Re-ConnectEd is a series about using technology in responsible ways and working to diminish the dependence on our devices and striving to make connections. CRT will look at what members, brokers, associations and people outside of real estate are doing to get Re-ConnectEd. Let us know how you’re getting Re-ConnectEd on Twitter, Facebook or email.
Gwen Moran, writing for Entrepreneur Magazine had an interesting piece on ways you can be less technologically connected and get more done in your work day. There are some great suggestions in here and I don’t anticipate that every member will heed every one of them, but doing just 1 or 2 could definitely help keep your day calmer. We will cover them at a high level here today, but then have future articles that delve deeper into how each one could work in a real estate office. Here are the four ways you can disconnect and get more done according to Entrepreneur Magazine:
- Recruit a gatekeeper
- Schedule your prime time
- Use a distraction-blocking app
- Change your culture
- Recruit a gatekeeper. – The intent of this is to have a filter from your email so you can focus on what you need to get done. You don’t necessarily need to have this be a person, you could use your technology to let people know you are unavailable temporarily. She writes:
…change your outgoing voicemail message to tell callers you’re unavailable and let them know when you’ll be available to answer their calls. And, don’t forget to turn off instant messaging.
- Schedule your prime time. – We all have times during the day where we feel at our most productive. Moran makes the point that this is definitely a time to dis-engage from technology. As you work throughout the day, try to determine when it is you are most productive. Box it out and hone your focus.
- Use a distraction-blocking app. – This is key. You will need to block out distractions from your devices. I’ve used software for my computer to keep me on task and avoid getting lost in ‘research’. Moran names a couple pieces of software that you could use to help you get more done. I’d also look to see what options there are for your smartphone and tablet. As an example, iOS6 & 7 devices have a ‘Do Not Disturb’ mode. This will silence your alerts on your iPhone or iPad. But, you also have the ability to set a list of people who can contact you even though this feature is enabled. So, if you had a contact list called ‘Important’, you could add your clients that need immediate attention, co-workers, and bosses to this list. You can also set a threshold for repeated calls with this app. If a person calls more than once within 3 minutes, that second call will go through.
- Change your culture. – What is your culture like at the office? Are you expected to answer email immediately no matter what? What feelings does this invoke within you? Stress? Distractedness? Working to change the culture anywhere isn’t easy, but it will be worthwhile. If you’re feeling stressed about how your environment is running, chances are others are too. This is not an invitation to complain to someone else, but rather a call to action. You can be a change agent in your office by talking about what you need to get your work done. Chances are you aren’t alone.
Again, you may not be able to implement everything suggested in the Entrepreneur article, but you can do some things to regain time for focus and getting more done. If you’re already doing some things on this list, we’d like to hear from you and see how they’re working for you. Let us know how you’re getting Re-ConnectEd on Twitter, Facebook or email.