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Don’t Let Your Work Kill You

May 3, 2011

“Good to Great” author Jim Collins tells a story of the former CEO of Gillette, Coleman Mockler, a shy and humble man who fought off corporate raiders during the 80’s, keeping Gilette independent and prosperous.  Even during the company’s darkest and most intense times of the takeover crisis, and despite the increasing global nature of the business, Collins notes that Mockler rarely worked evenings or weekends. Instead, he spent that time with his family, never missed church, and was actively involved with a non-profit board.  

When Collins asked how Mockler was able to pull this off, a fellow executive said, “Oh, it really wasn’t hard for him. He was so good at assembling the right people around him…that he just didn’t need to be there at all hours of the day. That was Coleman’s secret to success and balance.”

Mr. Mockler, you are my hero.  Because, dear sir, here is my own dark corporate confession: I am not a workaholic, either.

In spite of a healthy desire to climb the corporate ladder and make myself indispensable to my employers, I never latched on to the idea of working an insane amount of hours to prove my worth. I didn’t think it was necessary, nor did I choose to work in companies where an epic work week was the norm. Instead, my philosophy has always been to work smarter than stupid hard. After all, our work is generally judged more by the results produced rather than the number of hours we slave away. So why be a slave?

To continue reading, click here to head over  to The High Calling.

Photo by Kelly Sauer. Used with permission.

One Comment leave one →
  1. May 4, 2011 1:08 pm

    Thanks for the reminder about balance, Brad. I’ve never been a fan of slavery, corporate or otherwise, but many people get caught up in the fear of losing their jobs if they don’t make themselves indispensable. I would love to wave a wand and make that fear dissipate, but alas, I have not that power. I love running my own biz, which can also lead to workaholism, so I have wonderful husband who teaches me the fine art of taking time out to do…nothing! Keep musing, Brad.

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