is not in your expertise can be toxic. Especially if it doesn't seem urgent. So leave those things to specialists like us. We take your website goals and make them into a reality, served on a silver plate. From production to providing you with a toolkit for success, you can better capture prospective clients. We don't ask for anything but to have a conversation. A conversation about what you want for your financial practice and best practices of an online presence.
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What are your productivity hacks? Share them with us!