Super Time Management Skills – Elite Entrepreneur Trait #3 – 298

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Today, we’re jumping back into my series on the nine traits of elite entrepreneurs and eight-figure real estate investors–and we’re talking about what it means to truly manage your time.

You might think that an elite entrepreneur has to work 80 to 100 hours a week because it looks like Gary Vee or Elon does it. However, I want you to know this: elite entrepreneurs do more with less. They have a normal work life (or less). They have financial freedom.

In this episode, you’ll hear my tips around time management skills. Whether you’re building a real estate portfolio or just about any other business, you may just find them to be invaluable.

Key Takeaways with Josh Cantwell

  • How to post and prioritize everything that you need to do each week.
  • Why it’s so important to remove yourself from anything that isn’t essential.
  • The power of adding important tasks to your calendar.
  • Why you need to give yourself hard deadlines.
  • What happens when you commit to other people in your organization?
  • How to give your brain a much-needed break.
  • Why you should set aside days to focus on generating revenue.

Josh Cantwell Tweetables

“Elite entrepreneurs who get a lot done and do things on time, they make a commitment to someone else that they’ll have it done with an accountability partner.” - Josh Cantwell


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Josh Cantwell: Hey there, welcome back. It’s Josh, your host. And we are continuing our discussion today around the nine traits of elite entrepreneurs and eight-figure real estate investors. If you remember over the last couple of days and weeks, we’ve talked about these nine traits. We started with number one, which was invest for cash flow now. Number two was you are 100% responsible for your own life. And that leads me to number three today, which is elite entrepreneurs that I’ve observed, that I’ve coached, that I’ve partnered with, have super time management skills. This is elite entrepreneur trait number three, super time management skills.


And what I mean is that, look, elite entrepreneurs don’t work 80 and 100-hour weeks, regardless of what Elon Musk does, regardless of what Gary Vaynerchuk does, and everybody else that you might follow on social media. Most elite entrepreneurs do work really hard, but there are plenty of us that work a normal week, maybe 30 to 50 hours, but possess super time management skills and have the capacity to get a lot done in a normal, I would say, workweek. And so, if you have super time management skills and you want to work extra hours, 50, 60, 70 hours a week, well, then for sure, you’re going to be more effective. But I’m assuming you don’t really want to work more, you actually want to work a pretty normal life or less and have financial freedom.


So, here are some tips around having super time management skills. And there’s one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight that I would like to tell you about. And it starts with, for me, posting and prioritizing. The tough thing about being a successful and busy entrepreneur is that you’ve always got a thousand things going on in your head. And so, elite entrepreneurs find time to post, write down whether it’s in software or maybe it’s in Basecamp or some sort of software program. Maybe it’s Google Keep, some of the different software programs that we’ve used over the years, or a simple yellow pad and a piece of paper and a pen is to post and prioritize everything that you need to be doing.


For me, I’ve had a lot of success doing this on Sunday nights. Some people do it on Friday at the end of their workweek. Some people do it every day. At the end of their day, they take inventory of the day and they get ready for the next day. Regardless of when it is, you need to post and prioritize all of the actions, all of the things that need to get done, and not only just post them all, but prioritize them and delegate them. So, post is first, prioritize second, and delegate third. So, I always look at what’s everything that needs to get done, what’s important, and who else can do it besides me? I get paid in my businesses to think in the macro, to think in the clouds, in the big picture.


My business partner, Glenn, just told me actually a few days ago, he was like, “Dude, you’re really good in the macro. Like, you’re really good at managing the business in the clouds and keeping everybody moving the same direction without getting into the detail, without getting into the dirt. You let your team get in the dirt and you stay in the macro.” So, post first, then number two, prioritize what’s important, and then number three, delegate.


And so, I do this typically on Sunday nights. I also do this while I’m at the gym. I bring a to-do list with me everywhere I go. So, this list is constantly changing. It’s a living document. But I want to create what’s important, prioritize what’s important, and then delegate it to somebody else that’s an expert. That’s my first tip for you. Find time to do that.


Then, major tip number two is to remove the nonessential. We all know that we want to get everything done. We want to get everything done. Brian Tracy in his book Eat that Frog!, a classic from the late 90s, early 2000s, mentions that every entrepreneur, every busy salesperson, every business owner/manager realizes that they’ll never get everything done. And so, they focus on the top 20% and then they eat that frog. And that’s his reference to essentially focusing on the top 20%. That gets 80% of the results.


We all know that our life is 80/20. Okay, 20% of my clothes I wear 80% of the time, 20% of my flooring in my house I walk on 80% of the time, 20% of the roads I drive on 80% of the time, 20% of my friends I speak to 80% of the time. So, the 80/20 rule is permeating throughout our lives. And so, the second big tip of removing the nonessential, what I’ve witnessed in elite entrepreneurs and eight-figure investors, is that they don’t just do everything. They focus on the top 20%. They remove the nonessential or they delegate the nonessential or they just simply don’t do it. If it’s nonessential, they don’t do it.


Now, after we’ve posted, we’ve prioritized, we’ve delegated, and we’ve realized what’s nonessential and what is essential, the next, number three, action that I would give you is to add that important task to your calendar as if you were making a meeting with yourself. So, if I need to review and underwrite an apartment complex and that might take me two hours, I schedule that in. For two hours, I make a meeting with my staff to get that done. If I need to write an email out to all of my subscribers and members and followers and that might take me 15 to 20 minutes, I schedule it in. If I’m doing a promotion of some kind that I need to write a sales letter or an email copy, that might take me a whole day.


If I’m going to view a property and do a tour of a new apartment that I’m going to buy, it’s probably going to take me a half-hour to an hour to get there, an hour to tour it, and a half-hour to an hour to get back. And so, I got three hours, I schedule it in, and then of course, while I’m in the car, I’m going to also make the phone calls that I need to make that day while I’m in the car. So, every important task gets scheduled into your calendar. Make a meeting with yourself. That’s number three.


Number four, give yourself enough time but include a deadline. Include a deadline. When am I going to have this done by? Now, a lot of us, let’s be honest, if we have a project that we need to do, if we have a project that we want to accomplish and we’re left up to ourselves, we might procrastinate. We might not get it done. We might go past the self-imposed deadline.


However, this is tip number five, is to make a commitment to someone else in your organization that you’ll have it done and when you’ll have it done by. So, everybody is going to be a possible procrastinator with yourself, but many of us, if we know that we have a deadline to meet somebody else, like when I was in the best shape of my life, I was mostly in the gym because I had a buddy I was working out with and I wanted to make sure I was there. I committed to him, so I was going to be there. If my kids have sports, I’m always on time because I have a commitment to get them where they need to go. If I’m coaching my team, I’m always early, the first one in the gym because not only do I need to be early for practice, but I need to have my schedule, my practice plan in place ahead of time.


If I have an offering deadline in an apartment complex and I have a couple of them coming up on deals that we’re going to offer on, I like to always have my underwriting done about a week prior to the call for offer so that my team has a week to digest that, to massage it, to change it, to edit it. So, I make a commitment to them that I’ll have it done about a week before the call for offers. So, if I just said, “Oh, I’ll get the underwrite done, I’ll have it done,” but I don’t impose a deadline, then I’m definitely not going to get it done. If I impose a deadline, but the deadline is just for me, then I might bleed over. But elite entrepreneurs who get a lot done and do things on time, they make a commitment to someone else that they’ll have it done. They essentially have an accountability partner. That’s number five.


Number six, if you want to have super time management skills, take walking breaks in between tasks and let your brain breathe and think. If I sit down to underwrite a deal and then I also need to underwrite a second deal, I’m not just going to do that back to back. I’m going to sit down and underwrite a deal. If it takes two hours in front of my computer, then I’m going to get up, walk around, get something to eat, go for a walk. If I’m working from home, I would go for a walk in the neighborhood, walk my dogs, get something to eat, go outside, get some fresh air because while I’m walking, I’m still thinking about the task, and there might be something that pops into my brain that I forgot. There might be something that I can still add to that project, or maybe I’m preparing for the next project. But take a walking break. Get up, move around. Motion creates emotion. So, take a walking break, move around. Take a break between tasks. Let your brain think. Let your brain breathe.


Now, tip number seven, this concept of revenue-producing days. So, for us, we have revenue-producing days, which is Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday morning. Real estate often happens on the weekends, like leasing of lands happens on the weekends, showing properties if you’re in residential happens on Fridays and Saturdays and Sundays, it’s sometimes a weekend business. So, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday morning are our revenue-producing days. Those are the days that we set aside as a team, not only me, but my entire team, to really focus on revenue production.


What does revenue production mean? Well, it means going in the field, hiring contractors, touring properties, marketing, emails, social, investors, podcasts, recruiting capital, reviewing deals, underwriting deals, looking for new properties, acquisitions, meeting brokers. Those are all revenue-producing activities.


Now, on Monday and Wednesday, when we come off of a weekend, usually on Monday, it’s a little bit chaotic because things happen over the weekends. Some of our contractors, our subcontractors go into our apartment complexes and they work on Saturday and Sunday. So, we need to go kind of walk units on Monday and see what the hell they got done. We need to see, maybe there was a skip-out over the weekend and some of our residents moved out and didn’t tell us. And we find out there’s a skip-out.


So, Monday is an important day, but we call that a buffer day. It’s a buffer day where we have meetings. We walk units, we’re in the field, but we’re kind of coming off of the haze of Sunday, if you will. So, Mondays and Wednesdays are buffer days. Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday morning are focus days or revenue-producing days. And my whole team works in that cadence. We’re all doing the same things. We all have certain days that we set aside for meetings. We have all certain days that we set aside for these kind of buffer activities versus the days where we’re in the field, we’re making money, we’re focused on marketing, we’re focused on recruiting capital, we’re focused on podcasts, we’re focused on reviewing deals, offering on deals. That’s all revenue production. We slam all the revenue production into specific days.


So, for those elite entrepreneurs that have super time management skills, these are the seven takeaways. Number one, post, prioritize, delegate. Number two, remove the nonessential. Number three, add important tasks to your calendar, like a meeting with your staff. Number four, give yourself enough time but a deadline. Number five, make a commitment to someone else that you’ll have it done by your deadline, create an accountability partner. Number six, take walking breaks in between tasks. And finally, create revenue-producing days in your whole organization versus buffer days where there are more meetings and non-revenue-producing days. Those are seven ways, seven real tips, seven real skills where you can be more of an elite entrepreneur and having super time management skills.

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