When I read the Elon Musk (Tesla CEO) tweet who said “Nobody ever changed the world on 40 hours a week”, my stomach wrapped. I found a disservice from a prominent CEO, at a time when everyone I know – especially those working in the corporate world – is struggling to find work life balance.
As soon as I moved to Amsterdam my priority was to find a daycare for my daughters. I spent the first two weeks in the tulip land without stepping in a garden or park, just visiting daycares.
Finally, I visited Curious Kids day care (kinderopvang). At the same day I enrolled my girls because they have a different proposal compared to the other ones I had visited.
Ananda Hagens is the founder and CEO of Curious Kids. She opened her first unit in 2010, with only 24 years old, recently graduated in Pedagogy and without any bank financing (exactly for those reasons).
Today she manages 14 units and a team with more than 100 employees. In 10 years she has collected stories of how she overcame economic, cultural and management barriers. The recipe is known, but not easy: risk-taking guts, many working hours and some personal deprivation.
In our conversation, I heard from Ananda something similar to Elon’s tweet. I understood at that moment that the perspective is uncomfortable (at this moment of my life, doesn’t connect with me), but even so, it is not incorrect. If this level of dedication does not seem right or possible to you, I do not think you need to give up on enterprising, but you must adjust your expectations properly.
Ananda was 100% “present” in our conversation. She clearly opened her schedule to talk for hours with an unknown person. She did it to support my project as well. The outstanding growth of Ananda’s business has not made her arrogant…by the way, is exactly the key reason of her success.