A day within the lifetime of the P.F. Chang’s CEO who wakes up at 4 a.m.
“My life is my work. My work is my life.”
So says Damola Adamolekun, former Wall Road whiz-turned-CEO-of casual-dining restaurant chain P.F. Chang’s. Within the midst of the distant work revolution, workers worldwide have been combating for a greater work-life stability, pushing again in opposition to employer mandates to return to workplace and advocating for four-day workweeks. Even international celebrity Rihanna lately expressed that discovering “stability is nearly unimaginable.”
However for Adamolekun, work and life have by no means been separate. “I by no means actually have been an individual that separated work and life,” he tells Fortune. “It mixes.”
That is perhaps as a result of the 34-year-old has so much on his plate. He’s one of many few Black CEOs main a serious U.S. firm; there are solely six black CEOs within the Fortune 500, and solely 8% of C-Suite executives are Black, in accordance with a 2021 Washington Publish evaluation of the 50 most respected corporations. And Adamolekun balances working the helm along with his job as a accomplice at Paulson & Co., the hedge fund that acquired the Asian-inspired restaurant chain in 2019.
It follows a profitable profession in personal fairness, the place Adamolekun labored at prime corporations, together with Goldman Sachs and TPG Capital. He says he devoted his finance period to “working on a regular basis,” even on the weekends.
“I assumed it was enjoyable. So it wasn’t like I needed to go in on a Saturday,” Adamolekun stated. “It was like ‘I acquired stuff to do, and I need to knock it out, or I need to take a look at one thing.’”
It’s not not like the lifetime of many financiers and CEOs, who’re recognized for logging after work hours to get the job finished. He says he nonetheless works on the weekends and may typically be discovered checking emails by the pool.
Though Adamolekun has by no means prioritized discovering a work-life stability, he acknowledges that work impacts folks in a different way. “It’s a person factor,” he says, including that you need to separate the 2 if work is worrying. That’s why he encourages workers to construct in “buffers,” taking a time without work on a Tuesday or Wednesday since weekends are often busy on the restaurant as a result of larger demand.
However for him, regardless of all of the pressures of being a chief government, “work doesn’t stress [him] out.”
Adamolekun gave Fortune a sneak peak into his every day routine, which kicks off at 4 a.m. sharp.
From a.m. runs to p.m. cigars
4:30 a.m.: Adamolekun’s motto: “Early to mattress, early up.”
He begins his day with a seven to eight-mile run, which he says helps him really feel much less burdened and extra relaxed. The cardio train routine stimulates his “calm, relaxed, autonomous nervous system,” Adamolekun says, not like the sympathetic nervous system, which set off’s your physique’s struggle or flight response.
There’s a motive you’re feeling good whenever you exercise, he provides: “You’ll really feel higher the entire day; you’ll be smarter, you’ll be sharper, you’ll be extra energetic.”
6:00 a.m.: After his run, Adamolekun showers and prepares to move to P.F. Chang’s headquarters in Scottsdale, Arizona.
Earlier than hitting the highway, he takes a couple of minutes to evaluate the chain’s efficiency numbers from the day prior to this in his dwelling workplace, checking to see in the event that they aligned with the corporate’s expectations.
7:00 a.m.: Adamolekun arrives on the headquarters, a 20-minute drive from his home, and casually meets with the COO and CFO earlier than leaping right into a day stuffed with conferences. His schedule is full of inner and exterior conferences.
In between conferences, Adamolekun manages emails, prioritizing probably the most important duties to make sure workers are being met with well timed approvals to maneuver ahead with their work.
6:00 p.m.: When the day’s conferences are over, Adamolekun clears his inbox and heads dwelling. However, his work day doesn’t precisely cease there.
Because the CEO of a serious restaurant chain, Adamolekun isn’t any stranger to mixing enterprise with dinner, typically assembly with colleagues and connections after the normal nine-to-five workday ends.
As he places it, “It’s a hospitality enterprise, so quite a lot of dinners are concerned.”
On the events when Adamolekun can go straight dwelling with none post-work affairs, he relaxes with a cigar on the patio, ending his day the identical approach he begins by activating his parasympathetic nervous system.