Josh Jebathilak is a Senior Consultant at monday.com, a Work OS powering remote teamwork. Note: We conducted the interview with Josh while he was still an Enterprise Account Executive at Zendesk.
1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?
Following my parent’s strong work ethic and ideology that nothing in this world is free, I started my first job at the tender age of 13, selling computer parts at the local markets with a family friend.
After my HSC I landed a role as a Customer Service Representative for Telstra, I later went on to manage the team but my real passion was in technology and solving business challenges, which led me down the path of becoming an individual contributor in sales for various technology companies.
I have spent the last 12 years working with some great brands like Telstra, Ricoh, SAS, SAP, and most recently as an Enterprise Account Executive for Zendesk where I work with Telcos, Utilities and Public Sector clients to deliver world-class customer experiences by transforming user experiences within customer operation teams.
2) What does a day in the life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?
As a father of three kids under the age of three, I am up at 5.30am to get a head start on my day. I like to check the news and read about 10-15 pages of a book while having my coffee, I also like spending this time in the morning getting the kids ready for their day.
In sales, I see my 9am-5pm as the hours of the bank vault being open, you simply can’t sell outside of these hours. To get the most out of these hours, all my email checking/responding, admin and proposal writing is done predominantly between the hours of 8am-9am and 5pm-6pm.
I also limit myself to 5-6 customer/internal meetings per day. I found limiting these meetings to 30 minutes each helps get straight to the point and stagger my workload to ensure I have time to prepare for the next meeting, breaks, and fit in the exercise I need for the day.
3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?
Yes, my role is mostly remote. Working for a cloud-based software company that focuses on operationalizing remote teams makes it really easy to work all hours of the day but having family commitments requires me to get the most out of the hours of 8am-6pm.
Pre-COVID I also needed to factor in travel time for customer meetings which forced me to do a lot of work on the road. Now, I not only have additional time in the day for customer conversations but also have the flexibility to spend precious moments of my working day with my family.
4) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?
To me, work-life balance means leaving work at work to actually enjoy the life you work for.
Like many people, I easily procrastinate without a plan, process, and method which can often leave me feeling frustrated and burnt out without achieving much. I combat this with detailed planning and sticking to my (daily/weekly) structure. I also keep handwritten notes which helps de-clutter my thinking.
5) What do you think are some of the best habits or routines that you’ve developed over the years to help you achieve success in your life?
Learning to take rejection
An essential skill for any person in any rolet. A more common example of rejection could be where someone simply doesn’t approve of an idea you have – It’s nothing personal, so instead of spending time overthinking and hurting over the rejection, I have learned to ask why and use their feedback as a constructive way to improve on that idea or the next.
Learning to listen
My mother always told me you have two ears and one mouth, so you can listen twice as much as you talk. Empathy and emotional intelligence is one of the key contributing factors to my success.
Learning to reduce stress
Stress scientifically speaking is an accumulation of the chemical Cortisol, its produced in your adrenal gland, unlike most chemicals in your body where there is a natural rise and fall in levels over time – Cortisol actually continues to increase if not treated, hence why you often feel ‘stress’ building up.
To avoid boiling over, I treat stress with exercise and for extreme situations, I meditate and visualise the things I am grateful for in my life and outcomes I want by telling myself I am excited instead of nervous.
6) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?
- Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action – Simon Sinek
- Tribe of Mentors: Short Life Advice from the Best in the World – Tim Ferris
7) What is the number one thing you do to make sure you get the most out of your day?
6 Ps – Prior Planning & Preparation Prevents Poor Performance
8) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?
9) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?
Visualising something to look forward to is incredibly motivating for me. My why is the weekend (why else do we work?!)
It’s what I look forward to most but suffer immense guilt if I’ve had an unproductive week and struggle letting go of the mishaps of the prior week, to solve this I spend 5 minutes on Sunday night writing my objective(s) for the week.
Having this in the back of my mind ensures I catch myself wasting time on things that do not contribute toward those key objective(s), even if I don’t achieve what I set myself, I know why and don’t beat myself up over it – this way Friday rolls around and I feel accomplished and ready for my weekend.
Set small subsequent goals that lead to your long term goal. Checking off things as I work toward an end goal helps keep me motivated, on track and satisfied.
“Rule number one is, don’t sweat the small stuff. Rule number two is, it’s all small stuff.”Robert Eliot
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