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The Peter Attia Drive

Feb 17, 2020

In my first interview with Jason Fried, Jason explained his overall philosophy about work-life balance and how exactly he optimizes for efficiency. For this special follow-up AMA, we've decided to release the full episode to everyone (including non-subscribers), so all can hear Jason answer questions from listeners that dive deeper into topics such as work-life balance, the role of luck versus hard work in success, specifics around Basecamp’s unique process-oriented approach to projects, 4-day work weeks, practical tips for people searching for the right company culture, tips on writing and parenting, and a whole bunch more.

  • If Jason had taken his own advice about work-life balance at the start of his career, would he have achieved the same level of success? [2:05];

  • What is Jason’s definition of success, and what is he optimizing for? [10:10];

  • Basecamp’s policy on email and expectations for a quick response, and why Jason believes in sleeping on big decisions [14:30];

  • How Jason implements “true” work-life balance in his life and at Basecamp [19:15];

  • Does work and life have to be separated in order to have balance? [32:00];

  • How Jason makes time the fixed component to avoid the compulsion to keep pushing forward on a project perpetually [34:15];

  • Jason’s tip for physicians who may be facing burnout [45:00];

  • Signs of “burnout” if you do the same thing for work and pleasure, and tips to avoid and manage that feeling [49:45];

  • Is a 40-hour work week the correct amount? [53:45];

  • How to evaluate a company’s culture when looking for a job with the right work environment [59:00];

  • Jason’s take on salaries and alternate incentives like equity, profit sharing, etc. [1:06:45];

  • What traits does Jason look for when hiring new employees? [1:13:45];

  • Does Jason believe in process-oriented work or outcome-driven work, and Basecamp’s unique process for completing projects [1:16:15];

  • How does Jason handle a project that results in a failure? [1:20:00];

  • Advice for people in situations where they don’t have full control of their time and work demands [1:23:50];

  • How much of success should be attributed to skill versus luck? [1:29:30];

  • The importance of writing skills, and tip to improve your writing [1:43:15];

  • Lessons learned from parenting, and Peter’s top priority when it comes to raising kids [1:52:15];

  • An important skill: the ability to say “no” to things [2:01:15]; and

  • More.

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