Jeff Bezos is one of the most successful faces in business — in 2018, he was named the richest man in modern history.
And while he may be a demanding boss and a ruthless competitor, there’s no denying that he has a knack for running a company. From Amazon’s humble beginnings in Bezos’ garage to the historic milestone of becoming the second company to reach a $1 trillion valuation, he’s in a league all his own.
At an awards event hosted by Business Insider’s U.S. Editor-in-Chief Alyson Shontelland and the publication’s parent company Axel Springer, Bezos revealed the counterintuitive advice he offers new Amazon employees. Rather than strive to achieve work-life balance, Bezos argues that employees should strive to maintain a healthy symmetry in professional and personal pursuits.
“This work-life harmony thing is what I try to teach young employees and actually senior executives at Amazon, too. But especially the people coming in,” Bezos said, according to Business Insider. “I get asked about work-life balance all the time. And my view is, that’s a debilitating phrase because it implies there’s a strict trade-off.”
Instead, Bezos views professional and personal pursuits as integrated parts. Finding a harmony between the two has been key to his success.
“It actually is a circle. It’s not a balance,” Bezos said.
There’s certainly a lot to learn from industry giants like Bezos, including the idea that success of any kind may have nothing to do with achieving a good work-life balance.
“If I am happy at home, I come into the office with tremendous energy,” he told Business Insider. “And if I am happy at work, I come home with tremendous energy.”
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