On Daily Routines, we profile successful leaders, entrepreneurs, artists, executives and athletes to explore their routines, schedules, habits and day in the life.
Fashion designer and streetwear OG, Jeff Ng aka Jeff Staple, follows a similar system to Jack Dorsey when it comes daily routines. Like Dorsey, who runs Twitter and Square, Staple manages a fashion and media empire; which includes creative agency Staple Design, streetwear collection Staple Pigeon, and podcast, The Business of Hype (done in conjunction with HYPEBEAST Radio).
To keep on top of his multiple businesses and projects, Staple divides his week up into themed days. It’s a necessary system, especially when Staple has to manage 50 people across three separate business, with various degrees of overlap. As the lead on all three companies, he put a system in place to balance the business and creative demands of each facet.
He described the system and a typical day in his life to Lifehacker in a 2019 profile:
I have devised a system that allows me to not go completely crazy, while allowing my team to get access to me as much as possible. Mondays and Wednesdays are dedicated to the clothing collection (in Midtown Manhattan). Tuesdays and Fridays are dedicated to the creative agency business (which is located in Soho NYC.) Thursdays are for the podcast, retail and flex.
It’s not so strict that I can’t work on a t-shirt design on Tuesday. But the system helps particularly in scheduling meetings so I’m not running around from downtown to midtown multiple times a day. Nothing is worse than losing valuable minutes commuting. I live in Greenwich Village: 12 min to Midtown. 7 min to Soho. That is not by coincidence. That is by design.I’M STAPLE FOUNDER JEFFSTAPLE, AND THIS IS HOW I WORK | LIFEHACKER
Staple has his life designed so that he doesn’t waste much time commuting to office to office. Although it does help that the businesses are separated physically, with each location having its own, unique vibe and feel.
“My Midtown office at the Staple Pigeon clothing headquarters is like a physical representation of my brain if it exploded. Every single thing that inspires me is on display and accessible,” Staple says. On the other hand, the Staple Design studio in Soho is more collaborative and inclusive.
“My office at the Staple Design studio in Soho is more laid back and like a lounge. While Midtown is like a shrine to the Pigeon, I want to allow the Design Studio office to be influenced by many other things. So there’s lots of art from other people, and of course some of the projects we’ve worked on as well.”
Even with the hectic business of staying in touch with the fashion world and juggling three companies, Staple tries to maintain a semblance of work-life balance.
I’m usually in the office around 10 a.m. I leave at a reasonable hour like 5 p.m. so that I can have a real dinner with my wife, family or friends. Then I usually pull a “third shift” at around 9 or 10 p.m. that can easily go till 1 or 2 a.m. We do a lot of business in Asia, which necessitates late night conference calls. There’s no such thing as weekends, holidays or vacations. I’m always on. I haven’t sent an OOO auto-reply email in over 20 years.I’m STAPLE Founder Jeffstaple, And This Is How I Work | Lifehacker
To avoid burnout, which can come quite easily when you’re juggling three ventures every week, Staple likes to travel. “Travel is my number one muse. I get so inspired when I meet new people and see new sights in foreign lands,” he told Lifehacker. “Mind you, ‘foreign lands’ can be as far as Kyoto or as close as Brooklyn. Just getting out of my regular comfort zone is key.”
I just love what I do. I don’t have to ever sit there and reconcile why I do this or grapple with my feelings on how I keep motivated. I love this; I really love what I do. I’m up until 4/5am every day, still grinding at this and I wouldn’t want it any other way. I’m fortunate that I still love what I do.The jeffstaple Interview | Breaks Magazine
Before you go…
Check out more daily routines from Barack Obama, Joe Rogan, Jeff Bezos, Michelle Obama, Sheryl Sandberg, Richard Branson, Warren Buffet and plenty others.