“We become what we repeatedly do.” ~ Sean Covey
Few things sabotage a person’s productivity more than bad habits. They slow you down, get in the way of other important tasks, rob you over your focus, impact creativity and performance and cause any number of other negative effects. The worse part about bad habits is that, in many cases, the person practicing them isn’t even cognitive of the problem. Meanwhile they’re left wondering at the end of the day why they never seem to get much done. Could this be happening to you in your property management career? Here are five common productivity-killing habits to watch for.
Taking Internet breaks.
We’ve all done it. Gotten the urge to check our email or scroll through Facebook for a minute or two. But did you know that it can take up to 15 minutes to fully focus on a task? That means that even if you take a 2 minute break to surf the web, it’ll take you another 15 minutes to get back on track. Multiply that by several times per day and you’ll quickly see why you’re having a hard time accomplishing your to-do list.
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Too many meetings.
If you call a meeting every time a decision has to be made, you’re not only wasting your own time, but you’re also impacting the productivity of everyone else in your property management company. These pow-wows can wreak havoc on a person’s ability to get things done, so try to keep them at a minimum. And if you absolutely must call a formal gathering, apply these tips to ensure it’s as effective a use of time as possible for everyone.
Managing your inbox in real-time.
It’s understandable to want to stay on top of incoming emails in order to avoid an overflowing (and overwhelming) inbox, but managing your messages as they come in isn’t as smart as you may think. (Remember the 15 minute rule?) Being successful in the property management industry requires exceptional organizational skills and a great place to start is by compartmentalizing your tasks, including email. Set aside a specific slot of time each day, such as first thing in the morning or just after lunch, when you will dedicate your time to sending and responding to messages.
Trying to do too much.
When you first started out, you were probably entirely capable of handling everything on your to-do list. But as businesses grow and roles evolve, it becomes increasingly hard to keep all the balls in the air. When you try to take on too much, not only does it wear you down, but it also increases the risk that something important will get overlooked. If you’re finding it difficult to keep your head above water, it’s probably time to delegate and get some help.
Procrastinating on the tough tasks.
When you’ve got a big decision to make or a monumental project looming in the not-so-distant future, it can be tempting to put it off. The problem is, humans only have a limited amount of mental energy. As this energy is used up, our ability to focus and apply ourselves to difficult tasks also diminishes. So, if you’re pushing off those intimidating items on your to-do list until the end of the day, by the time you tackle them you won’t be at your best. To combat this, make it a point to schedule your most complex tasks for the time of day when your mind is the freshest, like first thing in the morning.
These bad habits may seem relatively minor, but they can really add up to a serious productivity problem over time – especially if you’re guilty of more than one. If you recognize one or more of the above things in yourself, it may be time to work on making some positive changes. The more you improve yourself, the more effective you’ll be in driving the success of your property management firm.
Find out what more you can do to boost the productivity of your property management business. Download a free copy of The Property Manager's Guide to Maximizing Productivity.