How Newark Mayor Cory Booker Crushes The Daily Race Against Time

Newark Mayor Cory Booker features an in-your-face reminder in his office that every second is precious. Here's what we can learn about entrepreneurial success from his emphasis on openness and urgency.

Don’t count the days; make each one count. That’s the advice New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg gave to his counterpart in Newark about making his business the best it can be. Bloomberg even left Cory Booker with a countdown clock showing his remaining days, hours, and seconds in office, the better to maximize productivity.

And say what you will about Booker's time in office, but no one can question how busy he's been. Whether it’s saving a pet pooch from the freezing cold, helping constituents shovel snow from their driveways, or even rescuing a neighbor from her burning home—all of which he has done—Booker’s very public activism has made him a national celebrity. It’s also allowed him to spearhead an economic revival of the city, with Prudential building a new $444 million office building and Panasonic moving its headquarters in North America to downtown Newark.

Cory Booker

So perhaps it's not too shocking that while New York City is almost 30 times larger in population than Newark, the mayor of Newark has more than twice as many Twitter followers than the mayor of New York.

“As a government leader I’m not going to sit on the sidelines and watch all these other sectors innovate,” Booker says. “I’m going to do everything I can as a leader to be in that innovation, to be a provocateur for that innovation.”

Whether that means founding his own startup, #Waywire, or gearing up for a U.S. Senate run, it’s all about using the strategies of an entrepreneur to inspire change.

“You have to get people excited and paint the picture,” Booker says. “All of us have that part of ourselves. We are all innovators, we all like to use our imagination, which is our greatest tool.”

Well, that and time—which he masters with the help of a very visual cue.

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