Sid Baveja is the founder & CEO at Humanery, which aims to build the definitive global destination for men that serves all their beauty, grooming and self-care needs in one convenient place.
1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?
I started my career as an investment banker at Goldman Sachs after graduating with an undergraduate degree in Economics.
After spending 2 years as an investment banker, learning the trade of corporate finance and business, I moved on to London to work in the growing technology and e-commerce industry. I spent a combined 10 years in leadership positions at viagogo and Just Eat, before leaving to launch my own venture – Humanery.com.
As founder and CEO of Humanery.com, I am constantly juggling various projects and initiatives to push the growth of our brand. I spend the most amount of time on our people’s efforts (hiring and helping our team grow + strengthen their process for growth), our brand (such as pursuing brand partnerships) and finance (mostly talking to potential new investors).
2) What does a day in your life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?
No day is the same for me (thankfully!). I start the morning around 7:30 am with a black coffee. I do some stretches and light exercises. Then I jump into the shower to get ready to go into the office – I never compromise on self-care after a shower, such as skincare (especially wearing SPF every day). While on my commute to the office (15 mins), I listen to a podcast or some music.
Things kick off with calls and emails during the first half of the day in the office. Then, I usually take a quick 30 min lunch break with my team members. Helps me stay connected to them and learn about what’s going on in their lives.
The second half after lunch involves some deep work + thinking. Sometimes I have calls/meetings in the second half, but I try to limit the second half to thinking time and concentrated work.
I leave the office around 7:30 pm, to get home for dinner. I then spend some time with my wife, and we watch our favourite TV shows or listen to records on vinyl. I either meditate before going to bed or fall asleep while listening to an audiobook.
3) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?
For me, work-life balance is not about reducing the number of hours one works. I think a healthy work-life balance is about being fully present when you’re either working or not working.
I enjoy the work I do, so I tend to work 10+ hour days. But, when I am relaxing, I try to be fully present and not let distractions like emails / calls come in the way. It’s really hard to do, especially as the founder of a young startup.
But this is the only way I know how to create a work-life balance. Put 100% into everything and be fully present. So many people go on holidays, but are constantly thinking about work or still fielding emails / calls. That isn’t creating any balance, even though you’re not in an office. I often tell my team this as well.
I don’t expect anyone to put in 10+ hours each day. But I do expect them to put their heart and passion into the time they’re doing work, so that when they’re switching off work they have less to worry about and they are more productive. We don’t have a mandated start-time or end-time to our day – everybody works at a different pace and has a different approach to delivering their best work.
4) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life?
Yes, I have started being more regular about morning stretch and movement. I used to leave exercise for the evening, but I realised this doesn’t work for my body any longer. As I get older, I need to exercise when I feel most fresh. Evenings are not the ideal time for exercise for me.
5) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?
Yes! I love The Knowledge Project by Farnam Street. Deeply insightful and covers a vast array of topics. My favourite book at the moment is the Bhagavad Gita.
6) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?
I would love to read an interview on work-life balance by someone like Dwayne The Rock Johnson. He’s an incredible person, who manages to get so much done and learns so fast! His evolution from a wrestler to Hollywood mogul has come at breakneck speed, and he’s constantly pushing the game forward. How does he strike a balance?
7) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?
- Focus on your own goals: stop comparing yourself to others and living somebody else’s truth.
- Invest in your mind and body every day: no better investment than yourself
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