Balancing the Grind with Mel Ho, Head Of Content at LADbible Australia

Mel Ho is the Head Of Content at LADbible Australia, a social media and entertainment social publisher with offices in the UK, Ireland and Australia.

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

My experience has been within digital and social media publishing working across creative strategy, production and branded content. 

I am currently the Head of Content at LADBible Australia where I manage my brilliant editorial, social and production teams.

Across the business, my days are split between editorial and social as well as our commercial side of the business where I also work closely with our sales teams to formulate and sell creative ideas and executions. 

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

I’m not a morning person so I sleep in for as long as I can.  

We are in the office Monday to Wednesdays and I’ll often start those days with a coffee run with my team — it’s a nice way to start the day and someone in my team will always have me laughing in stitches. 

In the office, my days are usually filled with meeting after meeting — often it’s with the commercial sales team to respond to media briefs; reviewing commercial content and feeding back; or it’s one-to-one meetings with individuals within my team. 

When we are in the office, I’ll make sure to take a quick walk every two hours to check I don’t have a parking ticket. 

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

Yes absolutely. The wider business are in the office Monday to Wednesday; and then work from home Thursdays and Friday.  

Recently I’ve allowed my team to work from home as they wish — I trust them completely to get on with what they need to. We’re all adults and don’t need to be micromanaged. 

Last year when we were working from home full time, I went nuts! I love having options because it means I can make the most of my time — Thursdays for instance I get to work from my brother’s home and get to see my little niece. 

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

Work life balance is so important; I’ve burnt out in the past and it is not a nice feeling. Plus I’m not saving lives, I work in the media; sometimes we need a reality check. 

I’ve set up boundaries where I definitely won’t answer emails or respond to a chat message past 6:30pm (unless something is genuinely urgent).

It’s still a work in progress but the reason why is because I’m usually out socialising or spending time with my boyfriend and the last year has made me realise that if I’m focused on work outside of working hours, those people that matter to me don’t actually get my full attention. 

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

I’ve cut down drinking, watching TV in bed until 1am and falling asleep at 2am — this makes me sound like such a bum. 

I’ve also started playing chess more on an app — it’s bloody hard but it definitely gets you thinking differently. 

Before COVID, I was also learning French so I want to get back into that. 

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

In Order To Live by Yeonmi Park is a mesmerising story. Root of Evil is a very good podcast if you like true crimes. I also want to make time to listen to Unfuck Nation. 

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

I downloaded the app to learn how to play chess and try to improve my game. 

I hate to admit it but I’m always on Instagram checking our LADbible’s pages! If I’m not, I’m always on @iamthirtyaf and @deuxmoi

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

Christine Centenera.

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

At work, days get filled up pretty fast with meetings that could have been summarised in an email; so sometimes it’s OK to say no— your time is your time so work smarter, not harder.

And in life, how you want to spend your time is up to you. Don’t let other people make you feel you have to do something you don’t really want to do. 

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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.