CEOs / Founders / Interviews

Balancing the Grind with Aaron Macarthur, Founder & CEO at Convo Ink

Aaron Macarthur is the ounder & CEO at Convo Ink, a smart content marketing engine connecting marketers, content writers and publishers to simplify and scale content marketing in a single platform.

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1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?

I started my career in real estate, which is where I developed a true understanding of what being exceptional at sales meant! I made the transition to media sales at Austereo which to this day remains one of the most fun and vibrant businesses I have worked for.

As digital started to transform the industry I moved to News Corp and then Allure Media (A Fairfax business), which was the most formative role of my career. I believe everyone needs one brilliant boss and I was lucky enough to find one at Allure.

Over the following years I worked consulting roles within media as we developed our MVP for Convo Ink. In 2021 We launched Convo Ink’s content marketing platform, of which I am the CEO.

2) What does a day in your life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?

I love getting up early (around 5am everyday) and kicking off the day with a coffee, organising my day and some exercise. My peak is definitely between 5am – 7.30am! 

Each day is a little different but when planning the day I try to carve out chunks where I can tackle big tasks that will shift the needle and get me results. It sounds simple, but I put a lot of time into deciding what tasks will have a noticeable impact on my outcomes for that week or month. I then try to repeat them as often as I can!

I also find it’s important for me to wrap up my days thoroughly so I end the day feeling like I am on top of everything. This stops me from having those anxious feelings we all get when we feel like we have forgotten something major for the next day.

3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?

Yes we have very much embraced flexible working at Convo Ink, but being honest I feel I am happy working anywhere as long as I have an internet connection. What I do see in our business is that people’s energy and commitments can be completely the opposite of mine.

Some people love to sleep in and work late, some may have commitments at odd times of the day. The flexibility affords people more balance which ultimately helps them bring their best selves to work – which is key in a creative industry

4) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?

Work life balance for me starts with being excited to get up for my day and ends with me feeling like I have contributed something. That said, like everyone else this is a day by day proposition for me. 

I must say that there is the reality of needing to bring a certain level of hustle and intensity in a startup business (or anything you are trying to be successful at) and the “balance” can take a hit.

Ultimately, there is nothing wrong with hard work and working a long day if you are enjoying what you’re doing and heading in the right direction. Again if you are jumping out of bed in the morning excited, you should just do you.

5) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life?

One thing I have added is mandatory breaks, or at least one event in my day that gives me some energy back. I can easily sit down and work from 6am – 9pm, the challenge I find is you don’t feel the effects of a long work day until days or weeks later. Proactively taking the breaks is a good circuit breaker, it helps fresh thinking and I come back more focussed than when I left.

6) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?

Going against the grain here and don’t get me wrong I read A LOT! However, what I have embraced lately is instead of reading another book this month I take 20 mins each night to organise my own thoughts on the industry based on my unique experiences. Too often we outsource a lot of great thinking to other people and if we actually reflect on our own journey there is a tonne of gold inside.

7) Are there any products, gadgets or apps that you can’t live without?

Audible is kind of my guilty pleasure! I say I “read” but in reality I listen to books at night. It’s brilliant for when you are too tired to read you can still take in some great insights by just listening.

Outside of Audible I try to detach myself from tech devices especially when exercising. I run to how you feel, get my head up and enjoy the fresh air because I know I will be back in front of a device before I know it!

8) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?  

I would say Gary Keller who is the author of a book which blew my mind at the time called The ONE Thing (in hindsight I could have put this in the book section)! I love the simplicity of his idea that there is basically one thing you can do everyday that will drive 90% of your results! I would love to catch up with him, just to see if he is still doing it 10 years after he wrote the book or if he has the same struggles the rest of us do!

9) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?

We all have the same 24 hours just, make a choice on how you want to spend yours.

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About Author

Hey there! I'm Hao, the Editor-in-Chief at Balance the Grind. We’re on a mission to showcase healthy work-life balance through interesting stories from people all over the world, in different careers and lifestyles.