Brian Scudamore, 02E Brands’ CEO and founder, has been taking his Fridays off for the past five years and claims that it has dramatically helped both his personal life and business career.
While reporting that he enjoys life more, Scudamore also believes taking Fridays off has helped his business expand to 175 locations worldwide and racking over $250 million in sales.
The serial entrepreneur was once a typical hard-working businessman until he was on the brink of exhaustion more than a decade ago, realizing that everything in his life was starting to fall apart.
Coming to terms with a failed marriage and stagnant first startup, he knew something had to change.
“When I hit rock bottom, I realized I had to stop trying to keep up with everything and start focusing on the right things,” wrote Scudamore in a blog for Wall Street Journal.
He then decided to take a break to “re-prioritize” and connect with what is most important in his life.
“I realized that the 7-to-7 grind was obscuring breakthrough ideas and making difficult decisions even harder. I decided to take drastic action and throw out the traditional work week,” he said.
After trying several methods, he finally came up with his unique work week pattern. Structuring his days around his biggest priorities for the week, he was able to allot Mondays for thinking and just using Fridays to recharge. He then scheduled Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday as his “Focus Days” where he spends his day “sweating out my A-game and acting on priorities.”
“It was on a Think Day that I decided to launch our fourth brand. For a year prior, a fellow entrepreneur kept pushing his hundred-million-dollar window and gutter-cleaning idea. I was overwhelmed with two other startups and felt forced to say ‘no’ When I took a step back, I realized we already had both the people and systems in place for a new brand that fit our family of home-services so perfectly. Taking a Think Day let me see the bigger picture.”
Of all the days in the week, he considers his “Friday Free Day” as the most important:
“They’re days where I do what I love – skiing with my children, cooking, learning languages and biking. When I’m away from the office, things have time to marinate. Connections bubble up and often turn into big, business-changing ideas,” wrote Scudamore. “Free Day gave me a vision I would never have found sitting in the office.”
The owner of successful startups 1-800-GOT-JUNK?, WOW 1 DAY PAINTING, You Move Me and Shack Shine stressed that it’s not just about spending long hours and physically being in the office all the time that matters.
“The future of knowledge work is leaders leading lifestyles that help them feel positive, relaxed, and creative so that they can set better priorities, set better examples for their people, and have more breakthrough ideas,” he concluded.
Scudamore has received several accolades over the years including, “Small Business’ Best Bosses Award” from Fortune Magazine, “Top 40 under 40, three ‘Best Company To Work For’ awards” from the Globe and Mail and British Columbia’s “2015 Entrepreneur of the Year award for Business to Consumer services”.