Hacks for reaching goals, managing mornings and asking for referrals

Success is often achieved in small, consistent steps. MDRT members share their tips and hacks that make life and work easier for them.

Small steps

A key to reaching your goals is to measure your achievements. The shorter these measurements are, the easier it will be to track your productivity and, in turn, the easier it will be to correct what is not turning out as you had planned. Before he became a professional basketball player, Michael Jordan had to learn to dribble a ball. Before becoming a successful financier, Warren Buffett had to learn how to add and subtract. The common denominator for these people is what they wanted to be was clear, so they proceeded step by step toward fulfilling small goals without stopping to focus on their ultimate goal.

Herman Colin, LUTCF, CLI, Estado de Mexico, Mexico, 15-year MDRT member

Better impression

When asking for referrals, if we just say, “Are there any friends you could refer me to?” clients can just answer, “Let me think about it and tell you later” or simply reject your request. Instead, when I ask for a referral, I say, “So after our discussion, what do you think is different from your first impression of me?” Then, I ask them to tell me two or three clear differences and to share those with their friends or family. Consequently, the referral target will know a little about me, which makes them more approachable before the first meeting. 

Ta-hung Kuan, Taipei, Taiwan Area, nine-year MDRT member

Scheduling energy

I think you can’t manage time, but you can manage energy, so I tend to be more selective of what I do during different hours. If I’m doing anything that is purely administrative, I do that first thing in the morning. I get up at 5 a.m. and start working at 6 a.m. From then to 8 a.m. is really when the administrative and strategic time is, because by the time I get into office, there are a lot of conversations, discussions and meetings, and very little time for thinking or planning. 

Chee Hong Gan, ChFC, CLU, Singapore, 13-year MDRT member

This was excerpted from the January/February 2023 Round the Table article, “12 hacks for scheduling your mornings, editing email and asking for referrals.”

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