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Viet Ha Do Discusses Productivity and Keeping a Work-Life Balance

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Viet Ha Do began her professional journey at Merrill Lynch. She then worked for several investment firms on Wall Street, before she made a transition to real estate. In 2009 she became involved with real estate investing and management focusing on multi-family residential real estate.

Throughout her career, Viet Ha Do has played a central role in value-add processes by bringing superior organizational skills, attention to detail, and a positive attitude to daily work. She does not rest when a real estate project’s goals are met. Instead, she seeks new and innovative ways to continually improve day to day management of multifamily and commercial investment properties.

In November of 2013, Viet Ha Do joined forces with a seasoned real estate investor, Paul Folkes, to form Habringer Group, Inc. Since its founding, Habringer Group focused its activities on identifying and investing in underperforming multi-family and commercial real estate assets located in the Mid-South region of the United States. The company was initially headquartered in Midtown Manhattan. In 2016, headquarters were moved to Memphis, while retaining a presence in NYC until March 2020. While active primarily in the Mid-South real estate market, the company maintains strong ties with its NYC roots and international investor partners.

Currently, Viet Ha Do is the CEO and Chairman of a Tennessee-based real estate investment and advisory company, Habringer Group, Inc.

Viet Ha Do continuously seeks out new real estate projects where she can apply her experience from the financial sector and 12 years of wide-ranging experience in multi-family real estate investment, management, and development.

We were able to connect with Viet Ha Do and she shared her insights into how she manages to be productive while keeping a work-life balance.

What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?

I usually lay out my agenda for the upcoming day before shutting down my computer at the end of the previous day. This way, when I wake up the next morning, I already know what the plan for the day will look like. I prefer not needing to spend time in the morning figuring out my priorities for the day.

Naturally, surprises are inevitable, but they are easier to integrate into the flow when you already have a well-laid blueprint of your day.

What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive?

Setting deadlines is one of the best ways to keep me on track and optimize my productivity. It starts with setting detailed reminders on my iPhone and then reviewing the tasks for the day to estimate the time needed to complete them.

I sometimes get caught up with “on-site” visits to specific projects and reminders of approaching meetings and deadlines help me tremendously in staying proactive.

What is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?

Learning to balance one’s life at each stage of the journey is important. During each phase, we are exposed to different opportunities, and being able to prioritize is key to maintaining a healthy level of happiness in life.

As we climb the career ladder, we work hard, take on more challenging projects, and pursue advanced education. At the same time, we also need to find ways to enjoy time with family, engage socially and find time to stay fit.

It was knowing how to balance these components that allowed me to stay sane during the difficult phases of my career and not feel as if I was losing out on anything.

How do you prioritize your work? 

I was always a big believer in the Eisenhower Decision Matrix and I follow it rigorously on a daily basis.

How do you find a work-life balance?  How do you like to spend your free time?

I do this by sticking to a routine. I have designated time to work, but also build in “downtime” to relax, rest and recharge. I spend my free time with my family, enjoying outdoor activities whenever weather permits.

Can you share your personal approach to managing an effective balance between life and work?

I try to keep a balance by making sure that I draw a firm line between work and life.

I go to sleep by a specific time each night so that I have enough energy in the mornings to get excited about the dawn of a new day.

While it is impossible for any business owner to “leave work at work,” I try to limit doing any work during evenings and on the weekends to absolutely time-sensitive emergencies that arise.

I specifically try not to plan on doing any work while at home spending time with my family.

How do you manage your workflow effectively?

I am good at delegating tasks to my team and tracking progress.

Delegating is an art and it requires you to both know yourself well as well as be able to honestly assess the strengths and weaknesses of your team.

If you were to start again, what would you do differently?

Certain things which I encountered in my life were more difficult to overcome than others, but without these challenges, I would not be able to fully appreciate the good things that eventually came to me.

Looking in retrospect, I would not have taken different turns at the crossroads, because I have learned a great deal and met meaningful people who shaped my life and career.

With both good and bad experiences under my belt, I feel well equipped to direct my company and make a meaningful impact for both stakeholders and residents of our communities.

Estonian-born, Tallinn-based entrepreneur, CEO, manager, marketing strategist and professional athlete. My work have been featured by Tech.com Engadget, Medium and other publication. In my free time, I love to get engage with people, and travel to explore the world.

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