Focus Funnels And Procrastinating On Purpose
Insurance agents, have you ever looked at your schedule and all the things you have to do and think, “I wish there were more hours in a day”? It’s true that 24 hours often doesn’t feel like enough. Well, we have good news.
A recent interview with Rory Vaden, author of Procrastinate on Purpose, on Asian Efficiency’s The Productivity Show podcast revealed how you can actually create more time in your day.
Not literally, but by reevaluating your priorities and responsibilities, you can actually produce “time multipliers” that allow you to take your business further on less time. Here’s how it works.
Eliminate * Automate * Delegate * Procrastinate
Vaden explains that you can look at each responsibility or obligation on your task list and break it down into four areas. If the item doesn’t fit in one category, just move it down the list until you can determine whether it needs to be done now or can wait until later.
At the top of the list is the word “eliminate,” or “can I live without this?” If you can live without doing it, then what’s it doing on your list in the first place? If it can’t be eliminated, then move to the next question.
Can it be automated? Is there a system you can set in place so that the task gets done without you having to devote any more attention to it? Examples of this might include setting up automated bill payments with your bank, so that you don’t have to take 30 minutes to an hour of your time each month to keep everything current. By doing this, you can essentially “create” six to 12 hours of extra time per year. That’s basically a whole workday. The more of those automations you can create, the easier it becomes to find time for what really needs your attention.
Unfortunately, not every task that you come across can be eliminated or automated, and if it can’t be, then the next question you should be asking is whether it can be delegated. Delegation is a fantastic way of creating those extra days and hours in your calendar. While some might look at a task and scoff at delegation because they can “do it better and faster myself” and they “don’t have the time to teach anyone,” Vaden says, that’s not the reality.
Vaden acknowledges that it may be true it’ll take you two and a half hours to teach a 30-minute task, but that expenditure of time is made up for by the fact that after the first few times, the one you delegate the task to will be able to accomplish the task in the same amount of time as you or maybe even sooner since they are specializing. What that means for your schedule is that you can take that 30-minute task and multiply it by the number of days in a week you have to do it. It it’s an every-weekday sort of thing, then you’ll actually pick up two and a half hours per week, or 130 hours in a year (over 16 workdays)!
Of course, delegation does require some resource investment, particularly a monetary one. If you can’t afford to delegate the task, then the next question you should be asking yourself is, can I put it off until later? If you can, then that will bring you closer in your day to the things that really need to be done. If you can’t, then you know the task must be completed and you’re the one who has to do it.
Essentially, by “procrastinating on purpose,” Vaden explains, you’re able to embrace essential tasks and ensure that other tasks are eliminated or handled in the most efficient way possible.
Insurance agents have a lot of moving parts in their daily and weekly work schedules. It can be difficult keeping it all straight, but by looking for these “time multipliers” and establishing a focus funnel like the one described above, you’ll be able to find more time than you could ever envision.