Features

24 hours With… Charles Tidswell of Socialbakers

In this 24 hours with, Socialbakers JAPAC vice-president Charles Tidswell wakes up to a long run and his six-year-old twins before taking on a hectic day of meetings and calls – fuelled by French pressed coffee

5.15am: The alarm goes off. From a young age I’ve always enjoyed and been relatively good at running. I’ll run between 8km and 12km a day. It’s a great time for me to reflect. I don’t wear headphones. I love to listen to my surroundings, at that time in the morning. The wildlife is also waking up and there are some interesting noises to be heard including the Cockerel chorus around Botanic Gardens and Dempsey.

7.00am: Back from my run and hopefully cooled down, I love to spend time with my children. With six-year-old twins, there is never a dull moment. With them being very different personalities, it’s non stop entertainment. The topics they discuss always make me smile. Some of the latest discussions revolve around what they want to be when they are older. My son an astronaut. My daughter wants to be either my son’s bodyguard, a ballerina or a lawyer.

8.00am: Head to the office. I’ll listen to music or read my Kindle on the commute. This 30 minutes is really important to me, a transition between the beautiful chaos at home and the vibe in the office.

8.45am: Coffee. Good coffee is a really important part of my weekday. I make a 750ml coffee, French pressed. It’s the only way I can operate first thing in the morning.

9.00am: Sales catch-up with the team. It’s a 15 minute stand-up chat reviewing open opportunities and understanding the next steps and possible threats. The whole team participates, which contributes to a transparent team-oriented work environment. Everyone knows how everyone else is performing. It’s a non-confrontational exercise, but very informal.

9.30am: At this stage, my day typically divides into two. The morning focusing on sales, the afternoon on retention. Having caught up with the latest tech news, especially social related I’ll dig into data. We use Salesforce religiously across the organisation, so I have a view into hundreds of metrics, which provide additional insight into the coming months performance.

10.00am: Time to have some one-to-ones. There are over 20 people in the office. There is always a lot to learn, understand and review. Micro-managing people is not my style, but I believe in process. And sales is very much a process and not a gut feel, especially in SaaS sales.

The Socialbakers team

12.00pm: I normally get really hungry at this time. If I’m not meeting a client or prospect I’ll usually grab a quick sandwich. Having said that, our office is in Tras Street, Singapore. So you have Maxwell on one side and ramen central on the other, meaning there are times when I’ll join some of the team for lunch.

12.30pm: A chance to catch up with emails, a time to think. I am massive glass board fan. More challenging problems I always like to sketch out, it’s my way of thinking out loud.

1.30pm: I will focus my attention to retention. Chats with the account managers to understand client health and opportunities to support clients in more of their activities.

4.00pm: It’s about this time the team in Prague are online and ready to respond to any requests. Typically there are a number of calls arranged around sales, product or public relations.

We’re launching new solutions, which requires significant time investment globally. There are training calls, Q&A sessions and so on. It’s a reasonably busy period. We have an amazing team in Prague, their involvement is critical and the more face time with them the better. While email is a part of everyday life, I prefer the phone and video conferencing.

6.45pm: Dinner with the family is important. The banter from breakfast continues at dinner, although maybe a little more animated. My children have ferocious appetites, partly because my wife is a phenomenal cook.

Every night we eat something new, which probably explains the reason I need to run so much. During this time, I do my best not to engage with any work-related activities and focus on the family. I like to compartmentalise. I learn a lot from my children, and I hope they learn from me.

7.30pm: If I don’t have any calls scheduled, it’s story time. The children will each chose a book to read. It becomes quite competitive as to who can chose the most entertaining book. I adore this time with them.

9.00pm: After the children are in bed and I’ve helped my wife. I’ll address anything that I didn’t get a chance to do during the day or reach out to the team in Prague for support, which can be addressed overnight for when I’m online in the morning.

10.00pm: The air con is at 16 degrees and it’s time to say goodnight.

Charles Tidswell is the Singapore-based vice-president of Japan and Asia-Pacific at Socialbakers, a social media marketing platform

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