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Financial planning is a pretty tough job. If you’re running a firm and advising, that job is even more difficult. There are a lot of balls in the air and, to use another cliche, a lot of hats that need to be worn. Keeping track of everything a firm needs to run smoothly, in addition to starting and facilitating relationships with clients, requires the ability to multitask and prioritize. Forming positive habits can make you more efficient, effective, and successful. Here are a few great places to start:

Time Blocking

If you’re having trouble accomplishing everything on your to-do list, time blocking could help you cross more items off in less time. In short, time blocking is the practice of segmenting tasks into timed slots. Start by taking an overview of your day; decipher how long each task should take you to complete. From there, you segment your day accordingly. You have one hour to finish paperwork, an hour for a new consultation, 30 minutes for follow-up paperwork, and so on. Time blocking is especially great as a tool for gauging productivity. You may find that certain tasks take longer than you thought they might, and you’ll have to adjust your blocks going forward.


Speaking of to-do lists, it can be easy to overwhelm yourself with an endless list of tasks. They may all seem pressing, but chances are a little time won’t hurt. Readjusting your to-do list to include only the six most important and one vital task to complete during the day prioritizes items on your agenda while helping you reach your long-term goals. By adequately prioritizing tasks, you’ll find yourself more focused on the most pressing agenda items, and more clear-headed going into the next day’s list.

Focus on Clients

Many financial planners, especially those who manage or own firms, fall into the trap of focusing their attention on the day to day business concerns. Instead, financial planners should always keep the majority of their attention on clients. Whether you’re marketing for new business or meeting with current clients, focusing on the people who drive your business will set you up for success. Why? For one, they drive revenue. Additionally, focusing on clientele will show you what your firm does well or needs to work on from the business perspective.

In the end, financial planning, and running a firm, comes down to one word: organization. If you’re effectively organizing your time, priorities, and attention, you’re on track to being as efficient as possible and wildly successful in the long run.

Chris Jacob is a Registered Representative with Saxony Securities, Inc.. Securities offered through Saxony Securities Inc. (SSI). Member FINRA, SIPC. Non-security products and services or tax services are not offered through SSI. Cadeau is not affiliated with SSI.