Friday, February 21, 2020

Working Hard vs Working Smart

In the early days, during the 19th century it was all about WORKING HARD. Since day one when we were brought up as children by our parents, it was always put into our minds to work as hard as possible because that was the only key to success. Overtime this advice or upbringing has changed drastically. Today you are referred to a donkey and the task you are doing is referred to as donkeys work if you are one of those who works hard and does not consider working smart. Well, let me tell you donkeys can play smart too.

The simple difference between WORKING HARD & WORKING SMART is that WORKING HARD includes working on tasks by the book. It would take a longer time to get the task completed and not necessarily make a difference to the end goal. WORKING SMART in turn means analyzing the task in hand and working on it appropriately ensuring it makes a difference to the business or the company that you are working for.

I was born in the 19th century and so I grew up during the same time when it was drilled into our heads that working hard would bear better fruits. Overtime, I have realised that working smart does help you do more and save much time for something else. Here are a few pointers that may help you at your workplace :

END RESULT: You need to understand the end result before working on any task. This will help you to understand the metrics you need to work upon and ignore the elements not required to concentrate on thus yielding better end results.

PLAN THE DAY: The most efficient and effective way to deal with any task in hand is to plan your day and your task. Create check points or bullet points which mark the most important parts of the task and work upon them one by one and tick them off once done.

UNDERSTAND THE LOSE ENDS: While working on any task you may come across issues that cannot be resolved by you and you may require someone else help or you may require to approach another team altogether to get it resolved. In such cases, always push through these tasks and delegate them to the respective teams while you can work on the rest of the tasks. Meanwhile, they shall also get back to you with an outcome of the task completed by them.

THE 80-20 RULE: This rule can literally save lives. Put yourself in a situation wherein you are supposed to go out of the country for a business meeting, what are the top priorities tasks that you would like to complete from your list before moving out? These tasks come in your top 20% of the tasks that you need to complete urgently.

TIME BLOCKS FOR TASKS: Create time blocks for tasks to ensure you are giving 100% attention and concentration to your tasks. Avoid unnecessary distraction and if required stay away from your personal gadgets which often have the tendency to take you away from your current task & lure you into the world of internet.

TIME BLOCKS FOR BREAKS: As much as it’s important to create time blocks for your tasks, it’s equally important to create time blocks for breaks. It’s vital you give that brain of yours some rest and get back to your task 100% energized to give it your 100%

ASK FOR HELP: Many of us withdraw ourselves when it comes to asking for help from others. It can be our family member or our co-workers. Sometimes it’s out of our own EGO and sometimes it is out of unnecessary CONCLUSIONS. EGO normally keeps us from asking help to avoid feeling less important. CONCLUSIONS such as they must be busy with their own schedule, what they will think of me if I ask them for help, I hope they don’t make a fool out of me etc. etc. Well the answer to all your questions is “As long as it gets your work done, it really doesn’t matter” On the other hand you may make more friends and build yourself a network where you can always go to for any kind of help.

AVOID PROCRASTINATION: Procrastination is the new term that has been introduced with the millennial generation. People often procrastinate because they are fearful to fail at work. This fear of failure can promote procrastination in various ways, thus resulting in less productivity at work of an individual. It’s important that you start and complete your task by giving it your best shot and leave the rest as not everything is under your control. As long as you have given it your best, you need not worry about the rest.

At the end of the day just make sure that whatever task or job you take in your hands, you do your best and most of all do what you love to do. Anything that you do as a compulsion will not yield good results as compared to the initiatives taken from your end itself. I hope this article will bring you more clarity and hope when you go to work tomorrow or the week after. Work well.


Anonymous said...

Amazing insights Sonu Ji and team. Really appreciate a lot. Amazing article. I knew this but didn't have clarity so never used it as specified in the article. Amazing to the point strategies.