He’s Got Our Attention

As a response to being named this week’s “Warrior of the Week”, Jordan Zimmerman posted further commentary on his blog.  I felt his thoughts on our way of life warranted sharing (link to full article below):

Attention, Business Warriors

This blog is a sure sign that I’m not the only one out there who has figured out that one of the secrets to success is hard work and little sleep.  But I also know that this lifestyle is not for everyone.  Maybe you require more than three to four hours of sleep every night. And that’s ok.

The question you should be asking yourself is, “What is my secret to success?

Once you find the answer, own it…no matter how crazy it may seem. Do you know how many people over the years have told me I’m insane for getting so little sleep and having such large goals?  I lost count a long time ago!  But I always tell them there’s a thin line between brilliance and insanity.  You can’t be normal to be great.  Life is not about being normal – it’s about being abnormal.

So figure out what makes you tick…what drives you towards greatness. Now get out there and own it.

If you haven’t subscribed to Jordan Zimmerman’s blog “You Sleep When You Die”, you may want to do that.  He’s provides straight talk and a great commentary on the 8pm Warrior way of life.

JZ, thanks for being a great “Warrior of the Week” and we’ll definitely be paying attention (as well as sharing, and retweeting) as you post new blogs, tweets, etc.   We’ve added your blog to the 8pm Warrior discussion news feed on Linkedin and we look forward to more discussion.

Have a great day,

Aaron@Biebert

Why Arianna Huffington was TED Wrong

Interesting message I got today:

“I saw this on TED http://bit.ly/gs5Byd thought it might interest you @8pmWarrior would like to hear your comments on it” – @SocialCharlie

I definitely have some comments on it, but first, here’s the video Charlie mentioned:

http://su.pr/1cZnQW

If you don’t have 5 minutes to watch it, I will paraphrase it for you:

  1. When she was already successful, Arianna Huffington (the Huffington Post Arianna) fainted from exhaustion, fell down, and broke some bones in her face.
  2. She met with doctors, scientists, and others to discover that the key to a more productive, more inspired, more joyful life is…getting enough sleep (contrast this with our current Warrior of the Week:  Jordan Zimmerman’s position).
  3. She is starting a new feminist revolution by telling women to literally “sleep their way to the top” and sleep deprivation is  a “virility symbol” for men.
  4. Sleeping will save the world.

Interesting.

Arianna, you’ve done some amazing things in your life, and you were an 8pm Warrior.  For that, I used to have a lot of respect for you.

However, I respectfully think it is ludicrous to tell those 8pm Warriors at the TED event that sleeping is the key to a more inspired life and I’d like to see Jordan Zimmerman give a TED talk to share the other side.  I’m assuming that one of the reasons you were wildly successful is the same reason that you fainted from exhaustion.

You were giving it your all.

One of the reasons that 8pm Warriors work late (and often sleep less) is because we want to; because we are inspired.  We’re busy.

  • We’re busy writing, reading, or watching TED videos.
  • We’re busy planning.
  • We’re busy making our dreams come true.

I believe that a person can sleep when they die or sleep when they’re satisfied.  Arianna, it sounds like your dreams have already come true.  Time to let others chase theirs.

Have an inspired night!

Aaron@Biebert

I’m Tired…

Hey, I admit it.

The last couple nights I’ve been working on coordinating a massive new social media project (3 new video blogs, 21 facebook pages, 41 websites, and 12 twitter accounts) and I’m tired.

It happens…even to 8pm Warriors.

You can always tell when you’ve reached your limit because you hit the wall (or pass out with the laptop sitting on you).  Then it’s time for bed.

Have a great night!

Aaron@Biebert

Warrior of the Week: Jordan Zimmerman

Burnout? I don’t think this “Warrior of the Week” has ever heard of burnout.

It’s a pleasure to introduce you to Jordan Zimmerman (also known as JZ).  Since starting his own advertising agency in 1984,  he has been the ultimate 8pm Warrior.  For the past 27 years he never stopped, barely slept, and kept up a work regimen that is truly rare in our 9-5 world.

All that hard work is paying off.

Today he has over 1,100 employees in 10 states, runs the 14th-largest agency in the nation doing close to $3 billion per year in billings, and is a partner in the Florida Panthers.  (if you’re curious about family, he also has a wife and four kids)

What advice did he give me to share with his fellow 8pm Warriors?

“I just don’t think we really need that much sleep. After all, there’s plenty of time to sleep after you’re dead!”

…typical Jordan Zimmerman.

Here’s a quick video with some more quotes from him:

This is what his typical “off time” looks like.

  • Try to get home for dinner
  • After the kids go to bed, he works a few more hours in his home office studying research, reprioritizing accounts, or working on his blog
  • He’ll go to bed around 11 or 12pm
  • He gets up every morning at 3:30am and is at the gym to lift weights by 4 am
  • By 5:30, he’s back home and then out on his bike.  (He rides 25 miles before breakfast)
  • He eats breakfast with the three youngest kids and takes them to school if he’s not traveling that day
  • Then off to the office

If he’s not an 8pm Warrior, then I don’t know who is.  I used to be proud of myself for keeping sleep down to only 5 or 6 hours…but he’s running on 3.5 to 4.5!

Does he sleep on weekends?

“Why would you sleep when that’s your time to live?” he says. “Sleeping isn’t living. You sleep when you die.”

Not surprisingly, “You Sleep When you Die” is also the name of his blog.

He’s got so many great thoughts on business and life so we’ll be featuring his material all week on the 8pm Warrior twitter feed and facebook forum.  In the meantime, here are some other ways to connect with him:

If you have a favorite 8pm Warrior you think should be featured, please let us know by sharing a link to their blog/website in the comment section, tweeting @8pmWarrior, or posting info on the 8pm Warrior facebook forum.

Have a great night!

Aaron@Biebert

The Cure for Agony

Agony [aguh-nee] – n.  intense feelings of suffering; acute mental or physical pain

We’ve all been there.

Saying goodbye to a loved one.  Closing down a family business.  Receiving bad health news.  Learning of infidelity.

You name it.

Since I’m still aching from the Badgers losing the Rose Bowl today, I figured I would discover the cure for agony.  Here’s the secret prescription I found:

  • Don’t love anyone
  • Don’t invest in anything
  • Don’t believe in anything
  • Don’t have expectations

I’d rather take the agony.

If you put yourself out there or care about anything in life, you’re bound to feel agony.  For 8pm Warriors, there’s absolutely no getting around it.

The more we care about what we’re working on, the higher the highs points will be and the lower the depths will be also…a sometimes agonizing rollercoaster.

However, take comfort that you’re not alone.  I and other 8pm Warriors are busy right now investing, believing, loving, and expecting great things from ourselves and others. We’ll take the agony.

Have a great night.

Aaron@Biebert

Why are you working tonight?

Is it because you need it or want it?

In the short term, there won’t be much difference.  However, the issue with needing to do something versus wanting to do something is sustainability.

Circumstances can force you or someone else to work longer and harder than others, but if you don’t want it (you’re missing the passion) there is only a matter of time before you quit or burn out.

That’s why long term 8pm Warriors have to love what they do.

They also have to rest, take breaks, vacation, and breathe.  I’m not sure which comes first, but sometimes burnout causes one to lose passion, and sometimes a lack of passion causes burnout.

If you find yourself starting to lose the love…take a break.  You’ll be more successful.

Have a great night!

Aaron@Biebert

Warrior of the Week: Philip Nowak

What is an 8pm Warrior?

As part of my mission to build this community, I’m going to feature a different person each week who defines what it means to be an 8pm Warrior.

Meet Philip Nowak, a social media engagement manager for a Fortune 50 retailer.  He is also the founder of Firmology.com, a small business news and information media company.  In addition to sharpening his writing skills at PhilipNowak.com (one of my favorite blogs), Philip is working on his first book slated to be published in 2011.

His passion is contagious. You’re going to love not only his blog, but his business goals, bucket list, and much more.

I asked Philip to share his goals, the action plan, ways our community can help, and advice he has for other 8pm Warriors.

Here’s what he said:

Aspirations:

I just blogged about my bucket list recently, so this topic is still top of mind.  Professionally, I aspire to be a successful entrepreneur, well-respected thought leader and bestselling author.  Some fun things I’d like to accomplish include continuing to lead an active and healthy lifestyle, earn the independence required to travel the world and to learn a couple of new languages (Russian and Chinese Mandarin).  Most importantly, I aspire to be a loving husband, a proud father and to be able to provide my family with the best of everything: home, health, education and endless opportunities.

Action Plan:

Currently, I am working moving forward with five key projects: my day job, Firmology.com, PhilipNowak.com, my first book and learning Russian.  I attack all of my goals with ferocity and not a day goes by without me working on at least two key projects.

My day job is currently the most important project on my list as it provides the financial backbone for everything else that I am working on.  I strive to learn as much as possible each day and have had the opportunity to gain experience working on a wide variety of projects within the social media, social commerce and ecommerce spaces.

I launched PhilipNowak.com as an outlet for my personal thoughts or as I like to call it, ‘PHILosophy.’  Consequently, blogging every single day has sharpened my writing skills and made the task of writing my first book much easier.  Practicing different styles of writing is also helping me gear up for the launch of Firmology.com.

Finally, I practice Russian using Rosetta Stone as much as I can each week.  I’m learning Russian so that I can better understand and communicate with my girlfriend’s family.  Given the fact that we plan on teaching our future kids Russian and Chinese Mandarin, I decided that it was critical for me to learn both in the next few years.

Help Philip:

A project I could use help with is Firmology, a small business news and information media company.  I’m currently looking for small business innovation story submissions and writers within the topics of business strategy, technology, mobile, social media and social commerce.

Advice:

The one piece of advice that I tell over and over again is this:

“You have to take little steps before you can take giant leaps.”

I have learned firsthand that you can have all the passion in the world, have amazing ideas and make huge plans, but in the end you have to execute on the boring little details from start to finish.  Don’t get discouraged if you don’t gain any traction in the beginning stages of your idea, plan, project or vision.

This applies to everything, whether you are studying a new language, launching a startup, trying to get into shape or even writing a book.  Keep your head down, execute day after day and you’ll eventually reach your goals.

______________________

We’ll be featuring his material all week on the 8pm Warrior twitter feed and facebook forum.  Here are some other ways to connect with Philip:

Twitter:  @PhilipNowak

Blog:  PhilipNowak.com

Company:  Firmology.com

If you have a favorite 8pm Warrior you think we should feature, please let us know by sharing a link to their blog/website in the comment section, tweeting @8pmWarrior, or posting info on the 8pm Warrior facebook forum.

Settle Down!

Do you ever have family or friends tell you to “settle down” when you get a little too caught up in a discussion?

I do.

I’m a passionate person about nearly every topic.  I take sides.  You probably do too.

Unfortunately, in a world of increasing relativism, it can make people feel uncomfortable (especially during Christmas).  However, in times of deep need, guess which people they want on their side?

That’s right.  The passionate ones.

It’s okay to “tone it down” when asked, but never be ashamed of your nature.  Passion and fire are rare qualities in this world, and will be desperately needed in a world of ever changing technology and gut wrenching challenges.

Have a great night!

Aaron@Biebert