3 Time Saving Tips for Financial Professionals
Tip #1-Take a Vacation!
While this first tip might beg the question of what happens first the chicken or the egg, taking a vacation might be exactly what the Doctor prescribes for you! It will strengthen relationships with your family and help you actually be more productive at work!
Many entrepreneurs started their businesses, so they could spend time with their family but fail to plan and carry out their promises of taking a vacation even when they have the money to do it! Making it to those vacations have been found to: improve communication, interaction, satisfaction, problem-solving, trust, and love, family communication, bonding, and solidarity (Widmer & Taniguchi, 2012). The cost and location of family vacations is not the key factor in increasing these relationships…it’s the time spent together!
Marriage and Family Therapist Sally Connely wrote the following about couple getaways in her article found at mentalhealth.net, “It is easy to find things to like while on a vacation. People can be more relaxed, less worried about everyday life, and generally in a better mood. Laughter, exercise, and sex (as there usually is more sex) engender a release of oxytocin, the bonding hormone. Couples get more connected.”
It will improve your work performance!
The State of American Vacations report shows that, of people who spent “All or most (75% or more)” of their days off on vacation, they felt significantly happier with their company and their job than those who spent 25% or less of their days off on vacation.
When I have taken a step back from the busyness of the business I am able to often appreciate my lifestyle and gain new insights that I bring back to my business. In fact, this idea to help Financial Professionals have more time with their family spawned from being on a family vacation!
Financial Professionals who own their business should also support and encourage employees to take a vacation as they will be more productive to the company! NBC News reported that employees who do not take vacation are 23 to 27 % less likely to receive a promotion, and 78 to 84 % less likely to receive a raise.
In the office, being the boss does not mean you have to have your fingers in every little detail. The Financial Planning Association completed a study in 2014 of Financial Advisors and the trouble they have with time management. The #1 reason they suffer from mismanagement of time is that they “try to do it all”.
Delegation means that you give assignments, give instructions, and follow up with an employee. What is required of this interaction is time; time to give the assignment and instructions in a way that the employee clearly understands and then time to follow up to see how the employee did. Many financial pros don’t want the hassle of the time it takes to train, but the minimal time to coach your employee has a big Return On Investment!
Unfortunately, many financial advisors get stuck doing the “paperwork” and cannot let go of these and other mundane tasks, so they can focus on the heavy-lifting aspects of their job. Don’t let this be you. Hire people who can be coached and spend the time needed to coach them.
It is imperative for delegation to work to schedule regular times to meet with your employees that you delegate tasks to. While there may need to meet for more urgent items, most times a good business owner will take the time to meet with his employees and see the value in coaching them.
Tip #3-Time to Process
In the fast-paced technology world, we work in, it's difficult to not be constantly bombarded with emails, text messages, voicemail that may seem urgent but really can take your focus away from other projects that are needing your attention. I am not saying to not pay attention to a true emergency, but because most financial professionals I speak to do not even have a time management system, they are winging it every day.
This one tip can help you control the chaos that surrounds you and allow you to focus on the important stuff. Schedule 30 minutes/day where you go through your email, tasks, appointments and other notifications. This will allow you to organize and process these messages and tasks by importance instead of by perceived urgency. Do this each day and your processing system will save you so much time that you would otherwise switch-task between tasks the way most do it.
Throughout the day it is wise to not answer every message, instead to have time that you are checking emails and other notifications. If all you did was respond to every notification, you would do that all day long. Instead, create specific times at breaks or set times to respond to clients where you can thoughtfully reply to their concerns.