[00:00:00] ANNOUNCER: Welcome to The Real Estate Syndication Show. Whether you are a seasoned investor or building a new real estate business, this is the show for you. Whitney Sewell talks to top experts in the business. Our goal is to help you master real estate syndication.
And now your host, Whitney Sewell.
[0:00:24.1] WS: This is your daily Real Estate Syndication show. I’m your host Whitney Sewell. Today, our guest is Honorée Corder, thanks for being on the show Honorée.
[0:00:31.8] HC: Delighted to be with you, thank you for having me.
[0:00:34.2] WS: Yeah, I’m really looking forward to this conversation because I know that you are an expert in something that everybody listening struggles with, right now. I mean, I can almost guarantee it and I know I personally do. It’s like an everyday thing that I have to think about and think through.
I’m really looking forward to this and I know the listeners are going to get a lot of value out of your expertise and this value that you’re going to bring today and help us to walk through. A little about Honorée, she is an executive and strategic book coach, TEDX speaker, and the author of dozens of books including, You Must Write a Book. Honorée passionately coaches business professionals, writers, and aspiring nonfiction authors who want to publish their books to bestseller status, create a platform, and develop multiple streams of income one on one in the You Must Write a Book live coaching course. She also runs an Empire Builder’s Mastermind, and all sorts of other magical things and her, how do you say that? Bad-assery?
[0:01:35.0] HC: That’s right.
[0:01:35.9] WS: Is legendary. You can find out more at honoreecorder.com. She’s also published a book that’s recently come out: 15 Secrets Successful Real Estate Agents Must Know About Time Management with Kevin Cruz. She’s an expert on time management and helping people with time management.
I struggle with that and I know that the listeners are as well, Honorée. I look forward to getting into this but first, you know, give us a little more about who you are and how you became an expert in this field and then I want you to help us as well.
[0:02:06.0] HC: Sure. The book that I wrote with Kevin Cruz, I wrote 51 books on my own and I’ve written some books with Hal Elrod, so I work with him in the Miracle Morning book series and you have to be in that time management to be working on – I publish anywhere from three to 10 books a year and I coach and I speak and I am a mom and a wife and I have a cat and a dog and neighbors and email. Over the years, my background is an executive of business coaching and corporate training and time management is always something that is a topic of conversation that comes up because there always seems to be more to do on our to-do list than time to do it.
It’s figuring out what’s most important and figuring out the strategies to put in place and the boundaries and the rules and all those things and it’s really become one of the things that I’ve studied over the past – I’m not going to say how many years because that’s rude. I’m not going to cop to anything Whitney.
But I’ve studied it for a long time and becoming more effective and more efficient has been a real study and focus of mine. Not only for myself but to help others to maximize the time that they have. Because I believe that work is something that we do in order to enjoy our free time.
And if all we do is work and if all we’re doing is doing instead of being, that’s no fun.
[0:03:30.0] WS: I agree completely. I’m so looking forward to this because I can relate to this, everything you just said, but you know, you could have stopped at, “One book written and family and email,” and like had a full day, you know? Right there. I’m looking forward to thinking about our day maybe one day at a time but even a longer period of time as well and strategies and mindset and those things.
Help us get started and really thinking through, really laying out our time the best way throughout our day to be obviously the most productive. So we gain that time back that really is what we think we’re working towards anyway, right? It’s gaining more time with our family and doing those things that we feel are so important and are so important.
But we get so caught up and I’m as guilty as anyone, get so caught up and just running the day to day, on and on, and push as many hours as it takes and before you know it, two weeks had gone by and I barely had a meal with family.
[0:04:18.8] HC: Right, I think the very first place that I would tell anyone to start is to carve out some time when time is not rushed. Whatever day of the week, or evening of the week, or afternoon of the week, whether that’s a Friday afternoon before you leave the office or a Sunday afternoon after you’ve gone to church and you’ve had your nap, maybe that’s just me, right? What are some hours of time where you can sit and look at what’s coming in the future?
List some intention and purpose, based on vision. Maybe we start with the vision, what is it that you truly want, what’s most important to you and then not having a day in actuality before you have it visually in your mind. When I’m thinking about let’s say 2020, right? I have a 2020 vision. It’s a play on words, obviously. But the year 2020 is coming up. It’s not that far in the future.
When I look at what do I want to accomplish next year, I know that if I just show up every day and I wake up at whatever time I wake up and I look at my phone and then I look at my email and then I look at Facebook and then it’s 5:00 and nothing has happened. I feel unproductive and like I haven’t accomplished anything and I’m behind and I’m always running to catch up, right? I hate that feeling. I like to be ahead of the power curve, I was the star student, at least for two out of the 20 years I went to school, and I really like to turn things in ahead of time.
I don’t like to be the person that’s doing my taxes on April 14th or April 15th or April 16th or filing an extension.
[0:06:00.3] WS: Or August.
[0:06:01.2] HC: Or August, right? Or whatever. I like to be ahead of the power curve in there is something very powerful about knowing that your Christmas shopping is done by December 15th. How do you do that? The way to do that is to look at what do I want to accomplish and then putting time blocks on your calendar ahead of time.
Starting with I have four weeks of vacation that I would like to take and when am I going to take those weeks, blocking those off and holding them sacrosanct, that nothing is going to change your mind about when that time block is going to occur. My personal rule is I don’t work evenings, weekends or holidays.
I have a dividing line between work and play, family time, recreational time. I get up early in the morning and I get up with intention and purpose. I get up at the same time every day, I have the same routine, I have work hours, I’m not doing anything that isn’t on my calendar when my calendar says it’s time to do it. However, it is surprising to some people, when they really get in the weeds with me and they’re like “Okay, how do you do all the things?” And what would surprise most people is that the hour of noon, right? Lunch time is lunch and rest.
I work at home, I get up from my desk, then go and I eat something. Sometimes I read a book, sometimes I sit on the porch with my dog, or my daughters, sometimes I take a nap but that is time away and then I am done working at 4:30 every day and not working after that. I get up from my desk, I shut up my computer. I walk away and I go do something else.
There are lines in the sand, lines of demarcation that say this is work time and this is non-work time which allows me to be effective and efficient, to recharge, and then to perform when I am working. I said a lot there, a lot to unpack, right?
[0:07:54.7] WS: It’s great things that you mentioned there, and I love how you’re like, you’re so rigid about that 4:30, this is time for my afternoon with the family, whatever we have planned, right? With the family and it’s time to turn the work off, okay? I struggle with that because it’s like, there’s still work to be done and I’m just, the mindset of like “Okay, however long it takes, I’m just going to get it done,” you know, that’s my thought process.
I’m pushing through, however many hours it takes, I’m going to get it done. You know, there’s times when my family sacrifices or I would say often, because of that, you know? Because I’ll be in the office till midnight if that’s what I feel like it takes, you know?
[0:08:27.9] HC: Time blocking for me is a way that I get things done. I have an hour block or a two-hour block or a three-hour block and those are consistent blocks where this is the time that I’m working on my business, this is the time I’m working in my business, these are the hours that I have available for these types of things, which is a shift for most people, right? To say, these are the days that I have to have appointments, these are the days and the times that I have to have appointments, and these are the days and times that I am working on writing or editing, or proof reading, or business development, or follow-up.
Those are appointments on my calendar with myself. When someone says, “When do you have time to meet?” Sometimes I’m scheduling them two or three weeks in advance because I want to make sure that I’m not working until midnight on something because I didn’t use my time effectively, does that make sense?
[0:09:19.2] WS: Yes, it does and so I would like to know, how do you know those things that can wait though? It’s noon, you have two minutes till you’re fixing to go to lunch. However, you know, you get this email or somebody’s like “Honorée, I really, I need this right now,” or whatever it may be. You know, there’s some kind of task that comes up that’s very important, are you going to move that around, how flexible can you be?
[0:09:39.9] HC: Well so, I’m not checking my email at that time. I have time on my calendar twice a day to look at email and it is not that I am not keeping an eye on it in case of emergency but there’s no publishing emergency, right? There’s nothing that can’t wait until.
[0:09:56.9] WS: There’s nothing that can’t wait until you can get to it or till you have the time next, right?
[0:10:01.4] HC: Correct. I’m not a brain surgeon, I don’t work in the ER, and I don’t think I’m that important and also, if something is that important, someone is going to call me or text me. I am not going to get an email for an emergency, right? A true emergency is going to come, there will be a knock at my door, a true emergency, there’s somebody with a badge, right? Or an axe or a fire hose, right?
That’s a true emergency. Everything else, I think can actually wait. I used to be in reaction instead of proactive and I used to be that person that was like, I respond to the emails right away. I am Jane on the spot, right? I have found that no one died, nothing really truly went wrong, nothing burned to the ground, no one didn’t sell or buy anything because I didn’t respond immediately. When I started to put my priorities in order, and then to calendar items, I think this is important to say, when something need to get done, I don’t write it on a to-do list. I put it in my calendar.
[0:11:07.5] WS: I like that.
[0:11:09.1] HC: I have a time to do every type of task and when someone says, “Could you send me a book?” Right? For example, someone will send me an email, “I’d like a signed copy of your new book. I’m going to Venmo you the money or PayPal you, or send you a check,” or whatever, right? Once I’ve gotten that then it goes in the mail out books hour, right?
Or the follow-up hour or the write a thank you note hour. Those sorts of task items where I’m at my desk and II don’t have to be smart, right? All of us have different times of the day when we are more creative and we can do the harder tasks and so I save those hours and those times for those types of activities. Then, in the later hours of the day or in the evening, I will do those important monetary tasks. Now, you asked me how I know what’s important? I put revenue-generating activities above anything else.
The first thing that I’m going to answer are my clients, the clients who have engaged me, those are the things I’m going to answer first. The things I’m going to answer next are the inquiries or the referrals, those sorts of things. If an actual person needs something, those are going to come above, “I need to write someone a thank you note for something” or “I need to send something in the mail” or I need to respond to something that isn’t revenue-generating but is still something I would want to respond to. Does all that make sense? It’s prioritizing.
[0:12:32.0] WS: It does, it makes so much sense. I’d love for you to break down even from – I know you talked about like 2020 vision, what you have planned for next year, you blocked this time for vacation, you said “Okay, this week, I’m doing that,” those big things. Could you bring that on down to even like today? Or tomorrow? We’ll say. Really laying out our day so we have the best time management and maybe some tips of how you do that.
[0:12:53.7] HC: Sure, everything is about pipeline. No matter what business you’re in, there’s a great book called Go for No which is how may no’s do you need to get in order to get a yes. Figuring out, if I teach a course, which was mentioned in my bio when you did the introduction – if I teach a course, looking at how many students I want to have in that course, I back into that. How many people need to say no when they find out how much it is, or when it is, or what the commitment is, or how long it’s going to take, or the timing compared to them writing their book and how many people I need to talk to.
I have hours of follow-up every single week that are on my calendar. They’re literally five blocks of time that are an hour long every single week where I am going through my list to see who I need to follow-up with. Do I need to give them a call, am I sending them a text, what kind of relationship do I have with them, am I sending them an email, did I send them a contract and they haven’t sent it back to me, did they send me their contract back and now I’m supposed to send them signed books, what does that look like?
Also, as part of my referral process and thank you process, if someone referred to that person, I’m writing a thank you note. All of that goes into that hour, that’s revenue-generating prospecting and follow-up, if that makes sense. Those hours are on my calendar and by gosh and by golly, that’s when my but is in the chair and I am doing that follow-up as someone who writes every day and I’m writing these books, I have the hour that I write every day. I’m always producing a book and there is editing or proof-reading time, there is marketing time and those hours are on my calendar.
Also, I need to do what I call Grippin’ and Grinnin’, which is business development revenue-generating activity in the form of face time. Developing relationship with people who are either going to hire me or refer me. I will go and have those meetings in person or I’m going to have a Zoom meeting or a Skype meeting. I’m having those conversations or I’m making those phone calls to those strategic partners. That time is on my calendar.
[0:14:51.4] WS: You mentioned earlier that you are up early and even mentioned like your best times a day for doing specific things and you just talked about, a few things you’re doing through the day. Could you elaborate on like maybe some of the first things you are doing in the morning and why that’s important. Then some other things throughout the day that are maybe the most common best times of day to do specific things that we might not normally know.
[0:15:15.3] HC: Sure. So, I am a big believer in meditation. My first thing that I do in the morning usually before my alarm goes off at 4:30 is I am doing a guided meditation and so by the time my alarm goes off at 4:30 I can go all the way down. This is my power up ritual and then I have a power down ritual. So, part of my power down ritual is laying out the clothes that I am going to put on right when I get up because I have a routine that I follow and then an alarm to take my dog out.
So, from 4:30 until 6, I am writing a thank you note. The very first thing I do is write one, two, three, four, five thank you notes and it takes three minutes per thank you note including stamping it and getting it ready to go for somebody who has done something for me the previous day. So, if there is anyone who said anything for me today, I have this call of view, it is not going to be a surprise when I say, “Hey Whitney was is your mailing address?”
I had a meeting earlier today, someone gave me a book so I am going to send her a thank you note for her time and for the book. I am coming up with a reason to show gratitude. I think that gratitude practice is great the first thing, there is always at least one person to send a thank you note for, especially if you are looking. Then I read. I set a timer and I have books on my desk that I am reading, and I will set a timer for 10 or 15 minutes per book and then I am doing some visualizations and affirmations out loud and written.
I am reviewing my goals right behind this screen is another board and I have pictures of things, vision board if you will. Things that are just going into my subconscious mind. So I am doing those morning practices. Then I have an alarm that sounds like a dog barking and my dog knows that when that alarm goes off, it is time to go for a walk and while I am walking, I am listening to an audio book. Usually on one and a half or two speed on Audible.
So I always have a book that’s queued up and I go for a two mile walk give or take with my dog, depending on the weather, all of those sorts of things then I am coming back and getting ready as quickly as possible for the day. I believe all of this probably takes a little bit longer than yours, right? So, my goal is to get in and get back out here as quickly as possible because at 8:00 I have an hour of something to do. At 9:00 I have an hour of something to do.
At 10:00 I have an hour or 90 minutes or two hours or three hours of something to do, whether that is a strategic block where I am working on my business, a coaching call, a class that I am teaching, a manuscript that I am reviewing, all hours are accounted for before I start the day. I never wake up and just go, “How am I going to spend my day today?” Except on the day that I am not working. So, evenings, weekends, and holidays – those are unscheduled time.
Because I am so intentional with my time and strategic and purposeful with my time, I figured out what activities are going to get my goals, figure out what the goals are based on the vision and then what are the activities that support the goal. It is just basically how many knows and how many yeses, how many yeses do I need based on the goal to achieve the vision? It is not rocket science or rocket surgery as they say, it is just what it is, right?
I just back into it with the data points and then I work from that. So then when it is time to follow-up with someone, that comes up. It is my hour block of time, you just pick up the phone, smiling and dialing, and just dialing or sending an email or sending a text message or sending a note, whatever that looks like. When the timer goes off and I am done, I didn’t get everything done, Whitney, it never all gets done but I know if I don’t step away then I don’t show up tomorrow with joy and excitement.
I wake up every single day thinking, “Today could be the day that something magical happens. It is a good day to have a good day, I wonder what amazing this is going to happen today.” I don’t resent my job, but it is not even a job. I don’t resent the work that I do because it isn’t my whole entire life. My work life supports my shoe shopping. It supports my mother-daughter dates. It supports my vacations with my husband. It is meant to monetarily support the rest of my life and things that I am interested in that are not work.
[0:19:32.6] WS: Yes, I love how you mentioned it never all gets done and that’s hard for me to chew on that for a while. You know it is hard for me to take that in sometimes. It’s like “No, I’ve got to get this done, I’ve got to get this done.” I think if you can realize that there is always going to be something to do, it is easier to just shut it off and say, “Okay we are going to put that away for a while because it is still going to be here tomorrow.”
[0:19:52.1] HC: It is still going to be here tomorrow and unless it is something important where someone said, “Send me a proposal, send me a contract. I would like more information about X,” then it can wait until the next block of time that I have because I know it will get done. I think that is the peace of mind part that you might be looking for that your listeners might be looking for, which is if you feel like you’re just working and working, and it doesn’t all get done.
You also then don’t have the answer to “When will it ever get done?” I know it will get done at some point because it is on my calendar to get done. I have a stack of books that I haven’t sent out yet because I haven’t written the accompanying thank you note, but every day I write one or two thank you notes to go with one or two books. One or two books go in the mail. I figured out how much they weigh. I bought the postage.
So, every day the pile is dwindling. I know that by the end of the week or in the beginning of the week next week, all of the books will be out and no one is sitting there going, “I can’t live my life until I get to this other book,” because the to be read file is huge.
[0:20:57.7] WS: So, you also mentioned that through your day you said like “Okay, at 8AM you’ve got an hour of this, at 9AM you’ve got an hour of this.” Do you do that often? Is it usually like hour blocks of different things? Does that help you stay productive to change it up like that or is that just how long those tasks take?
[0:21:13.5] HC: I just schedule hour blocks for coaching even though most of my coaching sessions are half an hour, but that gives me preparation time and come down time, sending the notes, sending the home work, sending the follow-up email, the thank you note, whatever that looks like. I am having buffer time. I believe in having time not going from thing to thing to thing without bandwidth to just think, right? Travel time what if there is an accident in a freeway and I am going to a meeting?
I try to stagger instead of doing something from 8 to 9:30 and then having something at 9:45. I will give myself until 10 or 10:30 so I have time to think. I might even have time to look at my phone and see if there is something that is more important than not. I can email someone and say, “Oh Whitney, you have been asking me for my bio and I am on the road but I will be sure to get that to you in the next day or so,” that gives you peace of mind because you’ve heard that.
[0:22:07.7] WS: I like it. You brought up another good point there that might give you time to look at your phone. So, during this hour block, from eight to nine you got this task, where is your phone?
[0:22:16.9] HC: On do not disturb, leavemealone.com, next to me. It is next to me, but it is not buzzing. There are no buzzers, there are no dings, there are no rings, with the exception of, I have alarms to remind me when it is time to do something. I will give you an example. When I met with someone earlier today, I knew that I needed to be back and ready for you and so when I sat down, don’t you always go like, “What time is it? How much time do I have left? Has too much time passed? Did I miss my window? Am I running late?”
I will say to someone when I am on the phone with them, I have a hard stop at this time so I am going to set an alarm five minutes before. My phone is on do not disturb so when my phone actually starts quacking at us, then it is time for us to wrap it up and if we are having a great time, we can schedule a follow-up appointment. But pretty much that’s time for us to wrap it up because I am going to roll out of here.
[0:23:09.8] WS: I like that as well because I will often get on calls that will last too long but I think you made a good point there like saying that upfront right away, “I have a hard stop at this time.” You know you are trying to be respectful, but this conversation can’t take two hours.
[0:23:22.9] HC: And I don’t want my phone to be going off. I don’t want to be looking at my phone and I want to be respectful and fully present and I know my phone will take care of me. That is another strategy for when you are working on your computer with your phone next to you, I tend to work in 50-minute hours. So, if I have the 8:00 hour to clean out my email inbox and write some notes and just do some general administrative nonsense, which by the way I do not do general administrative nonsense at eight in the morning. That is valuable thinking time, right?
The admin stuff happens later, however I will set the timer on my phone for 50 minutes because what I want is just a minute to make a fresh cup of coffee, go to the restroom, check and see if anyone texted me, my husband, “What’s going on?” You know God forbid someone has a flat tire and they need me to come pick them up, or something like that, right? I don’t want to be completely disconnected.
But I do communicate that to my immediate folks, my family. I will say I am going dark for three hours, so you know 911 is your best bet, right?
[0:24:32.2] WS: All right Honorée, we have about four minutes before we end this interview. So anyway, a couple more questions though. What about an assistant? Are you using assistants? Do you have virtual assistants? Do you have people who are helping you like lay these tasks out?
[0:24:45.7] HC: I do. I have someone who takes the inquiries for me. So I have an assistant where the emails go to that person and when someone does an inquiry and they’re just saying, “I heard you on a podcast and I would like to write a book, what does that look like?” Then that email will be something that my assistant handles to send how it generally works and then if they’re like, “Hey that sounds great. I’d like to know more,” then she will schedule a discovery call with me.
So, she’ll get that person on the phone with me and she’ll book 15 minutes or 30 minutes for me to talk to the person to see if I am the right fit but all of that is handled. So, access to my email, access to my calendar to make sure that everyone gets taken care of. That the things that I am doing are the things that I have to do. Absolutely using Calendly and an assistant, a virtual assistant, I recommend all of those things.
When you do the math, if you take your goal, let’s say, “I want to make a million dollars a year.” I did this exercise recently last week. Actually, I was at a conference and they suggested it. So, I did it out, I was like, “Okay, if I wanted a million dollars of revenue from a business, then what is an hour of my time worth?” Well, it comes down to be $800 an hour. An assistant is $20 an hour and so if I make $800 an hour, I can pay for 40 hours of an assistant. When you think of your time like that, why would you do something that you can pay someone $20 an hour to do?
And most people will say, “I can’t afford an assistant. I can’t delegate things,” so having an assistant and delegating absolutely key, many hands make light work, big fan.
[0:26:20.4] WS: The listeners have heard me rant and rave about hiring a virtual assistant today because yeah it has changed my life. So quick tip on email management, other than having that structured with your assistant.
[0:26:31.6] HC: Scheduling blocks of time to do it and then I set my timer for 21 minutes. I have a half an hour block of time and then I am answering as many emails as possible. I have lots of folders. If I send someone an email and I say, “Can you meet Thursday at 1:00?” I will hold that time on the calendar for that person, so that I don’t give that time away because very often it will go into the spam or something like that and then I file it in my waiting for file.
Then when it is time to check email, I go into that folder and it’s like, “What am I waiting for? Who do I need to follow-up with?” But it is not in my inbox. I like my inbox to be zero.
[0:27:08.6] WS: Great, so a few quick questions. What is a way that you’ve recently improved your business that we can all apply to ours? Maybe something we haven’t discussed.
[0:27:16.3] HC: I feel like I’m on the hot potato. I started doing a work-out at the end of the day. I started doing a cardio workout at the end of the day to ensure that I would hold the line with stopping work.
[0:27:28.7] WS: What is the one thing that’s contributed to your success, like the most important thing?
[0:27:33.1] HC: Two things. I embrace hard work. I don’t ever take anything for granted.
[0:27:38.6] WS: I love it and tell us how you like to give back?
[0:27:41.2] HC: So, I am a Rotarian. I donate a good percentage of my time reading to kids in schools and doing Habitat for Humanity builds and anything I can do in the community. Also, I give monetarily. I think the more money you make, the more generous you can be.
[0:27:57.3] WS: Great, well an amazing show. I appreciate just this focus on time management because it is something I struggle with, I mean, every day. I know the listeners are as well and I just appreciate you being able to lay out just some really actionable things that we can do right now to think about our day and how we are spending our time. But tell the listeners how to get in touch with you and learn more about you and what you’re doing?
[0:28:17.4] HC: My website is honoreecorder.com and on the front page of the website, they can download a free copy of my book, You Must Write a Book. I am @honoree on every social media site ever except for Snapchat because I am too old for that.
[0:28:32.1] WS: Don’t go yet, thank you for listening to today’s episode. I would love it if you would go to iTunes right now and leave a rating and written review. I want to hear your feedback. It makes a big difference in getting the podcast out there. You can also go to the Real Estate Syndication Show on Facebook so you can connect with me and we can also receive feedback and your questions there that you want me to answer on the show. Subscribe too so you can get the latest episodes.
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[END OF INTERVIEW]
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