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Inman Taps RSIR Broker Brian Hopper To Share His Top Productivity Hacks With Their Readers

By RSIR Staff |

In a recent article published on Inman, Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty broker Brian Hopper shared his list of the top productivity hacks that have changed his personal life and his real estate business. The feature follows Hopper’s recent return from Inman Luxury Connect 2017, where he was invited to speak on the same subject. “I obsess over systems and productivity in both my professional and personal worlds,” Hopper writes. “At home, I’m striving to create the most efficient way to remind my kids to do their household tasks with the perfect ‘chore chart.’ And I am always looking for opportunities to refine and improve my real estate team’s workflow.” He says when “used in combination with a few key apps, these practical, basic tips and strategies can change the way you do business for the better.” We’ve outlined Hopper’s ten hacks below.

1. Surround Yourself

Hopper says that early on, he made the mistake of trying to take on too much on his own without leaning on those around him for support. But it’s teamwork that makes the dream work, and Hopper says it’s important to “take a look at your day-to-day operations and create a list of your current tasks.” In doing so, you’ll gain an idea of all of the different hats you’re wearing and be able to pinpoint places where you could use support because after all, “delegating allows you to focus on what you do best: selling.”

2. Get Up & At It

It’s easy for most of us to say “there simply aren’t enough hours in the day,” but Hopper says that waking up just one hour earlier can make a world of difference for our productivity. He uses the extra hour to clear his mind at the gym, but adds that “you can use this sacred quiet time for just about anything: reading, writing, praying, meditating, stretching, eating.” The point is to get yourself away from your work and computer and set your mind for the day.

3. Airplane Mode

Distractions can get the best of us, especially in today’s technologically driven world in which smartphones bring virtually everything to our fingertips. Hopper combats the temptation by setting his phone into airplane mode. “Beyond eliminating distractions, I have found that Airplane Mode allows me to be more present,” both personally and professionally he added.

4. Practice Saying “No”

Many people find it hard to say no to others, but sometimes it is a necessary response to protect your time. Hopper shares a recent example, in which he declined co-listing a property with an associate because he “saw the work involved it would take to bring the listing up to speed and position it to sell” and it just didn’t align with his team’s needs. Though it was a tough decision, it paid off, because just a week later he received an offer to list a property in the same price point. “The power of saying ‘no’ enables you to say ‘yes’ to other things,” he says. “And furthermore, it keeps you focused and in tune with your vision and your goals.”

5. What Are You Reading?

We all know reading is an important tool to use in developing ourselves and our businesses, but often it is difficult to carve out the time to sit with a book. Hopper says he’s found a solution in audio book services such as Audible, which provide a range of options and an ability to “speed listen,” to maximize time spent. Using audio books, he says he has brought his reading game up to an impressive 4 or 5 books monthly!

6. More Phone Control

Tired of endless work calls coming through to your phone? Hopper says his team now uses Grasshopper, which will mask phone numbers and allow calls to be routed to “to each team member in an order we prefer, and giving multiple team members the ability to respond to inbound text messages for faster response time.” This allows them to connect with clients quickly, and gives Hopper the ability of stepping back when he needs to.

7. Manage All Your Deals Easily

In order to quickly and efficiently keep track of all of the Hopper Group’s transactions, the team uses Pipedrive, which he says “solves the problem of too many internal emails, workflow interruptions and leads falling through the cracks.” As a result of using the app, the team has found less clutter in their inboxes and they all love having a place to put projects and project-related files.

8. Micromanage Your Tasks

When working with a number of team members, it is easy for things to slip through the cracks, so Hopper says they began using Wunderlist to “silo all communication for most every small task.” The program allows them to create and assign tasks, add notes and other relevant details, and interact with team members to further reduce emails.

9. If This, Then That

The Hopper Group is dedicated to maintaining a strong and relevant social media presence, and he says IFTTT has allowed them to streamline the posting process. It also allows you to “create recipes with our apps,” such as “having every photo you take automatically upload to a Dropbox file” or tracking certain types of purchases and sending “the data from these expenses to a spreadsheet” to keep finances in order.

10. Find Freelance Help

In line with his first productivity hack, Hopper says he started hiring out more and more tasks utilizing Upwork, where candidates apply for an ongoing or one-time freelance position. Hopper has a virtual assistant he found on the platform, and says “she happens to live in a different time zone, meaning that we can assign her a variety of tasks as we finish our day in Seattle, and she works on them while we’re sleeping.” This has served as an excellent supplement to the local assistant who covers the team’s daily needs.

For a more detailed version of Hopper’s productivity hacks including his helpful “tips and tricks” under each sub-category, read the full Inman article here and check out his key takeaways from the event here.