One of the major realizations that I came to was, as the company got bigger, I remained too execution oriented. I’m very good at working on big rocks vs small rocks, but I found that the rocks I was tackling were still not big enough. This was backed up by my advisors, investors, team leads, and coach.
I was ready and willing to make the change, but didn’t know where to begin. My career to date has been coming up with and executing a daily task list, pounding through bugs, checking off boxes.
One of my advisors suggested whitespace time. Block a few hours a week out of the office to think. Just letting my mind wander is not useful, so before I start, I come up with the items I want to focus on, and what the deliverable is (often times an Evernote outline).
I also make a point to get out of the office and into a different environment. One awesome thing about DC is there is no shortage of places to go. The convention center is across the street from our new office, where you can blend in to whatever conference is happening. There are a few hotel lobbies to hang out at. My favorite is the National Portrait Gallery, just a few blocks down the street.
Close email, unplug team chat, and just focus.
It’s been incredibly productive so far.