Brooke Sellas is the Founder & CEO of B Squared Media, a boutique digital marketing agency specialising in social media marketing and advertising.
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1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your background and career?
I’ve worked in real estate, non-profit, and marketing jobs most of my life. Each of them have had a particular focus on sales (if you ask me). My B.A. is in Communication & Media Studies with a minor in English (I’ve always loved writing).
2) What is your current role and what does it entail on a day to day basis?
Currently, as the Founder & CEO of B Squared Media, I focus mostly on sales and operations.
With sales I’m responsible for all of our client-relations, new sales, renewals, speaking endeavors, guest post or interview spots, and also help with booking sponsors for the Marketing Companion.
Operations mostly means managing our team of about 15 remote contractors and freelancers (and ensuring we have the tools needed to do our jobs!).
3) What does a typical day in the life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?
My day-to-day typically looks like this:
7-7:30AM: Wake up, check social and email from my phone (I know, GUILTY!). Read the NY Times and LinkedIn daily briefs.
7:30-8AM: Make coffee and a Garden of Life raw & organic FIT shake for breakfast.
8:15-12PM: Various calls and meetings. I try to do any creative thinking and writing earlier in the day.
12-1PM: Lunch. My husband and I try to eat together if we can since we both work from home.
1-3PM: Cover any comms with my team, network, “must keep in touch” list, and open deals; wrap up my day.
4-6PM: Barn time! I ride, groom, or lunge my horse, Diva.
6-8PM: I usually make dinner, or on Wednesday nights we go out for “date night.”
8-9PM: I’m watching tv while simultaneously catching up on social.
9-10PM: Wind down and prep for bed. I have a large “nighttime routine” including taking off any makeup, spraying my pillows with lavender spray, and putting essential oils on my wrists for sleep.
10-12AM: I’m not a great sleeper so I usually watch tv (no phones allowed, finally!) until I fall asleep.
*Twice a week I take horseback riding lessons.
**Every other Friday I record the Marketing Companion podcast with Mark Schaefer from 9-10AM.
4) Do you have any tips, tricks or shortcuts to help you manage your workload and schedule?
I organize my week on Monday and try not to stray too far from that path. I use Basecamp and Nimble to help me stay on track and complete any deliverables on time. For writing, I keep a simple list going on my iPhone.
I have Fridays removed from my schedule, AND, if I finish all of my work before Friday I’ll take the day to myself.
5) In between your job, life and all your other responsibilities, how do you ensure you find some sort of balance in your life?
Up until a few months ago, I was working 60-80 hours a week. That was my “balance” for nearly 7 years with B Squared Media.
Last summer, we hired an operations manager and I started taking horseback riding lessons. The barn literally changed my life.
I realized how much more focused (and successful!) I am when I spend less time at work and spend more time on things that bring me joy.
6) What does work life balance mean to you?
NOW, it means putting me first (and my husband and our fur-babies, of course!).
I am a people-pleaser by nature which means I usually find happiness by making other people happy. Although I wasn’t “unhappy” there was definitely an element of joy missing in my life. Things felt so monotonous and stale.
Once I started riding and being around horses I felt complete. I feel better, I sleep better, and I’m gaining a lot more confidence in being “selfish” or not worrying about others as much and just concentrating on my own happiness.
7) What do you think are some of the best habits you’ve developed over the years to help you strive for success and balance?
Even though it’s not spontaneous, planning Date Night with my husband every Wednesday has been a game-changer. We both tend to work too much.
Now, we truly look forward to spending a great night out together in the middle of the week. We aren’t allowed to bring phones or talk about work which makes us focus on the more joy-inducing conversations couples should be having!
Gaining a hobby (horseback riding) has helped me personally and professionally. It’s also forced me to strive for a better work-life balance. Now I have something besides work that I want to conquer and be the best at … you can’t put a value on that!
Taking Fridays “off” if my work is completed. This little incentive works quite well and by most Friday afternoons I’m OOO and at the barn or taking a break from work-related items.
Giving back is very important to my family. Recently, I joined Best Buddies of New Jersey. People today seem to be self-serving. Giving back helps keep me grounded and reminds me that I can use my strengths to make the world a better place.
8) Are there any books that have helped you improve over the years?
I love reading. Admittedly, I usually only read work-related or marketing books. A goal of mine is to start reading for pleasure again, so I’ll get back to you on this one!
9) What is the number one thing you do to make sure you get the most out of your day?
ORGANIZE. You’d be surprised how much better your day/week/month/year goes if you take the time to organize.
Set up processes for frequent tasks. I can’t stand/don’t tolerate inorganization, lateness, or any other blatant disregard of time management.
10) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?
I used to roll my eyes at all of the work-life balance talk. Now, I truly understand what it means to fully invest in a work-life balance. I wish I would have realized this a lot sooner. Better late than never.
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