The Value Of Your Time
In the financial services industry, you’re constantly advising your clients about the value of a dollar. You may educate them on how they can invest their dollars to grow over time or even how to protect their hard-earned dollars from risks such as accidents, crimes, or mother nature, etc. As a professional you work to ensure your clients have a well-thought-out plan for growing and protecting their dollars, and you likely do the same for yourself.
And yet, we’d argue there is a resource that is immensely more valuable than a dollar that is being spent much more casually. A resource that financial service professionals are much less likely to protect for themselves and freely let others spend on their behalf.
If you haven’t guessed, the most valuable resource is time. Time is the one resource that you can’t make more of and you can’t replace. Although you don’t know how many days or weeks you’ll have; you do know how many hours are in a week or even how many hours you want to work within a week. Therefore, it makes so much sense to have a plan for how you choose to spend this non-renewable resource, a time design.
If you think about time like you think about money, you’ll be more intentional about designing how it gets spent. For some reason, it’s a lot easier to give our time away while safeguarding our bank accounts. Start by thinking about your time as a bank account with a finite number of minutes in it, and the only thing you can do with that account is to deplete it minute by minute. As much as you love your clients and employees, you probably don’t give them unlimited access to your bank account – however there are times when you give others blank checks for spending your time.
You can spend your time to yield greater results for your life. It takes a shift, but there are some things that you can do.
- Believe in Investing – you know that where you put your money counts and it’s time to believe that how you spend your time is just as important. Remember, clients are investments. They will provide a return, but, and this is an important but, they are not your only investment. You must invest in prospecting. You must invest in your employees. You must invest in your agency. It’s too risky to let your investment only be in your clients. You must balance your portfolio when it comes to how you spend your time.
- Understand you are in control – when you talk to clients about investing their money or protecting risks you probably acknowledge that there are things outside of their control. They can’t control if mother nature puts their house in the path of a tornado or if another car crashes into them. They can’t control the stock market. But they can control the safeguards they put in place to minimize their risks. The same goes with your time. Can you control if/when clients call in with service issues? No. Can you control if a prospect says the only time they can meet is after work hours? No. However, you can and should control the elements of time that are controllable, such as what you spend your time doing. Saying that you “can’t” control your time is an excuse. Either you control it, or you give others permission to control it for you. Again, we know it’s not easy, but it’s time to give up the idea that you can’t control your time, because there are elements that you can control. Changing your mindset is a big part of making a step in the right direction.
- Design your week – how many clients have you helped to design their portfolios? To understand where their money was being spent and how to bridge the gap to where they want to be. To identify their financial strengths and to address their weaknesses. It’s time to do the same thing with designing your time. That’s right. Time should be spent intentionally with a design in mind. Time for clients. Time for Prospecting. Time for building referral relationships. Time for education and attaining new licensure. Time for employees. Time for refreshing your vision and working on your growth strategy. Now that doesn’t mean when your time design is put into action every week will be perfect. You’ll still have weeks that miss the mark. Think about it the same as a budget – you’re budgeting how you spend your time to give yourself and your business maximum return. There’s wiggle room because not every moment has to be planned just like not every dollar spent needs to be planned. You have flexibility to change things up. However, as you’re spending your time, you’ll be more mindful of what you spend it on, and why it matters. It’s a powerful way to approach your time. As time passes, you’ll get better at designing your time and better at the choices you make.
We encourage you to talk to your Optimal Outcome business coach about designing your time and your team’s time. It’s not always the most exciting activity, but it’s one that will yield huge returns on investment. And we have a process to help maximize the return on your time, like how you have a process to help your clients for investing.