When Jesse Noller’s essay explaining why he had essentially left his software community made it to the top of Hacker News, I read it with great interest. Noller was one of the pillars of the community, but by pouring all his time and energy into the community, he neglected his marriage and family, and ultimately … Continue reading You’re not indispensable (except when you are)
I was struck today by the juxtaposition of two different stories on two different, extremely successful people. On Sunday, Simpsons co-creator Sam Simon passed away at the age of 59. Simon had been told that he had only months to live back in 2012, but he defied those odds, and lived long enough to give … Continue reading Life, Death, and Living
As is a bit of a tradition around here, one of my friend Penelope Trunk’s blog posts lured me into commenting at such length that I decided to do an actual blog post: http://bit.ly/1k2cqCC In her recent post, Penelope writes about her struggle to avoid branding herself as a mom: “I intuitively knew to hide … Continue reading Are Women Penalized For Talking About Family At Work?
I recently ran across an awesome New York Times editorial by Erin Callan, who was the CFO of Lehman Brothers in 2008 (she had the foresight/luck to resign a number of months before the financial crisis brought down the firm): http://nyti.ms/1b2a4wr In particular, I’d like to draw your attention to two passages: “I didn’t start … Continue reading You Can’t Balance Your Life By The Decade
I hate it when the press worships workaholism. The latest example is this Business Insider piece titled, “16 People Who Worked Incredibly Hard To Succeed.”: The article is filled with glowing praise for people who seem to spend all their waking hours working. Here are just a few of the headlines: “Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz … Continue reading The real reason we wrongly worship workaholics
My friend and HBS classmate, Lindsey Mead Russell wrote a great article for the Princeton Alumni Weekly last year. In it, she meditates on one of the fundamental dilemmas that faces women: Job or Family? Lindsey followed a path that many would envy or consider the ideal–she worked part-time managing recruiting for a private equity … Continue reading How Do *You* Choose Between Job and Family?
One simple hack that can help you balance your work with your family is to take on the primary responsibility for picking up your kids from daycare/aftercare. I’ve always picked up the kids before 6 PM, which forces me to leave the office. Anyone who wants me to stay later, I simply tell them, “I … Continue reading Parenting Hack: Pick Your Kids Up From School
People throw themselves into 100-hour work weeks because they are afraid to make choices that others might not understand. If you work 100-hour weeks, no one (investors, co-founders, employees) can blame you if things don’t work out, right? I had a moment like this during my first startup, when I was held late at a … Continue reading Workaholism Is A Choice (Usually The Wrong One)
One of the most important of Yeh’s Laws of Entrepreneurship is simple but universal:Get someone else to do the work. I’m not advocating laziness in entrepreneurs–entrepreneurship is hard work. But you have to realize that hard work is insufficient. Even the most dedicated entrepreneur is hard-pressed to work more than 12 hours per day. That’s … Continue reading Entrepreneurship is about getting someone else to do the work
One of my all-time most popular posts is “Can the Global Business Leader Balance Work and Family?“ In it, I discuss Shai Agassi’s brutal travel schedule, and ask whether or not it’s possible to be a global business leader without sacrificing one’s family in the process. The update, of course, is that Shai has resigned … Continue reading The Global Business Leader, Updated