Viewing by month: February 2013

Managing procrastination at work

Each new work day has the potential to bring a fresh set of distractions. It is when these distractions take hold and begin to hamper productivity that procrastination can become a real problem. While procrastination can be difficult to recognise and sometimes even harder to fight, there are a few simple tips that can help to stay focused on the task at hand.

What follows is a three-step plan for fighting procrastination: 

1. Recognition: in order to fight procrastination habits effectively, it is important to first identify how these habits are affecting your work. To this end, a great starting point is to examine the way in which you compile your to-do list. Aim to make sure that you aren’t prioritising less important tasks over those with tight deadlines and give yourself specific timelines for completing each individual task; 

2. Understanding: the next step is to examine the root of the problem; ask yourself why you are putting off completing certain tasks. Your procrastination habits could be stemming from a factor relating to you personally or the job itself. Aim to discern whether it is an unpleasant element of the task or perhaps an issue of poor time management; the answer to your question will inform your subsequent response.

 3. Adopting: by recognising and developing an understanding of how and why you procrastinate, it can become easier to implement anti-procrastination measures. For example, poor organisation can potentially be improved by employing a more rigorous scheduling method. Aim to take responsibility for your deadlines and hold yourself accountable if you fail to meet them. Conversely, reward yourself when you do successfully meet deadlines and targets. 

Disorganisation is often at the core of procrastination and can lead to inefficiency and added pressure at work. By recognising your procrastination habits, identifying the source of the problem, and then implementing measures to control these habits, you can place yourself in a better position to maximise your focus and productivity at work.

0 comments | Posted by Reality Bytes - Real Estate Training Blog on 22/02/2013 at 12:00 AM | Categories:

Five key business communication tips

As an agent, an integral part of your daily business relations is how you conduct yourself and communicate with those around you. An agent should always aim to secure their clients’ confidence, their co-workers’ respect, and the trust of management. 

To this end, here a five key tips to remember when communicating in business contexts: 

1. Contextualise your emails: every email you send reflects on your personal brand and each communication you make, no matter how unimportant it may seem, plays a vital role in shaping your professional reputation. As such, even if you feel that an email or attachment is self explanatory, you should always give the recipient a clear and concise explanation as to why you are sending the email and what it includes;  

2. Check and edit your emails: make sure that all of your emails have an appropriate signature, are correctly addressed and free of spelling errors; a poorly edited email reflects badly not only on you as an individual, but also the business that you represent;

3. Verbal expression: the pitch and tone of an agent’s voice is especially important when using the phone. A good agent will communicate using clear and concise language, and will be mindful of the different cultural backgrounds and knowledge levels that they may encounter; 

4. Stay away from ‘txt-speak’: it is important to write formally in email communications and to avoid using abbreviated ‘txt-speak’. Not only can ‘txt-speak’ come across as unprofessional, but it can also potentially cause confusion. Stick to clear and easy to understand sentences to avoid problems;

5. Follow-up promptly: when communicating with clients, colleagues and management across a range of different channels, it is important to keep a record of any phone or email requests that come to you, and to respond to these requests within reasonable time frames. As a general rule of thumb you should aim to respond to requests on the same day that they are issued to you. Even if you aren’t able to action the request on the same day, a response to let the person know that you are following up will often suffice.

Proper email and phone etiquette within the workplace aims to establish clear and concise lines of communication, and can help to eliminate practices that may appear detrimental or unprofessional. By applying the above tips, an agent should see the benefits not only in their work-life, but their personal life as well.

0 comments | Posted by Reality Bytes - Real Estate Training Blog on 14/02/2013 at 12:00 AM | Categories:

The importance of self awareness

In an industry that relies heavily on the development of interpersonal relationships, real estate agents must consider how their actions are perceived by others. As such, self awareness is one of the most crucial aspects on an agent’s day-to-day job.

Self awareness requires an agent to be more critical than self praising. If an agent is constantly rewarding him or herself and not working towards bettering their overall approach, they will not likely improve. Furthermore, if an agent is unwilling to rectify their faults, they may struggle to retain and secure clients.

This is why the loss of a client can, in a sense, be a golden opportunity; it can act as a positive catalyst for self reflection and improved self awareness.

If you do find yourself having lost a client, it would be wise to reflect closely on your history with the client. Ask yourself the difficult questions – was this avoidable? What may I have done badly that I could do better? Accept that a level of responsibility may fall upon you and keep in mind that a failed relationship can potentially be a valuable tool for self improvement.

Self awareness doesn’t relate exclusively to interpersonal relationships, however; it should encompass the entirety of your work-self. That includes your conduct, presentation, and how you interact with colleagues.

By becoming more self aware you can potentially gain a greater level of control over how others perceive you. This may lead to not only benefits in your work life, but also in your personal relationships, as well as your relationship with yourself.

0 comments | Posted by Reality Bytes - Real Estate Training Blog on 01/02/2013 at 12:00 AM | Categories: