Have you walked back into the office for 2019 and been caught up in a whirlwind of ideas, plans, goals and budgets? Combined with client requests, catch ups and enquiries, do you feel like the holiday is a distant memory?!

Before you get caught up in another year, take some time to reflect on the results of the last 12 months and ask yourself what is it that you really want to achieve this year. It’s a question I ask myself, and my clients, at the start of every new year.

Firstly, reflect on the year that was, because it’s important to know what was achieved (it’s usually more than we give ourselves credit for!), but also think about what wasn’t completed and why. It helps with your planning, because it’s unlikely you need to make extensive changes.  It’s often just the 1%’s you need to work on to reach the next level. These 1%’s could easily be your new year goals. So long as they’re realistic.

Realistic goals are the ones you want to set yourself. Break them down to daily, weekly, monthly and quarterly activity so you can keep yourself accountable. Give yourself small milestones so that you not only have a sense of achievement, but you don’t feel overwhelmed. Yes, have a stretch target as well, but if you don’t reach the small targets, the big picture will start to look very hazy very quickly.

So, set yourself those realistic goals and, as you do, think about one word to summarise what you’d like to achieve in 2019. For me, it’s consistency. But it could be anything you like. It could be ‘balance’, maybe ‘growth’, ‘profit’ or ‘efficiency’.

So, what’s your word for 2019? Whatever it is, the Real+ team can’t wait to help you achieve your best year yet.

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Tips from Australia’s Best BDM

Recently Real+ were excited to invite Adam Freitas, BDM at Raine & Horne Newtown & 2018 REB Australian BDM of the Year into our Virtual Classroom.

During the session, here are some of the top take tips Adam shared with his Real+ Coach, Kate Benjamin:

  • Elevator pitch – You need to be able to clearly articulate “Why” a client would choose you and your brand to manage their property and this will differ based on client needs and previous experiences.
  • Lead Sources – Based on current market conditions, missed opportunities are the best source of New Business in a slowing market for Adam. In the early days of his career, he spent hours each day building his database with sales OFI attendees and current tenants -he continues to do this on a regular basis.
  • Prospecting targets – Aim high, 40 – 50 calls per day dependent on the source you are focusing on.
  • Accountability is imperative, know your numbers and involve your team, peers and a coach to hold you accountable to sticking to them.
  • Block out time – Prospecting needs to be in your calendar every day. You must love the phone.
  • Listing presentation – You must have a tool kit stocked with evidence, stats, comparable properties and case studies. You must understand in some presentations you may never use these tools, but you can never be too prepared.
  • Fees – at least 75% of Adam’s clients want to negotiate, and you have to be ready and willing to fight for your fees. Adam overcomes client objections by demonstrating a premium marketing plan and well documented market share across all property types in his core areas.
  • Marketing – Social media is where Adam experiences the most traction. Adams personal website and his use of video has allowed him to connect with his ever-expanding client base.
  • Key to success – Discipline, focus, structure. Sit down and work out, based on the number of properties you need to achieve, what activity to you need to undertake to achieve this. Consistency of prospecting and don’t me afraid to miss out on listings because the more you lose, the more you win.

Thanks, Adam, for sharing!

Adam has been working with Kate Benjamin, New Business Coach at Real+ for over 18 months. During December they will be focusing on Adam’s 2019 goals.

If you would like a copy of the Real+ goals template, click here to request a copy, and go into the draw for a free New Business Goals setting session.

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Do you have a masters in procrastination?


Procrastination is that wonderful little technique that enables us to lose track of those precious hours while catching up on the latest internet craze. We can all be a little guilty of this from time to time. It can often sneak up on us when we are distracted, our brains are overwhelmed or we would like to avoid a difficult situation.

If you find that your brain space strays to thoughts like:

  • “I can always do it tomorrow (or next week, next month, next year)”
  • “The deadline is kind of flexible,” “I’ll do it soon,” or
  • “The due date isn’t for ages…”

Then it may be a sign that you are also falling into the procrastination void.

How to avoid it

In avoiding getting bogged down with procrastination, implementing methods like tracking your activity can help with understanding where you time goes. If I were to ask you how long an average task would take, would you be able to answer it with certainty? We don’t often know how long something takes, which can lead to the statements like, “Oh, is it that time already?”

Time logging

A time log can assist in working out where that time goes. You might also like to have a stopwatch on your desk and time yourself to check. There are also some great apps out there to track your activity both on your phone and your computer. More recently I have heard of an app called Forest which aims to help regain focus and remove procrastination.

When working with a team, it is also important to keep in mind that not everyone will work in the same way you will. We are all unique and don’t always march to the beat of the same drum. As humans, we are wired differently. When it comes to our relationships with our work and with others, we will look at it at varying levels and this includes our relationship with time.

Final note

It is important to recognise that your expectations of time and how to control it may be different to someone elses. If you find that you are becoming distracted by others, it may mean finding some quiet space. Or you may be the ‘distractor’ which may mean some self-awareness around habits to avoid distracting others.

Benjamin Franklin was once quoted as saying; “Don’t put off to tomorrow what you can do today”. So, what is it that you are trying to put off until tomorrow and can you do something today that your future self will thank you for?

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Quick Computer Hacks for Property Management Productivity

I love finding better, faster and smarter ways to do things, and recently I’ve realised that some of the better, faster and smarter ways are not something everyone is privy to.

So today I want to share with you some of the nerdy little hacks that I believe can save seconds, minutes, who knows, maybe even hours when you’re working on your computer…. And if nothing else, help you to be a bit more productive which means you can get more done, in less time, and be less stressed!

Interested? Here are my favourite 12 at the moment. You may know some, all, or none, but always a good refresher to figure out how we can save time on the devices we spend so many hours on each day.  Comment with any of your favourite hacks!

  1.  Quick Parts

Are you frequently typing the same email over and over again? Or going into templates to copy and paste into your emails? For things like confirmations, reminders, explanations of those repetitive PM questions? In your outlook there is a feature called “Quick Parts” which allows you to quickly dump your frequently used and favourite content into your emails – you can save as many as you like and categorise them too. For a handy guide on how to set it up and use it, click here

  1. Keyboard Shortcuts

A few quick keyboard shortcuts that will speed up seconds when working on your computer (they all add up):

  • Alt – M – minimise all windows to show desktop
  • Alt – TAB – flick between open programs/windows
  • CTRL – X – cut
  • CTRL C – copy
  • CTRL V – paste
  1. Delay Send

This handy one works on outlook and gmail now has a feature for this too – allowing you to shoot of an email now but select when you would like it to be delivered, great for reminders to tenants ahead of routines, after moving in to return condition reports etc.  The above download will also explain how to delay send emails.

  1. Turn off email alerts

Constant distractions popping up in the corner of your screen will not make for a productive property manager. To disable Desktop Alert in Outlook, simply go to: Options – Mail – disable “Display a Desktop Alert” option. Turn them off on your phone too otherwise the buzzing in the background will keep you just as distracted. (Turn off all your alerts on your phone actually you’ll be amazed at how much more pleasant it is).

  1. Work Offline

As above, distractions will derail your productivity. If you’re trying to work on a specific task, or just want to clear out the email clutter without getting new messages in that distract you – select to work offline from your main menu. Some super productive PM’s will selectively use this throughout the day.

  1. Shared Calendars

Sharing calendars with your fellow staff members will save time asking who is where and what each other has got going on. It might seem a bit big brother but it can save a lot of time and help others in the office know when not to disturb you, or when you’ll be back in the office.

  1. Format Painter

If you’re ever trying to get some text to match up to how another area of text looks in outlook or word… there is a cheat mode to do so, click on the text you want to duplicate, then click on the format painter icon (top left on the main menu on most versions), and then click on the word or highlight the area you want to past the formatting to. Saving time fiddling with fonts, sizes etc.

  1. Follow up

Sending an email but think, I really need to follow this up if I don’t hear back, but how will I remember? From your draft message you can set a follow up(either a flag to go into your outlook to-do list) or an actual pop up reminder. You’ll thank yourself for reminding yourself.

  1. Email rules

Most mail clients can help with this. And they are not too complicated to set up – Even simply by right-clicking an email. Helps if you’re organizing emails into folders on a regular basis.

  1. Group messages by…….

If you receive a high volume of email, tracking down relevant messages can be a chore. Outlook can group emails into conversations, so that a single click shows all related messages together. You can set this on a global or per-mailbox basis by going to the View tab and ticking “Show as Conversations”. Click the “Arrange By:” bar at the top of the message list and select “View Settings…” from the dropdown menu to configure additional grouping options.

  1. Unsubscribe

If you’re wasting time sifting through email newsletters you’re no longer interested in, instead of deleting them each time, click on the unsubscribe button at the bottom of the email. Save yourself some seconds and frustration.

  1. Apps

I’m the one in the office that says “oh there’s an app for that” and quite usually there is! So as far as computer apps go here’s a few of my picks

  • Momentum Extension – when using Google Crome, you can add on this app, which means that everytime a new browser tab is opened, the time and your main goal for the day is displayed loud and proud, reminding you to get back to the task at hand and avoid procrastination.
  • StayFocused – The app StayFocusd increases your productivity by limiting the amount of time that you can spend on time-wasting websites such as social media, set your limit to 30 mins each day and you’ll quickly see how much time you really spend online.
  • Forgotten Attachment Detector – Whenever you send an email contains terms such as attachment, attached, enclosed, and more but does not actually have a file attached, it will alert you before you send your email. A saviour for me.

Comment below with your hacks. Happy Productivity!

Hermione Gardiner

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