We’ve all got the same 24 hours. How are you leveraging that time every day?

Time management is one of the biggest issues that real estate agents constantly discuss, whether it’s a single agent, small team, large team, team member, team leader, or broker. Time management is always an issue in business and, specifically, in real estate. 

And what I hear happening all the time is people saying, I don’t have the time to do this; I don’t have enough time to do that. In actuality, they spend more of their time being busy than productive. 

There’s a big difference there. Productive activities are those that earn you income. Busy work can include administrative tasks that probably need to get done—but could be delegated to someone else.

It can also account for a lot of wasted time. And no serious agent can afford that. 

The average real estate agent works part-time

According to the National Association of REALTORS®, the average agent worked 35 hours a week in 2021. So, the average agent is part-time. And maybe it’s not intentional. 

Maybe they don’t mean to work only 35 hours a week; they’re just not managing their time effectively. 

So, I’ve got an exercise that will help you understand where your time traps are. 

There are a lot of things we all do that can suck time out of our day and make us less productive.

But if you’re not tracking and measuring your time, you have no idea what those time-sucks are. 

Enter the time log

Do this for one week: 

  • Break your day down into 15- or 30-minute segments.
  • Write down what you’re actually doing during those time blocks

You can start it as early as you want. Invariably, if you’re honest about how those time blocks are spent, you’ll see entries like I surfed the internet and looked at Facebook for half an hour,” or I scrolled on TikTok and didn’t know where 45 minutes went in the middle of the afternoon.

Or “I got stuck on a phone call for 20 minutes with someone.” That’s a little different, depending on who was on the other line and what that phone call has to do with your business. 

[But generally, people don’t say they got “stuck on a phone call” if it results in a hot lead, an appointment, or a signature.]

Once you see what you’re doing for a whole week, you understand where your time is being spent. And then, you can work on being more regimented with your time blocks and eliminating time-wasters. 

Too many people adjust their calendars based on educated guesses or assumptions or a story in their head. And those are all subjective. They’re based on your preference, your opinion, and what you think is going on—instead of the actual data. The time log gives you a way to track your daily activities and understand how you’re really spending your time.

Data and facts rule the business world. This is a way for you to determine where you’re losing time and where you can gain it so that you can prioritize income-producing activities within those time blocks. 

Do this exercise. After a week, have a meeting with yourself, and be honest about where the gaps are. And you can improve from there.