Q4 Tips and Tools to Stay Afloat

October 1, 2018

Time is our most precious commodity when it comes to productivity. We start each day optimistically planning to complete a good portion of our workload, only to find ourselves at the end of the day questioning where the time has gone. Truth of the matter is, it’s hard to work efficiently when there’s so much to do, and it feels as if there’s just never enough time.

To help increase your productivity, we got in touch with several of our Client Services managers to get some quick tips on tools and resources that will come in handy this fourth quarter.

Use Outlook to plan your day. Outlook offers a myriad of features that can help you keep track of everything on your to-do list. Start by putting time on your Outlook calendar for all the things that you normally do during the day like CRM activities, renewal preparation, and relationship building calls. This will help ensure that the day doesn’t slip away before getting the chance to complete everything you set out to do. A Rules feature that is often underutilized allows you to have emails from a specific sender or with specific wording in the subject line to automatically go to a designated folder.

Try grouping your work. Your workload becomes more manageable when you organize tasks that require a similar skillset. For example, make all your calls together, work all your proposal requests together, and send all your renewal emails together. This can keep you focused on a specific project without feeling the urge to jump around to unrelated tasks. If something unrelated comes to mind, jot it down and go back to it later. Multi-tasking is a highly praised skill, but it doesn’t always allow you to make the most of your workday the way grouping does.

Share the workload. It’s not uncommon to look at your list of tasks and feel inclined to do it all yourself. However, there’s a reason we use the phrase, “better together.” Each of the individual departments here can serve as an asset—helping you check a number of items off your list. For example, after cross-selling clients on new benefits, it can definitely be a challenge adding in those new options, especially during fourth quarter. With the help of the 

Integrated Benefits team, they can create a simple Benefit Guide to present to your client, highlighting these updates and changes. Or, if you find yourself flooded with employee enrollments, reach out to the Enrollment Solutions team. They can alleviate a ton of stress by enrolling employees in voluntary and core benefit options. Remember you are never alone; there are people here to support you!

Pre-recorded Webinars and Video-based Learning. This time of year, when you are being pulled in so many directions, you need creative ways to be present and still deliver a quality renewal product. A great way to balance the two is by utilizing video-based learning tools, like BrainShark or pre-recorded webinars to compliment your enrollment meetings. Pre-recorded webinars and video-based learning gives us the ability to be in multiple places at one time, providing your clients with the additional support they’ve come to expect from us. Not only does it open up more time on your calendar, but gives your clients the convenience to use the video during the most opportune time for them or their employees.

Above everything else, the most important thing to do during fourth quarter is to start now and continue implementing different practices throughout the year to help you stay efficient and productive. Not every time management suggestion may be to your benefit, but with an open-mind and consistent effort, you’ll learn what works best for you.

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