Give a boss a break and the firm will come out on top

Viewed in Financial Times

Conventional wisdom holds that the world’s top performing executives largely live their job, logging long days, working weekends, and rarely taking a break from their professional focus and responsibilities. But conventional wisdom likely is wrong, Financial Times‘ Pilata Clark reports in this article. 

Among others, Clark cites the case of Salesforce.com founder Marc Benioff. Prior to conceiving of the idea for Salesforce.com, which has blossomed into an industry behemoth with over $13 billion in annual revenue, Benioff found himself burning out in his prior role as an Oracle executive.

Noticing Benioff’s need for recharging, Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison suggested something unusual: a three-month sabbatical for Benioff, who says now that he did not at the time even know the meaning of the word “sabbatical.”

But he used the time productively, visiting India, where he gave fresh thinking to his career and business concepts, ultimately conceiving of the ideas that served as the foundation for Salesforce,com’s founding.

Nor is Benioff alone in finding the business sabbatical hugely productive and rewarding. He is, instead, part of “an interesting club of successful people I keep coming across who, at a reasonably important point in their careers, have left their striving peers behind and headed off to see the world,” Clark writes in this Financial Times article.

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