Photo by piovasco
OUR TRADITIONAL CULTURE HAS INCULCATED IN US THE VALUE OF HARD WORK. In school, our teachers nurture us with the idea that hard work breeds success. At work, employers recognize and reward their dedicated “hard” working employees.
If you are a hard working employee, you must have earned this honor, but suffered the consequences. The long hours you put forth at work must have left you no time for your family and friends – even for yourself. The enormous amount of effort you spent must have reduced you into a burnt out and stressed unhealthy individual.
Work Smart, Not Hard.
But if you work smartly, you don’t have to work hard. You get more things done with less time, and consequently enjoy more free time. You are calm, relaxed, confident, and pleasant to be around. You find happiness in your work, and achieve maximum success with minimum of resources.
The difference between a hard worker and a smart worker is that while the hard worker does things rightly, the smart worker does the right things.
How to Work Smartly
To work smartly, you first ask the following questions: Should I be working on this in the first place? If so, is there a better way to do it? How do I minimize the use of time, effort, and money to achieve maximum results?
Apply the Pareto Principle:
Working smartly is all about the application of the Pareto Principle. Identify and perform the 20% of your work that will produce 80% of the desired results. Not the other way around: working on 80% of the work that produces only 20% of the results. That’s hard work.
Leverage simply means the ability to do more and more using less and less resources.
How do you maximize the results attained from your limited inputs? What tools or system will multiply the output from the little work you put in? You can do this in two ways:
Leverage your own resources:
- Time. Manage your time around priorities of importance and urgency.
- Energy. Do your more important work during your day’s peak energy hours, and the less at other times.
- Technology. Use machines to expedite your work through automation.
Leverage other people’s resources:
- Time. Employ people for their time to accomplish some of your tasks.
- Talent. Hire people smarter than you, and assign them to do delegated tasks.
- Money. Borrow other people’s money for, or invite them to invest in, your project.
Upgrade Work Method
Seek ways to streamline operations. Break up a big project into its component parts, delegate them, and coordinate the whole effort. Develop shortcut techniques for each operational procedure.
Find areas to multitask wisely. Wise multitasking is done for routine tasks only, not for detailed and risky projects.
Avoid “reinventing the wheel”, and save precious time. Apply to your new project the workable information and methods used successfully in similar past projects.
Improve Work Attitude
When work is an obligation, it becomes hard work. Work for what you believe in, and love every moment of it. That is when work becomes smart work.
If you love your work, then you will totally focus your energies and stay on until work is successfully completed. At every step of the way, you want to be open to learning from your mistakes and the mistakes of others.
Working Hard at Working Smart
When you work hard, you do not work smartly. When you work smartly, you don’t need to work hard. Work hard or work smart: what is your choice?
If you really love to work hard and insist on doing so, then work hard at working smartly. It will give you the best of both worlds – without the limits each one has by itself. This means that your first hard work will be dedicated to learning and doing the smart work way.
After that, take your learning to the next level. Learn how to be more productive the stress-free smart-work way with WORK SMART, Not Hard!: Organizational Tips and Tools That Will Change Your Life! Here you will learn how to delegate and take multitasking to a new level. You will also learn how to organize your work in a way that makes you feel that you only have one thing to do.