As the leader of a company, you are there to set an example, to lead and inspire a team individuals to achieve a series of business goals. But, how do these business leaders go about their daily routine?
Business Leader spoke to Neil Wright – CEO of CoverForYou about his working day.
WHAT TIME DO YOU USUALLY WAKE UP?
I set my alarm for 7.15am but it rarely goes off as I normally wake up around 6.30am. Before getting up I lie in bed for 20 minutes thinking about what I want to get done in the day. It is a luxury just lying there with my thoughts, and really sets me up for the day ahead.
WHAT DO YOU TYPICALLY HAVE FOR BREAKFAST?
I never eat breakfast unless I am staying in a hotel. I am too impatient to get the day started to eat; all I require is a very large mug of tea to start the day off right.
WHAT IS THE REST OF YOUR MORNING ROUTINE BEFORE YOU START WORK?
I make fresh coffee for my wife and leave it by her bedside before jumping into the car and driving to the frontier of Gibraltar where I park. I then have a 25-minute walk to the office – another great time to organise my day. Sometimes there is a bird migration happening; watching hundreds of birds of prey in flight makes my day.
WHAT IS THE FIRST THING YOU DO AT THE START OF YOUR WORKING DAY?
I like to be the first one into the office to set an example, so I am in before 9am. I look at yesterday’s sales by each sales channel to see if there is a trend that should either encourage me or mean I have to change something around. I then read every review left by clients in the past 24 hours; we take every small criticism seriously as this lights the path we should be taking for the future. Having done that I then look at the financials, cash flow projections and payments to be made. With this out of the way I can then devote myself to something more interesting.
HOW DO YOU PRIORITISE YOUR DAY’S WORK?
Luckily the business pretty much runs on rails, but we always have a series of projects on the go to improve what we do and the customer experience. Most of the remainder of the day is spent sending emails or making calls trying to drive these changes. I then spend the last part of the day looking at data to again try to discern trends, which then turns into further projects for the team to tackle.
DO YOU PLAN MEETINGS OR ARE THEY A WASTE OF TIME?
I am not a great one for meetings. I make calls when I need to move things along but prefer to receive feedback via emails so that I have record of where we are on various topics.
DO YOU HAVE A WORKING LUNCH OR IS IT GOOD TO TAKE A BREAK?
Two or three times a week I will take my pack and climb to the top of the rock of Gibraltar as fast as I can go – circa 440m of ascent – and then back down in the cable car. Old military habits die hard! On days I don’t do this it is normally a sandwich at my desk.
WHEN DOES YOUR WORKING DAY FINISH?
I like to leave by 6pm, so I’m home at 7pm. I try not to do any work at home as I think doing this on a regular basis is counterproductive. This doesn’t stop you thinking about your business though.
HOW DO YOU PREPARE FOR THE NEXT DAY’S WORK?
Before I leave the office for the day, I prepare a list of things to do for tomorrow which means that I focus on the important things for the business.
FAVOURITE PIECE OF TECHNOLOGY?
I am rather traditional, and couldn’t get by without paper, pen and a calculator. I couldn’t operate without my mobile of course.
HOW DO YOU SWITCH OFF?
I love being outside – especially in the mountains. Weekends are spent hiking and climbing with my wife. We always have a long-term expedition or holiday planned which keeps us on the straight and narrow when it comes to fitness training. We are planning to go back to Nepal for 24 days this autumn to climb Saribung Peak which is over 6,300m. Being away from the business for this long is wonderful. I don’t do sitting on the beach!
BEST PIECE OF ADVICE YOU’VE RECEIVED?
Praise the work your team does on a regular basis. Being told you are doing a great job is fantastically motivational.
Are you a CEO of a business and want to be featured on Business Leader for ‘My Working Day’? Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.