Balancing the Grind with Abrar Ashraf, Talent Acquisition Manager at ROLLER

Abrar Ashraf is the Talent Acquisition Manager at ROLLER, a company building technology for leisure and attractions businesses, helping them to deliver amazing experiences for their guests.

Learn about the daily routines from the most successful people in the world by signing up to our newsletter

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

Like a lot of talent professionals out there, I fell into recruitment. Started out in bulk recruitment within public transport and worked my way through the transportation & logistics industry.

I had a stint with agency recruitment before making the switch back to internal recruitment. Currently with a global SaaS company, ROLLER as their Talent Acquisition Manager. We are rapidly growing so I’m super busy helping bring awesome talent in to join us on the ride! 

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

So my day starts off nice and early with a 4am wake up to get my morning workout done and dusted. I find that getting it out of the way in the morning really starts me off in a positive way.

My work day is pretty varied, it consists of a number of candidate calls, screening through CV’s, hunting through LinkedIn and other recruitment tasks. I really look forward to my candidate calls each day because I love learning about different people and their backgrounds!

I also get to collaborate with different hiring managers to learn more about their teams and their recruitment needs.

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

ROLLER is amazing when it comes to flexible working. We have been doing the remote working thing before it got cool so it has been really easy. I’m in charge of my day & time and have complete freedom in choosing my work hours and fitting it around my life.

I work as an F45 trainer on the side so I can start early and knock off early to go teach a class or start a bit later if I’m teaching a morning class. I love that we have trust in each individual to manage what they need to do and also make sure they have time for what they love!

Elon Musk, Kobe Bryant, Naomi Osaka, Simone Biles, receive a new daily routine each week about some of the most successful people in the world.

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

Work-life balance to me means having the time to do things other than work. It’s having the trust of my team & manager to manage my time myself and still be able to do things I need to get done outside of work like going for a long walk, picking up my deliveries from the post office (still persisting with the online shopping!) or go to the gym without feeling guilty!

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

With the lockdowns, my routine did go a bit crazy and I found myself getting lazy. However, more recently I’ve started to really change that and created a habit of waking up early, smashing out my morning workout to really put me in a positive mindset for the day. I’ve also started time-blocking critical tasks that I need to get done throughout the day and prioritizing focus time as well.

I also bought a sit-stand desk which has been a game-changer! Being able to just stand up for meetings or to respond to a bunch of emails is great to keep me active!

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

For my fellow talent professionals out there I recommend Hung Lee’s Recruiting Brainfood which is awesome! I also really enjoy listening to podcasts from TaPod – We Talk Talent.

Non-talent-related – I LOVE Casefile podcasts which are super interesting!

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

I can’t live without my Apple Watch to remind me to stay active throughout my day. My trusty iPad to write my endless to-do lists and also to use as a secondary screen. Google Calendar is my go-to for time management and of course Slack to keep my gif & meme game strong.

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

I’m a big soccer fan and a tragic Manchester United supporter. I’d love to read more about how athletes at that level like Cristiano Ronaldo juggle having to train (work) multiple times a day, travel for games and then also have time with their family & loved ones.

It would be extremely interesting to learn what they implement to be able to ensure that precious time but also how they can disconnect from thinking about their performance or upcoming tactics/strategies.

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

It’s so easy to get sucked into work and put in longer hours since a lot of us are now working remotely. But, I highly recommend scheduling time for yourself, whether it’s a lunch time walk, a trip to the gym or even a time to reset. Also, try and get away from your desk for lunch or have a short break and go make yourself a coffee. Doing this genuinely helps you just reset.

Before you go…

If you’d like to sponsor or advertise with Balance the Grind, let’s talk here

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.