Reads like one of those quotes that you’ll eventually see in the authorized auto/biography of Gates in a couple of decades (if he doesn’t cure death first)…
We work to draw in not just governments but also businesses, because that’s where most innovation comes from. I’ve heard some people describe the economy of the future as “post-corporatist and post-capitalist”—one in which large corporations crumble and all innovation happens from the bottom up. What nonsense. People who say things like that never have a convincing explanation for who will make drugs or low-cost carbon-free energy. Catalytic philanthropy doesn’t replace businesses. It helps more of their innovations benefit the poor.
I was talking about calendars and work weeks with a friend earlier and I tried to explain how my convoluted brain processes the week. I don’t like to think of time in terms of hours or days. Rather, I’m much more productive (and happy) when I can segment things into their proper places in the flow of my life.
For me, that means having “4 Quarters” to what others would call a week.
This cycle of 4 quarters keeps me sane and focused. I look forward to each segment as you might look forward to a different class in high school or as a football team might prepare for a game of four quarters (see what I did there?).
Of course, there are unpredictable situations that pop up and cause a disruption in my cycle, but as I transition from a classroom teacher (wake at 6, work until 5, sleep, repeat) to running a business, this completely makes sense in my head.
Monday and Tuesday: Work Days. Sleep late. Work in the home office with the pups from 9’ish until lunch time. Go into downtown office at 1 until 7. Meet Merianna for dinner and week review. Work until 10 or 11 or 1 depending on volume. These are my “put on your headphones, put your nose down and get your work done” focus days. I’m up way too late and drink way too much coffee during this quarter. I normally look like this by Tuesday night.
Wednesday and Thursday: Travel and Meetings Days. This is the quarter when I have to take a deep breath and get out of introvert mode. It’s my travel, meetings, email catchup and phone calls quarter and I try to jam them all together so I can focus on work the other quarters. I travel to Asheville, Greenville, Charlotte or Charleston for client meetings during these two days. I’m usually working in my hotel room from 6’ish to midnight on either design work or meeting reviews. I’m constantly and purposefully on the road these two days and using the (headset) phone while driving. However, I’m trying to make it to more of our church’s Wednesday night suppers these days. This is usually me on the drive home Thursday night.
Friday: Brainstorm. Head to the office early (8 or 9) and catch up on reviews from Wednesday and Thursday travels and meetings and plan out the week ahead. This is my time to catch my breath and do some brainstorming for my clients and my own business. I normally look like this during the quarter. I work until 2 PM or so then go pick up my daughters for the weekend.
Saturday and Sunday: Family, Fun and Review. Normally includes sleeping late, working in either football and/or NASCAR for a couple of hours and some down time to cook and enjoy the family. Otherwise, I’m working but not as much as on Monday and Tuesday. On Sunday morning, there’s church and lunch with our congregation after. Sunday night from 8-10 PM is week prep time where I review my note cards, make sure they are scanned and in Evernote and everything from the previous week is either checked, archived or ready to be addressed Monday and Tuesday.
How do you think about your week?
Because I am my job. I enjoy building a business that literally has my name on it. It’s frustrating and scary and amazing all at once.
Man is meant to be busy. But busy on certain types of things. There is not supposed to be some distinction between work and not work. It’s all supposed to be work…and none of it is supposed to feel pointless or soul crushing. You’re not supposed to have sneak in a Crossfit workout at 9 PM at night before you go home because that’s your only opportunity to feel alive or part of something. It can be that way all the time.