Here’s How 16 Successful Australian Entrepreneurs Start Their Day

Mornings are a time where muscles are exercised, daily goals are prioritised, and a business can be attended to from inside to out.

Business Insider spoke to a range of Australian entrepreneurs across a range of sectors about how they get energised and organised for the day ahead. The one common theme is preparation and organisation – but after that it’s a grab-bag of routines that shine a light on the routines of successful people.

From industries ranging from health to retail, here is how these 16 entrepreneurs make the most of the early hours of the morning.

BlueChilli's COO Tony Burrett and Chief Growth Hacker Alan Jones

At 7:30am twice a week, Burrett and Jones start their work day with an early morning cross-training session on the grass at Sydney's Newport Beach.

Followed up with a 'twice-weekly Work In Progress meeting at an outdoor beachside cafe,' says Jones.

Since the workday often extends into the evening anyway, nobody's too put out by their late arrival at the office.

The pair agree nothing beats exercise and salt air for reducing stress and clearing the mind.

Milan Direct CEO Dean Ramler

In the gym by 5:45am and at the office by 7am, Ramler aims for a fresh start to the day, when he is the most productive.

Once at work he checks the businesses dashboard - Google Analytics - to see if ad spend hit set targets and other factors that show the health of the business.

Ramler then reads over management reports and then begins on the tasks that will bring the most value to the business in that day or week. CEO Andy Sheats

'I start with our daily agile standup. This gets everyone on same page for the day and helps me prioritise/re-prioritise my day to make sure I'm most effective and getting the best out of our team.'

Vinomofo CEO Andre Eikmeier

First thing Eikmeier makes a list of what he needs to achieve for the day to stay focused on the important things.

Then a walk around the office, saying hi and touching base with everybody in each department, giving his employees an opportunity to ask him questions. Eikmeier says doing this 'I can get a big picture update of where things are at with each team. BIG believer in face-to-face.'

Then it's into emails, actioning or boomeranging them to action later in the day or week'.

OneShift CEO and co-founder Gen George

Up 'at the crack of dawn' George squeezes as much as she can in to each morning.

She starts by scanning social media pages, as well as reading the news to stay tuned in on industry communications.

She follows this up with a gym session and a morning coffee before hitting the office.

Thankyou Group MD and co-founder Daniel Flynn

Flynn likes to start the day 'as calmly as possible' which he says helps to set up his day and gets him in the right frame of mind. After having breakfast with his wife (co-founder of Thankyou Group), Flynn says his morning shower is where he comes up with his best ideas.

Flynn is sticking to his New Year's resolution to get fit, and so does some laps at the Box Hill pool before work.

After an ice coffee, Flynn gets to the office where he'll review his calendar and make a to-do list.

Zookal COO Vicky Lay

Lay starts the morning with her TO ACTION list, prepared the night before. She splits her day into 3 columns: ‘To do’, ‘To Contact’ and ‘Schedule’.

‘To do’ and ‘To contact’ are prioritised based on urgency and importance and based on this, she begins to assign tasks to either herself or to relevant team members. She then makes a schedule with solid start and end times so she can make the most out of the day.

InStitchu Co-founder James Wakefield

Most days Wakefield is up at about 6am. He says, 'As an entrepreneur, it's hard not check emails when you first wake up! I scroll through the most important ones that need action over a morning coffee, and map out my day ahead.'

Sometimes fitting in some exercise at the gym, Wakefield says he usually gets ready with Bloomberg News on in the background and then switches to his iPad to read the news on the train to work.

Blamey Saunders hears Managing Director Dr Elaine Saunders

Waking up at 5.45am Dr Saunders starts off her day with exercise. She is currently into Pilates.

She spends part of her morning browsing her iPad before work. She says 'It’s like a risk analysis and awareness check on the world at the start of the day and helps her stay up to date with research and technology in hearing'.

Once at work she spends the first hour greeting all the staff. It’s a way of 'taking the temperature'.

Imagine Team Co-founder and Director Zakaria Bouguettaya

It's short and sweet for Bouguettaya in morning at the app development company.

He has a hashbrown and coffee. 'That’s about all I can stomach for breakfast', he says. Then it's onto follow-up emails and phone calls, and putting out 'fires' from angry users, and dealing with bug fixes from the night prior.

Mozo MD Rohan Gamble

Gamble makes the most of entrepreneurial freedom, by not setting an alarm and taking a walk around Sydney Harbour before heading into the office.

'It's a lifestyle that working for an employee salary just doesn't allow. And I find that it keeps me operating at my best, because I arrive at the office fresh, full of energy and with my day already planned out in my head', he says.

B2cloud Director Luke Smorgon

Smorgon says, 'After waking up and spending 10 minutes or so skimming through Facebook and emails in bed, I’m up to take my dog Herbert for a 20 minute walk, which gives me time to mentally plan for the day ahead.'

OzForex CEO Neil Helm

First Helm checks his overnight emails while checking his local surf break. He then has breakfast and drives to work, making a few business calls on the way (hands-free, surely!).

Then once in the office, he reconfirms the schedule for the day or week and gets on with it.

NORA CEO Paul Greenberg

Greenberg appears to be a man of 'threes'. He starts the day with a fitness regime.

It's three laps around the Chatswood Oval, three sets of pull ups on the rusty exercise bars next to the cricket nets, and three sets of running up and down the stairs of the grandstand.

Then back home, he concludes the session with another 3 minutes of wailing blues guitar on his trusty Fender Stratocaster and Vox amp.

He skim-reads The AFR, The SMH and The Australian (and Business Insider too, we hope) and then breaking the three habit, has two coffees.

Rozibaby founder Rosh Ghadamian

Starting at 6am, Ghadamian checks emails and reads articles on a range of websites that are based on anything from entrepreneurship, management, industry related issues, leadership websites, and unrelated industries for cross pollination of ideas.

By 8am, he's had breakfast, showered and is ready to start thinking about the day ahead.

Ghadamian says 'A lot of my best ideas for the business have happened in the car driving to work. It's an hour trip to our offices, which gives me enough thinking time to nut out problems and work through projects in my mind.'

At 9am Ghadamian is at work sorting through emails and prioritising work to be done for the day ahead.

The Big Smoke managing director and publisher Alexandra Tselios

Tselios does three things every morning to ensure she has a productive day.

1. Goes for a long walk to clear her head.

2. Reads a number of news and business sites.

3. Revises her to do list and prioritise the next 14 working hours. Which she says 'stops me from getting overwhelmed and allows me to start my day on a positive note.'

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