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The CEOs’ guide to staying focused

focus, dictionary, paper

Have you ever wondered how some of the world’s top CEOs stay focused in order to run multi-million dollar businesses? Below are some tips and tricks from recent public interviews, which may help you rise up the corporate ladder.

Give each day a theme

Jack Dorsey, co-founder, and CEO of Twitter and founder of Square, chooses to focus on one topic each day of the week. Mondays, for example, focus on management; Tuesday on product; Wednesday on marketing and so on. Having themed days allows for a rhythm throughout the week to create structure and focus.

Try not to work from home

Whilst this remains a controversial topic, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer removed the option for employees to work from home in 2013. “Some of the best decisions and insights come from hallway and cafeteria discussions, meeting new people, and impromptu team meetings,” said Mayer. Rather than feeling like a one person team communicating strictly over email, being in a collaborative environment may help spark some of the greatest ideas.

Don’t get overwhelmed with emails

Zappos CEO and frugal millionaire, Tony Hsieh, lives by the concept of making yesterday’s emails today’s to-do list. “The great thing about this is when you get up in the morning, you know exactly how many emails you have to get through.” After all, you’ll never get to the bottom of the inbox, and after analyzing Hsieh’s publically shared schedule (he receives at least 379 emails per day) it’s clear he’s doing something right.

Find your outlet

Patrick Dolan, EVP and COO of the Interactive Advertising Bureau, starts each day with a run. “During my morning runs, I try to come up with solutions to any unresolved problems at work, brainstorm new ideas, and really prioritize my work in terms of the top things I want to accomplish that day.” Not only that, but exercise boosts your mood and starts your day off on the right foot.

Get some sleep

Entrepreneur Arianna Huffington explains that seven to nine hours of sleep each night is imperative to make sound decisions the next day. Following a collapse due to over exhaustion years ago, Huffington stresses with enough sleep, “…We make better decisions. We are less reactive. We get less upset when bad things happen.”

Take time to pause

Melinda Gates, philanthropist, and co-chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation believes quiet time is crucial to keep productivity consistent throughout the day. By building in 15-minute breaks between meetings, she is able to reset and mentally prepare for what is next. “I’m a big believer in taking time to pause and reflect, particularly when you’re working on some of the big challenges in the world.”

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