12 Summer Work Tips From Top Executives

Richard Branson vacation

Even in the working world, summer tends to be a relaxing season. Your challenge is to find a way to take advantage of the slowdown to grow on a professional or personal level.

We’ve picked out the best insights LinkedIn influencers on how to have an ideal summer.

Take time to think about the future.

Stay cool in the heat.

Writes Warby Parker CEO Neil Blumenthal:

Summer in New York City is not for the weak. The combination of hot pavement, sweaty subway rides, jumbo-sized rats and street garbage leads to an atmosphere that F. Scott Fitzgerald once described as 'overripe.' Which is a nice way of putting it.


A leader's responsibility is to act as a shock absorber. While the A/C was being fixed, I walked around the office to apologise, compare sweat stains, and absorb some of the emotional reactions and frustration that people were experiencing. Acknowledging the situation (and expressing a genuine apology) helped to restore equilibrium.

Source: LinkedIn

If you can't get away for a real vacation, at least learn the art of the nap.

Writes Buzzfeed President and COO Jon Steinberg:

When trying to come up with 'the best vacation for summer,' my mind immediately went to my near regular weekend nap. I exercise each weekend morning, spend time with the family and then often crash for two hours.

This is my single most restful time of the week. With two small children, and frequent evening business activities, I often hit a sleep deficit during the week. There is nothing like a weekend nap, ideally outside, with the sun on your face and leaves rustling to create the ultimate in rest and recharge.

Source: LinkedIn

Learn the fun way to work on vacation.

Writes Virgin Group founder Richard Branson:

If you are fortunate enough to get a holiday, try not to spend it looking at your smartphone every five minutes. Instead, put business at the back of your mind -- but not out of your head. I have been on many holidays where I have heard an exciting idea that has turned into a Virgin business. Keep your eyes peeled for a creative idea. You might not be in a brainstorming meeting, but a eureka moment could easily strike while you are stood chatting at the bar.

Source: LinkedIn

Take care of the things that you've been avoiding all year.

Network like mad.

Writes Likeable Local CEO Dave Kerpen:

Networking outside the office has always been a valuable career skill. And at no time do people want 'out' of the office more than summer. People are also more laid back during the summer. That manager at work who's normally uptight may cherish an opportunity to let loose outside the office. Now is YOUR chance!

Remember, summer = less serious. Summer = nobody wants to be at the office until 6PM. Summer = your opportunity to get out and network your way to the top.

Source: LinkedIn

Read something useful.

Writes McKinsey partner David Edelman:

My summer reading pick will shake you out of your Powerpoint haze. Resonate, by Nancy Duarte, is a great reminder that business is about people. In our Powerpoint-obsessed business meeting world, it is way too easy to project slide decks on a screen with dozens of bullet points and unmemorable lists that somehow one expects people to absorb. Good luck getting anyone to remember dry text and dull charts. Sitting through those kinds of presentations can feel like a modern form of water torture. We need to connect, persuade, and motivate.

Source: LinkedIn

Shift your focus.

Redfin CEO Glenn Kelmann:

My summer career advice is simple: change your job. This is different than changing jobs, though that may later have to happen. First, I recommend changing the job you already have, so you get to do what you like more often.

Source: LinkedIn

Learn something new.

Writes EdSurge CEO Betsy Corcoran:

Finding new ways to get deeply smart about something is our generation's badge of honour. When we unplug from work, we rush to explore yoga, sketching, Greco-Roman history or French cuisine. Mastering these sorts of new skills shows creativity, tenacity and character. Best of all: it's fun.

Think of all the offbeat courses we didn't take in college, because we were too busy getting ready for our careers. I got a fortunate do-over in the 1990s, via a year-long fellowship to study at some of Boston's finest universities. Suddenly there was time to audit classes in everything from urban development and artificial intelligence to anthropology, women's studies, and Spanish. No exams. No pressure. Just the joy of discovery for its own sake.

Source: LinkedIn

Take some risks.

Writes Trulia.com CEO Pete Flint:

Ultimately, all of you are at different points in your career. Summer for a college student presents different opportunities than summer for a manager in a Fortune 500 company.

But whether its summer or not, throughout your career you need to consider taking some risks, trying something new, or travelling somewhere you haven't been to find new perspective. Maybe it's time for a change, or maybe you'll find new inspiration in what you already do.

Source: LinkedIn

Revisit your high school reading list.

See what top executives carry with them at all times

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