Why CEOs Like Tim Cook Start Their Day early and don't sleep much

From Tim Cook to Elon Musk, learn how these tech leaders start their day before sunrise and the impact on their productivity. Uncover the secrets behind their sleep habits

Why CEOs Like Tim Cook Start Their Day early and don't sleep much

Friday December 22, 2023,

2 min Read

Many CEOs of major companies, including those of tech giants like Apple, have sleep schedules that deviate significantly from the norm due to their demanding roles and workloads. They often wake up early and go to bed late to manage their busy workdays. Despite this, some still aim for a decent amount of sleep each night.

For instance, Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, is known for waking up at 4:30 AM. He spends the first hour of his day reading user comments about Apple products, which he believes is crucial for focusing on the external factors important to the company. Cook manages to get around 7 hours of sleep every night, going to bed at about 9:30 PM.

On the other hand, Vlad Tenev, CEO of the financial platform Robinhood, averages just over four hours of sleep a night. His sleep schedule is irregular, often sleeping fewer hours during weekdays and compensating for it over the weekends.

American Express CEO Steve Squeri wakes up at around 5:45 AM and has 17-hour workdays packed with meetings, winding down for about an hour at night before going to bed around 11:30 PM.

While these extreme schedules are common among CEOs, there are exceptions. For example, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg aims for eight hours of sleep a night and uses a sleep tracker to monitor his rest.

Notably, the importance of sleep is recognised by some top executives. Elon Musk, for example, sleeps 6 hours every night on average, stating that sleeping less decreases his productivity. Similarly, biotech millionaire Bryan Johnson emphasises sleeping well as part of an age-reversal regimen.

It's evident that the sleep patterns of CEOs vary widely, with some prioritising minimal sleep to maximise work time, while others emphasise the importance of a full night's rest for productivity and health. This reflects the diverse approaches to balancing the demands of high-level leadership with personal health and well-being​