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Balancing the Grind with Luke Thomas, Founder & CEO at Friday.app

Luke Thomas is the founder at Friday.app, a company building email and Slack-based team communication tools to make remote work easier.

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

I’m the CEO & Founder at Friday. We’re building software to make it easier to work from anywhere. I’ve spent most of my career working in early stage startups in a variety of roles ranging from product, to growth, to marketing!

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

Sure! I typically wake up everyday around 5am. I’ll grab a cup of coffee and sit for a few minutes before going for a walk. I enjoy morning walks because everything is so peaceful. When that’s done, I’ll hang out with my two kiddos and let my wife get some time to herself. 

Around 8am I will start working. I try to do more focused work early in the morning and “shallow” work later in the day. I try to end my work around 4pm and go back to hanging out with my family! I try to be asleep most nights around 9pm.

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

Of course! I try to keep a daily schedule, but sometimes life pops up and interesting opportunities present themselves. At Friday, we are trying to build software to make it easy to work where you want (and when you want). Powering flexible work is a core part of our strategy.

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

I find work to be fun, so it’s hard to comment meaningfully here. For me, having a family forces me to work to find work/life balance.

If I’m working all the time, I can’t hang out with them. I also try to end work on time every day. This forces me to compress my activities and reduce procrastination. The productivity upside is limited after a certain number of hours anyways.

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

Yeah, I try to take a cold shower every morning. The cold water completely “wipes” your brain. It’s like drinking a cup of coffee. I also try to walk at least a few miles before I start working. This gives me time and space to think.

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

I’ve been really enjoying the following podcasts as of late:

  • Starting Greatness (startups)
  • The Investors Podcast (investing)
  • Tales from the Crypt (investing/bitcoin)

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

I’m biased, but I really like using Friday to plan my day and keep productive. Some of my other favorite apps include:

  • Loom
  • Screenflow
  • Cleanshot

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

Good question! I think I’d like to learn more about Jack Dorsey’s routine. Running 2 public companies seems ridiculously tough, so I’d be curious what strategies he uses to stay sane.

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

I’d encourage anyone reading to think of work and life as a scale that can tip in either direction. I believe you have a responsibility to do great work, because if you aren’t productive at work, you are basically robbing your personal life.

I’ve found this to be a useful framework for thinking about why I should care about my productivity at work. If I don’t, I’m stealing from time I could be spending with my family.

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About Author

Balance The Grind gives me a platform to talk to these people about how they're achieving their ideal lifestyle. I'm inspired by the passion, the work ethic, the hustle; and these conversations motivate me to live life the way I want to live it.