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 Kai Feller – co-founder of Bark.com – about his working day.
What time do you usually wake up?
I’ve always been a morning person, so I’m usually awake by about 6am every morning. I like to make the most of the day.
What is the rest of your morning routine before you start work?
I check my emails first thing in the morning to catch up on anything that’s come in overnight – running a business across multiple time zones means that I can receive messages anytime of the day or night. Once I’m up, I’ll kick start the day with boxing at the gym followed by a good breakfast, before heading into the office.
What is the first thing you do at the start of your working day?
The first thing I do is open my calendar and organise my time. I’ll check what my day looks like, schedule meetings if needed, prioritise urgent actions and look over everything that needs doing for the rest of that week.
How do you priorities your day’s work?
Something I learned early on in my career was how important it is to delegate and pass on responsibility to the people you have hired to do the best job; as tempting as it can be as a business leader, it’s impossible to do everything yourself. I aim to meet with my management team to discuss priorities for that day, make a to-do list of tasks that need my attention and block out colour-coded time slots in my calendar based on the urgency of each task.
Do you plan meetings or are they a waste of time?
I believe meetings are only a waste of time if there’s no real agenda or actionable outcome. If planned properly, meetings can be efficient and productive, and an essential part of the day-to-day running of a business. It’s important to keep communication open between departments so we can work together to the best of our ability.
Do you have a working lunch or is it good to take a break?
I try to take a break from time to time, but I will normally have a working lunch or will grab something to eat on the go if I’m between meetings. My morning routine will usually set me up for the day ahead – once I’m in the office, I like to stay completely focused.
When does your working day finish?
Bark.com currently operates in five countries across the globe, so that typically involves working late into the evening. I wouldn’t really say my working day finishes until I’m actually asleep, but I usually leave the office around 8pm.
How do you prepare for the next day’s work?
I will always check my calendar again before I leave the office. I like to think of myself as an organised person, so I will take any opportunity to check what’s on the agenda for the rest of the week and re-evaluate if there are any tasks I didn’t get round to that day.
What’s your favourite piece of technology?
Any kind of open source technology!
How do you switch off?
Boxing is one of the only things that takes my mind off work. I love the physical and mental benefits the sport gives you. I won my first amateur fight last year and am currently training for my next. I really believe there are a lot of similarities between the world of business and competitive sport; if you invest the time, blood, sweat and tears and are passionate about what you are doing, it will pay off.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Test and question everything, never give up and be tenacious – there’s always a solution.