Ebony Smith is an OBM + Ops Specialist + founder of the Artistry Marketing Group. Early in April 2020 both she and her husband realized that they had missed so much time in their daughter’s first 4 years from working. As she put it, “Let’s face it, with a traditional 9-5. You have limited time with your child in the morning and in the evening you may pick them up, make dinner, enjoy a little family time, start the bedtime routine and back at it again the next day. I realized then I couldn’t continue operating that way.” In March 2021 she officially started her OBM business. Now she says, “I have a great roster of DREAM clients. I am no longer burnt out, I cut my work time in half, reduced the number of clients that I take, increased my rates, and set boundaries from the beginning. My life is completely different, I am present for my family. I homeschool my daughter (never thought I would do that) and I just enjoy making these memories and soaking up these moments with the kids.”
Here’s a sneak peek at a Day in the Life of Ebony Smith:
I’ve had a hard time finding the “right” routine for me, but this is what a typical day looks like and it’s working. I enjoy waking up early, that can be anytime between 5:00 am and 7:30 am. This gives me time alone while the entire family is sleeping. There have been some days where I sleep until 8:00 am, but I notice that I typically feel more anxious those days so I try not to do that often until I’m tired. I do take medication for anxiety and ADHD so I take those before I even look at the computer.
I have an office at a co-working space that I work from at times, but more recently I’ve been working from home. When it’s working from home day, I take a look at my planner as well as ClickUp. I prioritize my day on a whiteboard and slowly get started. Typically I try to keep my work hours from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm, but that does change as we support international clients so the time difference can alter my working hours on days that we have a scheduled call. I typically get to my computer before 9:00 am, but I don’t open Slack because I generally tend to use that time for tasks for my business or personal development. Once I get to Slack, I first check to see if there are any messages from my team, then check client channels.
More recently I’ve been working from our living room as it’s a pretty central hub so the kids can find me and visually see me. I typically schedule calls during nap time for my son, if I have a call that falls outside of naptime I retreat to my home office.
I find that I reach peak productivity by working in sprints, the times typically vary. I like to focus on one client at a time, and I have a Chrome profile set for each client and one for my business to keep things separated. Once I finish tasks for one client I typically take a break to clear my brain or connect with the kids.
Ahh the great food conversation, meals vary. Recently I’ve been enjoying a smoothie bowl or a bowl of mangos and blueberries. I have reminders in my calendar for lunch and the same for dinner. I am also no stranger to placing a Doordash order when needed. Haha! I love a good taco.
My day-to-day varies, depending on the day of the week. Mondays, Thursdays, and Fridays we have a nanny come in for a few hours and it has been one of the best decisions we have made. Other days, my mom comes to help with homeschooling and caring for the kids. My husband does work an overnight shift so on his off days, we’ll typically alternate various tasks around the house. On days that he works, he’s typically up early prepping the house and then sleeping by early afternoon. My team is made of myself, my best friend who serves as my right hand, aka Director of Operations, and our all-star interns. My friend is local, so we work together in person a few times a week. Over the past few weeks, I’ve been taking one day to work from my grandmother’s home, she has had a few health challenges in the past year, so I make it a priority to get as much time with her as I can.
I find joy in the work I do. My team is amazing, my clients are top tier, I get to hang out with my family every day, and listen to great music throughout the day. I do also enjoy that morning time alone, solo walks through Target, and trips to the hair salon. All of these things that bring me joy, couldn’t be done in my previous company. Other perks include the ability to work at any time, when my kids aren’t feeling well I let my clients know they may not get as quick of response in Slack and I work in between rest times.