The Cohen-Miller Report: Inspiration from the founder of Twitter

Inspiration from the founder of Twitter

by Emily Cohen

Jack Dorsey has two full-time jobs: executive chairman of Twitter and CEO of Square. That is impressive. I have to believe his success in forming and running these two highly successful and innovative companies must be a testament to great time management skills. Recently featured in Fast Company’s March issue highlighting the World’s 50 Most Innovative Companies, he explained his schedule:

“All my days are themed. Monday is management. Tuesday is product, engineering, and design. Wednesday is marketing, growth, and communications. Thursday is partnerships and developers. Friday is company and culture.” While he knows the idea may sound overly rigid and could be perceived as nuts, he calls it “disciplined.”

As a consultant, I have been recommending this strategy for years to my clients and I was thrilled to hear its success reinforced by a leading executive. I do believe you can manage your time effectively by chunking out your week or days based on clearly defined buckets depending on your role. So, a creative manager’s week may include a similar schedule. Mondays could be focused on organizational strategies and issues, Tuesdays on operational strategies and issues, Wednesdays on team building/management, Thursdays on client/relationships, and Fridays on vendor/partner management. Alternatively, I have also recommended dividing one’s days similarly with mornings possibly devoted to meetings/communications and afternoons focused on actually working, without interruptions, on one large project (or goal).

One portion of Dorsey’s schedule that I found less inspirational is “Sundays are for strategy, and a lot of job interviews.”  Perhaps this is necessary for him, managing two companies and all. And, indeed, many of us work weekends anyway. So, if you do (as I do) then dedicating this precious time time for strategy would certainly be a great use of whatever weekend time you do work!

Emily has consulted with design firms and in-house corporate creative departments for over twenty years. During this time, she has provided confidential, best-practice insights and advice. She helps creative teams improve operational effectiveness and helps companies build efficient teams and processes.

Emily currently serves on the board of advisors of InSource and on the AIGA In-House task force. Emily has also served as Secretary for the AIGA/NY Board of Directors and has taught classes and conducted seminars for many leading design schools and organizations. Emily is a frequently-requested speaker on business-related issues for the creative industry. Learn more at www.emilycohen.com and www.cohenmillerconsulting.com.

Join the LIVE Twitter DesignCast Thursday, April 19, 2012 from 2:00-3:00 PM Eastern (1 hour): Twitter for Creative Entrepreneurs. For more information and to register go to http://www.mydesignshop.com/product/twitter-for-creative-entrepreneurs-designcast

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