CEOs / Founders / Interviews

Balancing the Grind with Corrie Jones, Founder & CEO of Untapped Digital

Corrie Jones is the founder and CEO of Untapped Digital, a social media agency based in London and working with clients around the world.

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

My background is in higher education; I used to work at two different universities managing their social media marketing.

In 2016, after a few months of taking on some freelance work alongside my 9-5 job, I took the plunge and went full-time running my business – Untapped Digital, the social media agency for ambitious brands.

As founder, my role involves a lot of different things, but mostly right now I look after getting new business and managing the team.   

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

This looks very different pre-COVID and post-COVID! A workday in 2019 would have involved working from the office or being out and about at various meetings across London, then going to a networking event or giving a talk in the evening.

2020 changed that ever so slightly.

Right now during the lockdown, we’re working from home and so Zoom and Slack are my new favourite places to hang out. On a typical day, I’ll have calls with potential new projects, catch-ups with the team and clients, and then some time to get a few tasks ticked off my list. 

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

Yes, as soon as the UK went into lockdown, myself and the team started working from home. Before COVID, we still allowed for flexible working but most of the week was spent in the office – like a lot of businesses, that’s flipped now and most of the time is spent working from home.

I personally really miss going into the office and having that sense of routine that separates work and home for you.

I think it can be trickier to switch off in the evenings when you’re trying to relax in the same space that you’re trying to be productive from. It does definitely mean I’m more on top of household chores and life admin though. Plus the commute is much shorter! 

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

Work-life balance to me means happiness.

Whether that’s happiness that you’re achieving the success you want at work or happiness that you can spend quality time with friends and family, it’s really important to feel content with how you’re spending your days because we only get a finite amount of them.

That ‘balance’ will flex and change at times too, a balanced life doesn’t have to mean you’re spending 50% of time focused on work and 50% of time focused on home, I achieve the goal by listening to what I need and doing what feels best in that particular week. 

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

I’ve definitely stopped putting a ridiculous number of things on my to-do list for one day and then beating myself up when they inevitably don’t get done.

Instead, I’ll focus on a few key tasks that actually do move the needle in life or business. Someone once said to me, if you have any more than 5 tasks on your to-do list, they’re all unimportant.

I think we have a tendency to try and fill our days with ‘busy work’ and actually there’s a lot of power in stepping back and focusing only on the essentials of what you need to do. 

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

I’d recommend Mica Vaipan’s newsletter. She’s one of our clients and she’s brilliant, so I’m biased, but it’s a powerful 30-second read every Monday with a thought-provoking reframing of a common problem or issue people might be having. Great way to start the week.

Most of the books I read are non-fiction business books, the ones I’ve read this year that I’d recommend are The 12 Week Year by Brian P Moran and Everything Is Figureoutable by Marie Forleo. 

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

I’m not big into gadgets, but the apps I can’t live without are To Do (for my to do list), Audible (for listening to books), Mindset (for meditation and hypnosis sessions) and Uber (critical in my life!)

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

Beyonce. Can only dream of the gems she would share. 

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

Balance will look different for everyone, don’t judge someone else’s work-life balance in the same way that you wouldn’t enjoy someone else judging yours. Find what works for you and be happy! 

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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.