Organizing Success with Time-Blocking

Services for Real Estate Pros with Happy Grasshopper

We’ve said this before, and we’ll say it again: Time is your greatest enemy. You could be the most successful agent in your market/state/country, but there’s still a finite amount of time on the clock with which to get your work done. What makes top producers as successful as they are is their utilization and optimization of time. Simply put: They plan their day and stick to it. And if you want to be successful, you will too.


Time-blocking in a nutshell

The secret to keeping your day organized and on point is time-blocking – assigning certain tasks to certain times of the day. This rigidity not only keeps you focused on the tasks you need to accomplish, but also works to deter distractions.

The premise is simple: you set your calendar for each day. This can be done with most mediums (Microsoft, Google, etc.), and is easy to implement. It doesn’t stop with implementation, however, and there are some best practices to follow.

Starting out

So you’ve decided to block out your calendar and change time management as we know it forever. Good for you! Now take a step back, because there’s some planning to do beforehand.

The first thing you want to do is pay close attention to the next few days. What are the tasks you do every day? Focus on these over the course of a week, writing down not only the tasks themselves, but also how much time it takes you to complete them. Once the week is over, spend some time to look over what your week entailed, and plan your calendar accordingly.

Be realistic

It’s important to recognize your limits when time-blocking. We’re human after all, and while assigning too many tasks is admirable, it’s not typically attainable. The quote: “The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry” applies well here. =)

Let’s get more specific. If you block out 3 hours for the “tough stuff” (the real time-consuming, thought-provoking tasks), knowing you’ll only really give them your undivided attention for 2 hours, you’ve just wasted an hour that could have been used toward another task.

Avoid distractions

Salespeople battle distractions all day. Phone calls, emails, texts, and social alerts attack you like an unstoppable, Darth Vader-driven force. No worries though, we have a solution: turn them off. Turn off all your notifications and send your phone to voicemail. You can look at email during the time you’ve assigned for it without worrying about the constant ding of your phone or computer. Distractions are going to happen no matter what you do, so an intervention is necessary to stay on track.

Leave time for you 

This is the most important tip of all, and something we practice religiously here at Happy Grasshopper, so we’ll come out and say it:

You matter.

While it’s important to complete tasks, make the sale, and build your empire, it’s equally important to make time for yourself and those that matter to you. We love money, and while we’re in the business of helping our customers make more of it, it’s not the end-all-and be-all of life. Make sure you’ve blocked personal time to have a little fun and stay loose. You’ll be thankful for it when the time comes. =)

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Comments (20)

Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, EXP - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

Great post Dan, and I am looking forward to attending the webinar next week.

Dec 08, 2015 01:15 PM
Happy Grasshopper

Thanks we will look forward to seeing you there!

Dec 08, 2015 10:37 PM
William Feela
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.

Time fly's by quick enough when we give ourselves enough time to breath

Dec 08, 2015 02:43 PM
Michael J. Perry
KW Elite - Lancaster, PA
Lancaster, PA Relo Specialist

Dan, I'm a believer !!!!    !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Dec 08, 2015 11:42 PM
Happy Grasshopper

Thanks Michael! 

Dec 08, 2015 11:50 PM
Christina Sanchez Hood
Palo Alto, CA
#SiliconValleyHOODS | Inspired Living

Nice post, Dan Stewart.  I am all set for the webinar 

Dec 09, 2015 12:58 AM
Ross Schueller
Jenison, MI
Property Pedaler and Realtor in Grand Rapids, MI

I've always been an organized person, but I've never had much of a need for a daily agenda.  Most of the time I've been able to keep track of my priorities and my appointments in my head (mostly, anyway).  However, my switch to Real Estate has forced me to organize my time, use new scheduling strategies, and generally have it "written down" in order to make effecient use of my time. It's been a learning experience and Time Blocking has been one of the biggest lessons.  Your post reinforced everything I've learned so far and gave me a few good ideas I'm not yet using.  Thanks!

Dec 09, 2015 01:45 AM
Happy Grasshopper

Glad you agree Ross, but what's stopping you from implementing this? 

Dec 09, 2015 03:10 AM
Lisa Friedman
Great American Dream Realty - Essex, VT
30 Years of Real Estate Experience!

This is currently an issue for me. Thank you for the very much needed reminder!


Dec 09, 2015 04:32 AM
Victoria M Baker
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Reston, VA

It is so easy to get distracted. I'm adopting this method in my business because I need to focus on lead generation in blocks. Social media, email and calls will divert you from what will make you MONEY!

Thanks, Victoria

Dec 09, 2015 05:51 AM
Val Evans
Scottsdale, AZ

Smart realtors adopt the attorney/doctor business model and let their associates/assistants do all the menial work while they handle the most critical components of the business.

Dec 09, 2015 06:13 AM
Olga Simoncelli
Veritas Prime, LLC dba Veritas Prime Real Estate - New Fairfield, CT
CONSULTANT, Real Estate Services & Risk Management

Good, basic pointers, thanks. Signed up for next webinar.

Dec 09, 2015 08:59 AM
L. Scott Ferguson
Ask4Ferguson - Your House-SOLD Name in Real Estate - West Palm Beach, FL
Sunny Florida Real Estate Professional

Great read!  I also believe in 'bookending' my days :)



Dec 09, 2015 09:39 AM
Shirley Coomer
Keller Williams Realty Sonoran Living - Phoenix, AZ
Realtor, Keller Williams Realty, Phoenix Az

Great post!  We all have the same amount of time in the day, it is how we use it!!

Dec 09, 2015 09:46 AM
Amelia Robinette
NoVa House and Home - Frankly Realty - Falls Church, VA
Education, Innovation, Service

The most important thing about timeblocking is that IT WORKS!!

Dec 09, 2015 10:21 AM
Lise Howe
Keller Williams Capital Properties - Washington, DC
Assoc. Broker in DC, MD, VA and attorney in DC

I am always in need of time blocking! Thanks for the reminder! 

Dec 09, 2015 10:33 AM
Joan Whitebook
BHG The Masiello Group - Nashua, NH
Consumer Focused Real Estate Services

Time block is sooo important and thanks for this

Leave time for you 

This is the most important tip of all, and something we practice religiously here at Happy Grasshopper, so we’ll come out and say it:

You matter.

Dec 09, 2015 01:02 PM
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

Very well said Dan Stewart .

"You Matter" - and that's why we should work on time management skills.

Dec 09, 2015 02:52 PM
Sam Shueh
(408) 425-1601 - San Jose, CA
mba, cdpe, reopro, pe

Time management and stay focused is the key to a successful career.

Thanks for the webnar invitation.

Sam Shueh

Dec 09, 2015 02:56 PM
Jerry Murphy, CRS, SRES
Long Realty West Valley - Anthem, AZ
Anthem, Phoenix, and Scottsdale AZ Real Estate

I fall victim to the distractions.  I'm going to start small and initially start time blocking one task I do then build from that.  Thanks for the advice Dan.

Dec 17, 2015 07:52 AM
June Piper-Brandon
Houwzer Inc - Baltimore, MD
Piecing Dreams One Home at a Time

My team leader swears by time blocking and I really should try it.  One of my goals for 2016 is to be more organized and therefore more productive.  

Dec 17, 2015 11:08 AM
Jamie Parker Gwinnett
Exp Realty - Snellville, GA
Realtor, Snellville Homes

Great reminder. It can be a struggle to stick to a schedule.  Create a habit going into the new year and schedule your success. 

Dec 17, 2015 12:32 PM

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