Turn down the difficulty: life hacks from Calgary's Entrepreneurs

March 19, 2019 ATB Financial

 

Turn down the difficulty: life hacks from Calgary's Entrepreneurs
 
Entrepreneurship—like any kind of love—is not for the faint of heart.

“You hear ‘no, no, no,’ and as soon as you hear one ‘yes’ it expands everything.”

But just because something is hard doesn’t mean it has to be impossible.

ATB’s Dustin Paisley recently sat down with some of Calgary’s leading entrepreneurs to discuss the life hacks they use to boost productivity and make building their businesses easier.

 

Here are life hacks from four of Calgary’s leading entrepreneurs.

Alex Putici, founder of Work Nicer Coworking

Alex Putici is building an Alberta success story—again.

After selling off his Calgary-based security business, Alex founded Work Nicer Coworking in Calgary. Work Nicer now has four locations across the city, and will soon open its first space in Edmonton.

He gives two tips to boost productivity. The first is to outsource work you’re not great at or don’t enjoy so you can focus on what you’re good at.

“You got into business to do what you want to do, not to do your books or your website or your logo,” he says. “Know that your time is valuable. Every minute you spend “saving money” doing your own books or website is a minute spent not bringing money in, which is the key to getting started.”

Alex’s second tip is to keep the boundary between his professional and private lives impermeable.

“I might not get home until 9 or 10 at night, but when I’m home I’m home. That’s been really good for me mentally,” he says.
 

Andy Nguyen, co-founder of Playfield Co.

Andy is one of Calgary’s leading lifestyle entrepreneurs. His most recent venture is Playfield Co., a fashion brand that sells bracelets and supports local non-profits.

His number one life hack for budding entrepreneurs? Before you can take care of your business, you need to take care of yourself.

“You’ve gotta make sure you’re filling your cup so you show up at your business full,” he says, “Not in a state of neediness or scarcity.”

Andy is also a big advocate of physically writing down ideas for businesses. There is, he believes, something special about the power of the written word.

Andy is also a big advocate of physically writing down ideas for businesses. There is, he believes, something special about the power of the written word. “Writing your thoughts, your ideas, physically writing it down, whether in a journal or a whiteboard, is powerful. It’s easy to just jot down a note in your phone these days. But I think there’s tremendous power in writing down your ideas.

“For a thought to grow, it must first be planted on paper.”
 

Andrew Obrecht, co-founder of YYC Cycle

Since its founding, YYC Cycle has been at the forefront of spin class fitness in Calgary. Now with three locations in Calgary and two in Edmonton, the business is dreaming of national expansion eventually.

Co-founder Andrew Obrecht says one key to his success has been making sure he’s using his technology and not the other way around.

“I have all of my notifications off. My cell phone does not ring or vibrate,” he says. “I only look at my phone when I pick it up and want to look at it.

“I found myself, as an entrepreneur, especially as my business was growing, that my phone was going non-stop. You can get caught up in all these distractions. Taking control of your devices, taking control of your time. Some of it is just eliminating the stimulation to be sidetracked.

“It’s been a big key to success.”

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