5 reasons why my hobbies are important business.

Oct 22, 2018

Joris Snoek
Digital Consultant
+31 (0)20 - 261 14 99

I'm very busy with music and sports besides my work. Recently I thought: is this not a constant distraction? Should I not try to focus as much time as possible on work? After a short recess, this was soon clear: nope! Why 'serious leisure' is even important for me to get business-like:

In my brief search regarding 'to hobby or not to hobby' I first came across several studies of CEOs with intensive hobbies, for example: CEOs who are also pilots lead more innovative companies and CEOs running marathons show better business performance, but excessive golfing can seriously hurt.

I myself do music production, kickboxing, fitness, yoga and sometimes some DJ stuff.

And all that besides social activities with the missus, family and friends :)

At the moment it is mainly the music production that takes a lot of time, I do not do much with it publicly and I do not pretend to be a pro producer; sometimes I put something on SoundCloud and sometimes a number is used for a video :). But I mainly work on synths and drum machines.

  • Favorite synths currently: Korg Minilogue andKorg ms-20
  • Favorite Drum machine: Roland MC-303. A cumbersome, challenging device. That is probably why hardly anyone uses it - and many sounds are unique.

Anyway, 5 points why I see benefits from my hobbies in business terms:

1. It makes me get free

The complexity of my role increases as our team has grown in recent years, I have to be involved in many disciplines and make choices. Now we have a good team that makes beautiful things, but I still have to stay involved in many areas.

And, more people give more complexity anyway.

All this stuff constantly wanders in my head, even in my free time. It varies per period, but sometimes work can be available 24/7. I can hardly let go when I am sleeping, eating or with friends / family.

This does not help my business performance: I have noticed that excessive stress damages my thinking and leads to reduced ability to be positive.

Regularly being free is therefore essential to stop that continuous background noise, just relaxing on the couch or even spending time with loved ones is not enough for me.

Those hobbies ensure that I do get free, for example:

  • the flow that occurs when I produce music or turn a DJ set;
  • kickboxing training (and especially sparring) gives no room to think of anything else;
  • yoga speaks for itself, I would imagine.

2. Constantly getting better

Despite being hobbies, the aim is to become as good as possible: I want to constantly improve myself and eventually reach the highest possible level. For kickboxing this means that I would like to do a real bout again and that I strive for a release in music that gets into the top 10 of a well-known electronics hit list, for example Beatport.

I constantly try to achieve the best, not give up and hope to transfer that to business.

3. To keep our feet on the ground

Research shows that humility can lead to more involvement throughout the organization, leading to improved overall performance.

Hobbies make me come out of my bubble, keep both feet on the ground, and keep in touch with everything in our company - do not become proud.

This is because I know that I will never be at the top in terms of my hobbies, it feels more like I am a hired help then.

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My most recent music project

4. Potential to connect with people more

Although I have to work more on this, I think hobbies are a way to connect with people more. To talk about something other than business stuff, it makes for better and more diverse connections. You can collaborate in a more informal setting and have a profound understanding of more than just work.

5. Lessons Learned

I get business lessons from kickboxing, yoga and making music, such as:

  • never stop;
  • always remain calm, even in the case of crisis;
  • do not fight unnecessarily;
  • only a clear mind can make good decisions;
  • healthy body, healthy mind;
  • creativity is necessary to keep up;
  • the same applies to authenticity.

Wrap up

I almost stopped my intensive hobbies, because I thought this distracted business, but fortunately I discovered this article in time where I got a lot of the above insights. I was immediately relieved and of course went to do my hobbies even more intensively :)


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