People ask me all the time about work-life balance. But to me — there is no work-life balance, or even a choice between the supposed opposites, because both are a part of my life. Who decided that life is the opposite of work, anyway? The good news is you can play at work, and you should. More good news: you don’t have to work after death either, unless Dante’s Inferno turns out to be non-fiction.
As an entrepreneur, when you love what you do, it just doesn’t feel like work. I enjoy meeting people, helping to build Calgary’s arts community and shaping our city. I love spending time with my family and competing on grass, ice and AstroTurf too. All of it is my life. I work for a living, but also live while working.
Village Brewery was founded within the same week that I signed on with Evans Hunt. Right from the get-go both entities have been a part of my life. I do both at the same time because they work well together. Often I find myself talking to a CEO or an organization about partnering with Village and Evans Hunt in the same meeting.
“There is no work-life balance when you love what you do and do what you love.” — Jim Button, Evans Hunt & Village Brewery
If I’m making a presentation for a business or a conference, my decks are often a mixture of the ethos of both companies.
One of the most common questions I get asked is “How do I manage it all?” The answer is pretty simple: I track and keep all of my appointments; I make a very concerted effort to be home with my family for dinner at least four nights a week (especially for Sunday dinner); and while it’s hard on the entrepreneur in me, I don’t go to everything I get invited to. All that being said, I am lucky to have a great wife that makes sure our family life is well taken taken care of.
Some of my friends look at me like I’m crazy, or a workaholic, but I think that this lifestyle is our new economy. If you look around all three floors of Evans Hunt, there’s a bunch of people who have other gigs. There are people who run photography businesses, contract independently, and write music and play gigs every week. In our environment, you’re rewarded for it. Because if you’re out there doing other things, it means you’re not complacent. It means you’re passionate and always learning. As long as collectively we’re getting our shit done, and done really well, everyone’s happy.
The line between work and life is long gone. Technology has allowed the workplace to be anywhere and anytime. It’s creating new and innovative ways to do business as well as run a company. There’s no way I could run a brewery and meet the people I do at Evans Hunt without the connectivity that’s in the palms of our hands today.
Technology allows us to simultaneously have a career and pursue our passions (and often they are one in the same), while still allowing us to keep in touch with loved ones and recharge whenever we need to. There is no work-life balance when you love what you do and do what you love.