Daniel Schutzsmith: Nothing Beats a Weekend
We caught up with Amnesty International's Digital Technology Manager and Senior Web Developer, Daniel Schutzsmith during CAMP Festival 2017 and learnt a lot about the transition from entrepreneur to employee. Read your hearts out.
“Trust that the stars will align.” —Daniel Schutzsmith
Daniel Schutzsmith went from living the entrepreneur life as if it were a nonstop college party to being an employee. That big shift has meant more time with his family, room for strategic creativity and space to set and achieve new goals.
You read that right. Daniel found freedom as an employee. But he did it on his terms and that’s why today he’s way more relaxed and gets more done. Plus, he’s got time to write a book now.
Here’s how it went down.
A while back, Daniel was laid off, so he started a company that combined his marketing smarts with his philanthropic streak. That went great for a time. But eventually, being the kind of entrepreneur who hadn’t taken a vacation in a decade took a toll on him and in May 2016, he made the shift.
Slow and steady change.
Daniel’s a big believer in gradual change and slowing life down to stay balanced. When he joined Amnesty International, he negotiated working in the office three days per week. He works remotely the other two, and teaches web design at the State University of New York at New Paltz, too. (And he gets his weekends off.)
From go-go to slow.
Daniel even slows down his morning and afternoon commutes. He gets off the New York train early at gorgeous, bustling Grand Central Terminal to walk a mile into the office, and does the same after work. His wellness became a particular priority after a health crisis, so in addition to the regular walking, he (gradually) cut aspartame, bread and sugar from his diet, added supplements and implemented regular routines, like:
- Making the next day’s to-do list the night before (Daniel recommends trying Todoist: https://en.todoist.com/)
- Listening to podcasts or read blogs on the train
- Using downtime for active self care
Be sure to choose wisely.
He chose to work with Amnesty International when he saw that they were a good fit for his drive to make an impact. And they have an impact right back on him. The organization is all about “inner synergies.” They want to set big goals but without being overwhelming, so annually they break their three main goals into smaller, achievable parts. This focus helps everyone in the organization track where everyone else is at, collaborate, and capitalize on one another’s strengths.
Employees have it all.
Daniel plans to keep living the employee life for the next 20 years. While he sees the upside of both career paths, for him, a fulltime job was a mature choice after the college party of entrepreneurship.