'All time is "spare" - it's about how you fill it' - VisitScotland's Helen Campbell

See the marketing mogul speak at this year's Inspiring Women conference in Edinburgh on 17 March

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Last Updated: 22 Feb 2016

What Does Your Typical Day Look Like?

I wake up at 6am, and go straight online to look at the news (a dreadful habit). Then the next hour is a bit of chaos – the kids, the husband and the dog need feeding. I leave at 7am. I like to get to work early; it’s quality quiet time – an hour before the phones go crazy. It’s time I can use to regroup.

I’m in charge of 40 marketing and PR staff. It’s the usual day-to-day – plus presentations, meetings, and my role as chair of The Marketing Society Scotland. I leave between 5 and 6pm to do the evening shift with the kids, and then I’m back online between 7.30 and 8pm catching up; it depends where I am.

How do you fit it all in?

I don’t know! I don’t see left-over time as ‘spare’ It’s all spare – it’s about how you fill it. You have to consciously try to squeeze in the important things – but also make sure you’re happy with the balance.

My to-do list just grows. I’ve always been naturally good at prioritising; organisation is a big part of my life. I was probably a buzzy big sister. On Sundays I work for Therapet [part of the Canine Concern Scotland Trust]. They rely on animals to go to care homes – they can help with healing, communication and the like. It’s really rewarding; it’s an hour a week, and really worth it.

How do you switch off?

The secret to unwinding starts with the removal of the phone and the iPad. I’m rubbish at it, but I try. My family and friends come first; Edinburgh is a fantastic city to live in – it’s close to the beach, the mountains, great walks… the outdoors is a big thing for our family. I love to travel, too (and a great G&T doesn’t hurt, either).

You’re already at the top of your game. What’s next?

I’m not at the top yet. There’s more I can do. I remain passionate about the country I live in and work for – and maybe I can use that to promote other great places. Some tourism industries are still in their infancy; perhaps a sabbatical somewhere tropical could help.

Hear more from Helen Campbell at MT's Inspiring Women conference in Edinburgh on 17 March. 

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