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Is it normal at some point to feel like you have little to do?

My 2 friends and I started a startup, it became serious about a year ago. At that point, it felt like there were too many tasks to complete in a day. We all worked 60 hours a week including weekends and it felt like we were constantly busy.

Now, we're at about 18 employees (which is mind-boggling!), I have 7 people working under me and at this point it honestly feels like my day to day is filled with meetings (on Monday I had 7 meetings..), answering slack messages/emails, and then probably 1-2 hours/day of getting my hands dirty. I still occasionally code but that should die down within the next couple weeks.

It's also made me have to improve my skillset in areas that I previously didn't think about. I'd say that's where a lot of my attention has been going. How do I manage people better? How can I learn to communicate better? How do I improve thinking about the bigger picture etc..

It's given me a lot of time to plan and manage, which is very important, but I'm just wondering if this is a "normal" transition that startup founders go through? Are there any resources y'all have used to become better at those aspects that you probably aren't very natural at?

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Yeah it's normal. My cofounder and I now have a team of 15 and life isn't about fun things any more - it's meetings about office admin, operational issues, compliance and HR mainly.

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This really varies a lot by company, both what you guys do, what your employees do, what you want your culture to be like, etc. It sounds like pretty similar to what I have seen in work environments though, you're probably spending more time helping out the new folks rather than meetings compared to a bigger corporation (7 meetings is actually not super high for somebody managing 7 people) but having a few hours a day "free" seems about right for 7 employees. Once you're managing double that, expect your "free" time to go to 0, and you'll also need to appoint 1-2 senior folks below you.

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May 6, 2020 at 6:07:14 PM

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