Working Hard Vs Working Smart? A Fact or a Myth?

Have you ever been told by someone to stop working hard and start working smart? Have you told another person to work smart rather than hard? We all have come across this advice and most if not all say it without much thought.

Is working hard or smart enough?  Working hard entails spending long hours to achieve your targets or objectives. It focuses on quantity, is tedious, tiresome, stressful, and requires a lot of effort. A hard worker more often than not sticks to the traditional ways of doing things and will rarely incorporate any changes in their work.

Ever heard a manager say that if it is not broken why fix it or we have done this and has worked well for us? I am of the opinion that you can break it to make it work better and that is being smart.

Hard work requires dedication,  commitment, and seriousness and has its place even in the good book. I am of the opinion one must work hard because it pays off but it is not sufficient. Hard work without being smart will rarely pay. Your hard work must be combined with working smart for better and faster results.

Working smart focuses on being efficient and quality. A worker who works smart achieves both quantity and quality. Working smart means you must be flexible and look for new and innovative ways of doing things. This ensures efficiency and saves time.

To be a smart worker you must be knowledgeable in what you do. You must constantly learn and focus on what is important. Smart workers delegate and trust their team to perform the delegated task.

Working smart is, therefore, a fruit of working hard, for it takes hard work to have experience and knowledge to do the work. Incorporating both hard and smart work for the two will give you a strategic approach to achieving your objectives or targets.

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Your thoughts?

Dr. Mary Mugo
Strategy, Governance, and Management Consultant.



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