As the leader of a company, you are there to set an example, to lead and inspire a team of individuals to achieve a series of business goals. But how do these business leaders go about their daily routine?
Business Leader spoke to – Joshua Gamble – Director at ActiveWin about his working day.
What time do you usually wake up?
Ordinarily, I wake up around 7am or sometimes even a bit earlier.
What do you typically have for breakfast?
It depends how organised on the shopping we’ve been, so varies every given week, but usually it entails either a bowl of muesli with fresh fruit or scrambled eggs on toast!
What is the rest of your morning routine?
My intention is to always get out for some exercise first thing, especially during lockdown as I’ve found it helps kickstart my day, and keep me feeling fresh and alert. It’s usually just a quick 3k around the canal in Castlefield or better still a walk with my fiancé and a take-away coffee.
What is the first thing you do at the start of your working day?
The first thing I do is review the day ahead. I’m a big fan of a to-do list,, which gives me the chance to assess and prioritize what I need to crack on with that day. I’ll then check in with the teams across the business to discuss their own priorities and anything that may need escalating.
How do you prioritise your day’s work?
With us being very proactive and extremely forward thinkers as a business, prioritising tasks is something I’m more than used to. Back in my university days, a good friend of mine introduced me to the Eisenhower Matrix. This was devised by the former US President and breaks tasks into four groups (as below), which also is a huge help when it comes to delegation:
Urgent and Important: Do these tasks as soon as possible
Important, but not urgent: Decide when you’ll do these and schedule it
Urgent, but not important: Delegate these tasks to someone else
Neither urgent nor important: Drop these from your schedule as soon as possible
Do you plan meetings or are they a waste of time?
Meetings are a massive part of our daily activities at ActiveWin. They are the quickest and easiest way to get key information across, but also when efficient mean that everybody within the business is getting the visibility and interaction they need. We’ve all been in a situation when we’re busy and in meetings that perhaps go on too long, or go off at a tangent so the key is NOT to do this. Have an agenda and stick to it.
Do you have a working lunch or is it good to take a break?
I always try and find a point in the day to have a break and take a step back – whether this be at lunchtime or another point in the day. I find I am a lot more productive after a break and when constantly trying to find ways to improve process and maximise efficiency – it allows a bit more time for creative thinking.
When does your working day finish?
Ordinarily I will try and wrap up any tasks and loose ends by 6pm. This allows some time in the evening for calls with our international clients followed by a home cooked meal and some quality time with the family and friends (Covid permitting).
How do you prepare for the next day’s work?
I always keep a track of milestones and completed tasks via a to-do list which acts as rolling preparation for the upcoming week. Through regular contact with the team and clients, I have a good idea of what the rest of the week will have in store for me. Although, working across industries where we have to be reactive and adapt quickly, always means that from time to time there will be one or two curveballs.
What’s your favourite piece of technology?
My favourite piece of technology is my iPhone. In the industry that we work in it’s important that I have access to it whenever necessary, but it also allows me to keep up to date with everything that’s going on in the world. Contact with the team and clients alike is key whether this be through the team whatsapp, skype or zoom catch-ups, the iPhone allows a lot more flexibility!
How do you switch off?
I’m a keen golfer. It’s an opportunity to get out, enjoy catching up with friends and I find it the best way for me switch off. I’m also massively competitive! I’m a big foodie too – both eating out with friends and family, but also cooking at home. I used to be a chef throughout my university life, and even for a few years after that. My fiancé is also a brilliant cook, which has been a form of escapism throughout lockdown! I also love reading. I’ve been reading more than ever during lockdown.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
To ‘Back myself’ by essentially being my own biggest advocate. When starting out at a junior level it can be quite easy to get overawed by situations. Irrespective of the situation I’m in, I’ve always been aware of the value I can add and the reason why I belong within that forum. One of the best things to do is say ‘yes’ to the ‘scary stuff’ that pushes you outside of your comfort zone. When I was starting my career I was always very fortunate to be given the opportunities that pushed me and gave me exposure to things which would essentially help me improve.