Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Work life balance

It is interesting I have been writing for a while and I have not spent any time on an topics that it is one of my daily battles (and probably one that many of my partners and other successful people go through) work/life balance
I was talking to Andrea and she mentioned also that she was interested on hearing my thoughts on this (obviously she believes I am a workaholic)

So let´s touch the topic. Being a workaholic. Well I am not one on my opinion. Why I believe that ? Because workaholic is that person that has no life, no passions or interests outside work. On my case I do love spending time cooking, tasting wine, playing basketball, going to the movies, playing golf, traveling (although yes we have done much less of this in the last 2 years both because of less money available and less time). However I do love what I do, I enjoy my work and I am always excited when I get up in the morning about going to work and I have always been that way almost since my early days at Andersen Consulting (now Accenture)

But I may say one thing is that quality of life has not improved to say the least. And this has been a combination of lots of work and also much more responsibility and tough time (remember my post harder that I though although much more fun). When we had some discussions in Prague about taking the offer to come to Madrid one thing was clear to me that quality of life was not going to improve. Working for Oskar, then Vodafone CZ I did learnt that you can be fulfilled (and exhausted) after working from 9 to 19, that planning vacations 4 months in advance was possible and that the key was to have a team that I trust, I have developed and I enjoy letting them acquire more responsibility. And I have hope that I can also achieve a good quality of life and work/life balance even at a startup, my own one. But I need it a team and the business could not afford that for a while and then it took time to find talent. Well today has been the first day of one of my new Buss Dev execs Nick Wrench. I am hoping that the contribution the sales and business development will be great, but also that they allow me to take a break once in a while. This is a marathon and we need to get to the last miles in good condition.

Another topic influencing this is traveling but we will get there in another post

So how do I score my work life balance. Let’s say a 6 so far. But learning how to improve and keep evaluating myself. As Fernando Bartolome, one of the professors at INSEAD (also at Instituto de empresa) who made me think a lot with his provocative comments and discussions during the MBA says: “Es mejor desarrollar la capacidad de las personas para auto-evaluarse”, (it is better to develop the capacity of the people to autoevaluate themselves ( So let´s develop that capacity

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