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Tackling Big Projects...Time Blocking, Chunking, and Eliminating Distractions


Quick video to share how we use time blocking, task chunking, and distraction elimination... 3 great hacks for tackling big projects.


Anton Anderson:   Hey, everyone. What's up? Anton Anderson here co-founder of Elite Resource Team. Hope you're having a great day. It's Good Friday. And you know what? I'm just diving into recording some new content. But as I was doing that, I had an idea for a video here just to show you kind of the way we do things behind the scenes. So let me ... Just chilling in my office here. Beautiful day in San Diego.


And I wanted to show you what my calendar looked like today. Because this is pretty consistent with how we try to structure our calendars to tackle big tasks. Right? So you'll see here's Friday the 19th. You'll see two different colors here. Mine is green. My business partner is red. And Ken does all of the sales in our company. We have two other full-time salespeople as well. But what you'll see is these are the sales calls for the day that he's handling. So he's got nine different new sales calls. I'm in green. So let me show you the difference between these two. There's my calendar. Two and a half hours this morning from eight to 10:30 blocked out for new training videos. I've got a couple things in the middle of the day I need to handle and then I've got three and a half hours in the afternoon blocked out as well, record new training videos.


So what's my point? First of all, it's so important to work on the business versus always working in the business. And the way you have to do that is by blocking time in your calendar. So typically if today was a normal work day and we had the rest of our team here, they would see this on my calendar. Everybody in the office has a link and they will know when Anton's recording or working on new content, don't go in and ask questions. Just let him work on that. Now if you can't, at this point, focus an entire day on working on the business, then you might have to kind of balance a mix of what looks like my calendar in the morning so you block off two and a half hours to tackle the big important projects. And then you have the afternoon to really focus on the short-term and medium-term revenue generating activities. Those could be meeting with clients, doing sales calls, et cetera.


So example of what you could be focusing on in this two and a half hours, well, in our training program, it's all about helping advisors obviously build those relationships with the CPA. So this could be focused on learning new scripts. Learning and information about new planning strategies. Getting more familiar with the email templates, and the phone calorie scripts, or the tax season survival kits, going through the training portal, whatever that looks like. So that's the first thing I want to discuss in terms of a cheat code today. Blocking off time in your calendar and sticking to it, right?


The second thing. So here, this is the editing software. But let me show you, I want to show you what chunking looks like. Chunking is another technique that we use. And basically what you're doing is you're taking a big project. It's the old analogy of how you eat an elephant. And you break it down into chunks. So the first chunk is, okay, we are building a new version of our online training portal. We're going to take that and break it down into nine-week segments. So everything in bold there is the title of the nine weeks. Then after that, you're going to break that down into smaller chunks. So you can see week one introduction and then I have nine different training videos for week one I need to do. Then we break it down even further. What do I have to do for each one of those individual training videos? Will I need to build a PowerPoint? I need to a record a video, edit a video, upload the video, add the video to our training portal, and then I have a note here. Are any supporting documentations needed in addition to the training? And if so, are they done or do I still need to create them?


So you can see, this is what I do every day when I'm working on new content. I'm just mapping out exactly where I'm at in the process, what have I recorded, what have I created, what does Michael need to help with the editing on, when does it get uploaded into the portal? And that gives us an idea of exactly where we're at in the project. And this will probably be a four month project or so for us. So that's blocking off time, that's chunking.


And then the last thing I want to talk about. Let me just take a step back here and show you what my desk looks like when I'm in this content creation zone and I'm about to dive deep into it. But you can see here, what does it look like? Super clean. Very, very little going on here. And typically if this was a normal work day, we would have our team. Oh, you can't really see because the reflection, but you get the idea. And my door is shut. That means do not come in. All of my desk is super clean because I don't want any distractions.


So as soon as I finish filming this video, I'm actually going to shut down my calendar. My email is already shut, as you can see. My desk phone is on silent. My Apple Watch, you can see that little moon in the top. That means I've turned off all notifications because I want zero distractions. And I even take it one step further. I don't even want to leave my office for the next two and a half hours. So if this was a typical day and our team was here, I don't want to go into the kitchen and have our in-house attorney ask me some question that's going to send my mind down one direction. I don't want our marketing consultant, Michael, to take a look at a question about the website or Facebook ads and ask me questions on that. So what do I do? I make sure that I have everything I need for the next two and a half hours in my office. I have snacks, protein bar, three extra water bottles in addition to my water bottle already on my desk. Cool.


So that's basically everything I wanted to cover today. Just wanted to talk about that. Time blocking, chunking big projects down into individual small pieces, and then really creating that environment that's very clean, minimalist, zero distractions. Because it will probably take me 45 minutes to an hour just to really feel like I'm getting in the zone. And then once I get in, nothing is going to distract me to pull me out of that. So that's it. I hope everyone has a great day.

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