Some days are a dream - and then there are the days you'd rather forget.
As an editor-at-large at Bloomberg Television, I come across my fair share of global movers and shakers, so I thought I'd ask the world's most powerful business leaders how they start their days in the smartest possible way, and their top tips for any budding young CEOs on the best way to start their careers. Here is what they had to say...
- Exercise...It seems the most successful business leaders use exercise as their way to a good start to the working day. Davide Serra, Algebris CEO, dedicates half an hour to training every morning, as does Dan Wagner, PowaTag CEO, who even suggests trying to stand for most of the day. For Colin Henry, Jaeger CEO, walking his beloved Jack Russell gives him that burst of energy he needs!
- Media...Most CEO's I speak to start their media consumption as soon as their day allows - normally before their feet have even touched the floor! The most popular sources seem to be The Financial Times, New York Times, The Economist, Wall Street Journal and of course Bloomberg Television, whilst Jaeger CEO Colin Henry gets a fashion fix from Women's Wear Daily and William McGrath, AGA Rangemaster CEO, wants all the sporting headlines from Sky Sports News.
- To tweet or not to tweet...Over half of the 27 CEOs I asked about Twitter actually don't use it, which may come as a surprise. Stephen Odell, CEO of Ford Europe, said that despite his daughter's best efforts to encourage him, he simply does not want to tweet. Dan Wagner, PowaTag CEO, even called it "a constant stream of drivel"! Personally, I love it, and some of the world's biggest CEOs agree - Richard Branson of Virgin told me he is "thoroughly into" Twitter.
- Caffeine...Whether it's Chinese Pure Tea (Andrea Morante, Pomellato CEO), a super strong black coffee (Tidjane Thiam, Prudential CEO) or a classic English breakfast tea (William McGrath, AGA Rangemaster CEO), it seems that our love affair with a morning caffeine fix is still going strong. For me, it's always a double espresso as soon as I get into the Bloomberg offices - I couldn't function without it!
- Family... Our working days may be getting longer, but there's still a school run to do, children's sandwiches to prepare or tea to make for a partner, so family often plays a crucial role in our mornings. John M. Scott, President & CEO of Belmond, told me that his secretary always jokes that he is the first CEO she has worked for that always walks his kids to school in the morning and takes public transportation to the office, but he stands by this mantra - "you need to make time every day to connect with your family".
- Advice on starting out...Anya Hindmarsch, a UK-based fashion accessories designer, summed it up when she told me "just believe in yourself... and be brave, don't hesitate". Patrizio di Marco, Gucci CEO, encourages you to "be curious and be humble", whilst the advice from Robin Wight, Engine President, is "don't get married so often"!
- And relax...It may be easier to say than actually do, but there are all manner of ways to switch off and give your stress levels a break. Each person is different, but losing yourself in
a literary classic is a popular option. Tidjane Thiam, Prudential CEO, told me that the most depressing periods in his life are when he doesn't have a good book going, whilst Magnus Nilsson, Faviken Chef, enjoys watercolour painting. Some never do switch off though. WPP's Martin Sorrell says it how it is: "WPP is not a matter of life and death, it's more important than that. So, the answer is I don't switch off."
Francine Lacqua is editor-at-large at Bloomberg TV. She also hosts "On the Move with Francine Lacqua" and "Eye to Eye".