A CEO's job is to make decisions. They often make several critical decisions a day, each of them ultimately weighing into the long-term the success of their company.
Since they make decisions left and right, do Silicon Valley's most-celebrated CEOs rely on a decision-making matrix the rest of us can rip off? Kind of, and it's not actually all that complicated.
Many of them simply head outdoors and go for a walk.
LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner prefers walking meetings, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg allegedly takes new hires on walks and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is also a fan of walking, CNN Money reports. Whether they prefer to walk solo to unpack a complex problem or invite someone along for conversation, here are several reasons why taking a hike is better than holing yourself up in a conference room.
When you're an in-demand leader of a company, the office is a place of constant distractions. From the overflowing email inbox to employees stopping you in hall to chat, it's difficult to find a moment to oneself when everyone wants a piece of your time. To truly focus on the task at hand, stepping outside to take a walk is an effective way to leave all those distractions behind. If you're physically not around, people can't bother you.
Minimize intimidating eye contact
A one-on-one meeting can be intense, especially if you're discussing an important topic that could potentially lead to conflict. If it's just the two of you, it's a lot of staring into each other's eyes.
Taking your meeting for a walk removes the necessity for eye contact, leading to what Weiner describes as more "direct and candid" conversations. It's less intimidating to walk alongside someone than to be sitting across from them in a conference room.
Reap the benefits of nature
While talking a walk around the block gets you out of the office, taking that walk in nature is even better. Spending time in nature has proven to boost brain function, reduce stress and improve your mood. The Japanese even have a term for strolling through nature that translates to "forest bathing."
"Scientists are beginning to find evidence that being in nature has a profound impact on our brains and our behavior, helping us to reduce anxiety, brooding, and stress, and increase our attention capacity, creativity, and our ability to connect with other people," Jill Suttie wrote in an article for the Greater Good Science Center.