Editor's note: Inc. asked eight entrepreneurs at the top of their game to track for one day (Tuesday, November 29, 2016) how they spent every single hour. Productivity expert and author Laura Vanderkam then weighed in on what they're doing right, what they may be doing wrong, and how you can apply their productivity skills to your life.
Most working moms barely have time to shove their hair in a scrunchy, but Rebecca Minkoff, 36, mother of two, runs (with her brother Uri) one of America's hottest fashion labels, and she is expected to look and act the part at all times. Her productivity hacks are part octopus, part Beyoncé, and totally geared to drive her company forward while giving her more time with her young family.
12:00 a.m. Sleep.
1:00 a.m. Three times a night, two adorable little monsters wake us up! Around 1,
Luca will come into our room and get into bed with us.
2:00 a.m. Bowie wakes up usually two times a night. My husband, Gavin, or I will go into her room and lie with her.
3:00-7:00 a.m. Sleep.
7:00 a.m. Having read Arianna Huffington's book The Sleep Revolution, I try to get at least eight hours of sleep a night. My kids get around nine. A good night's sleep helps my productivity, health, and overall happiness throughout the day. That and coffee--lots of it!
8:00 a.m. For breakfast, I usually make smoothies, Greek yogurt with honey, or eggs with fruit. And coffee. I get the kids dressed and pack their lunches. I make sure I don't schedule any meetings until 9:30 so that I am able to walk my kids to school in the morning.
Laura says: Set some rules.
Maybe it's not realistic for you, but setting some hard rules (like no meetings before 9 two mornings a week, or no working past 6 two days a week) can help you feel like you have a life.
9:00 a.m. I commute to work around 9:15 or 9:30. If I have a lot of calls that morning, I'll take a cab, but otherwise I take the subway and use that time to catch up on email. Twice a week, I work out with a personal trainer. I like working out in the morning. It's a great way to start the day and makes me super productive.
10:00 a.m. I arrive at work. If I have a full day of meetings offsite, I schedule them in order of location so I'm not wasting time traveling back and forth.
11:00 a.m. Work + meetings. If I know I'm going to be on a long call, I'll try to follow up on emails during that time. I try to do two things at once.
Laura says: Watch the multitasking.
Be very careful if you phone and email at the same time. You might get sucked into a hot email exchange, and, next thing you know, the person on the phone is calling your name because you aren't paying attention.
12:00 p.m. Work + meetings. I try to get a manicure or pedicure during lunch or my hair and makeup done if I have a photo shoot or an event that evening or the next day.
Laura says: Pamper when you can.
There's no rule against getting a little pampering in during lunch. If you work long hours (and have kids who need stuff from you after work), it's probably the best time.
1:00 p.m. Work + meetings. I combine meetings with breakfast and lunch. I also try to get outside for lunch, even to just grab a coffee. Everyone needs fresh air.
2:00 p.m. Work + meetings
3:00 p.m. Work + meetings. If I have long photo shoots, I like to schedule them either in the morning, so I have the afternoon for meetings, or vice versa.
4:00 p.m. Work + meetings. Depending on my evening commitments for the week, I try to schedule my hair and makeup so that I can "Beyoncé it" for more than one event. This means, for example, getting my hair done Monday morning for a Monday night event, sleeping in hair and makeup, and waking up for a photo shoot on Tuesday morning with the same hair and makeup!
5:00 p.m. Work + meetings. I make sure that my latest meeting most days is at 5:30 and ends by 6 so I can get home.
6:00 p.m. I go home for the day unless I have an event after work. I'd rather get home at 6:30 to have dinner with my kids, and then work later that night. I commit to evening events or dinners only two or three times a week so I can spend time with my family. My husband and I try to have date night a few times a month so we can spend time together as well.
7:00 p.m. Unless I have a work event, my husband and I play with the kids, and then start cooking and have dinner.
8:00-9:00 p.m. I disconnect from my email at night so I can focus on time with my kids. Emails can wait until the next day.
10:00 p.m. We try to get the kids in bed by 10:30. This gives me plenty of time to play with them when I get home.
11:00 p.m. I do emails and work after the kids are asleep so I don't miss time with them.
Laura says: Work a split.
Rebecca works what I call a split shift: Leave the office on time, go home and spend time with the kids, and then do email and other low-energy work after they go to bed. This way, she's trading TV time for work time, rather than family time for work time. That's a tradeoff a lot of parents are willing to make.