Steve Snygin is a freelance designer, and the co-founder of Bill, a Slack app that helps companies build better remote team cultures with icebreakers.
1. To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?
Hello, I’m Steve Snygin. I’m a freelance designer and co-founder of Bill. Bill is a Slack app that helps to build better remote team cultures with icebreakers.
Previously I was doing art direction in an advertising agency. I realized I was more interested in technology, and wanted to build my own product. While being at that agency I’ve met my co-founder, David. I learned how to code and now we’re working towards making a profitable product.
2. What does a day in the life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?
Normally, I split my day between freelance work and my own product Bill.
Since Bill is the beginning stage of the product development, it comes to talking to existing users, flashing out new features and developing them. Basically, most of my time I spend Googling why my code doesn’t work.
I try to split work time into chunks where I frequently take breaks. Having a todo list and sticking to it helps quite a bit.
3. Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?
Having your own business means that you can be flexible with your schedule. Even though it requires responsibility to get things done, it’s one of the perks I love.
Now the idea of remote is finally settling in the public’s mind because of the virus. For me it wasn’t really a choice. After I left the ad agency, I moved to Russia where I’m originally from.
My co-founder is in the States, so working remotely became inevitable. I’m glad more companies are opting in for the remote policies. At the end of the day, the product I’m building is focused on remote work culture.
4. What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?
I guess work-life balance isn’t a right concept for me. I think it implies FOMO. If you’re not working that means you’re having fun. That’s not how I feel. I focus more on keeping my work sustainable.
For example, I don’t believe I can work 16 hours every day and still be productive. The trick is how to make it productive and sustainable. I have a few habits that help me with it (listed below).
5. In the past 12 months, have you started/stopped any routines or habits to change your life?
- Get 8 hours of sleep.
- Have physical activity every day.
- Try to avoid junk food, but don’t be anxious of consuming it.
- Avoid news.
- Pick random books that help you think differently.
- Build a good social support system.
- Take days off when needed.
6. Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?
7. Are there any products, gadgets or apps that you can’t live without?
I guess I can’t imagine my life without Notion. It became my virtual office so to speak. It’s the place where I run my to do list, keep my projects, and make important notes throughout the day.
Another thing that comes to my mind is a monitor + a wall mount. Having a good posture while working can make a huge difference.
8. If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?
Elon Musk. Although, I would be more curious spending a full working day with him. I think lots of people exaggerate how effective they are. I wonder if that’s the case with Elon.
9. Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?
I think it’s important to figure out what that balance means for each person. While some lifestyles can work for a person you respect and want to imitate, it doesn’t mean it will work for you. So, look for your way.
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