Alessandro Masini is the founder of Italian Luxury Group, a Sydney-based importer and distributor for niche luxury and lifestyle brands.
1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?
I am an expert in start-ups with many years’ experience in the commercial sector, strategy and development pertaining to the creation of projects.
I have had full autonomy in commercial development and know how to select professional teams to support a corporation and growth phases of a company. Specifically my career has been PR and marketing focused across varying sectors.
Since the age of 16 I have been maintaining contacts with foreign companies and now have a long list of personal contacts. My inquisitive nature and desire to learn new things have allowed me to calmly tackle even the most difficult situations with verve and also a good deal of rationalism.
Even at the age of 50 I feel ready to take on new challenges and projects. I set up Italian Luxury Group in 2014 in order to acquaint the Australasian market with international brands which means sourcing the finest in Italian innovation, design and quality.
Italian Luxury Group now represents some of the world’s most respected brands including La Florentina, Acqua dell’Elba, Lamborghini, and niche international brands such as Vardena, all preserving a revered level of Italian craftsmanship.
2) What does a day in the life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?
My best dreams come at 5.30am and I get up at 6.30am to make myself a coffee with the Italian-style “moca”. The days that I have my daughter I prepare breakfast and lunch for school, I watch the news and then I take my daughter to school and go to work.
My mornings are more or less the same, either I work from home or I go to the warehouse to manage orders. Lately I’m always in the warehouse thank god because the work is growing exponentially.
As soon as I get back around 3pm I do all the back end work on the site, answer emails and talk to the various suppliers and place orders. Usually when I don’t have any commitments I work late and then I plan the following day.
3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?
With the help of technology, it is much easier to manage the days and I can find all the time I want by managing it in the best way. The advantage of an online business is that it is much easier to manage, I can work from my mobile or computer wherever I am.
4) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?
I love my job very much and can’t do without it. I can manage my private life and work in an extraordinary way without it being a burden. The work is part of me and therefore does not weigh on me at all.
I know very well that I will have to sacrifice the time I give to my daughter if I want to achieve bigger goals, but now that she is growing and more and more independent, I can find more time for work and my private life.
5) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life?
Absolutely not. I have organised myself very well so that I can maintain my lifestyle even better. Of course, there are days when I work a lot more than others, but I think it’s natural.
6) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?
I have read many stories of entrepreneurs about how they made their success and how they conceived the business to see if we are on the same level of thinking.
I usually choose people who started from scratch like me. I could name names but it would be useless, just search the internet to find lots of them. My advice is to read several stories and if your thoughts coincide, I would say start with your project.
7) Are there any products, gadgets or apps that you can’t live without?
Today more and more indispensable for work are the phone and the computer with their apps. I like them very much as long as they remain in the working sphere, for private I prefer not to appear much.
8) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?
Maybe it would be someone who is not around today, when life was simpler and less hectic, we had time to enjoy things and family and friends with a better lifestyle. Today everything is very fast and hectic.
If I think of someone from Italy, Enzo Ferrari or Gianni Agnelli Lawyer comes to mind, but honestly I prefer to think of someone who was as in love with his job as I am.
For example, fashion or cinema, working in those channels consequently leads to living a dream life, as sport could be. The balance between private life and work would not weigh at all.
9) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?
Since the age of 16, I’ve always done what I wanted, and maybe I’ve been very lucky but I’ve always started from scratch and made my dreams come true. I know that many people do not have this luck, but it is important that each of us follow his dreams in life and work.
Today we have the help of technology that may seem difficult to many, but I guarantee you that it is much simpler than you might think. Never lose focus on the fundamentals in life like family and friends and respect for others.
Work is important but it is important not to neglect the fundamental values of life. Today we live to work but we should work to live. My model would be to work 4 days a week then treat Friday as if it were Saturday, and the weekend of absolute rest and fun. Perhaps this could help to have greater physical and mental balance.
Thinking as an entrepreneur, my search for balance is to delegate as much as possible to others, so that life can be simpler. Today there are many entities that help you grow, in my specific case logistics are an integral and fundamental part of my work. I just have to send the order and they do the rest.
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