September 21, 2023
As our world grows increasingly fast-paced, it can be difficult to give any one task our full attention, making time management skills integral to running a successful business. This is especially true for insurance agents, who conduct most business online, over the phone, or on Zoom.
Technology can be our greatest asset or our biggest distraction, so here are some tips you can use to master the art of time management and become a successful insurance agent:
As personal and professional responsibilities constantly vie for your attention, setting clearly defined goals can help you see the bigger picture. Having short-term and long-term goals readily accessible to you can shift your focus daily to what matters most. These goals may include sales targets, prospecting goals, professional development milestones, or even personal milestones.
Once you identify your “why,” and you intentionally focus on those goals daily, you can start making decisions and prioritizing your time in a way that is goal-oriented. Defining your goals can also help your mentors and loved-ones support you based on your needs.
Whether you prefer digital or paper calendars, having a reliable calendar can help you visualize your day, schedule appointments, and better allocate your time. It can also keep those pesky distractions out of sight, allowing you to focus on your goal-oriented tasks.
If you’re using a digital calendar, Google Calendar or Microsoft Outlook are great options. Importantly, these platforms allow you to share information with other users, allowing your spouse, mentor, family member, and whoever else to keep track of your day so they know what you have going on.
Once you’ve laid the groundwork by identifying your goals and putting an effective calendar system to use, you must prioritize your tasks. Each day it is important to identify the most important tasks that align with your goals to ensure you stay focused on the tasks that will help you achieve them.
One recommended method is the Eisenhower Matrix, which helps you categorize tasks as urgent or important. It is also helpful to write out all that you must accomplish in a day and then simply ask yourself, “does this help me accomplish my goals?” If the answer is no, then maybe that task moves to the bottom of the list. Whatever your preferred method is, it is crucial to prioritize tasks with your goals at the forefront.
Once you’re in a groove, it can certainly be difficult to stop your progress, and you shouldn’t if you feel good about your momentum! But if you begin to feel stuck or dwell on the same problem, you are most likely no longer using your time productively, and that can negatively impact the rest of your day.
Taking short, scheduled breaks can improve your focus and productivity. Burnout can sneak up on even the most focused individuals, and it can feel wrong to stop working during business hours, but it’s important to give yourself time for rest. Methods like the Pomodoro Technique, which includes 25 minutes of focused work followed by a 5-minute break, can help maintain energy levels.
It’s important to remember that breaks are not a one-size-fits-all solution, so it is important to try a few things out to determine what version of rest works best for you.
Reflection can be a powerful tool to look at your work honestly and determine what has been working well and what needs improvement. Whether you best accomplish this through mindful meditation, journaling, or talking it through with a trusted friend, it is important to do so with your goals in mind. Reflecting at the end of each day or week is a key element to incorporate into your life to ensure personal and professional growth.
There are so many more tactics to use to improve time management skills, but these five are key to getting started. Remember, no one is perfect at anything when they start, but the best thing you can do is to start.