By mick | August 19, 2021

EPISODE 59 | Multitasking Wastes Time for Builders

Hey folks and welcome to another episode of Builders Business Success Podcast! 
This particular episode I want to help you to understand something that’s I think made a big difference to a number of our builder’s business blackbelt members. 
It’s a little bit of a shift in mindset, but it changes your action and activity, and it can certainly make you significantly more productive and have a feeling like you’re very much more in control of what’s going on than perhaps what you feel now. 
‘Cause there’s a lots of stuff that’s out of your control happening right now. If this is your first time if you have not listened to or watched one of these podcasts before the purpose of the podcast is to help builders established builders, overcome the common and often costly problems that are found in pretty much every building business. 
How we do that is we have a group of builders it’s called Builders Business Blackbelt. They’re all over the country in regional areas, in major cities, in all sorts of different places. 
So we get to test out our theories, our ideas in all different sorts of environments with different sizes, size businesses with different focuses. So the feedback that we get is amazing. 
And the cool thing is that we talk pretty much every day from Monday to Thursday, we have a conversation with the whole group and we’re sharing ideas. We’re sharing wins, we’re sharing lessons. They’re asking questions. What if that happened, what if we now have, how could I have done that better or here’s what I did and here’s some feedback. 
So the cool thing about it is everybody in the group is getting feedback from other people and you don’t have to make the same mistakes to learn the lessons. It’s very, very cool. 
We’ve got a whole bunch of builders out trying different things, reporting on it. So when we find something that works, it can go into other builders businesses. And that’s why the rate of change and business improvement is so high in this group. And the cool thing with this podcast is that’s the stuff that I talked to you about. 
So none of this stuff is just me making up theory. It’s all stuff that originally was theory, but it’s been put out into the field and tried and we’ve gotten the feedback. 
So what are we talking about today? The topic of conversation is this question, what is your priority? So I’m gonna open that up, unpack that a little bit so you can understand why I’m being so pedantic in saying priority instead of priorities. 
And there’s a big, big difference in how things work out if you can understand this concept. We’re going back to our standard format. 
We’ve got a Q and A as well. The question is, how do we manage the phone inquiry? Because I’m finding that it is a bit of a distraction and energy interruptions because the phone rings at the most inopportune times. 
We don’t want to miss any opportunities, but we also so need to be able to focus, to get what we need to get done in a day. 
And then there’s an idea of the week. The idea of the week, this week is all about your portable camera crew. 
*Transcription of the show*
Why is it so important to understand what the word priority means? And the second thing we need to unpack is you understanding what yours is, what is your priority? 
And as I said, I’m being very, very careful to use the word priority because it turns out, and this was mentioned in a book called “The One Thing” I highly recommend getting a copy of the book, “The One Thing”. And it seems that the word or the term priorities didn’t start to come into popular use until the ’80s. 
And around about the same time, there were a lot of so-called time management gurus around the place, espousing the skill of multitasking and being able to get more things done by implementing multitasking, like a computer. 
The thing is even computers don’t multitask. Some of them do nowadays, but back then when I said that they didn’t, they just did one thing then another thing, but the rate of switching tasks was so fast it seemed like that they were doing things at the same time. 
Regardless of all of that, we’re not really a computer and we cannot and should not, and must not multitask. Unless there is one caveat to this. 
If you really wanna waste an absolute metric shit ton of time multitask, that’s the only caveat. If you wanna waste a lot of your time multitask away, because it is the best way to be unproductive and waste a whole bunch of time. 
Multitasking is the biggest time-waster that there is, that mindset just needs to be obliterated. 
Do not even attempt to multitask. To get the best return on your efforts you need to give priority to the actions that directly affect your number one goal. Let me say that again. 
To get the best return on your efforts and the one thing that I do know with builders, because I’ve been working with them for a long, long time, is I don’t think I’ve ever run into a lazy builder. They just work hard. They put the hours in, they get stuff done. 
Does that mean they’re productive? Not as much as you would think, but working hard isn’t the key here because you might be doing a lot of things that don’t have high leverage. 
So we’ve got to figure out what is the priority for the business and what are the actions that serve that priority. And then those actions need to get given priority. So the key mindset shift needed here is that you have a priority, not priorities and well, I think the best way to explain it, frog in the throat. 
The best way to explain it is if you know anything about surfing at all, and I don’t know a whole lot or that I do it on a stand up paddle board, but apparently that’s not proper surfing, even though I enjoyed it a lot, that in a surfing competition when a surfer has priority, they get to go first. 
Now I want you to think about that with the actions that you know, that you should be taking. 
To build your business in the direction that you wanna build. So I’ve spoken to many of you and you know what to do. You just don’t do it because you’re busy doing other things. 
And there’s a reason for that is because we don’t really understand this whole idea of priority. And there are things that make a big difference to the effectiveness, the profitability, the enjoyability, the efficiency, the productivity of your future business. 
There are things that can make a massive difference, but time after time in my conversations with builders is I seem to find that they’d put that activity in a place or decide to do that when they’ve got time. 
For the people just listening to the audio version, I was doing air quotes there. So what happens when we do this is there’s a little person in your head that really controls the show. 
And we’ve talked about this before in previous episodes, we get up and we go to work and we do all of these things, and we overcome challenges and we make decisions. And we even think that all of those decisions that we made that day to overcome these problems take advantage of opportunities, avoid disasters. 
We think that we made those decisions consciously, but we didn’t a massive proportion of the decisions you make every day are preordained because of your values and your beliefs and your habits, particularly your habits of thought. So you react the same way most of the time in these situations. 
And so what happens is that if we go, I know doing that activity, and I know having a daily direction meeting is important, it just makes so much sense. 
We should be doing daily direction meetings. But we’re that busy we just haven’t got time for them at the moment. So what’s happening there is you’re giving the person in charge ’cause you’re not the person up here in between your ears is in charge. 
And you’re giving that person information saying that you believe that this is important, but that person doesn’t listen to what you say. 
They watch what you do. And so if you say that this is important, yeah, I know how important it is, but I’m doing something else. The message that you’re really giving the subconscious is that something else is more important. 
And that’s why we get into the habit of giving priority to things that don’t have as high leverage in a lot of cases, that they don’t have much delivery at all. They’d just work, work, and you just keep doing it and doing, and doing it. 
And you’ll wonder why your days, weeks, and months, start to feel like Groundhog day, because you’re doing the same things over and over and over, you know what you should be doing, but you’re not doing it. 
And the reason that you’re not doing it is the person in charge in between your ears believes something else. They believe that the onsite work always trumps everything else. Talking to the customers, fixing a problem on site, always trumps everything else. 
The trouble is if you always give priority to the onsite stuff, even the administration stuff, and you don’t give priority to building procedures, improving your skills, improving your abilities, improving communication, things like that guess what’s going to change not much. 
So we need to make sure that we find out what the things are that are going to make the biggest difference and we need to do them first. Yes, that’s right, we need to do them first. But I start on site at 7:30. I wouldn’t have time to do those things. That’s just a choice. Change it. 
Either get up early or go to site a little bit later, you can have your daily direction meetings with the team on site, through Zoom meetings. There’s always a way around it, but the secret to your future success is proving to the person in charge that these things that make the biggest difference genuinely are important. 
And the only way that can happen is if you behave your way into that. You make the choice to perform those tasks that are directly related to your number one priority goal for your business, and you do them first. 
Make sure that you do them first. Just to wrap this up, believing that some things are equally important is a flawed mindset. There are no things, two things that are equally important. 
So we need to develop the skill of asking this question, what will happen if I don’t do this? And if you’re building your prioritized daily action list, you add the word today that helps you identify which is more important today. But if you look into the future and genuinely discover what would happen if I didn’t do this. 
What are the consequences you will find if you commit to doing this process, you will find there are many, many things that you have hypnotized yourself into thinking must be done, must be done, must be done. If I don’t the world will stop turning, but you look into the future having asked that question, what will happen if I don’t do that? And the answer quite often is not much. 
Sometimes it’s nothing like there are things that you will do every single day and you’ve hypnotized yourself into believing that they are important. If you never did them again, it would make no difference. If you can identify what those things are, guess what? You just got a chunk of time back. 
There is a reason why many of our blackbelt members, and we had the same conversation with one of our new blackbelt members the other day and it just made me laugh because he even used a 12:30. 
He said, I’ve got my whole, what I not used to get done in a long day, done by 12:30. And I feel a little bit guilty that I’m not doing enough. And I have had that conversation so many times with our members that they work really, really hard. 
They work long hours, they’re exhausted and so they can’t do the things that they know they should do at least in their mind. They implement these ideas, our PSR, our personal success ritual, our prioritized daily action list, these things. 
And in a really short space of time, they are getting everything that they used to get done done by lunchtime. They’re cutting their working day in half. It happens with monotonous regularity. That’s why now it’s possible. 
That’s why I know that I’m not talking shit here. I’m not just making stuff up. This can happen to you if you change your mindset and if you start to implement these processes, like the personal success ritual, the prioritized daily action list. 
If you don’t know what I’m talking about, go back through previous episodes and you will find the detail on how to do those couple of things, and it will make a massive difference. 
But the main thing that I want you to take away away from this part of the podcast is I need you to start to change your behavior, stop telling porkies to yourself, stop saying that that’s important and then not acting that way. 
You’ve got to start to act in a way that reflects you believe genuinely that these activities are more important than on site activities, than administration activities. They just are. And as soon as you start to invest time in performing these activities, you will start to get a return you will understand what I’m talking about. And then you will start to pass this message onto the rest of the people in your business, in your team. 
And start to help them become far more effective, far more productive, enjoy their day so much more and there’s just a string of benefits that come from that when that starts to be part of your environment, part of your culture and the thinking of the team. 
So I hope that made sense. Now, if you want help to implement that stuff, as I said, you can scroll back to previous episodes or you can talk to us about how we can help you do that really fast. 
We can give you all of the tools, everything you need to be able to implement that plus, plus, plus a whole lot more in 12 weeks. We run this program, it’s called “Blueprint the Blackbelt” just lasts for two weeks. In that 12 weeks, you will have accomplished that cut the working day in half. You will have implemented what we call the quality client pathway. 
That means that you’ll have a process in place that educate your clients into becoming better quality clients or educate your prospects rather into be being better quality clients and you’ll have a process that eliminates those time-wasters, tire-kickers, price shoppers, those people that steal, thieve your time. 
So again, by implementing this, you end up with more time to work on the things that really make a bigger difference. And then of course, the third pillar that we help you establish in that blueprint program is profit first. 
I wish I had a bunch of people around me now to talk about the difference that profit first makes, because they would blow you away with what they say. 
It is I know that this is game changer is used a lot. It’s kind of like a throw away, but this is a massive life changing process implementing profit first.
Q & A
The question was, if I scroll back to the top here, question was how to manage the phone inquiry because it’s often an interruption and sort of gets you out of flow if you’re in doing some sort of work, whether it be administrative or on site work on the tools even, and the phone keeps ringing, it’s very difficult to get a run on and get momentum. 
So here’s what I suggest is that you need to set up a process where you’re in control. You can still have people find your number. Like it can be on your website and so forth, but I just wouldn’t make it the focal point. 
What I would make the focal point is something that they can click and start the process of delivering information to you without you being involved in that process actively. And so there’s a couple of ways you can do that. 
And I would suggest that you do both of them. And this is a classic example of something that’s a bit high leverage that’s gonna give you back time permanently. 
Like getting rid of these distractions so you can create a schedule of call button. Now I’ve got Brian to just fast forward here, if you’re watching this rather than listening to us. So that’s the front of our website. So that’s the top of the website. And in big letters that says book a call. 
So what’s the focal point? In our case, there is no phone number, unless you go I think you’ve got to click away to the contact, but all over this page, schedule a call, schedule a call there’s buttons, and you click the button, fill out a form, tell us a little bit about your business. 
And then we can give you a call back and we’re already prepared for it and so on. And so you can do the same thing with your website. If people do have your telephone number, what you can do is have like a copy and paste message. And you can, if people ring, you let it go to message bank. 
And then what you can do is listen to the message in your own time, and then shoot them back a link with a little message saying, “Hey, I got your message. Will call you back shortly. Could you just give us a little bit of information, click this link and give us a little bit of information. 
So I’m really prepared when I talk to you on the phone.” And so what that does is a couple of things, is it gets them some response quite quickly without it interrupting your flow and what you’re doing. 
The second and probably most important thing is that it establishes that well, you don’t want to establish a precedent that they can just call you anytime, because eventually when they become a client of yours that they’re already used to just calling any time, any time of day, whether you’re working, whether you’re not well, and they get on the phone. 
Whereas if you’ve got processes in place, at least in the beginning that give them the opportunity to progress. So they’re getting some answers, they’re doing some things I feel like that they’re progressing. They’re not just waiting for you to call back. 
But it doesn’t set that precedent that they can just ring you any time. Because if you answer the phone, whenever they ring, that’s establishing that precedent and that will carry on throughout the project and it will make you very, very ineffective and unproductive. So I hope that makes sense.
Idea of the Week
So let’s go to idea of the week, and this is super simple, but can be very, very valuable for your business. 
And that is have a film crew with you wherever you go. Now, obviously I’m not talking a film crew, but I am talking about things like this. This is a tripod, it’s a very small tripod, and you can just leave it in your car. It doesn’t take up much space. 
You can get a little adapter and just use your phone for this. I’ve got another little tool that might be even better and that is this little, DJI Osmo Pocket I think it’s called. And it’s a 4K camera. I don’t know whether you know what that means, but it takes very, very high resolution video. And the cool thing about that is that you can bang it on your stand and you can just kind of put it out of the way a little bit. 
So if you’re talking to your customer, obviously you need to get their permission, but you don’t wanna be setting up big cameras and making them go back into their shell. You just got this little thing you can just pop it out of the way back behind you. 
And it’s got these amazing technology in it that it will lock onto their face and if they move around, it’ll move around and it’ll follow their face. And the beauty of it is if you put it sort of a little bit in the background, because it can record in 4K. So what that means is the standard television, which is high definition is 1080. And that’s the resolution. 
That’s the sharpness of the quality of the picture. Well, this is four times that, and what that means is that you can zoom in later on by four times. So you can zoom in on their face as if the camera was right close to them and you don’t lose any quality. 
So really great idea to have. ‘Cause this and this doesn’t take up much room at all. You can kind of keep it your car. And then something like this, this is just a little microphone, and you can just pin it on their jumper, it’s got a long lead and you can plug it into that. 
Or you can even get things like the Rode Wireless Go, they’ve just bought out a twin pack now. So you’ve got a tiny little thing about that big, which is the receiver that you can plug into the camera or your phone or whatever. And they got another two of these little things so you don’t need to buy microphones or whatever. 
They’re all in one little thing and you just clip it on, husband and wife shirt, and have a conversation with him and you get really, really good quality sound into your video. And why I’m saying this is a good idea, is testimonials are really, really important to help build your business. 
And I’m gonna talk about that in a future episode of how to get testimonials and what to talk about when you’re getting the testimonials, because most people get testimonials at the end of the job. That’s nice, but it’s nowhere near as useful as getting testimonials even before they become a customer. 
That’s right. Even before that, while they’re a prospect, you can get testimonials. And in a future episode, I’ll share with you why, and then how to do that. And it will make a big difference to the quality of your marketing. So I hope all of this made sense.
Takeaway & Jump On A Call
So what do I want you to take away from this? Well, I just feel that you have far more control over things or how things work out than you think you do. 
When you start to think about priority instead of priorities, and really start to behave in a way that talks to the person in charge up here, that these things really, really are the most important things. If then your time and your effort becomes an investment. It genuinely returns big time in the future. 
But if we just keep doing the same things over and over and become a victim to our own hypnosis, that the onsite stuff, the in the business stuff is the priority because of your behavior, because you always give it priority not much is gonna change. but you can change things big time. Just noticed Sheridan’s putting a comment to this fabulous tip regarding managing phone calls. 
What occurs to me is that when people are asked to write out their questions or requests, they begin to clarify their message that improves the whole communication process, 1,000,000%. That is fantastic Sheridan. I didn’t say that. I kind of knew that that’s what happens but I didn’t say it. 
So I’m glad you made that comment. So everybody else can get that as well. That when you put that little behavioral hurdle because that’s part of the quality client pathway, instead of just starting to talk to them and they start to talk to you about price and this and that, and the other, you put something in front of them to get them to start to think about the priority of the project. 
And then what, in their mind, when is the end date of this and any sort of idea of budget and all of those things that are really useful to have a meaningful conversation. So thanks for that comment, Sheridan. So the takeaway really is control what you can, you can control your communication skills. 
You can choose to improve them. There are tons of things out there to help you improve your communication skills, improve the procedures in your business, improve the way that you perceive things and managing your thoughts and your mindset it can make a profound difference. 
And so those things are things we can control the rest we only have influence. So what we need to do is improve our ability to influence those things that we can’t control. So you have a lot more control and influence over how things turn out than you think you do that’s my takeaway. 
So I hope that makes sense. As we’ve said through out the conversation today is I’d love you to book a call. There are so many things that we can help you overcome obliterate, learn, improve with your business super, super quickly. 
As I said, the way that we’re doing it is everything is field tested and we’re constantly improving things. So by jumping into the process now, you’re standing on the shoulders of giants, just you’re learning how to do things far more quickly, far more effectively because of the errors, the mistakes and the lessons that have been made by the people who went before you. 
And so all you need to do is jump on a call. We’ll find out if we can help, if we can’t, we’ll certainly point you in the right direction. But if we can, we can talk about all sorts of things about how it would suit you and what’s best for you and point you in the right direction. 
So all you need to do is, as I said, in the Q and A hit one of those buttons, schedule a call. There’s a link in the comment section if you’re watching in Facebook, same if you’re watching on YouTube, if you’re watching the replay on our blog, which is on buildersbusinessblackbelt.com.au. There’s a button underneath the video there which you can do the same thing. 
We’d love to talk to you. We’d love to help you and eliminate many of those costly and common problems that established builders experience every day. Hope this was valuable. 
We’ll be back again next week with another builder’s business success podcast. I’m Mick Hawes from Builders Business Blackbelt. Bye for now.
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