REAL ESTATE VIRTUAL ASSISTANTS | REAL ESTATE SALES FUNNELS | PERSONAL GROWTH STRATEGIES

Tag

asana

Podcast

EPISODE 19 – Productivity Hacks for Busy Real Estate Entrepreneurs: Season 2 Recap

The Level Up Your Business Podcast

Show Notes for Episode 19: "Productivity Hacks for Busy Real Estate Entrepreneurs - Season 2 Recap"

Episode 18 of Season 2

Clickable Show Highlights:

 
[01:09] Topic of today’s episode
[01:23] Recap: 20 life changing productivity tools to add more hours to your day 
[03:14]  Recap: The secret to working on instead of in your business
[03:54] Recap: Larry Goins – Productivity secrets revealed from a 30 year real estate investing expert
[05:12] Recap: Mastering the art of delegation to 10x your productivit
[06:00] Recap: Using standard operating procedures to make your business productive with predictable results
[06:55] Recap: Brent Simpson – Focusing on your one thing is the key to success
[07:43] Recap: The ultimate productive morning routines of highly successful entrepreneurs
[08:44] Recap: Danny Johnson – Sell more houses by making marketing your big domino
[09:53]  Recap: Whitespace: Your to innovation, clarity, and hitting your goals
 

Quotes:

  • Sometimes it only takes one valuable tip or tool to really give you and your business the productivity boost you need to get more done, gain more time, and be more efficient.

Resources:

THE LEVEL UP YOUR BUSINESS BLOG

 PRODUCTIVITY HACKS FOR BUSY
REAL ESTATE ENTREPRENEURS:
SEASON 2 RECAP


For the past few weeks we’ve been in Season 2 of the Level Up Your Business podcast (as well as the blog), where my focus has been on Productivity Hacks for Busy Real Estate Entrepreneurs. 

The content has focused on showing you how to get more done, gain more time, and be more efficient.  

This blog post marks the end of Season 2, and next week I'll be starting a brand new topic for Season 3! 

So, I think the perfect way to end this season is to recap and highlight some of the most valuable lessons, strategies and tips from Season 2 that you can put into action to level up your business. 

Today on the Level Up Your Business Podcast I recap and highlight some of the most valuable lessons, strategies and tips from Season 2 of the podcast which focused on Productivity Hacks for Busy Real Estate Entrepreneurs.

Click to Tweet

EPISODE 8 & 9:
20 Life Changing Productivity Tools 
To Add More Hours To Your Day

Season 2 kicked off with the episode entitled, "20 Life Changing Productivity Tools To Add More Hours To Your Day."

I shared with you 20 of my favorite tools that’ll help you reach new levels of productivity in your business and personal life.

Those tools were broken into four categories: Communication tools, marketing tools, admin tools, and creativity tools.

One of my favorite communication tools I spoke about was Viber, which allows you to communicate via voice, message, video and “walkie talkie.” You can also use it to exchange images, recorded video and send audio messages.

I also spoke about one of my favorite marketing tools - Clickfunnels. This software is a website builder that allows you to create almost anything you need to market your business online, including: lead generation pages, sales funnels, membership sites, landing pages, and e-commerce systems - all with the ease of a drag and drop interface.

One of my go-to admin tools that I shared was Asana . This is the task management tool I use most often in my business, and in my opinion is one of the easiest ways for you and your team to track your work - and get results.

And finally, I spoke about creativity tools that I use for productivity. Workflowy is the tool that I mentioned which I use every week for brainstorming. It helps you break big ideas into manageable pieces, so you can focus on one piece at a time.

Those are just 4 of the 20 tools that I went over. I shared so much value that it took two episodes to cover!

If you want to hear about all the tools, check out leveluprsj.com/8 and leveluprsj.com/9. I guarantee that you'll find at least a few tools that'll help you and your business become more productive.

EPISODE 10:
The Secret To Working
ON Instead Of IN Your Business

The next podcast post was "The Secret To Working On Instead Of In Your Business."

I shared with you what I consider to be the ultimate guide to alleviate some of that business fatigue you may be experiencing, so you can start working ON instead of IN your business - and get back that loving feeling that you may have lost as a result of being consumed with the day-to-day minutia of being a business owner.

Some of the tactics I covered included:

  • The benefits of meditating
  • Planning for tomorrow the day before
  • Focusing on your one thing
  • Using task management tools
  • The importance of delegation

To get all of the actionable strategies from that episode, check out leveluprsj.com/10.

EPISODE 11 & 12:
Larry Goins - Productivity Secrets Revealed From

A 30 Year Real Estate Investing Expert

Next up I had a two part interview with Larry Goins. Larry has been investing in real estate for over 30 years. He's a best selling author, a speaker, a radio host and he travels across the country educating real estate investors.

He dropped a ton of productivity secrets on us based on his decades of experience. One of his key takeaways was about the role of visionaries and integrators in your business.

He said every successful business has a visionary and an integrator. The examples he gave were Disney and Apple. Walt Disney was a visionary and his brother was the integrator. Also, Steve jobs was the visionary for Apple, while Wozniak was the integrator.

You have to have a vision along with goals to aim for. But, you also have to have someone that can break goals down into an actionable step-by-step plan and help see things through.

Larry also made some great book recommendations. One of the books he advised was Traction, by Gino Wickman, which I started reading shortly after that interview. If you're looking to make your business more focused and growth oriented - you need to grab that book!

Go to leveluprsj.com/11 and leveluprsj.com/12 to catch the full interview with Larry Goins.

EPISODE 13:
Mastering The Art Of Delegation To 10X Your Productivity

Learning how to delegate has been one of the things responsible for the greatest growth in my business. That’s why I did an entire podcast post on mastering the art of delegation to 10x your productivity.

Some of the subjects I covered were:

  • Why delegating is so hard and why so many business owners tend to avoid it
  • Why you absolutely need to delegate if you want to have long term success
  • The keys to effective delegation that you can immediately put into action

Here’s the bottom line: The ability to delegate is one of the biggest differences between real estate entrepreneurs who have successful businesses that produce CONSISTENT income which don’t require their CONSISTENT daily involvement…

​…versus people who struggle, living from deal to deal, and who feel like they’re business owns them instead of the other way around.

You can check out the strategies I laid out for you to become an effective delegator and run a more productive business at leveluprsj.com/13.

EPISODE 14:
Using Standard Operating Procedures To Make Your
Business Productive With Predictable Results

If you’re looking to run a more productive business with predictable results, then you need to check out my podcast post on using standard operating procedures (SOPs).

SOPs are the documented processes that a company has in place to ensure services and products are delivered consistently every time.

They're the secret sauce that’ll reduce your time spent training the people that work for you; help you maintain a consistent quality of work; allow you to be more efficient when you’re working; and allow you to scale your business.

Not only did I cover the advantages of SOPs and how to use them in your real estate business, but I also covered when and how you should create them - and the tools you can use to easily build them in your business

Check out leveluprsj.com/14 for all the golden nuggets from that episode. On that page you can even grab a free cheat sheet I made for you entitled, “How To Create SOPs,” that digs into the steps I mentioned in this podcast in much more detail so you can create your own SOPs.

EPISODE 15:
Brent Simpson - Focusing On Your One Thing Is The Key To Success

I interviewed Brent Simpson, the owner of Bold Vision Enterprise for the next podcast post. Brent’s company focuses on providing strategies to solve the problems of corporations and small businesses.

One of the biggest gems Brent shared in that show was that “being busy doesn't actually equate to being profitable.

He also talked about the value of making a list of all the activities you’re doing on a daily or weekly basis and then ranking them - not based on importance to you - but instead based on profitability to your company.

Ranking your activities this way will help you when you're trying to focus on your "one thing," or your big domino, that will make everything else in your business easier or unnecessary.

Check out Brent's interview at leveluprsj.com/15.

EPISODE 16:
The Ultimate Productive Morning Routines

Of Highly Successful Entrepreneurs

A structured morning routine has been responsible for one of the greatest shifts in my life and my productivity. That’s why I did a podcast post about the ultimate productive morning routines of highly successful entrepreneurs.

Some of the key points I shared were:

  •  What life was like for me before a morning routine
  • The benefits of planning the night before and waking up earlier
  • Why waking up with an attitude of gratitude is a game changer
  • How the the combination of water, a morning workout, and a high protein breakfast can provide the fuel you need for your da
  • Why morning meditation and affirmation are the perfect way to get your mind right so you can face whatever your day brings

If you start doing a morning routine I think you'll find that it will be some of the most important time you'll spend in your entire day - hands down!

Check out this episode at leveluprsj.com/16.

EPISODE 17:
Danny Johnson- Sell More Houses By

Making Marketing Your “Big Domino”

Next on deck was my interview with Danny Johnson of Flipping Junkie.

In a previous show/post I discussed how important it is to focus on your one thing - your big domino in your business - which if you topple it, everything else becomes easier.

So, in this show Danny Johnson shared his insights and tips on how your real estate business can be more successful, and you can sell more homes, by making marketing your big domino.

One of the greatest insights Danny mentioned is: as real estate entrepreneurs, we're now at the point that you MUST do digital marketing in some capacity just to be found by your customers.

If you don't have some type of digital marketing strategy in place with your website, or you’re not working on building your online presence, then you're basically handing your prospective clients over to your competition who ARE online.

He also shared how digital marketing tactics like Adwords and Facebook Ads can provide some of the lowest costs per lead and costs per deal in your marketing. Not to mention it's much easier to measure your ROI with these marketing tactics versus direct mail.

To discover the rest of Danny's marketing gems, go to leveluprsj.com/17.

EPISODE 18:
Whitespace - Your Key To Innovation, Clarity, & Hitting Your Goals

I wrapped up Season 2 with a show called “Whitespace: Your Key To Innovation, Clarity, & Hitting Your Goals.”

Whitespace is the gaps that you purposely create in your calendar between meetings, or other activities. It's the time that you consciously allot in your schedule to think, distraction-free.

I went into detail about why whitespace is important, how I handle whitespace, and how you can create whitespace in your business.

Those few hours that you set aside for whitespace in your business will make a world of difference - because without whitespace, your personal growth is limited.

So, if you're looking to level-up your business - or, even if you're just trying to get out of a rut - adding whitespace to your schedule is key.

You’ll learn all my strategies to create whitespace in your business by going to leveluprsj.com/18.

It’s Time To Take Action!

As you can see from my recap of Season 2, I covered a ton of valuable content. The truth is, sometimes it only takes one valuable strategy, tip, or tool to really give you and your business the productivity boost you need to get more done, gain more time, and be more efficient.

But, the only way to know if any of the tactics that I shared will work for you is to put them into action. Choose at least one or two of the many tools and strategies I shared over the course of Season 2 and apply it to your business. Then once you see it’s working for you, try another. 

The goal is to always be moving forward and implementing things that help you and your business get the productive edge you’re looking for.  

Next Up In Season 3

Next week we start a whole new season of the Level Up Your Business Podcast and blog posts!

I won’t give away the topic just yet, but I promise it will not disappoint - especially if you're looking to grow a profitable real estate business with CONSISTENT leads and HAPPY customers.

Podcast

EPISODE 17 – Danny Johnson: Sell More Houses By Making Marketing Your “Big Domino”

The Level Up Your Business Podcast

Show Notes

Episode 17 of Season 2

Clickable Show Highlights

[02:17] Danny’s background and his business
[04:10]  How marketing has really made an impact on his business
[08:36]  What digital marketing really is
[10:47]  How much does he focus on digital marketing vs offline marketing
[11:49]  Tips on how to make time in order to make sure that marketing still gets done
[16:43] Systems and processes that he haven’t place right now that have the biggest impact on his productivity or marketing efforts
[18:08] His advice to a new real estate investor for the path of least resistance to get their marketing up and going to generate leads
[21:00]  Advantages of bandit signs
[22:17]  What are the trends in digital marketing for real estate right

Quotes:

"If you’re not marketing your business, then you don’t have a business ... or, you won't have one in the long run."


Resources:

THE LEVEL UP YOUR BUSINESS BLOG

 Danny Johnson - Sell More Houses
By Making Marketing Your
"Big Domino"


Danny Johnson of Flipping Junkie

If you’re not marketing your business, then you don’t have a business. 

...Or, you won’t have one in the long run. 

Whether you have a real estate business, an Amazon business, or a lemonade stand - consistent marketing is the lifeblood of your company.  

As real estate entrepreneurs, consistent marketing is what ensures we have a steady stream of prospective customers finding our services, and the properties we have for sell.  

When you neglect marketing it’s inevitable that you’ll suffer from an inconsistent deal flow. And you’ll feel like you’re working from deal to deal - which makes you uncertain about your income and the stability of your business.

I did a previous post on how important it is to focus on one thing (or your big domino in your business), which if you topple it, everything else becomes easier. So in this post I interviewed Danny Johnson, the host of Flipping Junkie.

Danny shared his insights and tips on how your real estate business can be more successful, and you can sell more homes, by making marketing your Big Domino.

Today on the Level Up Your Business Podcast I interview Danny Johnson of Flipping Junkie. Danny shares his insights and tips on how your real estate business can be more successful, and you can sell more homes, by increasing your focus on your marketing.

Click to Tweet

My Interview With danny johnson


“Tell us a bit more about you and your business.” 



danny says...

My wife and I have been flipping houses for about 15 years in San Antonio, Texas. I became interested in real estate investing from watching my dad, who was a contractor at the time, partner up with another investor to flip houses. I saw what my dad was doing and I decided that it looked much better than what I had going on - being cooped up in an office all day long. 

So, I came across a Carlton Sheets course on VHS tape that I found in my garage. He was teaching cold calling as well as a lot of weird deal structuring. It completely turned me off of the business. I said “I can’t do that, that’s not me… I’m not that kind of person.” I was really shy and introverted, so it was hard imagining that's how you’re supposed to get deals. 

I didn’t know any better. So, I put real estate on the back burner for bit. But, later that year I went out and got my first property. And then we started flipping houses and doing marketing with direct mail, driving for dollars, and bandits signs. We chased MLS deals at first, but eventually found that motivated seller marketing was really better for us. 


“How has marketing really made an impact on your business?”


 danny says...

I think figuring out marketing and lead generation - so that you always have deals coming in - is probably the most important thing you can know, besides learning the basics of flipping. Because if you can’t generate enough leads to have consistent deals, you’re spinning your wheels all the time. 

Once you have marketing figured out you can scale up, and do so much better in your business. You can be in a position to actually quit your day job, and have that freedom that you want. So, figuring out that marketing piece is super important. 

The toughest part is getting that first deal, right? People I’ve talked to, have often taken at least 6 months to find and complete their first deal. But then it takes two weeks, or less than a month, before they line up their next deal. 

So why is it so much faster to find the second deal?  I think people have to deal with their doubts of whether there’s really deals out there. When many people first start looking for deals, they’re making offers in the MLS and competing with other investors. That makes doubt set in, because they’re not very confident with their numbers, and they’re probably more conservative at first. 

But once you have faith that the deals are out there, then it becomes so much easier because then it's just a matter of putting your marketing out there more often, and making more offers on deals - and it changes everything for you! 

If you’re spending all your time trying to make every single lead that comes across your desk work, you’re gonna get frustrated and burned out. You’ll start wondering, “how many leads does it take before I get a deal?” I think a lot of people don’t really know what their numbers should look like. 

That’s one of the things a lot of people say that they enjoyed about my book, Flipping Houses Exposed. In that book I showed 34 weeks of my house flipping business; how many leads I was getting in; what and why people were selling; and how I analyzed those deals. But the biggest impact was that people told me it opened their eyes to how many leads they need to look at before getting a deal. This was good because it meant they wouldn’t lose steam so soon, since they saw the reality is it can take a ton of leads to get a deal. 

Once you know that, then you can stop trying to force everything that comes across your desk to be a deal somehow. 

I don’t do subject-to, lease options, or that other stuff. I keep it simple. I just want to buy cheap as possible so I have a lot of options. It makes it easy because I’m either going to buy a home at a low price that makes sense to fix-and-flip, or wholesale - or I’m not. And If I don’t buy, I’m going to follow up. 

I just had the mentality of “next... next…” If this one isn’t a deal, then I go to the next lead.    


“You obviously believe in the importance of marketing, especially digital marketing in your business. Can you shed some light on what exactly is digital marketing, for people that may be a little less familiar with the term? 


danny says...

Digital marketing is awesome!  

Basically, digital marketing is anything where you’re leveraging online resources to get leads. The type of leads I’m mainly referring to are motivated sellers who are looking for us. So basically digital marketing is inbound marketing, whereas direct mail is more outbound marketing. 

With direct mail you’re throwing a bunch of mail out hoping that some of the people that might need your message will receive it and call you. But the majority of people will likely not need your message, and they’ll throw your mail in the trash. 

With inbound (digital marketing), the difference is they’re looking for us most of the time.They’re going to Google and searching, “how do I sell my house fast,” or “my house needs a ton of repairs, can I sell it?” 

They’re looking for solutions to their problems - so you already move pass the first stage where you’re trying to convince them that they have a situation and you can help them. They already know they have a problem and they came looking for you - which makes all the difference in the world.   

“In your business are you putting more focus on digital marketing than offline marketing, or is there a balance?”  

danny says...

At one point direct mail was about 25% of my business, and 75% was digital marketing. We’ve since changed that where we basically stopped doing direct mail this year.  

The only direct mail we’re doing is to probates, but that’s a very small list. Everything else that we’re doing is digital marketing. It provides the lowest cost per lead, and cost per deal of all our marketing. And it’s been the most consistent, so we know what works.

It’s also easier to track. We know if the Adwords and Facebook ads are working, and how much it’s costing per lead and per deal. Organic search is still our best lead generator.   

“For that person that says they’re too busy to fit marketing in, do you have any tips or strategies on how they can make time to make sure it still gets done?”


danny says...

Yes, that’s super important because marketing does get dropped a lot of times if there isn’t a plan in place.

If you’re doing direct mail, you need to have a calendar. You also need a list size that you can handle mailing to at least six or more times. The key with direct mail is that you’re hitting people multiple times over a span of nine months to a year.

This is important because time has a way of motivating people. For example you could be sending me a postcard to buy my house, but I’m not interested in selling right now because my rental has great cash flow and no problems - so I throw your mailer away.

But, you continue to mail to me to me every six weeks or so. Then four months go by and I get a call from the neighbor of my rental property who is complaining about noise, multiple dogs, and the condition of the home. On top of that, my tenant becomes unruly.

Now that dream rental becomes a nightmare. All of a sudden, I’m considering the possibility of selling, and that postcard reminds me to give you a call to see what you’d offer. So, it’s more of a timing thing.

If you’re mailing to people once and not getting responses, it’s less likely likely that you need to change your letter, and more likely it’s just timing.

For digital marketing, Google and Facebook allow us to do retargeting, which is basically when ads follow you around on different sites based on other ads that you’ve clicked, or pages you’ve viewed.

The approach you can take is to target the people that come to your site through those platforms. But, you don’t want to do it an an annoying way where they’re seeing you EVERYWHERE constantly.

Instead have it so they’re seeing you randomly, like a postcard, maybe once a week. That way they still remember you, but you’re not annoying.

Retargeting ads can be be credibility builders in the form of video testimonials, text testimonials, or pictures of a house that you bought. The ads just remind people that you exist. Those ads can help send people back to your website so they can give you their information to call, and become new leads - and eventually deals.
 

“Do you have any other systems or process that you have in place right now that you feel have had the biggest impact on your productivity and your marketing efforts? 


danny says...

The biggest thing was stop doing everything myself. That’s obviously a big problem a lot of us entrepreneurs have. We learn how to do things, and then we do them, and then keep doing them because we feel like nobody could do it as well as we do it - or we don’t want to take the time to train somebody.

Once I finally got to the point where I was willing to hand over the reigns of a lot of the online stuff in my business, my life got a lot better. We got focused on more important things, like working on the business, instead of me having to always keep everything going.

I handed those responsibilities off to somebody in my office, and they have been doing it for me and also for other investors. It frees me up to not have to worry about lead generation at all - other than giving more ideas on how to do it better, and tweaking our systems.

“If a complete beginner came to you and said they’d like to know the path of least resistance to get their marketing up and going to generate real estate leads, what would you tell him?” 


danny says...

Honestly, the easiest thing if someone is just getting started is probably some of the less complicated, and less technological strategies. 

I sell websites and services for investors, and I would say that’s the easiest thing. But I think there’s some knowledge that needs to be learned first. If you’re trying to get things ramped up I feel like driving for dollars is one of the absolute best things an investor could do when they are starting out. 

The reason is, you basically get to know every part of your target city very well. I’ve lived in San Antonio all my life, but I probably was only familiar with about 30% of the city. When I started to drive for dollars, I got to know all other areas.

I was really shocked about the areas I discovered which were great working class neighborhoods with a lot of rehab activity going on. It's also good for meeting contractors, investors, and finding properties that are run down - so you can send letters to owners. 

Since the homes are vacant and run down, you already know that there’s some sort of motivation there. Whereas if you’re just buying a list and sending mail, you don’t know the situation for those houses. So, driving for dollars is good because it doesn’t cost as much, and you get to find out more about different areas of your city. 

The other thing I recommend (although you need to check with your county since it’s prohibited in some areas) is bandit signs. They just work - especially if you put them in the right places, like busy intersections. 

The beautiful thing about bandit signs is most of the time people aren’t seeing your competitors’ marketing, so they’re going to contact you. That means you’re likely not dealing with a lot of competition, and you’re not worried about what other people are offering - which would typically force you to up your offer. Instead, it’s just you and the seller, working out something that makes sense for both of you. 

If you’re looking to generate some quick leads and talk to sellers, those are two ways. Then once you get a deal and some experience (as well as some money to spend on marketing), Adwords is a good option. 

“Are you seeing any trends in digital marketing for real estate that you think people should be aware of?”  


danny says...

I overhead a couple talking as I was a leaving a building a few months ago. The woman said “I looked online and I couldn’t find their company website. And, I checked on Facebook and didn’t see them either.” Then she said, “Well, I guess we need to find somebody else.

That really made me think. More and more people, regardless of age, are looking up your business online. Before someone decides to work with you, they want to find out more about you. It’s so easy nowadays for everybody to find out anything about anybody.

So now, instead of just getting a postcard in the mail, a seller will be curious and go online to look up:

  • Is this business online?
  • Who is this that wants to buy my house?
  • How does this work?

Even if your website isn’t listed on the postcard, they’re probably going to Google your business’ name and phone number.   

In the past, a lot of the top investors were just using direct mail, and sticking with that. But now, its not a matter anymore of “should I do online marketing? 

It’s to the point that you need to do digital marketing  just to be found. All your other marketing efforts actually might be driving people online to look for you. And if you’re not there, they’re finding your competition.

There’s two benefits of being online. Not only do people find out more about you when they look online after they get your postcard; but also you get the benefit of being found by sellers when your competition is sending out postcards, but maybe they aren’t online. So sellers find you instead of them.

Next Up In Season 2

Next up in our productivity series I’m going to talk about something that is critical to leveling up your business and being more creative. It’s also something that I’m personally working to master. That thing is WHITE SPACE. I’m not talking about margins in your website and your business cards. I’m referring to the time that you purposely reserve when you’re not working IN your business. 

It’s the time you set aside for creative thought, brainstorming, and sometimes just to do nothing. Adding white space could be the tweak you need to take your business from good to great. So make sure you catch me next post!  

Resources Mentioned In The Podcast



Podcast

EPISODE 16 –The Ultimate Productive Morning Routines Of Highly Successful Entrepreneurs

The Level Up Your Business Podcast

Show Notes

Episode 16 of Season 2

Clickable Show Highlights:

[00:58] The topic of today’s episode
[01:30] Ryan’s story before he had a morning routine
[03:13] Ryan’s days after he developed his morning routine
[03:41] Planning the night before
[04:38] Waking up earlier
[05:07] Expressing gratitude
[05:40] Drinking water
[06:18] Working out
[06:44] Breakfast
[07:07] Meditation and devotion
[08:06] Affirmations
[08:24] Start of business
[09:05] How kids fit into the morning routine

Quotes:

  •  "Starting your day with an attitude of gratitude sets you up for success."
  • "The more you consistently mediate, the quieter your thoughts will get. And honestly that is priceless - because it's the space between our thoughts where we're most creative and connected to our source."

Resources:

THE LEVEL UP YOUR BUSINESS BLOG

 THE ULTIMATE PRODUCTIVE MORNING ROUTINES OF HIGHLY
 SUCCESSFUL ENTREPRENEURS


How you start your morning will heavily influence how your entire day goes.

A good morning routine can literally be the difference between you having a focused day, where you can face challenges unscathed and end the day feeling accomplished..

VS...  

...feeling like you’re day is a rickety roller coaster, where you have very little control of it. And at the end of the day feeling like you didn’t get anything significant done.

I'm going to talk about my morning routine and share with you certain things you can do every morning that will lead to you achieving significantly better results in your business, and your life.

After reading this, if you don't already have a morning routine I think you'll reconsider. 

Today on the Level Up Your Business Podcast I'm going to talk about my morning routine and share with you certain things you can do every morning that will lead to significantly better results in your business, and your life.

Click to Tweet

Life Before a Morning Routine

I didn't always have a morning routine. I can remember just how hectic things were before I had one. A few years back, my real estate company not only did rehab projects and sold properties to investors, but we also did property management - so, we were a full service operation.  

For the people that operate property management companies that are reading this - God bless you! Property management IS NOT for the faint of heart, since you're dealing with both tenant and owner issues.

And people usually are only contacting you when something is wrong, not to give you a pat on the back. I’ll digress from my property management rant. 🙂

So again, back when my company was doing property management I didn't have a morning routine. Instead, here's how my morning typically went:

I'd wake up sometime between 7 and 8am and the first thing I'd do is look at my phone.

When I grabbed my phone I'd start checking emails and texts.

Then I was immediately in “fire fighter mode,” sending emails or making calls to address whatever issues were at the top of my inbox.

All this happened before I even got out of bed!

Then I'd try to fit in a workout if I could. But, that really depended on what my inbox looked like. If my inbox was spilling over, and I had to put out fires - then no workout that day.

I'm a Christian, and I believe in taking time out for devotion and spending time with God in the morning. But even with that, I was finding that it was hard to stay focused. Instead of keeping my mind centered on my devotion, my thoughts were still on what I had to take care of in my inbox.

Basically, my mornings were haphazard. And if I had a crazy morning, I found that it often played a role in how my day went.

Life After  a Morning Routine

A couple years ago I decided to switch things up. I wanted my days to start out great, and I wanted to have more control of my day. So, I developed a morning routine.  

I'm going to share my routine with you below. Just note - I didn't start out doing everything I'm about to tell you. Instead, over time I adapted different elements to my routine to further improve it.    

Also, you should know that there's not one morning routine that works well for everyone. But, there are some key elements that make a morning routine more effective. The evidence of this is the number of productivity experts that do some of the same things that I'm going to share with you.   

Plan The Night Before 


First off, your A.M. morning routine should start in the P.M. In other words, the night before you should plan out your next day. More specifically, determine the 3 things that you want to accomplish the following day.

It's also important to make sure those tasks will in some way drive your business forward. So, grooming your dog wouldn't be something you'd include on this list. But, reaching out to another real estate investor for a possible JV deal would be.

Planning the evening before is important because we have a limited amount of willpower and decision-making ability every day. If you have too many decisions to make in the morning it will slow you down and drain your brain for the rest of the day.

As much as possible, try to eliminate decision-making from your mornings by doing some planning the night before so you'll have more time and energy for a highly productive day. 

Wake Up Earlier 

The next thing I recommend is to wake up earlier. I'm typically up around 6 a.m. That doesn't necessarily work for everybody, especially if you stay up late. Therefore, if you're not an early riser, I recommend to start out by just waking up 30-45 minutes earlier than you do now.  

That's enough time to get in a decent morning routine that will start your day out right. You'll thank yourself at the end of the day, if you sacrifice a few more z's in order to have a more productive day. 

Have An Attitude of Gratitude

The first thing I do when I open my eyes in the morning is express gratitude. I literally sit in bed and audibly go down a list of everyone and everything I'm thankful for, as well as my gratitude for the day ahead.

I think that starting your day with an attitude of gratitude sets you up for success because you're going to vibrate on a much higher energy than if you start your day out in panic mode. Also, the energy you put out is the energy you're going to get back from clients, vendors, family, and anyone else you interact with.

Start Your Day With Water

After I've gone through my gratitude list, I drink 24 oz of water.

I have a water bottle that I keep by my bed which I fill up the night before.

So, before I take my first step out of bed I chug down the entire bottle of water. 

I’ve found that this does a couple of things:

  • First, it does an amazing job of helping me wake up and shake off the cobwebs from the night before, while also jump starting my metabolism.   

  • Secondly, our bodies tend to get dehydrated when we sleep, and hydration is incredibly important - especially after you wake up. That means instead of a cup of Starbucks being the first thing that touches your lips in the morning - try drinking a large quantity of water and see how much it helps your energy level, while preparing you for your day ahead.

Morning Workout

Next, I get in a workout. My workouts always involve cardio and weights, because that's what makes me feel good. I typically work out for 45 mins to an hour. But honestly, as long as you're doing something to get your endorphins going - that's what's important.  

Working out in the morning will increase your clarity as you begin your day, and make you feel good. Plus, it's like getting your first win of the day. It’s always good to start the day with a W! 

High Protein Breakfast 

After I workout I eat a high protein breakfast. My breakfast consists of 2 egg whites, a protein shake and an avocado. Sometimes I'll replace the eggs with oatmeal and diced almonds. 

I find that a high protein breakfast that is light, and not too heavy, gives me fuel and helps me concentrate - without giving me the “itis” and making me tired (like you experience from a large starchy breakfast). 
 

Get Your Mind Right with Meditation/Devotion

After breakfast I meditate and do a devotion. This is where I spend quality time with God. During my devotion I'm usually reading my bible, or a spiritual book to help me get centered for the day - while reminding me of my connection with God.  

Then I meditate. Sometimes it's as short as 5 minutes, and other times as long as 20 minutes. The key is to be present. And don't judge yourself if it's hard to stop your mind from racing.

What you'll find is the more you consistently mediate, the quieter your thoughts will get. And honestly that is priceless - because it's the space between our thoughts where we're most creative and connected to our source.

**By the way, you'll notice that I still haven't checked my email yet. If I would have, it would make mediation significantly more challenging because my thoughts would wander on what what I need to do in the future, instead of being present in the moment.

THE POWER OF AFFIRMATIONS

The last thing I do before I jump into my business day is look at my affirmations and recite them. I have a vision board in my office that has both my affirmations and pictures of my goals - so I spend a couple of minutes going through that.

Positive thinking and affirmations can cultivate immense power in your mind, so don't take it for granted.

THE START OF THE BUSINESS DAY

Finally, my business day begins. My virtual assistant, Kay, greets me in the morning and gives me a run down of the appointments I have for that day.

Then I look in Asana to see what my top 3 priorities are for the day, which I had set the night before. I work on the most important thing I have to do - without distraction.

If you're not careful and don't prioritize your most important thing, your day can have a way of running away from you. So, prioritizing will make sure your most important tasks get done and make you feel accomplished with what you completed that day.

WHERE DO KIDS FIT INTO YOUR MORNING ROUTINE?

If you’re reading this and have kids you may be wondering, “how do kids fit into this morning routine?” I have two young sons, so don’t worry - I didn’t forget.

I take care of getting my kids ready and off to school after I finish my gratitude and water routine. Then I go workout. I make sure to have a few moments of quiet time and reflection before waking them up.

Whether you have kids or a significant other, I think it’s imperative to have some quiet time alone, even if brief, before you start you day. That peacefulness can carry over to the first people you interact with in the morning.

Morning Routines Can Make All The Difference

So, that's my morning routine. All together, it takes me about 2 hours.


If you start doing a morning routine, I think you'll find that it will be some of the most important time you'll spend in your entire day. The fact is, your initial actions lay the foundation for mediocre, or EXTRAORDINARY results.


And remember, it's not as important what's in your morning routine - it's more important that you actually have one, and that you're consistent.


Having a morning routine will anchor you and ensure you stay focused on what's most important - while helping you achieve your highest level of productivity!









Next Up In Season 2

Marketing is the lifeblood of your business. When you neglect marketing it’s inevitable that you’ll suffer from an inconsistent deal flow. And you’ll feel like you’re working from deal to deal - which makes you uncertain about your income and the stability of your business.

I did a previous post on how important it is to focus on one thing (or your big domino in your business), which if you topple it, everything else becomes easier. So in this the next post I interview Danny Johnson, the host of Flipping Junkie. Danny will share his insights and tips on how your real estate business can be more successful, and you can sell more homes, by making marketing your Big Domino.

Podcast

EPISODE 15 – Brent Simpson: Focusing On Your One Thing Is The Key To Success

The Level Up Your Business Podcast

Show Notes

Episode 15 of Season 2

Clickable Show Highlights

[00:59] Introduction of guest – Brent Simpson
[02:00]  Who is Bold Vision Enterprise
[02:31]  Brent’s insight on multitasking versus focusing on ONE thing
[03:19]  Why many entrepreneurs feel multitasking is a badge of honor
[04:15]  What is a C.E.E?
[04:21] The biggest pitfalls Brent’s clients encounter
[05:26] Suggestions for solopreneurs to get out of the mindset of holding onto everything
[07:09]  His top three strategies to help entrepreneurs focus on one thing at a time
[08:54]  Productivity hacks to stay more focused
[09:33]  Brent’s “BIG DOMINO”
[10:50]  Brent’s suggestion to people who want to figure out what their “BIG DOMINO”

Quotes:

"Multitasking makes people feel busy... but, being busy doesn't actually equate to being profitable."


Resources:

  • Ryan S. Johnson website - Virtual assistants and sales funnel for your real estate business
  • Bold Vision Enterprise - A company that focuses on providing strategies to solve the problems of corporations and small businesses
  • Asana - Asana is the easiest way for teams to track their work—and get results

THE LEVEL UP YOUR BUSINESS BLOG

 Brent Simpson - Focusing On Your One Thing Is The Key To Success


Brent Simpson, Owner and CEO of Bold Vision Enterprise

In today’s post I interviewed Brent Simpson. Brent is the owner of Bold Vision Enterprise, a company that focuses on providing strategies to solve the problems of corporations and small businesses.

In the Level Up Your Business Podcast, I’m currently in a series that focuses on Productivity Hacks for Busy Real Estate Entrepreneurs. So, in this interview I really wanted to key in on the the importance of “The One Thing. 

I’ve found that we often struggle with productivity because instead of focusing on ONE THING, we try to focus on EVERYTHING - which actually makes us less productive   

This interview will provide some strategies and actionable tips to get awesome results by narrowing your focus. 

Today on the Level Up Your Business Podcast I interview Brent Simpson of Bold Vision Enterprise. He’ll be sharing strategies and actionable tips you can use to narrow your focus and get results by focusing on ONE THING.

Click to Tweet

My Interview With brent simpson


"Tell me more about your business and what you do."



brent says...

My company, Bold Vision Enterprise is an international business development company that provides corporate level solutions for small businesses. We do this for companies across the country and the world. We have clients in the US, Europe, Canada, and Africa.


What’s your take on multitasking vs. focusing on one thing at a time? "


 brent says...

My feelings fall in line with a Stanford study I read on multitasking. That study states that multitaskers are actually less efficient. In fact it says multitaskers suffer from diminished memory, and have the inability to concentrate on one single thing after they’ve been multitasking for so many years.   


Why do you think so many entrepreneurs feel that multitasking is a badge of honor, as opposed to appreciating the value of truly giving the task at hand their full attention? "


brent says...

Multitasking makes people feel busy. Often your friends and peers will ask you, “how’s work going?” Then your response will be something like, “it’s super busy… a lot of work!”  The idea of saying you’re very busy and you’ve got a lot of work makes you feel productive.  

But, being busy doesn't actually equate to being profitable. So to answer your question, the reason why people wear multitasking as a badge of honor is because they’re confusing being busy with being profitable.   

What are some of the pitfalls you’ve seen your clients run into when they’re
spinning too many plates? 

brent says...

One of the things that happens is they become the C.E.E. - The Chief Executive of Everything. That’s something you don't want to be. So, I think the biggest pitfall is trying to wear all the hats in your business.  

And sometimes I don't think people realize they’re doing is strictly out of fear. They’re fearful if they give tasks to someone else, that person won’t do it as well as them. I think sometimes there’s also an underlying fear that someone will actually do the task better than them.  

"Solopreneurs often run into the challenge of trying to be “super-preneurs” and taking everything on themselves instead of hiring help and focusing on activities that are the highest and best use of their time, and tasks that drive their businesses. "

"So, how do you suggest solopreneurs get out of the mindset of holding onto everything, and instead delegate tasks that aren’t the highest and best use of their time?"

brent says...

One of the things we suggest at Bold Vision Enterprise is that you have a very strong team. When you have a team, you have people that can hold you accountable. If you work on developing your team and making sure the right people are in place, then they’ll tell you when certain activities don’t make sense and are counterproductive to the growth of your company.

That’s also why sometimes you need advisors. One of the things my company provides are advisory services to look at the activities that our clients are doing, and how those activities fit into the big picture.

I hope that your real estate audience who are currently doing everything themselves (marketing homes, cleaning their own properties, listing properties, writing contracts) are really listening to your advice. Because whether it’s using virtual assistants or some of the other ways you talk about improving their businesses, it can be hugely helpful.
 

"Give me your top 3 strategies to help entrepreneurs focus on ONE thing
at a time vs. trying to do everything."


brent says...

  1. Write everything down. Make a list of all the activities you’re doing and then rank them - not based on importance to you - but instead based on profitability to your company.

  2. Put up a mantra in your office. That mantra may be something you recite whenever you’re drifting into the multitasking realm. That mantra could be as simple as saying “just one thing at a time.”

    When you feel yourself drifting into another task, but you know you’re not finished with your current task, tell yourself “just one thing.” Write it out, put it on the wall, put it on your desk - wherever you need to put it so you can quickly relate back to it if you get off course.

  3. Utilize technology. There’s a thin line between technology being a distraction and actually making us more efficient. I recommend having a task manager that will help you stay organized as much as possible

"Do you have any other productivity hacks or tools you can suggest for entrepreneurs to help them be more focused? "


brent says...

You have to make sure you’re creating processes in your business. One huge life hack is to combine your daily activities with your customer relationship management tool in order to create automated workflows. 

"If you could only focus on one thing to drive your business forward, what would it be?
In other words, what’s your “big domino?” 


brent says...

My big domino is paying people. Although that sounds simple, it’s not as simple as most people think.

When you start your business, from a psychological standpoint, you feel like every time you do something yourself, you’re saving money. Psychological that satisfies you in a way that makes you feel good. So when you leave that day, even if you didn’t make money but you felt like you saved money, you feel accomplished

Move away from that logic. Step as far away as you can. Because in reality you end up spending more money in the long run than if you just hired a professional in the beginning to help you the right way.

Here’s a way to know what you need to be delegating: If something comes across your desk that only requires eyes, hands, and a computer - it should go to someone else. For instance - tasks like data input and editing are tasks you shouldn’t be focusing on, because you’re not taking advantage of your true hourly rate potential.  

How do you suggest people figure out what’s their “big domino?”


brent says...

Again I’m going to recommend making a list. Lists really do help because you have to have to be able to have a brain dump.  So, write down what you’re doing and what’s most important. Then from that list you need to circle what you enjoying doing the most and match it to what’s most profitable.

Any closing advice regarding focusing on one thing?


brent says...

For all the multitaskers out there, you should really focus on becoming a mono-tasker. If you have to, take some time to sit down and create a list of the things that you have to do. Then set a timer so that you only focus on that one thing until the timer goes off. Once the timer goes off, give yourself a break.

During your break you can check emails or satisfy your need to text - because it's an addiction - and you may have to satisfy that itch a little bit. So, basically take a Kaisian approach so that you can turn small steps into big results.

Next Up In Season 2

Next up I’m going to talk about MORNING ROUTINES. This is something that has really impacted how I approach my business and my life in a major way. The fact is, how you start your morning can heavily influence how your entire day goes.

And, there are certain things you can do each morning that will lead to you achieving significantly better results in your business. You’ll find out what those things are in my next post! . 

Resources Mentioned In The Podcast


  • Ryan S. Johnson website - Virtual assistants and sales funnel for your real estate business
  • Bold Vision Enterprise - A company that focuses on providing strategies to solve the problems of corporations and small businesses
  • Asana - Asana is the easiest way for teams to track their work—and get results


Podcast

EPISODE 10 – The Secret To Working ON Instead of IN Your Real Estate Business

The Level Up Your Business Podcast

Show Notes

Episode 10  of Season 2

In today's episode I’m going to share with you my secrets to helping you work ON instead of IN your real estate business - which is one of the keys to true productivity and business growth. 

Clickable Show Highlights:

[02:35] What today’s show is about
[03:10] The benefits of meditation
[05:34] The difference between a proactive and a reactive real estate entrepreneur
[07:01] Knowing your lead domino is key
[08:54] Using task management tools
[11:49] The importance of delegating
[14:12] Recap and action steps

Quotes:

"Make each day your masterpiece."

"Success is sequential, not simultaneous. It's one step at a time. ONE thing at a time. It's not your one and only thing. It's the ONE thing right now."

Resources:

Season 1 - How To Level Up Your Real Estate Business With Virtual Assistants

ryansjohnson.com - reach out to Ryan if you need help to level-up your real estate business

Asana - Asana is the easiest way for teams to track their work—and get results. 

"The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results" - By Gary Keller

THE LEVEL UP YOUR BUSINESS BLOG

 THE SECRET TO WORKING ON INSTEAD OF IN YOUR REAL ESTATE BUSINESS

What was it that made you first fall in love with real estate?


Think back to when you first fell in love with real estate…

  • What was it about real estate that made your heart go pitter-patter?

  • What was the pivotal point that caused you to make a career change?

  • What initially excited you about becoming a real estate entrepreneur?

Whatever it was that made you first fall in love, it’s not unusual to “lose that loving feeling” if your business takes a turn and it feels like it’s running you, instead of vice versa.

In other words, you’ve become so consumed with the day-to-day minutia of being a business owner (admin, paperwork, dealing with dead-end leads, managing staff, dealing with unruly vendors, etc.) that the business starts to swallow you up and spit you out.

This feeling is often the precursor to a plateau in productivity… and profits. Not to mention, it spills over into your personal life, and can affect how you relate with family and friends.

So, I’m going to share with you what I consider to be the ultimate guide to alleviate some of that business fatigue you may be experiencing, so you can start working ON instead of IN your business - and get back that loving feeling.

Today on the Level Up Your Business Podcast, discover my secrets for working ON instead of IN your real estate business.

Click to Tweet

Make Each Day Your Masterpiece Through Meditation

Meditation can positively impact every aspect of your life. 

Let’s start with how to get off the roller coaster of ups and downs you may experience on a daily basis in your real estate business.

The highly admired coach, John Wooden, once said “make each day your masterpiece.”

So here’s some tips to help you do just that:

Meditate every morning. I suggest before you get in the hustle and bustle of your day, take at least 5 minutes, relax, and just – be still. That doesn’t mean you have to try to struggle to turn all the thoughts off in your head (which usually only results in more thoughts).

It just means that you sit still, breath and relax – distraction free – before you look at your first email or make your first call. Be present, and meditate.

I know there’s push back from some people about taking time to meditate because they think it’s too esoteric - or they don’t feel it works for them. 

Look, it’s not a coincidence that a growing number of Fortune 500 CEOs are practicing meditation and encouraging meditation in their companies.

Some of the benefits of meditation include:

  • Decreased anxiety, which increases resilience and performance under stress

  • Increased emotional intelligence

  • Enhanced creativity: Your greatest ideas typically occur when your mind is more relaxed and in a quiet space - as opposed to when your mind is going 100 miles a minute, making it hard for creative ideas to break through.

  • Helps you focus on the task in front of you

Don’t overthink this

In fact, when you’re meditating – do nothing. And, try to make a habit of doing it everyday around the same time. This one thing alone has helped me achieve incredible peace and resilience in my business.

A few years back I didn't meditate. Instead, I'd wake up in the morning and the first thing I'd do is grab my phone and check my email. As soon as I did that,
I no longer had control of how my morning was going to start, because now I was in reactive mode to whatever fire I needed to address from my emails. 

Situations that rattle many real estate entrepreneurs who experience emotional highs and lows, don’t phase me. Trust me. If you’re not already doing it, start meditating tomorrow morning.

be productive instead of reactive

Real estate entrepreneurs who are PROACTIVE work ON their business, while those who are REACTIVE work IN their business. 

One way to start working ON instead of IN your business is to become a proactive, instead of a reactive, real estate entrepreneur.

Below are some examples of one vs the other:

Being a Reactive Real Estate Entrepreneur vs. Proactive

REACTIVE

PROACTIVE

  • You get into the office, check your email, and dig into whatever is at the top of your inbox.
  • You plan the night before and you identify the ONE MAIN OBJECTIVE you must accomplish the next day.
  • The path that your day takes depends on who or what needs your attention from the last call you took or email you read.
  • You time-block your day - making sure that your one main objective has a block of uninterrupted time (no calls, emails, social media). And, your day is batched so you know when you’ll answer calls and when you’ll reply to emails.
  • You don’t write down objectives and priorities for the day. Instead you just take the day as it comes.
  • You use task management software to keep track of tasks that you and your staff need to take care of for the day, and the week, to prevent tasks from falling through the cracks.

Figure Out Your ONE ​​​​THING  Each Day

Focusing on your ONE THING (your lead domino) makes the other dominoes behind it fall effortlessly. 

Part of being a proactive real estate entrepreneur who doesn’t have your head on a swivel is knowing your dominoes.

Let me explain...

At the end of each business day, you should identify your “lead domino” which will be your focus for the next day.

Lead domino refers to the idea of focusing on the ONE objective or task that will make everything else simpler in your business (hence push down the first domino and the other dominoes behind it will fall effortlessly).

This concept is coined by Gary Keller, author of “The One Thing.” He suggests that no matter how success is measured, personal or professional, only the ability to dismiss distractions and concentrate on your ONE thing stands between you and your goals.

Then, you MUST time-block your most important work and avoid distractions during that time at all costs.

If you do do this, amazing things will start happening because your concentrated efforts are pushing your ultimate goal forward as opposed to your energies being dispersed in a multitude of activities, that make it feel like you’re running in place.

"Success is sequential, not simultaneous. It’s one step at a time. ONE Thing at a time. It’s not your one and only thing. It’s the ONE Thing right now." - Gary Keller

Use Task Management Tools To Help You And Your Team Stay Focused

Task management tools keep you and your team focused and more productive.

There is no one size fits all task management tool.

But, you absolutely must be documenting tasks that need to be accomplished by you and your staff along, with deadlines.

If you’re just relying on memory, it’s not a matter of if, but when, something falls through the cracks – potentially costing you a lot of time and money.

​It's no secret that my task management tool of choice is Asana.

Below I've provided 3 suggestions on how you can use this tool, or similar task management tools, in your real estate business to be most effective.

  • Like I mentioned before, determine what your ONE THING is at the end of each business day, which will be your main objective for the next day. In your task management tool, write that down and block off undisturbed time that will be dedicated to that activity the next day.
  • If you have a virtual assistant or local staff, make sure they’re also connected to your task management software. The only way to optimize your results is if you and your entire team are plugged in. Otherwise, there's a greater likelihood of someone dropping the ball. 
  • Think about the tasks you need them to do the day prior - or even several days in advance - and assign those tasks in the software. This is another way to keep you ahead of the curve because you’re taking time to think about your business proactively instead of waiting until you’re consumed in it, which makes it more challenging to think “bigger picture.

Also, whether you use a task management tool or some other method, you should find a way to keep that ONE thing in front of you at all times during your work day.

Maybe you type out that activity and make it a screensaver on your phone or computer. Or, you write it on an obstructive sticky note that you’d have to physically move in order to get anything else done.

You need to have horse blinders on so that if by chance you do get distracted, you’ll have something to help you hit the reset button and get back on course.

If You Want To Sell More Real Estate, You Have To Learn To Delegate!

Effective delegation eliminates burnout and makes you more productive.

A large part of the burnout you may be feeling in your business is because you’ve got too much on your plate.

There’s a lot of moving pieces in your business, so when you have to be the chef, the server and the host – it’s eventually going to wear on you.

I know we’re talking about real estate investing, but I’m a foodie and the same concept applies. 🙂

One surefire way to alleviate some of that pressure is to delegate. 

If you have a virtual assistant or local staff, make sure to delegate tasks that: (1) aren’t revenue generating, or (2) you don’t enjoy doing.

You didn’t get in business for yourself to do $10/hr tasks, or to operate a business doing activities you don’t like.

SO STOP IT.

If you have staff, even if it’s just one person, reorganize your to-do list RIGHT NOW so you’re only doing the tasks YOU should be doing.

But, what if you don’t have staff and you’re a solopreneur?

If you’re solo in the biz, the first person you should hire in your real estate business is a real estate assistant. You can hire someone local or use a virtual assistant (VA). 

A VA is a remote person that works from home so they’re typically much more affordable and don’t require the extra overhead of someone local. I’ve had a great experience using virtual real assistants since 2009, so I’ll dig a little deeper on that:

Your virtual real assistant will provide you support with all your day to day routine tasks including deal coordination, handling phone calls, and taking over admin paperwork, in order to save you substantial time and money.

Over time this person can also become your right hand, and quite honestly completely change your real estate business. 

A virtual assistant will create efficiencies in your organization that make you more profitable and free up your time and mental space to focus on high revenue generating activities – or just allow you to have more free time with your family.

Flying solo may be fine initially – but in order to really soar financially, and to avoid crashing from overwhelm – you should seriously consider hiring a real estate assistant.

Your Action Steps

Now that we've discussed a few ways for you to fall back in love with your real estate business by using some strategies and tools to help you work ON instead of IN your business- it's time for you to take action.

Here's a quick recap of my suggestions:

  • Meditate - Try meditating a few minutes a day each morning before you get into your day. It will only get easier over time and the results are priceless.
  • Pre-planning – Be proactive instead of reactive, and plan for tomorrow the day before. Determine your ONE thing that you need to focus on that will make everything else easier or unnecessary. And then be militant with the time you block off for that ONE thing each day. This little bit of distraction-free time along with your intent focus on one activity designed to push you closer to your objective, will pay off in a big way toward helping you achieve your goal.
  • Use Task Management Tools - You've got too much going on in a day to rely on your memory to keep everything straight. The more "stuff"you can take out of your head,  the less stress you'll experience. Use tools to help you keep track of daily tasks and to assign tasks to your stuff.
  • DEL-E-GATE - Start delegating all tasks that aren't generating revenue  or aren't on your love-to-do list. If delegating means hiring someone, then make a point to hire a real estate assistant as soon as you can. Bonus points if you hire a virtual

If you put to use these strategies I mentioned, they'll have a tremendous impact on eliminating  stress and helping you run a real estate business that you love.

What's Next?

If I could point to one thing that I learned to do in my real estate business which has had the single biggest impact on my productivity, it is learning THE ART OF DELEGATION.  

But delegating isn’t as easy as it sounds - especially if you’re (a) too close to your work, (b) don’t trust other people, or (c) feel like the only way things will get done is if YOU do them. In my next episode, I’m going to address this and show you some secrets that have worked for me and that you can use to master the art of delegation in order to 10x your productivity.

Resources Mentioned In The Podcast


Podcast

EPISODE 9 – Pt. 2: 20 Life Changing Productivity Tools To Add More Hours To Your Day

The Level Up Your Business Podcast

Show Notes

Episode 9 of Season 2

Clickable Show Highlights:

[00:52]The topic of today’s episode
[02:37]Definition of productivity hacks
[03:06]6th admin tool: Last Pass
[04:52]7th admin tool: Genius Scan
[5:40]8th admin tool: HelloSign
[06:34]9th admin tool: Airtable
[08:54]0th admin tool: Calendly
[09:45]4th category of productivity tools: CREATIVITY TOOLS
[10:03]1st creativity tool: Evernote
[10:53]2nd creativity tool: Workflowy
[12:12]3rd creativity tool: Xmind
[12:49]4th creativity tool: Draw.io

Quotes:

"Sometimes, just writing things out isn't good enough to convey your ideas. That's when you might need to use the right tool to get your point across to your team."

Resources:

LastPass - Stores all of your passwords so that whenever you visit a site, it will log you in without the need to enter your username and password.
Genius Scan - A mobile scanner in your pocket, allowing you to quickly scan your documents on the go and export them as JPEG or multi-page PDF files.
HelloSign -  A cloud-based electronic signature tool that enables users to sign, fill out, send, retrieve, and save documents paperlessly.
Airtable - Software that uses a spreadsheet format which makes it incredibly easy to organize stuff, people, ideas and anything else you can imagine with your team.  
Calendly  - Helps you schedule meetings without the hassle of back-and-forth emails.
Evernote - allows you to collect and share ideas across desktop and mobile platforms so your thoughts are always accessible and always in sync. 
WorkFlowyOrganizational tool that helps break big ideas into manageable pieces so you can focus on one piece at a time. 
XMind - Mind mapping and brainstorming software that allows you to capture ideas, clarify thinking, manage complex information, and promote team collaboration for higher productivity.
Draw.io - Free online diagram editor built around Google Drive that enables you to create flowcharts, network diagrams, mockups and more.

THE LEVEL UP YOUR BUSINESS BLOG

 (PT. 2) 20 LIFE CHANGING PRODUCTIVITY TOOLS TO ADD MORE HOURS TO YOUR DAY

  • productivity hacks: shortcuts, tricks or strategies that help you get more done in the same amount of time, or less.


If you feel like you never have enough time in the day to get things done - or you’re not running your business nearly as efficiently as you’d like - then maybe the right productivity tool will give you the breakthrough you need. 

In my last post, I shared the first half of my
20 Favorite Tools That Are Absolute Game Changers That’ll Make You More Productive And Add Hours To Your Day. 

In this post, I’ll finish up the second half of the list. Just as a reminder, I’ve broken these tools down in 4 categories: 

  1. Communication tools to help your productivity
  2. Marketing tools to increase your productivity
  3. Admin tools to make you more productive and save you considerable time
  4. Creativity tools that will make you more productive


I covered communication, marketing, and half of the admin tools in the last post. So, I’ll finish up admin tools as well as some of my favorite creativity tools.

There's a few tools that I’ll cover that you’ve likely never heard of. But if you use these tools, I GUARANTEE they'll increase your productivity and level up your business. 

Today on the Level Up Your Business Podcast, catch part two of the 20 life changing productivity tools to add more hours to your day.

Click to Tweet
Quick Navigation (click on a link below to go directly to the productivity tool shown)

ADMIN TOOLS

Here’s a continuation from my last post of some of my favorite admin tools that will significantly increase your productivity.

LASTPASS

LASTPASS

LastPass is a must-have time saving tool for those of us who have trouble keeping up with passwords. Prior to LastPass, I can't tell you how much time I wasted trying to remember passwords to log into various websites.

LastPass stores all of your passwords so that whenever you visit a site, it will log you in without the need to enter your username and password. The only login credentials you'll need to memorize are your username and password for LastPass.

How’s It Increase Productivity?

As far as productivity, one of the best uses of LastPass is if you're working with people remotely, such as virtual assistants. Let's say you you want people to access a secure site to do some work for you (i.e. accessing the back end of your website to update properties) - but your site requires a username and password.

However, you don't want to share your current login credentials or spend the time creating a new login - which can be a time consuming pain.  

The simple solution is to have your remote people install LastPass on their browser (it’s free to install). Then, you’ll log into your LastPass vault (where all your credentials are stored) and add their email address to that specific site you want them to access.

Once they visit your site to log in, LastPass will automatically log them in - without showing any of your login details. Also, just as easy as you can grant access, you can also remove it with the click of a button inside your your LastPass vault. 

GENIUS SCAN

GENIUS SCAN


Genius Scan is basically a mobile scanner in your pocket. You can quickly scan your documents on the go and export them as JPEG or multi-page PDF files.  Download the app for free on your mobile phone from the iTunes store or the Google Play store. As a real estate entrepreneur, here's how it will help you be more productive...

How’s It Increase Productivity? 

Let's say you need to get signed documents to a title company, but you're on the go and it would be a hassle to find a local Kinkos to fax them. With Genius Scan, all you have to do is take a picture of the documents and the app turns your pictures into pdf documents that you can attach to an email with the click of a button in order to send to your title company.  

It’s incredibly easy to use and and more convenient that hassling with traditional scanners. 

HELLOSIGN

HELLO SIGN

Speaking of getting documents signed, HelloSign is my tool of choice for e-signatures. It's a cloud-based electronic signature tool that enables users to sign, fill out, send, retrieve, and save documents paperlessly.   

How’s It Increase Productivity? 

HelloSign increases productivity in your business since now instead of having to print, sign and send documents - and then wait for your recipient to also do the same before sending back to you - you can actually set up your document in Hellosign so that the entire transaction is paperless. 

You can sign electronically (it looks just like your signature), and then send the document to your recipients via HelloSign so they can do the same. You'll be alerted when they've opened your document, and you'll automatically receive the fully executed document once they're done signing. 

The time you'll save from getting documents signed using this tool is huge!

AIRTABLE

AIRTABLE

Airtable is a tool that not too many people know about. I started using it some months back when I was looking for a solution to easily organize my promotional calendar, my launch calendar, and my podcast schedule.

Very quickly I learned that Airtable could handle organizing all of those - and so much more. It’s so flexible that I also started using it as our CRM (customer relationship manager). 

Airtable is free to get started and there is nothing to download. The software uses a spreadsheet format to organize data. You can use Airtable on your desktop and mobile and it's easy to add and remove data, attach files and share tables. And it integrates with a ton of apps.  

How's It Increase Productivity

What makes Airtable an awesome productivity tools is that it makes it incredibly easy to organize stuff, people, ideas and anything else you can imagine with your team.

The other nice feature is Airtable already has a lot of ready-made templates you can use - even templates for real estate professionals in the business of buying and selling homes. One of the many ways I currently use it is to keep track of our clients, their buying preferences, and our transactions.  

I like Airtable so much that I’ll write a future post that covers some of the ways you can use it to optimize your real estate business. 

CALENDLY

CALENDLY

The last admin tool I'll discuss is Calendly. This is an online app that helps you schedule meetings without the hassle of back-and-forth emails. It has both a free and paid version, but the free version has plenty of great features to make your life easier.

How’s It Increase Productivity?

Calendly makes you more productive because of how convenient it is to use. It's so simple, but so incredibly useful. Instead of going back and forth with phone calls or via email, using up valuable time in your day to coordinate a time to meet with buyers, sellers, or vendors - you can now just send them a link.

Then, they can can choose a time that fits within their schedule based on time slots you’ve already predetermined. That means no more going back and forth to confirm availability. And if you need to reschedule or cancel, that can also happen through the same link.

CREATIVITY TOOLS FOR PRODUCTIVITY


That brings me to the last category of productivity tools - which I call “creativity tools” because they're the tools that you can use to capture all the million dollar ideas that are floating in your head, and easily refer to them later, or convey those ideas to your team.

EVERNOTE

EVERNOTE

Evernote allows you to collect and share ideas across desktop and mobile platforms. Your thoughts are always with you, always accessible, and always in sync.

It's a really good tool to use to make sure you don’t lose great ideas as they come to you - no matter where you are. I can't tell you how many times I've used Evernote in the wee hours of the morning when I wake up with a brainstorm.  

How's It Increase Productivity

One of the ways you can use it to save time is instead of writing out ideas that come to you in the middle of the night, or on your car ride home - you can audibly record your ideas inside Evernote.

Those recordings of your ideas can then be organized by title, date, or however you wish to file them. Then if you want to share your ideas with team members, it's as easy as a click of a button to email it to them from inside the app - even if your team doesn't use Evernote.   

WORKFLOWY

WORKFLOWY

Another productivity tool that I literally use every week is Workflowy. It’s my favorite tool to help break big ideas into manageable pieces so you can focus on one piece at a time.

Workflowy is also my tool of choice to use when brainstorming. And it's how I come up with outlines for all my podcast episodes, courses, and goal-setting.  

How’s It Increase Productivity?

Workflowy is an organizational tool that makes life easier when you have a lot going on. And, it's a surprisingly powerful way to take notes, make lists, collaborate, brainstorm and to plan.

Everything in WorkFlowy is part of a single giant list. Each item can have sub-lists under it, and each of those sub-items can have their own nested lists, and so on

The best part, though, is that you can “zoom in” on each item - double-click on a bullet point, and WorkFlowy suddenly shows you a new page for that item and all its sublists so that you can narrow your focus.

Believe me, you only have to try Workflowy once to really love it if you're a list person, or if you like to have organized notes.

XMIND

XMIND

If you're more of a visual brainstormer, then Xmind is the tool for you. This is a mind mapping and brainstorming software that allows you to capture ideas, clarify thinking, manage complex information, and promote team collaboration for higher productivity.

How’s It Increase Productivity?

Xmind is a great tool to use when collaborating in a brainstorm with your team. It’s also a nice software to use if you need to get ideas out of your head for a project but you're not sure how the ideas and concepts connect - so visually seeing the connections will help you and your team see the bigger picture.

DRAW.IO

DRAW.IO

The last tool I’ll share with you is Draw.io. Draw.io is is a free online diagram editor built around Google Drive that enables you to create flowcharts, network diagrams, mockups and more.

How’s It Increase Productivity?

Just like some of the other tools I mentioned, sometimes writing things out isn't good enough to convey your ideas.

Draw.io saves you time and helps productivity when you’re trying to get a point across to your team, but diagrams and mockups would work better than words.

Next Up In Season 2

One of the productivity challenges many real estate entrepreneurs face is that they get consumed working in their business, as opposed to working on their business - which is required if you want your business to go to the next level

In next week’s podcast and blog post I’m going to share with you what I consider to be the ultimate guide to alleviate some of that business fatigue you’re experiencing so you can start working ON instead of IN your business.

Resources Mentioned In The Podcast

ADMIN TOOLS

  • LastPass - Stores all of your passwords so that whenever you visit a site, it will log you in without the need to enter your username and password.
  • Genius Scan - A mobile scanner in your pocket, allowing you to quickly scan your documents on the go and export them as JPEG or multi-page PDF files.
  • HelloSign -  A cloud-based electronic signature tool that enables users to sign, fill out, send, retrieve, and save documents paperlessly.
  • Airtable - Software that uses a spreadsheet format which makes it incredibly easy to organize stuff, people, ideas and anything else you can imagine with your team.  
  • Calendly  - Helps you schedule meetings without the hassle of back-and-forth emails.

CREATIVITY TOOLS FOR PRODUCTIVITY

  • Evernote - allows you to collect and share ideas across desktop and mobile platforms so your thoughts are always accessible and always in sync. 
  • WorkFlowyOrganizational tool that helps break big ideas into manageable pieces so you can focus on one piece at a time. 
  • XMind - Mind mapping and brainstorming software that allows you to capture ideas, clarify thinking, manage complex information, and promote team collaboration for higher productivity.
  • Draw.io - Free online diagram editor built around Google Drive that enables you to create flowcharts, network diagrams, mockups and more.
Podcast

EPISODE 8 – Pt. 1: 20 Life Changing Productivity Tools To Add More Hours To Your Day

The Level Up Your Business Podcast

Show Notes

Episode 8 of Season 2

Clickable Show Highlights:

[1:25]  The topic of today’s episode
[3:24]  Definition of productivity hacks
[4:03]  Four categories of productivity tools
[4:57]  COMMUNICATION TOOLS to increase productivity
[5:04]  1st Communication Tool: Line2
[5:57]  2nd Communication Tool: Zoom
[6:48]  3rd Communication Tool: Screencast-o-matic
[8:00]  4th communication tool: Viber
[8:52]  MARKETING TOOLS to increase productivity
[9:00]  1st Marketing Tool: ClickFunnels
[11:07]  2nd Marketing Tool: BIGVU
[12:44]  ADMINISTRATIVE TOOLS to increase productivity
[12:48]  1st Admin Tool: Asana
[13:49]  2nd Admin Tool: Todoist
[14:53]  3rd Admin Tool: GSuite
[15:57]  4th Admin Tool: Snipping Tool 
[16:36]  5th Admin Tool: Droplr

Quotes:

 "If you don't have some way to track who's doing what, when it's due, and how tasks are progressing - things will start falling through the cracks - costing you time and money."

Resources:

COMMUNICATION TOOLS
  • Line2 - Adds a second phone number and a complete cloud business phone system to your smartphones and computer that's robust, yet affordable
  • Zoom - Conduct online meetings and video webinars with ease
  • Screencast-O-Matic - Record your on-screen activity for tutorial videos, visual presentations, and demonstrations
  • Viber  - Make calls, send messages, exchange images and files - freely and secure
MARKETING TOOLS
  • ClickFunnels  - Website builder that allows you to create everything from: lead generation pages, sales funnels, membership sites, landing pages, and e-commerce systems - all with the ease of a drag and drop interface
  • BIGVU  - A teleprompter on your phone that scrolls while you record so you can speak candidly with no need to memorize lines.
ADMIN TOOLS
  • Asana - Asana is the easiest way for teams to track their work—and get results.
  • Todoist - Maximize productivity by giving you the ability to see all tasks assigned, completed, updated, relevant notes, and shared files in a user-friendly interface
  • G Suite - Marries your calendar, with your email, with cloud storage and additional cloud editing capabilities all in one package that works from your computer, phone or tablet
  • Snipping Tool - Easily capture a screenshot, or snip, of any object on your screen - and then annotate, save, or share the image
  • Droplr - Share files, screenshots, and screencasts to get your point across.

THE LEVEL UP YOUR BUSINESS BLOG

 (PT. 1) 20 LIFE CHANGING PRODUCTIVITY TOOLS TO ADD MORE HOURS TO YOUR DAY

  • productivity hacks: shortcuts, tricks or strategies that help you get more done in the same amount of time, or less.


Are you looking to “level up” your productivity in your real estate business?

Do you feel like your days are too short and your task list is too long?

If so, my new series on Productivity Hacks for Busy Real Estate Entrepreneurs is the cure for your productivity-blues.

I just finished a series of posts all about
Using Virtual Assistants To Level Up Your Real Estate Business, which you need to check out if you value your time and desire to learn how to work on instead of in your business.

But, now I’m shifting gears to show you how to reach new levels of productivity in your business and personal life so you can…

  • Get more done
  • Gain more time
  • And, be more efficient

To kick things off, I’m going to share with you 20 of my favorite tools that are absolute game changers that’ll make you more productive and add hours to your day.

These tools are broken down in 4 categories:

  1. Communication tools to help your productivity
  2. Marketing tools to increase your productivity
  3. Admin tools to make you more productive and save you considerable time
  4. Creativity tools that will make you more productive, especially if you're someone that always has ideas floating in your head

My ultimate goal is after you read this you’ll identify some tools that you can apply to your business in order to LEVEL UP your productivity.

(By the way, since we’re going over 20 tools, I’ll discuss half the tools this week and then the other half will be in next weeks post)

Today on the Level Up Your Business Podcast, discover 20 life changing productivity tools to add more hours to your day.

Click to Tweet

COMMUNICATION TOOLS

LINE2

LINE 2

Line2 adds a second phone number and a complete cloud business phone system to your smartphones and computer that's robust, yet affordable. It’s the software we use in my business to handle all of our incoming and outgoing calls.  

How’s It Increase Productivity?

Line2 allows you to be more productive since you'll have a business phone line that can be answered on any device. That means you don't have to take all your incoming calls yourself - but instead your virtual assistant or local staff has the ability to answer and transfer calls remotely.  

So basically, you they can be your gatekeeper - saving you time from answering unproductive calls.  

ZOOM

ZOOM


Zoom is the preferred video chat app in my business. It allows you to conduct online meetings and video webinars with ease. To start an online video meeting is as easy as sharing a link. One-on-one meetings are free - while meetings of 3 more people are free up to 40 minutes. And there are no time limits on the paid plan.  

How’s It Increase Productivity? 

It's a real time saver when you can convey an idea to someone on video as opposed to having to write out instructions. In my business, if I'm trying to explain something that would be too complicated to convey in writing, my virtual assistant and I will get on a zoom video call and I'll record the video using Zoom as I give her a demo of what I need done.  

This also makes increases productivity because instead of explaining the same concepts over and over again to new people, you can actually record your instructions once, and then refer people to that video next time you need the tasks done. 

SCREENCAST-O-MATIC

Screencast-O-Matic

Screencast-O-Matic is a handy tool  to record on-screen activity for tutorial videos, visual presentations, and demonstrations. The free version allows you to record videos up to 15 minutes long, while the paid version allows you to make longer recordings - and gives you video scripting and editing tools to aid in your video creation 

How’s It Increase Productivity? 

One of Screencast-O-Matic’s features that will help your productivity is the ability to easily upload videos that you record (with the click of a button), to a video hosting platform like YouTube - or you can use  Screencast-O-Matic’s platform to host your videos. This makes it really easy to create a demo/training library - saving you a ton of time in training your staff or bringing new people up to speed. 

One of the things you should consider is this: if you're already doing a task (i.e. running comps for properties), then all you have to do is record your screen while you're doing it and narrate your steps if you feel that will be helpful. Then that recording becomes part of your training library that you can refer people to when you want to teach them to run comps. This is a huge time saver! 

VIBER

VIBER

If you've been listening to my Level Up Your Business Podcast, then you know I talk about Viber quite a bit. Viber allows you to communicate via voice, message, video and “walkie talkie.” You can also exchange images, recorded video and audio messages. 

How's It Increase Productivity

Here’s an example of one of the many ways Viber increases your productivity: if you want to relay a quick task to your virtual assistant or local staff to complete, instead of having to call or compose an email -  there's an option where you can press a button on the Viber app and speak into the recorder.

Your staff will immediately receive your audio instructions in real time. This is incredibly useful when you're driving, or you have a spur of the moment idea/task that you need taken care of. 

MARKETING TOOLS

CLICKFUNNELS

CLICKFUNNELS

ClickFunnels is a website builder that allows you to create everything from: lead generation pages, sales funnels, membership sites, landing pages, and e-commerce systems - all with the ease of a drag and drop interface.  

Clickfunnels is pretty much the backbone of my business and what I use to create almost all of our lead generation pages and websites - including my main site at ryansjohnson.com

There's 2 things I really like about Clickfunnels. The first is how simple it is to use - even if you are a complete non-techie and have no design skills. I'm not a programmer nor a designer, and I'm able to put up any webpage I need for my business easily, without having to go through the hassle of hiring someone to do it. That's a big deal to me. 

The second thing I like is that ClickFunnels is all-in-one system to manage your marketing funnels. Here’s the thing - just having a brochure website page that tells people about your business isn't enough. You need a way to engage with visitors to your site, capture contact info for leads, and easily follow up with them. 

ClickFunnels provides you with all the tools to capture leads; automatically follow up with them via email, text, or voice broadcast; and even accept payments if you need to do so.  

How's It Increase Productivity

The most obvious way that ClickFunnels makes you more productive is that you don't have to piece together multiple marketing softwares that may or may not play nice together. I used to use WordPress and a bunch of plugins to try and do half of what ClickFunnels can do, and it was a nightmare. But with clickfunnels you have one system that allows you to easily create web pages for your business, track your leads, and follow up with them. 

I'm really only skimming the surface on Clickfunnels, so I’ll write a future post where I’ll dig into the software in more detail for you to show you the best ways to use it to level up your business. 

BIGVU

BIGVU

Not too many people have heard of this next tool I’ll discuss. BIGVU is a teleprompter on your phone that scrolls while you record. It allows you to speak candidly with no need to memorize lines or glance down to consult written notes. This means you can keep your eyes on the camera and read your script with ease as it scrolls up the screen, and it can automatically adjust to your cadence. 

So why is that important and how does it make you more productive? Well, in case you haven't noticed -  having a video presence in your business is HUGE right now. It allows your clients and prospects to connect with you more, since ultimately people decide to do business with people they like - not faceless companies - especially if you're a small business.  

If you don’t have some type of video of presence in your business, you should strongly consider it.  

How’s It Increase Productivity?

BIGVU is an incredible time saver if you’re using any type of on-screen video to market your business.  All you have to do is put together your script in the BIGVU app, turn on your phone, look in the camera and read the script as it scrolls on your phone. Videos that used to take me an hour or more to create can now be done within minutes. BIGVU is by far one of my favorite under the radar tools.

ADMINISTRATION TOOLS


Now I’m going to talk about my favorite admin tools that will significantly increase your productivity.

ASANA

ASANA

Asana a tool for organizing personal or team work, basing the system on individual tasks framed into bigger projects. It’s incredibly helpful when it comes to keeping up with deadlines, keeping track of projects, and making you and your team members accountable. 

Another nice thing about Asana is it allows you to create custom templates for your most common workflows and projects. This is convenient because you can save time on setting up processes that are frequently repeated in your business, and ensure that everyone is taking care of their designated tasks. 

How’s It Increase Productivity?

There's a lot of moving pieces in real estate deals. So, anytime you have to constantly circle back with your team to make sure things are getting done, it takes time away from other activities you need to focus on in your business. Asana provides you a way to track who's doing what, when it's due, and how tasks are progressing.  

Part of being productive is having systems in place that ensure things don’t fall through the cracks -  ultimately costing you time and money. That’s why Asana is my favorite tool for accountability.  

TODOIST

TODOIST

Before I got on the Asana bandwagon, I was using Todoist. Although I don't use it anymore, I mention it in this post because you might find you don't need a project management tool as robust as Asana. Todoist is still a very effective tool because it will help you manage your entire staff (both local and virtual) for less than the cost of a steak dinner (it costs less than $30 FOR AN ENTIRE YEAR!). It's hard to beat that value.

How’s It Increase Productivity?

Just like Asana, Todoist helps you maximize productivity by giving you the ability to see all tasks assigned, completed, updated, relevant notes, and shared files in a simple user-friendly interface. And, all communication is synced across your desktop, browser, and mobile app.

G SUITE

GSUITE

G Suite marries your calendar, with your email, with cloud storage and additional cloud editing capabilities. We use G Suite for just about everything that’s document-driven in our business.

G Suite includes Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Docs, Google Sheets, and Google Slides. It also includes Google Drive, which is the most valuable resource for me in this package.

How’s It Increase Productivity?

You can't beat the G Suite package for productivity because regardless of what type of document you're working on - a word doc, spreadsheet, a powerpoint, or even a survey - you can collaborate on documents in real time with people remotely (this is what I do with my virtual staff).

It also saves time and helps you stay organized to store all your documents in Gdrive, so that you don't waste time looking on your laptop and usb drives for files when you need to access them

SNIPPING TOOL

SNIPPING TOOL

Snipping Tool is one of the tools I use most daily because it's just so easy and convenient. It allows you to easily capture a screenshot, or snip, of any object on your screen - and then annotate, save, or share the image.

How’s It Increase Productivity?

For productivity, Snipping Tool is great because you can grab an entire screen, or a section, and then copy and paste it in one of the other tools I mentioned (like Viber or Zoom), in order to share the image so it’s easier for you to get your point across than just using text.

The only caveat is Snipping Tool is only for Windows users. The comparable tool for Mac users is called Grab.  

DROPLR

DROPLR

Droplr is Snipping Tool on steroids. Droplr is an awesome tool to effortlessly share files, screenshots, and screencasts with your staff, friends, and colleagues. It's also very useful to create short demo videos or take annotated screenshots to get your point across. It's nice because you can save all of your screenshots and videos on Droplr’s online interface so you can access them at any time.

How’s It Increase Productivity?

For increased productivity, Droplr is awesome. Once you install the browser extension, anytime you want to do a screen grab or record a video you’ll just hit the icon in the top right of your browser - and effortlessly you’ll create a sharable link that has the image you captured or video you created. I use this tool quite a lot to get my point across to my virtual assistants when text won't convey my instructions as effectively

Next Up In Season 2

Next up I’ll finish up the second half of the list of 20 Life Changing Productivity Tools To Add More Hours To Your Day. There's a few tools that I’ll cover which I'm pretty sure most people have never heard of. But if you use these tools, I guarantee they'll increase your productivity and level up your business.

Resources Mentioned In The Podcast

COMMUNICATION TOOLS

  • Line2 - Adds a second phone number and a complete cloud business phone system to your smartphones and computer that's robust, yet affordable
  • Zoom - Conduct online meetings and video webinars with ease
  • Screencast-O-Matic - Record your on-screen activity for tutorial videos, visual presentations, and demonstrations
  • Viber  - Make calls, send messages, exchange images and files - freely and secure

MARKETING TOOLS

  • ClickFunnels  - Website builder that allows you to create everything from: lead generation pages, sales funnels, membership sites, landing pages, and e-commerce systems - all with the ease of a drag and drop interface
  • BIGVU  - A teleprompter on your phone that scrolls while you record so you can speak candidly with no need to memorize lines.

ADMIN TOOLS

  • Asana - Asana is the easiest way for teams to track their work—and get results.
  • Todoist - Maximize productivity by giving you the ability to see all tasks assigned, completed, updated, relevant notes, and shared files in a user-friendly interface
  • G Suite - Marries your calendar, with your email, with cloud storage and additional cloud editing capabilities all in one package that works from your computer, phone or tablet
  • Snipping Tool - Easily capture a screenshot, or snip, of any object on your screen - and then annotate, save, or share the image
  • Droplr - Share files, screenshots, and screencasts to get your point across.
Podcast

EPISODE 4: What I Learned Running A Real Estate Business Using Virtual Assistants (Behind the Scenes)

The Level Up Your Business Podcast

Show Notes

Episode 4 of Season 1

Clickable Show Highlights

[0:51]  Topic for today’s episode
[2:07]  Major activity #1: Handling all calls
[3:25]  The software that handles all our calls
[4:30]  Major activity #2: Screening new buyer and seller leads
[6:34]  Major activity #3: Coordinating all deal transaction paperwork
[8:32]  What my day looks like with my virtual staff
[10:50]  Summary

Quotes:

 "Using virtual assistants is an absolute game changer in your productivity and in your profits."

Resources:

  • Better Your Best Virtual Assistants - Our real estate virtual assistant services for savvy entrepreneurs that want to focus on what you do best, and let us handle the rest. 
  • Level Up Your Business Podcast Contest - Win 20 Hours of  Our Virtual Assistant Services 
  • Line2 - Business phone service that lets you talk and text with the simplicity of an app
  • Zipforms - Fillable online real estate forms for real estate professionals
  • HelloSign - Easily send documents for eSignatures
  • Viber  - Make calls, send messages and much more - freely and securely
  • Zoom - The #1 video conferencing and web conferencing service on the web
  • Asana - Asana is the easiest way for teams to track their work—and get results.
  • Calendly - Calendly helps you schedule meetings without the back-and-forth emails.

THE LEVEL UP YOUR BUSINESS BLOG

 WHAT I LEARNED RUNNING A BUSINESS USING VIRTUAL ASSISTANTS
(BEHIND THE SCENES


If you really want to have the best results using virtual assistants in your business, it's beneficial to see how other real estate entrepreneurs are successfully using VAs in their business...

...regardless if you're in the early stages of thinking about using a virtual assistant - or even if you currently have a virtual assistant, but you're looking to get better results.

That's why I'm going to pull back the curtain on my real estate business and share how I've been running my company for almost a decade, primarily with virtual assistants.

My goal is to give you some practical ideas you can take action on to use virtual assistants in your real estate business so you're 10x more productive and efficient.

I'll share some of the tasks I no longer do as a result of delegating them to a virtual assistant. And, I'll primarily focus on 3 of the tasks that tend to be the most time consuming in most of our businesses as real estate entrepreneurs. 

Today on the Level Up Your Business Podcast, I go behind the scenes of my real estate business to reveal 3 things I've learned running a business using virtual assistants that will help 10x your productivity.

Click to Tweet

Answering Your Business Calls

In my business I have a phone line set up that goes directly to my virtual assistant who lives in the Philippines. She’s responsible for answering all calls that come in, just like a receptionist would in a brick and mortar business.

Here’s the process my virtual assistant follows for incoming business calls:

  • When someone calls regarding something that my VA can address (i.e. additional details about a property, or providing buyer info to the title company) then she'll handle the call.
  • But If someone wants to speak with me directly, then she'll ask the nature of the call and then she'll send me a message in Viber to see if I'm available.
  • If I am available, then she'll transfer the call to my mobile phone. If I’m not - then she'll take a message and set a reminder in Asana for me to call that person back.

The software that we use in my business to handle all of our calls is Line2 - which is an online software that allows you to have lines on one phone.

In my business, Line2 is set up on my VA's desktop and her mobile. She can easily transfer calls to my cell phone through the Line2 dashboard on her devices.

It's also installed on my desktop and phone, so that if for some reason my virtual assistant isn't available, I can still see who's calling and answer calls if needed.

I've been using Line2 for about 4 years, and prior to that we were using Skype - which isn’t nearly as reliable. Not to mention, at $10 a month, Line2 can meet anyone’s budget.

Can you imagine how much more productive you'd be on a daily basis if you personally didn't have to answer all of your own business calls every time your phone rings?

That means no more starting and stopping important activities to look down at your phone every time it chimes throughout the day - ultimately making you lose focus.

Screening New Buyer and Seller Leads

Another major activity that my virtual assistant handles that saves a tremendous amount of time is screening new buyer and seller leads that come through my website.

If you're a real estate investor that's currently doing all the follow up on new leads to determine if they're viable, or an agent that's calling back new leads that you receive online - then you know how time consuming this can be.

It’s one of those tasks that must get done in your business to make sure you always have a steady stream of leads coming in. However, using a virtual assistant as a filter before you speak to new leads helps you spend more of your valuable time speaking with people that are ready, willing and able to do business with you vs. tire-kickers.

Here’s the process my virtual assistant follows to screen buyer and seller leads:

  • I provide a script to my VA to follow when she's calling new buyer and seller leads that come in from our website.
  • She's very personable, so she's doesn't read word-for-word like a robot. However, she does make sure she covers the questions that need to be answered.
  • Then she takes the answers to those questions and puts them in our CRM (customer relationship manager).
  • The script she uses includes some qualifying questions that determine whether she'll schedule a follow up call with our sales manager, or if she'll add the lead to a list of people that we’ll follow up with later because they're not ready to take action yet.
  • Then our sales manager will receive the appointment in Calendly, along with the notes that my VA took about the call inside the CRM.

If you're currently managing this entire process yourself then you already know that setting aside time for these type of calls can easily eat a big chunk of the most productive hours of your day.

Again, the beauty of having a VA as your initial filter with these calls is that you're only speaking with the low hanging fruit - in other words, the people that are ready to do business.
 

Then everyone else is placed in an email follow up sequence so you can be on the top of their minds when they're ready to take action.


Download Your Real Estate Virtual Assistant Toolkit

Discover how to leverage virtual assistants to 

free up your time while growing your income!

Give Me The Toolkit!


Coordinating Deal Transaction Paperwork

A third major activity that my virtual assistant is responsible for, that I'd HIGHLY recommend you also use a VA for, is coordinating all deal transaction paperwork.

Here’s the process my virtual assistant follows for coordinating a typical deal:

  • I place short bullet point details in Asana of what needs to be included in the purchase agreement (i.e. purchase price, earnest money, who's paying what closing costs, closing dates, etc.)
  • My VA prepares the purchase agreement electronically using an online software called Zipforms, and then places the contract in Asana or Viber for me to review.
  • After I give her the green light, she sends the contracts for electronic signatures using a software called Hellosign.
  • Once all parties sign electronically, my VA receives the purchase agreement and contacts the title company to open escrow.
  • She’ll work with the title company to retrieve any documents needed to process the deal (i.e. articles of organization, license info, etc)
  • While the deal is in escrow, my VA keeps the buyers, sellers, title company, and me in the loop, to make sure all parties are on the same page.
  • Then when it's time to close, she'll receive the preliminary settlement statement from the title company and ask me to review it. 
  • Once the deal is closed, she follows up with the title company to make sure checks are sent to the correct address, and she ensures all parties received a final copy of the executed docs from the title company.
  • Lastly she files all the paperwork from the deal in Asana.

If you're the person managing all the paperwork and moving pieces of a deal in your business right now, how much more time would it free up for you to dedicate to more deals - or just having more time off the grid - if you had a virtual assistant taking care of everything I just said?

​​DELEGATING DEAL TRANSACTION ADMIN CAN BE A GAME CHANGER IN YOUR PRODUCTIVITY AND YOUR PROFITS - TRUST ME!

My Typical DAy With a VA

Last but not least, I want to get the wheels spinning in your head about what your day could look like managing a virtual staff - so I'm going to share what happens in the course of my typical day.

  • At 9 a.m. my virtual assistant that’s in charge of my business phone logs in. Her shift is from 9 a.m till 6 p.m. Every morning she sends me a message 1st thing when she logs on to greet me and let me know she's online.
  • Between 9 and 9:30 a.m. we have a chat on Viber via text where I give her marching orders for the day. If it's something I think may need further explanation, we'll jump on Zoom and do a video call or screen share, if necessary.
  • I also put her tasks in Asana. As she completes them, she'll update me inside of Asana, so it's easy to track the progress of all activities in one place.
  • In the morning I'll also check in with my with my virtual project manager. When we're working on projects (i.e. creating a digital course), he's in charge of making sure all the moving pieces are moving forward and on deadline. 
  • During the day if any of my virtual staff has questions or concerns about a task, they'll put place them inside Asana under the related task. Or, they'll reach out to me on Viber if they need immediate attention.
  • I tend to stay out of email until the second half of the day in order to avoid being reactive to what's going on in my inbox. Also, my VA will take care of low priority emails that she can handle that don't need my direct attention (i.e. domain renewals).
  • Regarding returning calls - my VA schedules that for the second part of my day, unless it's urgent. This allows me to concentration on whatever activity is most important during the first half of the day. 
  • At the end of the day, my VAs will let me know they're logging off and we'll do a wrap up message in Viber if there’s something they need to make me aware of or vise versa.

Now Is The Time To Take Action

Now you have an idea of some of the most time-consuming tasks that you’ll no longer have to do as a result of delegating those activities to a virtual assistant.

In your real estate business, can you think of some things you're doing now which you should STOP doing, and start assigning to a VA?

If you're willing to take action to delegate tasks that are distracting you from what's most important in your business (even if it's only small tasks initially) - you'll quickly discover how much more you can get done and how much more efficient you can be with a virtual assistant working in your business.

Next Up In Season 1

Next up I'll share with you the 3 biggest mistakes you should avoid when using virtual assistants in your real estate business in order to save you months of trail and error with your VA - which obviously means you'll save time and money by getting it right the first time.


Resources Mentioned In The Podcast:


  • Better Your Best Virtual Assistants - Our real estate virtual assistant services for savvy entrepreneurs that want to focus on what you do best, and let us handle the rest. 
  • Level Up Your Business Podcast Contest - Win 20 Hours of  Our Virtual Assistant Services 
  • Line2 - Business phone service that lets you talk and text with the simplicity of an app
  • Zipforms - Fillable online real estate forms for real estate professionals
  • HelloSign - Easily send documents for eSignatures
  • Viber  - Make calls, send messages and much more - freely and securely
  • Zoom - The #1 video conferencing and web conferencing service on the web
  • Asana - Asana is the easiest way for teams to track their work—and get results.
  • G Suite - All you need to do your best work, together in one package that works seamlessly from your computer, phone or tablet.
  • Calendly - Calendly helps you schedule meetings without the back-and-forth emails.


Download Your Real Estate Virtual Assistant Toolkit

Discover how to leverage virtual assistants to 

free up your time while growing your income!

Give Me The Toolkit!


Podcast

EPISODE 3: 5 Free Tools To Run Your Real Estate Business Using Virtual Assistants

The Level Up Your Business Podcast

Show Notes

Episode 003 of Season 1

Clickable Show Highlights

[0:51]  The topic of today’s episode
[1:47]  Working with virtual assistants thousand of miles away
[2:18]  Tools that I use to communicate and manage virtual assistants
[2:45]  Tool 1: Viber
[4:26]  Tool 2: Zoom
[6:33]  Tool 3: Asana
[9:01]  Tool 4: G Suite
[10:18]  Tool 5: Calendly
[11:40]   Putting the tools in action

Quotes:

 "The key to being able to manage a staff located across the globe is to have good tools in place that will ensure you're able to run your business as smoothly as if your staff were local."

Resources:

  • Viber  - Make calls, send messages and much more - freely and securely
  • Zoom - The #1 video conferencing and web conferencing service on the web
  • Asana - Asana is the easiest way for teams to track their work—and get results.
  • G Suite - All you need to do your best work, together in one package that works seamlessly from your computer, phone or tablet.
  • Calendly - Calendly helps you schedule meetings without the back-and-forth emails.

THE LEVEL UP YOUR BUSINESS BLOG

 5 FREE TOOLS TO RUN YOUR REAL ESTATE BUSINESS USING VIRTUAL ASSISTANTS


I've been running my real estate business primarily with a staff of virtual assistants since 2009.

Most of my staff lives thousands of miles away. I've worked with virtual assistants in the Philippines, India, Italy, and also different parts of the United States. 

The key to being able to manage a staff located across the globe is to have good online tools in place that will ensure you're able to run your business as smoothly as if your virtual staff were working right down the hall from you. 

I'm going to share with you the tools that I use every single day to communicate and mange my virtual assistants. And the great thing is most of these tools are completely FREE - and even the paid versions of the tools cost less than your weekly Starbucks bill. 

Today on the Level Up Your Business Podcast, discover 5 FREE tools to run your real estate business using virtual assistants.

Click to Tweet
VIBER

Viber is one of the game-changing tools that’s allowed me to be twice as productive and focus more on revenue generating activities since it makes it very easy to communicate and delegate tasks to my virtual staff - as well as easily share files in real time.

Like I mentioned, I have a virtual team located in different parts of the globe. With Viber, we’re able to communicate worldwide using video and voice calling as well as text messaging in real time...

...and by the way - IT’S FREE.

We also use the app to:

  • Send files - like contracts and purchase agreements
  • Send pictures - like rehab pics for properties
  • Send videos - like property walk-throughs that we need uploaded to a website

We even use Viber like a walkie talkie if I'm not a position to text or call.

For instance - if I'm driving and I want to provide some instructions to my virtual assistant but I obviously can't text and I don't want to make a call - I can choose to hold down a button in the Viber app that that will record my instructions and provide them to my virtual assistant in real time. 

The other nice thing is Viber syncs with your mobile, tablet and desktop so you have your messages and files across all your devices.

ZOOM

The second tool I use to communicate with my virtual assistants is Zoom.

Zoom is a video conferencing app. You can use it for video calls, voice calls, screen sharing, and to host webinars.

You might be thinking, why would I need to use both Viber and Zoom since there is so much crossover in their functionality - such as the ability to make video calls and the voice calls anywhere for free. 

Here's the difference in how I use them in my business:

I leave the Viber app open on my desktop and on my phone at all times. That means anytime my staff needs to message me, or I need to touch base with them, we receive a notification with the message on whichever device we're on at the time. 

I use Viber primarily for text conversation and quick file transfers. I also use it for really quick video calls on the fly.

But when I want to do a longer video call; share my screen to do a training or demo with my virtual staff; host a webinar; or record a video call that I can refer to later and use as a training reference - then I use Zoom. 

Also, the quality of the Zoom video conferencing is superior to Viber.

Some of the other great features with Zoom are:

  • check
    You can create a link in Zoom and send it to anyone in order for them to join you in a video or voice conference. Or you can send a link for a video/voice conference to be scheduled in the future. 
  • check
    Like I mentioned, you can record your sessions so you can refer back to them later. This is especially good if you want to create a video training library for your virtual assistant.
  • check
    You have the ability to remotely control someone's computer once you've been granted permission. This is good if you need your virtual assistant to take care of something that needs to be done on your laptop, such as troubleshooting.

And the other obvious benefit is Zoom is FREE. 

You can use unlimited Zoom video and calling time for one-on-one meetings, whereas conferences of 3-100 people are limited to 40 minutes under the free plan. There are no time constraints regardless of the number of people on the paid plan.

Download Your Real Estate Virtual Assistant Toolkit

Discover how to leverage virtual assistants to 

free up your time while growing your income!

Give Me The Toolkit!

As real estate entrepreneurs, we know there are a lot of moving pieces in our real business - rather it's keeping track of communication with buyers and sellers, making sure offers are progressing through each stage, or managing  vendors on a rehab project. 

That's why when you're managing a virtual assistant as well as local staff - it's important that you have a system in place to make sure everyone is accountable and nothing falls through the cracks.

I've been through quite a few project management tools, but my hands down favorite tool to manage my virtual team and my personal life, is Asana.

First off, Asana is a tool for organizing personal or team work, basing the system on individual tasks framed into bigger projects.

It’s incredibly helpful when it comes to keeping up with deadlines, keeping track of projects, and making you and team members accountable.

The nice thing about Asana is you can get most of the functionality that you'll need in order to run your real estate business using the free plan. Although there are some features in the paid plan that make it worthwhile, in my opinion.

The plans are very affordable. There's obviously the free plan, but even the the monthly paid plans (as of the time of this post) are only around $6 a person to a little over $10 a person - depending the size of your team and the features you want.

Another nice thing about Asana is it allows you to create custom templates for your most common workflows and projects.  This is convenient because you can save time on setting up processes that are frequently repeated in your business, and ensure that everyone is taking care of their designated tasks.

For instance: With Asana, anytime you have a new deal under contract you can create an SOP (or standard operating procedure) in Asana for what steps are necessary and what should be done by each member of your team to bring that deal to fruition. 

Bottom line - if you’re using Asana it means you and your team don’t have to think through processes every time you have a repeated activity. Instead you'll look at Asana and follow the steps - with each person checking off their tasks as they're completed - so everyone is accountability, and you have one place you can monitor everything happening in your business

I'm not sure I can say enough good things about G Suite. This online app marries your calendar with your email, with cloud storage and additional cloud editing capabilities.

G Suite is the bread and butter in my business because it allows you to seamlessly run a business with a virtual staff since everything is cloud based

We use G Suite for just about everything that’s document-driven in our business. It includes Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Docs, Google Sheets, and Google Slides. Those last 3 that I mentioned are Google's online version of Word, Excel, and Powerpoint.

It also includes Google Drive, which is the most valuable resource for me in this package. That's the tool my virtual assistants and I use to access documents we're collaborating on remotely - in real time.

I could literally write an entire article on how you can use G Suite to make your real estate business more productive while working with a virtual or local team. 

Trust me, getting familiar with G Suite and loading it on all your devices will drastically increase your productivity.  

G Suite starts has a free trail and then it's only $5 a month per user. 

CALENDLY

The last tool I'll talk about is one that will save you more time than you think.

The tool is Calendly. This is an online app that helps you schedule meetings without the hassle of back-and-forth emailsWhat makes Calendly special is convenience. It's so simple, but so incredibly useful. 

Instead of going back and forth in phone calls or via email, using up valuable time in your day to coordinating a time to meet with buyers, sellers, or vendors - you can now just send them a link. Then, they can can choose a time that fits within their schedule based on time slots you’ve already predetermined.

That means no more going back and forth to confirm availability. And if you need to reschedule or cancel, it can all happen through the same link. I'm telling you firsthand, this is a tremendous time saver!

Calendly syncs with your Google Calendar and other calendar apps in real time. This comes in handy if you or your staff handle scheduling appointments.

You may not think it takes much time to schedule appointments - but 5-10 minutes here and there on a daily basis can have a serious impact on your productivity.

Now Is The Time To Take Action


So there you have 5 of my favorite online tools that will help you run your real estate business and manage your virtual assistants as if they were working down the hall in your office. 

The next step is to evaluate your business needs.

  • If you’re looking for a free, versatile tool to communicate with your staff via voice, message, or video as well as easily transfer files and pics - then you have to give Viber a go.
  • If you want to have the ability to conduct video chats, screen sharing, webinars, and create training videos - Zoom is an excellent tool.
     
  • If you need to keep track of to-do lists, assigning tasks, and you want to hold your team accountable - then Asana is the tool for you.
     
  • If you’re looking for a more efficient way to collaborate on files with your staff - or just a way to more easily organize all the documents in your business - then you have to give G Suite a shot.
  • And lastly, If scheduling meetings and calls with buyers, sellers, and vendors has been a time-suck in your business – then ​try Calendly.

Next Up In Season 1


Next up I'll give you a detailed behind the scenes look at my real estate business and my work day using virtual assistants. Hopefully it will get your wheels turning as to how you can also use virtual assistants to level up your business. 


Resources Mentioned In The Podcast:


  • Viber  - Make calls, send messages and much more - freely and securely
  • Zoom - The #1 video conferencing and web conferencing service on the web
  • Asana - Asana is the easiest way for teams to track their work—and get results.
  • G Suite - All you need to do your best work, together in one package that works seamlessly from your computer, phone or tablet.
  • Calendly - Calendly helps you schedule meetings without the back-and-forth emails.



Close