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Q&A: Rob Cairns talks about productivity for agency owners

Rob Cairns talks productivity

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In Toronto, Canada, Rob Cairns is making his mark in his part of the world. As an agency owner for over ten years with clients ranging from the local jewelry owner to Fortune 500 clients.

Over the years, Cairns has embraced his love of website design, technology, digital marketing, and productivity to become a successful agency.

Cairns admits to being somewhat of a podcast junkie, which he often consumes while walking, one of his favorite modes of transportation.

Rob is also a huge sports fan. When his beloved Toronto Raptors won the NBA title last year, fewer people were happier than he.

He and his wife Jill enjoyed the championship run while attending the games and joining the city-wide party.

You can often find Rob doing one of his Stunning Digital Podcasts or attending a workshop with a vendor such as SEM Rush.

Rob is also a volunteer with the Ontario Police Memorial Foundation and the national foundation honoring fallen officers. He is an active member of his community and serves as a mentor for many in the digital marketing space.

And, by the way, Rob has been using MainWP faithfully for the past couple of years.

About MainWP, Rob says, “MainWPis the solution that helps me manage my agency’s care plans efficiently and effectively.”

Today you will learn:

  • Why he doesn’t do website design
  • Why he studies productivity
  • What his biggest struggle has been
  • The one thing that will kill productivity for agencies
  • This top three tools to help productivity
  • What he likes to do when he isn’t working
  • His favorite podcasts
  • The four books that made the biggest impact on his life
  • Rob’s five tips for increasing productivity

Rob, can you tell us a little about your background and how you got into digital marketing?

I originally have a background in tech support. 10 Years ago, this March, I transitioned into a web design agency. After a year, I realized web design was only part of the Marketing puzzle, and as a result, I transitioned into a full marketing agency.

What lead you to take an interest in improving productivity?

It was an effort to make my life more efficient. I started on this quest around the time I was 20, and now I am 52. And you know what, I am still trying to make my life more productive.

What is one of the biggest struggles you have had with productivity?

For a long time, my biggest struggle was not being a slave to my email. Then I figured out I only needed to check it 2 or 3 times a day. Much better.

What is one of the biggest mistakes you see agencies and agency owners make regarding productivity?

They take calls at all times of the day and do not schedule things. They jump on non-emergencies like everything is 911. This kills productivity.

What are your top three tools that help you with productivity?

1. Google Calendar – to manage my schedule
2. Clickup – to manage projects for my agency.
3. My Journal = it helps me think things out and look back on them.

What kinds of things do you like to do during your non-work time?

I love watching sports, especially the World Champion Toronto Raptors, spending time with my wife Jill, Reading, and watching movies.

I know you are a big podcast fan. What are your favorite podcasts?

Business Wars
Smart Web Creators
The Tim Ferris Show
The Kim Doyal Show
The Next Big Idea

What are the books that have made the biggest impact on your life?

1. Awake the Giant Within by Tony Robbins – It was what started me taking care of my mental state.
2. Getting Things Done by David Allen. This is the ultimate productivity book.
3 1984 by George Orwell – when it was written, it was a look into the future.
4. Any “Hardy Boys” books – these books started my love of reading

What other things can you share to help us improve productivity?

1. Minimize the number of times in a day you check email.
2. Eat the Frog – do big tasks first thing in the morning.
3. Schedule out your day, including to-do items in your calendar.
4. Eat well, exercise, and sleep well.
5. Take care of your mental health.

Wrapping it up

Rob is one of those guys that you may not know, but once you do, he’s that best friend you didn’t know you had.

You can find out more about Rob and his business at his company website or keep up with him on Twitter or Facebook.

He’s active in a few groups on Facebook, including Content Creators, Web Creators Community, and the MainWP Users Facebook group.

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Donata Stroink-Skillrud
Donata Stroink-Skillrud
President of Agency Attorneys

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