Last month – before the lockdown was upon us all – Business Leader spoke to Jonathan Oldfield, Riverside’s MD, on his typical daily routine.
If you missed the article, catch it in full here…
What time do you usually wake up?
It does depend on how my day is looking – when I’m going into the office it’s about 6am but if I’m travelling to meet clients, I’ll be up as early as necessary!
What do you typically have for breakfast?
I like to vary my choice of breakfast but I’m major fan of croissants!
What is the rest of your morning routine before you start work?
Generally, it involves getting myself and two kids ready – I’d love to say I hit the cross-trainer without fail, but unfortunately I fall in and out of love with morning exercise!
What is the first thing you do at the start of your working day?
I always grab a coffee and check my emails before planning for the day ahead (if I’ve not been able to manage this the evening before).
How do you prioritise your day’s work?
I start by putting a list of tasks together for the day and identify those that are urgent versus the less important jobs, before putting them in a logical order. Although this sounds very formal and rigid, I realise that it’s important to be flexible and to adapt as the day goes on – just in case. I try not to set goals which I know are completely unachievable – although I like to push myself – or it’s pointless doing the planning in the first instance and I’d only frustrate myself. Every tick against a task is a win and a real motivator, I find!
Do you plan meetings or are they a waste of time?
Meetings are great so yes, I do enjoy them, but only those with a purpose – I never take time out for the sake of it. Our office is open-plan, so internal discussions do occur regularly.
Do you have a working lunch or is it good to take a break?
I have no hard and fast rules around lunch breaks, so on the days that permit I’ll take one, but I’ll always still answer any calls from clients. I actively encourage all my colleagues to have a break, given that they work hard day in day out. We’ve recently bought a pool table for the office so when I get the opportunity, I love a game or two.
When does your working day finish?
Unless I’m travelling, it’s typically just after 6pm.
How do you prepare for the next day’s work?
Usually by finishing as much – if not all – of the day’s work, so not to carry any over. I try and stick to the five Ps – proper planning prevents poor performance.
Favourite piece of technology?
It’s probably not what you’d think! We have so many great gadgets these days, but I love a brew, so with exception of balers and compactors, I’d have to say the kettle!
How do you switch off?
That’s the billion dollar question we’re all seeking to answer! It depends, but generally when I get home its playtime with the kids and then I help put them to bed, before I can start to switch off with a bit of Audible or YouTube.
Best piece of advice you’ve received?
I don’t think I could hang my hat on just one preferred piece of advice, but as my dad once said to me ‘you get out what you put in’ – which is very true. The other piece of advice I keep in mind is ‘do what’s right, not what’s easy’ – I can’t remember who said it to me or when, but I think it’s given me an ethical grounding to build from.