6 Easy Ways to Boost Your Productivity in Real Estate

by | BiggerPockets.com


As the New Year quickly approaches, I thought I’d put together a post that helps us all be a little more productive and successful. It is human nature to be distracted, to procrastinate, to be fearful, to stress out — I can go on and on, but we can work around these things to help ourselves find success in everything we do.

  • Put together daily, weekly, monthly, annual goals – Decide what it is that you’re looking to accomplish. Then establish a system to help you make those goals happen. One of the most effective methods is typically setting and organizing tasks. e.g. GOAL: Buy my first investment property in the next four months; TASKS: Locate investments, seek funding, etc. Once you have these tasks listed, make sure you make them happen!
  • Establish a routine – Do you do the same tasks every day? Establishing a routine will help you to get through them. Create a schedule and map out what you’ll do with your time – then stick to it! Decide what block of time you’re going to set for your correspondence (email, phone calls, etc.), your education, your marketing, etc. Once you start living by your schedule, it will become second nature and you’ll see that you get much more done with your time. A great tip for setting your routine is knocking out the most difficult or tedious tasks of the day first thing. By doing that, you’ll eliminate the need to worry about it throughout the rest of the day.
  • Create mini-goals to help break down your tasks and daily schedule. – It is human nature to want to be successful. Mini-goals allow us to find little successes that eventually add up to become the big ones. e.g. Want to send mailings to 5,000 people? Start with small daily batches of say 50/100 during your marketing time and you’ll feel like you’re making progress. Try to tackle 5,000 at once and you’ll likely get burned out and give up.
  • Be Decisive – If you need to make a decision about a client, deal, etc., dwelling on it or procrastinating is never helpful. Doing so typically adds to your stress load. One of the most helpful ways to force yourself to make decisions is to set a time limit for yourself. Sit and think about it for a few minutes and then go with the direction you’re leaning. Our initial intuition is typically right. So . . . if something feels wrong, don’t let others sway you. Too many times I hear from people who were about to walk from a real estate deal, but allowed themselves to be convinced to rethink things from others. Most of these people ended up in a deal that they regretted.
  • Share your goals – By sharing your goals with others, you can use them to help keep you accountable. At BiggerPockets we have a monthly goals thread on our Goals, Business Plans & Entities forum to help members share their goals. Other great people to share with include your spouse, friends, colleagues, or mentor.
  • Don’t allow distractions to run your life – We’re living in the ADD Generation, but can’t allow ourselves to! One of the best ways to overcome distractions is so tackle our tasks one at a time, and to see them through to the end. We don’t have to take that call or answer that email/text/twit immediately. Let it wait until you’ve completed the task at hand. Find or create a system to help you make note of the distractions that came up and get to them when you’re done. One of the most helpful things you can do to help overcome the distractions is to work VERY early in the morning in a closed/private space.

Got any other tips that you think should be added to the list?

NOTE: This post was inspired by Steve Pavlina’s 33 Rules to Boost Your Productivity.

Photo Credit: Bhernandez

About Author

Joshua Dorkin

Joshua Dorkin is a serial entrepreneur, investor, podcaster, publisher, educator, and co-author of How to Invest in Real Estate. He started BiggerPockets to help democratize the real estate investing landscape for himself and others, aiming to make it accessible for everyone, regardless of income or education. Today, BiggerPockets is the premier real estate investing website online with over one million members and reaching over 70 million people with the message of financial freedom through real estate investing. Joshua, along with his wife and three daughters, make their home in Denver, Colorado, and spend any time they can traveling, exploring, and adventuring. Read more about Joshua’s story in 5280 and Inc.com.


  1. I think your list is a great start and very timely as we begin setting goals for ourselves and our business for the coming year. If I could expand on your last tip just a bit – I actually go completely offline for at least 4 hours each day. That way I can really stay unplugged from distractions, and focused on the task in front of me. I also like the “do not disturb” button on my phone!

    Wishing you prosperity and profits in the New Year!

  2. Josh, I liked this post.

    I’ve always been a good planner and very goal oriented. But sometimes I would lose track of my progress. Last year I started keeping a paper journal in one of those fake marble patterned note books they sell at the pharmacy. My SCORE counselor suggested this to me. I date the top of each entry/day and I put my daily task list there. On Mondays the weeks tasks are entered. Many times its mundane stuff like “call the masons – Smith house”. Sometimes there is a great idea there too. I can go back now to my little book, to see what I have accomplished.

    When I look around at people who are doing well, and then those who are not, organization and planning are keys to success.

    Best to you all for a prosperous ’09

  3. I’m glad you guys enjoyed the post, Diane and Wayde. I’m still working on my own systems, and lately have been toying around with the GTD methodology (getting things done). I’m still trying to find the software that works best for me, but they are all basically pretty similar.

    Wayde – I love the idea of a 4 hour, no-tech time-out. I do that with the phone, but should probably consider doing the same with the internet — maybe free up some more time for thinking.

  4. Great post Joshua, to be successful in real estate study and create a good business plan and sets your goals like whats your short term and long term goals. And you should also revisiting your business plan because your business plan may not always work.

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