In 7 Hours With, we explore the routines of leading professionals in their space to learn the when, why, where and how they work. In each diary, we will look at what they’re doing at seven different check-ins throughout their day.
Juliana Jaoudi is the Senior Director of Marketing Solutions at LinkedIn, where she manages all mid-market solution sales for the United States and Canada.
As much as I would like to be a morning person, I’m not. I get up between 7:30 and 8, and the first things I do is turn on NPR to start my day. I always have a cup of tea and a good breakfast — maybe scrambled eggs or oatmeal. Health, eating well, and fitness are very important to me, and even though LinkedIn serves breakfast, I like to make my own. Then I get ready for work, and maybe check to see if there’s anything happening on email. Like I said, I’m not much of a morning person, so I like to take my mornings slowly.
I get to work around 9:30 or 10, and usually my first meeting isn’t until 10, so I try to keep 9-10 clear so I can get to the office and settle in. A bit of background on what I do: LinkedIn has several different business lines. Our largest business line is talent solutions, where we sell software as a service primarily to recruiting organizations. LinkedIn originally started out to democratize the recruiting space, increase discovery capability, and offer greater economic opportunity. And our overall mission is to help our members be more productive and successful, but over time we realized we had many other services to offer. For example, LinkedIn now has a fully engaged news feed similar to other social media sites.
LinkedIn’s second largest line of business is what I do, which is marketing solutions. It’s B2B, and focused on newsfeed ads. I run mid-market new business and future enterprise, and so my team does a few things. First, we nurture and stabilize accounts who are spending a certain amount, and help them out with their day to day. The second part of what we do is working with strategic enterprise firms who haven’t yet figured out how to work with us, i.e. companies that are typically focused on B2C.
My team is a combo of true mid-market and strategic acquisition of high-potential enterprise companies. It’s a blast. They call us the growth engine because we take companies from zero to 100, and then once they’re at 100, we pop them over to the other (enterprise) side of the house.
Typically my mornings are comprised of East Coast 1-on-1s or cross-functional meetings with teams like marketing, finance, and product — there’s a lot of cross-functional connecting. But I always block off half an hour before lunch, around 11:30, so that I can do some emails after my morning meetings. That’s one of my productivity tips. I also make sure I’ve got about 1.5 hours of downtime on any given day. Packing my day to the brim with meetings isn’t going to help anyone. I need time to put out fires or deal with issues that arise, and I can’t do that if I’m in back-to-back meetings all day.
1-on-1s and cross functional meetings are also important because I believe that the key to productivity is scaling and sharing best practices — when someone solves a business challenge, they should be able to share that as a best practice with the team and create a culture of collaboration and transparency. That’s the key to productivity. When people are having to reinvent the wheel every time they have a problem, it really slows you down.
My team actually has the highest productivity of any team at LinkedIn globally, which I’m proud of, and creating a culture of collaboration, sharing and transparency has been critical to us. Another other part of the puzzle is talent. Making sure we hire folks who are innovators who like to solve problems, and are entrepreneurs in their own right. When we look to hire, we want people who are creative and innovative thinkers. That’s made a huge difference in our productivity as well, because that means their speed to market is faster.
After lunch I’ll start my afternoon meetings, which are usually comprised of West Coast 1-on-1s and a mentoring session. At least three days a week I mentor, typically women and diversity employees. It’s a big part of my passion and true north. It’s so important to make sure that we have a balanced set of perspectives influencing our direction and how we interact with customers. I love that LinkedIn as an organization is really committed to talking about tougher topics like unconscious bias or lack of awareness, and how to move through those uncomfortable moments.
I am an evening exerciser, and I’m usually out of the office at 6. I do yoga, Flywheel, and have recently really gotten into SLT. I usually go to The Shala in Union Square for yoga. It’s Ashtanga based, so the class has an Ashtanga rhythm and place. It’s predictable and there are no surprises, which I love.
Making time for exercise is so important to me. As I’ve become older and wiser, I’ve realized that exercise is what keeps you young, energetic and relevant. I feel better mentally, emotionally and intellectually if I exercise consistently. That’s really critical. Even when I travel, I get my exercise in. That’s why the evenings are so precious to me.
If I don’t have social plans, I’ll head home after yoga and make some dinner, and probably hop back online. If I do end up going out to dinner, I’m big on seafood. A few of my favorites are Sushi Seki, The Clam and Morimoto, just to name a few.
When I get back online at night, it’s not because it’s required, but because I have lots of time to think critically in the evenings. LinkedIn has an incredible work-life balance. It’s actually not really work-life balance, it’s just work and life.
Plus, I like to leave my brain open to have excellent ideas outside of working hours. If you love what you’re doing, you’re able to live in this fluid space where it’s OK if there’s something that filters in on a weekend, or at night. And it works the other way too — maybe on a Wednesday afternoon you just have to turn work off because you need self care. That’s OK too.
Ideally, I close my laptop at this time. I try to be mindful of taking time to rest and giving myself recovery time. As we get older, health isn’t a given. In my career in the early days, no one talked about mindfulness, anxiety or stress, and how it was impacting their mental state. It’s not just “get your energy and get your sleep,” it’s about finding the tools to not take one small obstacle and blow it up. That’s something I espouse and encourage with my teams. Really check in with yourself and have the freedom to take care of yourself.