By SADAF AYAZ
April 22, 2017
“A runner-up for the Smartest People in Tech by Fortune Magazine, D’Angelo knows a thing or two about hustling and succeeding.”
At the age of 24, Adam D’Angelo quit his job at Facebook as Chief Technology Officer to start Quora one year later with Charlie Cheever, another Facebook employee. Eight years later, Adam’s net worth is $600 million, and he is only 32 years old.
A runner-up for the Smartest People in Tech by Fortune Magazine, D’Angelo knows a thing or two about hustling and succeeding.
Below, he shares five ways anyone on the hustle can stay focused and productive without burning out:
1. Be motivated by your mission.
“Make sure you are motivated by the ultimate mission of whatever you’re working on, and you understand the connection from that all the way down to the specific work you’re doing at any given moment.”
2. Constantly work on improving yourself.
“Focus on getting better at whatever it is you’re doing. There is a reason why the most addictive RPGs formalize the “leveling up” dynamic and it’s amazing how much tedious work this can motivate.”
3. Find one aspect of your work that you really enjoy.
“Enjoy the day-to-day work itself. Don’t expect to enjoy everything, but it can really help your motivation to have a job where you enjoy a significant part of the work intrinsically.”
4. Take care of yourself.
“Make sure you look out for your psychological needs and get enough rest, take time to relax with friends, get exercise or whatever else you need to be able to focus on work without the rest of your life dragging you down.”
5. Have a sense of value of the work you are doing.
“Have an internal sense of what’s worthwhile and don’t fool yourself. Some people think of “staying focused” as an issue of psychological willpower. In my experience, one of the biggest reasons people don’t focus is that they don’t have a strong sense of the value of all the different things they could do. They will get lured in by things that seem exciting or things that will get them some kind of short term social status but have little to do with what actually matters in the long term. It is much easier to avoid this stuff if you have a good sense of its value.”
D’Angelo believes a large reason why he hasn’t burnt out is because the work he does now is what he spent time on as a hobby. For the other parts, he is motivated by the mission and the impact he expects the work to have on the world.
D’Angelo believes a large reason why he hasn’t burnt out is because the work he does now is what he spent time on as a hobby.
Moreover, as a leader, D’Angelo believes, “the things you do well and do badly get magnified throughout the team you are leading. You can see entire companies get thrashed around when the CEO can’t focus, or move slowly when the leader isn’t motivated.”
D’Angelo is deeply aware of these effects and understands the responsibility he has. In addition, knowing that the people on his team depend on him drives him to have a lot of motivation to focus, work hard, and make good decisions.