Cameron Prockiw is a entrepreneur and founding partner of Cornerstone Technologies (one of Calgary’s leading web development and design firms), Vovia (online marketing) and Hubblr (social media engagement). Cameron has well over a decade of experience in the digital and online space.
What are the first few things (work/business/personal) that you do each morning?
I’m not really a morning person, but my daughter gets me up early. I usually start the day by getting up to speed checking news and blog sites. Google Plus is also a great source for industry news.
When do you first check your email? And how many emails do you get a day?
I first check my email right after breakfast. I usually get 100 to 150 emails a day.
Do you have any tips for dealing with email?
I only check my email 3 or 4 times a day and have disabled notifications so that incoming email doesn’t distract me from other things. If I see an email that I can deal with in two minutes or less, I deal with it right away. If it’s going to take longer, I add it to my to-do list and prioritize it. I haven’t quite made it to “Zero Inbox” but these techniques really help me.
I only check my email 3 or 4 times a day and have disabled notifications so that incoming email doesn’t distract me from other things.
What time do you usually arrive at the office? And what does your typical day look like?
I’m usually in at 9am but my day doesn’t end until 6 or 7 pm. Typically I have one or two client meetings and one or two internal meetings each day, so they take up a lot of my time.
What’s the most interesting thing about your job?
Working with a variety of clients across a number of different industries. It’s amazing how many substantial companies there are out there that most people haven’t even heard of. For example, we’re working with a company that manufactures water screens that remove algae and other debris from water lines. That’s a very interesting niche business!
How do you approach productivity?
Keeping focused on the things that matter the most as it’s easy to get distracted and spend too much times on things that don’t matter. I make use of daily to-do lists and always check priorities before starting something new. That way, even if I’m not able to get to everything, the things that matter most will still be looked after.
I make use of daily to-do lists and always check priorities before starting something new.
Do you have a good work-life balance?
Having a daughter has forced a better work-life balance as she demands my time when I’m at home. I still work from home at times, but make sure that I spend time with my wife and daughter first and give them my full attention. Turning off cell phones and email occasionally is also good for my sanity.
Can you share a personal or business challenge that was hard to deal with and how you overcame it and what you learned from it?
In the beginning we did some cold calling to get our first clients. I’m not naturally the most outgoing person so I found it uncomfortable, but forced myself to do it. In the end, I landed quite a few clients and ended up being not too bad at it, which taught me that selling (like most things) is a skill which you can learn.
In the beginning we did some cold calling to get our first clients. I’m not naturally the most outgoing person so I found it uncomfortable, but forced myself to do it.
What inspires you?
Learning new things and being challenged.
What is your favourite quote of all time?
“Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration.”
– Thomas Edison
What’s your favourite book?
My favourite business book is Good to Great by Jim Collins.
In your industry, what is the biggest trend or opportunity you are seeing right now?
Social networking is changing our lives in such a profound way as is likely the biggest societal trend since the introduction of the internet itself. This creates a huge opportunity, but everyone is trying to figure this out so there is also an enormous amount of competition as well.
If you weren’t doing what you’re doing now, what would you be doing?
I’m an entrepreneur at heart, so I’d probably start up another business of some kind.