I have just read an interview with Colin Brown, MD of Softcat. (Available here). Two things struck me, these are both common themes in “top performers”.

Exercise before work. So often I read this. Colin says he swims 3 times a week before work. I love swimming, mainly because you can’t take your phone swimming. Note the picture at the top, Zuckerberg running with his phone in hand. So many industry leaders focus on exercise first thing in the morning. Keeping fit helps you last longer in the day, but also makes you more productive 8.30 to lunch. My tip here is set your alarm and have it somewhere you need to get out of bed to snooze it, this makes rolling over a lot harder!

The second point was not having an office. I notice a big different here from people that have started a business to people that have been brought in at a senior level in a business. Business founders often don’t have offices. They want to hear and feel what is going off and most still do the bottom level job regularly. Colin goes to customer meetings, I make calls and empty the bins. I like emptying the bins. I also like cold calling. It is why we started the business!

These aren’t hard and fast rules, but I would suggest to anyone, exercise in the morning and dump your office. We have a kitchen area where I go to make private or more sensitive calls. Apart from that, be on the floor with everyone else. The people who are paying your wages, not the other way round.