Everyone knows how demanding life can be when running a business, but it's a whole new playing field when you're an entrepreneur and a parent.

Kirsten Saenz Tobey and Kristin Groos Richmond are the dedicated mothers and co-founders of Revolution Foods, a company that provides schools with chef-crafted, affordable, and healthy (no fructose, corn syrup, or artificial colors, flavors, or sweeteners) meals. Since launching in 2016, they've worked with 1,500 schools across the country to serve more than two million meals each week. In 2013, Revolution Foods Meal Kits was launched, bringing a line of branded kits into more than 4,000 stores (including Target, Whole Foods, and Amazon).

Revolution Foods says it plans on being a more than $150 million company by the end of 2018, and there's no doubt that productivity skills at work will be essential to making that happen. But both Saenz Tobey and Groos Richmond agree that, as parents, spending quality time with their children is equally important. 

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There's a time and place for everything

"Productivity means more than checking things off of a to-do list," says Groos Richmond. "For the most part, it means having a focus on the company's strategic goals in a primary sense on a day-to-day basis, and then knowing when to turn that off."

But keeping a schedule and prioritizing important tasks--whether it's exercising or working on long-term projects--in advance are still key ingredients to a successful day. "I look at my calendar a week or two ahead of time and say, 'I'm going to block off these two hours to work on that project'--and really do it," says Saenz Tobey.

Putting the brakes on business

Groos Richmond, who maximizes her time so much that she does work on her commute home, has a rule to stop working once she crosses the bridge--10 minutes from her house. That's when she wraps up a call, closes her computer, and sometimes meditates.

"When I get home, I want to be extraordinarily present for my family," she says. "You have to create a little space between when you're coming off from a very fast-paced mindset and into a space where you need to be present and thoughtful."

Healthy matters

Groos Richmond starts her mornings at 5 a.m., and spends an hour (from 6 to 7 a.m.) working out. Her current obsession is spinning. "When I'm off my [exercise] routine, I can tell I'm off my game," she says. "It actually makes me feel good to be more self-nurturing in that way."

It makes sense for Groos Richmond to prioritize healthy habits. After all, her entrepreneurial mission is to promote smart eating habits among kids--and it's just that sort of mindset that fuels the company. 

To Be Productive, There’s Only 1 Question You Need to Ask Yourself
Published on: Jan 19, 2018