I’m going to break down one of the most important time blocks. It’s one that nobody talks about.
If you follow me, or you’ve been talking to coaches or any successful entrepreneurs, you know that time blocking is something that comes up consistently. It’s something that people are always talking about—If it’s not in your calendar, it doesn’t exist.
Rock, Pebble, Sand Scheduling Method
Let’s take a look at the rock, pebble, and sand method of scheduling your day, which my good friend Lisa Chinatti recently broke down.
Imagine a bell jar that you fill up throughout the day. You start filling it with rocks first, which are the most important parts of your day. If you start with sand or pebbles you won’t be able to fit your rocks. Rocks can include personal things or income-producing activities.
Then you put in the pebbles. The pebbles will move their way around the rocks, and they’ll fit into the jar. Pebbles include things like talking to current clients, client maintenance, and communicating with agents about offers and negotiations—important items that need to happen, just not the highest priority items.
And then you’ve got the sand, which can be a lot of the time wasters—emails and that sort of thing.
But the mistake that many agents make is filling up a rocks time block with pebbles.
Prioritizing Time Blocks
What I’ve found is, instead of having that 8:00-11:00 am time block that is totally dedicated to setting new appointments or following up with leads or clients, a lot of agents prioritize current client maintenance as the first thing they do in the morning.
Here’s the issue with that. Current clients that you’re working with on selling or buying a home are going to take your call. They’re going to pick up the phone when you reach out. They’re going to be responsive.
But the reason why lead generation and lead follow up should be prioritized in the morning or that 4:00-6:00 pm block in the afternoon, is because people are more likely to pick up the phone and engage in communication during those times.
So while it may feel like you’re doing something important, and I’m not saying you’re not, it’s just not the best time to do it. You’re not thinking smarter, you’re not working smarter, you’re prioritizing things that’ll still be there around 11:00.
And when you use up the morning time block, you’re missing an opportunity to grow your prospects list, to have a bigger pool of buyers and sellers that you’re working with.
Create a Time Block for Current Client Maintenance
So, here’s the hack. I did this myself—I would have a time block right after making my lead generation, lead follow up, and prospecting calls, and dedicate it solely to current client maintenance:
- Active listings who need a phone call from you
- Active buyers who need a phone call from you
- People under contract who need a phone call from you to talk about inspections and negotiations and how the transaction’s progressing.
These things take time. Sometimes they’re 10, 15, 20-minute calls. And they’re also going to take your call. So if you know they’re taking your call, schedule the time so you can prioritize the rocks—the income-producing activities and your personal stuff—and still get to them earlier in the day.
Waiting until the evening to make client maintenance calls is also not a good idea. You want to get to them earlier in the day so they’re not calling you and wondering what’s going on. Instead, you’re managing them so they don’t bleed over into your lead generation, lead prospecting and follow up time—because that’s the most important time for any agent. That is the one thing you want to prioritize the most.
And while it may feel good to get client maintenance out of the way, it’s not making you any more money. It’s not adding to your income, it’s not adding to your business. So install that time block somewhere between 11:00 am and 1:00 pm. Schedule a block called “current client maintenance.”
When you do this, your day will get more efficient. You will let clients know when they’ll hear from you. Just like Chris Voss says—tell them when they’re going to hear from you and then actually call them during that time. And all that anxiety is removed.
This time block is critical for people that want to get the most out of their 24-hour day and who want to build the biggest businesses.