DAY IN A LIFE …
What does a day in the life mean?
Definition (expr.) a typical day; a normal day. Examples I wonder what a day in the life of a Rock star is like?
We begin this series of daily insights with: –
Rob Jones, Co-Founder of newly launched property platform Property.xyz designed by property investors for investors of UK property.
Rob tells us he is “Building the world’s most intelligent property platform” with two core features of search and research, easing the process of finding property opportunities across the UK with a buy to let, new build or development focus.
That all sound great but what we really want to know is what does being a co-founder of a tech company in the property space look like on a normal day? Is it better than being a Rock Star?
A Day In The Life Of A Tech Start-up CEO
‘The start of the typical day kicks off in a similar way; On a Monday there is always a million and one things to do with everything seemingly top priority so it’s very important to get a good start to the week, and make sure everything is setup right to get the best momentum so that all the team have what they need, a typical Monday looks like this.’
7am – Wake up ‘With two children (8 and 5) it’s rare to ever have a lie in or wake up late anyway but a typical day starts at 7am. I start with herbal tea to help me wake and some may see as rather unusually I don’t have breakfast. After a few health issues starting in 2015 I now fast throughout the week, Monday to Friday, starting eating at dinner time, so I miss breakfast and lunch.
This has the added benefit of giving me more time throughout the day and although tough to get use to at first actually makes you more alert and mentally engaged so adds a lot of benefits, it’s amazing what you can achieve on water, herbal tea, and coffee.
Seemingly my email inbox is always full, so I action any immediate emails that need replies before kick starting the rest of the day. I’ve found this clears my mind up to be more focused on key tasks through the day.’
7.30am – Walk and learn ‘Health has become more and more of a priority for me in recent years but finding time is tricky, so my hack has been to combine tasks. I’m a firm believer in learning and consistently improving knowledge, skill set and network, and really like audio books. So in the morning I do a local walk which is a 2hr loop.
This thinking time is critical and helps with … at the beginning dedicated thinking time
… mid way a 1hr audio book … on the way back phone calls as it’s a perfect time to make call backs.’
9.30am – Reports & Scorecards ‘As a company we track a lot of key metrics and we have a Scorecard that forms part of our team meetings. This scorecard looks at all of the website data, traffic, customers, inquiries, and revenue and gives clear indications where the company is heading.
My mid-morning is focused on reviewing, collating, and planning action steps based on the data. This helps form critical decisions within the business and if we need to change any core team priorities to improve our ‘score’
10.30 – Key Meetings ‘Monday is focused on marketing review with key team members, usually our SEO analyst to see what’s working, what’s not and brainstorming future ideas. Other days meetings vary from coffee with a potential angel investor, a team member 1-2-1’s or product feedback, with changes happening regularly across the site it’s important to stay close to the product and support the developers on fast feedback.
If for any reason the day is looking clear and no meetings are fixed this will be filled with additional time for marketing implementation, outreach, and marketing strategy.’
11.30 – Emails ‘After an 1hr meeting there’s usually a little downtime before the next meeting which gives me time to action the next round of emails. These can often be replying to customers or speaking with our b2b partners. Emails as always are wild and varied, but I try and maintain focus on customer care, sales, and marketing.’
12pm Co-founder meeting ‘Every week myself and Simone have a Monday co-founder meeting. This has an agenda that covers Tech overviews to see progress, discuss challenges, re check priorities and confirm what user stories we are focusing on next after the current projects.
It also covers a roundup of growth, based on the early morning scorecard review and marketing meeting “how are we performing” and touches on financials, not a deep dive but a good chance to go through together recent wins and losses for financials, this could be everything from saving money by changing a product supplier through to assessment of our hosting costs.’
1pm Partner meetings ‘As part of a tech start-up, our success is intertwined with partnerships, working with other tech companies, leveraging best in class services, data, products that great people and companies have developed that we can work with to improve the user experience for customers on https://property.xyz/.
So it’s important to have regular contact with our partners and discuss new ideas, new integrations, or best ways to grow together. This can vary from data providers through to other potential proptech partnerships.’
2pm Marketing campaigns ‘We’re a small team that’s self-funded so unlike some tech startups we don’t have the luxury of a team member for every role, we each wear many hats. My role as CEO requires a range of interactions from marketing to sales, customer care to overseeing company accounts.
Daily I have time aside to implement key tasks for our companies marketing myself. This could be on paid digital campaigns with google pay per click, creating or reviewing videos with our video editor for our YouTube channel or social media posts’.
3.30pm Budgeting & Forecasting ‘This can sometimes be a simple review of accounts in Xero and reconciling invoices or making payments. But weekly I review company budgets. This helps us keep on track and plan the future. We work in 3 months cycles for many sprint targets and regular reviews is critical, especially with the fast pace change of 2020.’
4.30pm Emails Back to emails to catchup on items throughout the day.
5.30pm – 8pm Family time
8pm – 10pm Research or Downtime
‘With the day to day complete the evening is a good time to catchup on what’s happening in the market. Keeping abreast of any key industry stories, researching an idea we have for a new feature or sometimes outreach on linkedin to new key contacts that we would love to partner with.’
Do you work at weekends, if so, how many hours? ‘Yes … not as a full day as I keep weekends daytime for family , but as a founder you’re always switched on and I personally find it hard to fully disconnect. So weekends is usually early am or late pm responding to urgent emails or product feedback as some of our team prefer to work weekends so it’s helpful to be available to provide feedback on product if required.’
And typically how many hours a week do you work on average? ‘Thankfully, I don’t track how many hours as I’m more concerned about output and progress than hours banked, and deep work rather than just being ‘active’ . The hardest thing as an entrepreneur and start-up founder though is down time and switching off, as it always seems like your tuned in and it’s easy for the hours to escalate.’
Do you work from home yes/no if so what % ‘Yes, I’m fully work from home. This is mixed with in person meetings (where possible) with team members, peers or business meetings and working from coffee shops for a change of scene a couple of days a week. But day to day I’ve been work from home for over 13-years with the different businesses.
How did you get your job? By creating the company 🙂 . A true start up from idea, to user testing and proof of concept to launch and beyond.’
Rock Star Rating 1 to 10 – How much do you like your job
10 – ‘Genuinely, I couldn’t imagine doing anything else. There’s days and moments for sure when it may feel like everything is going against you and you would score lower, but day to day, week to week, I feel really lucky to be working on a project that is always exciting.’
If you would like to share your ‘day in the life’ with the Estate Agent Networking community – scaling to over 100,000 now – just drop me a line – whether you are an EPC assessor, surveyor, corporate CEO, COO, CTO, Lettings manager, Inventory Clerk, Solicitor, in fact any vertical in the industry, what is your day like?
Please make sure you look in tomorrow to see who we have in the hot seat.
Email me today! [email protected]